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David Darling (born March 3, 1941) is an American cellist and composer. In 2010, he won the Grammy Award for Best New Age Album. He has performed and recorded with Bobby McFerrin and Spyro Gyra and has released several solo albums.

David Darling
Born(1941-03-04)March 4, 1941
Elkhart, Indiana, U.S.
GenresJazz, new-age
Years active1980s–present
Associated actsGallery


Music careerEdit

Darling was born in Elkhart, Indiana. He was interested in music from an early age, beginning piano when he was four, cello at ten, and string bass in high school. He studied classical cello at Indiana State University and after graduating remained there another four years as a teacher.[1]

He worked as a studio musician in Nashville, Tennessee and was a member of the Paul Winter Consort until 1978. During the following year, he formed the chamber jazz group Gallery with Ralph Towner and released his first solo album.[1]

Darling's performance and composition draw on a wide range of styles, including classical, jazz, Brazilian, African, and Indian music.

He has written and performed music for more than a dozen major motion pictures, the horror film Child's Play (1988), Heat (1995), and Until the End of the World (1991). He contributed music to Nouvelle Vague (1990), Éloge de l'amour (2001), and Notre musique (2004).

In 2000, he recorded an unusual collaboration with the Wulu Bunun, a group of Taiwanese aborigines.[2]

In 2007 he recorded The Darling Conversations, with Julie Weber discussing his music philosophy. It was issued by Manifest Spirit Records. In January 2009, Darling released the Grammy winning, Prayer for Compassion, a follow-on to his earlier 8-String Religion.

Other activitiesEdit

In 1986, Darling joined Young Audiences, an organization that seeks to educate children about music and the arts through school programs. In the same year, he founded Music for People, which seeks to encourage self-expression through musical improvisation. His teaching methods are the subject of a book, Return to Child (2008).

In May 2008, he became part of a collaboration of music teacher and performers offering a training program in holistic and intercultural approaches to healing with sound and music at the New York Open Center Sound and Music School.

Awards and honorsEdit

  • Grammy Award, Best New Age Album, A Prayer for Compassion, 2010[3]


As leaderEdit

  • Journal October (ECM, 1979)
  • Cycles (ECM, 1981)
  • Cello (ECM, 1992)
  • Dark Wood, (ECM, 1993)
  • Eight String Religion, (Curve Blue,1993)
  • The Tao of Cello (Relaxation, 1993)
  • Musical Massage: Balance (Relaxation, 2000)
  • Cello Blue, (Hearts of Space/Valley Entertainment, 2001)
  • Musical Massage: In Tune (Relaxation, 2001)
  • River Notes, (Wind Over the Earth, 2002)
  • Open Window (Relaxation, 2003)
  • Mudanin (Kata World Music Network/Riverboat, 2004)
  • Balance (Gaiam, 2006)
  • Musical Massage: Blissful Relaxation (Relaxation, 2007)
  • The Darling Conversations, Vol. 1 (Manifest Spirit, 2007)
  • Prayer for Compassion (Curve Blue, 2009)
  • Where Did the Time Go (CD Baby, 2013)
  • Gratitude (Curve Blue, 2016)[4]

As sidemanEdit

With Peter Kater

  • Homage, 1989
  • Migration, 1992

With Ketil Bjørnstad

With Terje Rypdal

With Jacqueline Tschabold Bhuyan

  • Cello & Piano Meditations (Sounds True, 2012)
  • Improvisations for Cello & Piano (CD Baby, 2012)

With others

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Phares, Heather. "David Darling | Biography & History". AllMusic. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2006-05-12. Retrieved 2006-04-08.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "David Darling | Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  4. ^ "David Darling | Album Discography". AllMusic. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  5. ^ "Into the Deep: America, Whaling & The World". Valley Entertainment. Retrieved 25 June 2010.

External linksEdit