Griz Gifford has enjoyed an extraordinarily varied and colorful career as a trombonist, performing virtually all styles of music that call for a trombone. His classical credits are mostly from his early years in Baltimore, including the Gettysburg and Annapolis Symphonies, Chesapeake Opera and Maryland Ballet, but his real passion is for popular and commercial music. His career moves took him from Baltimore to Atlantic City and then New York City.
He has performed for a plethora of entertainment greats, including Tom Jones, Liza Minnelli, Michael Jackson, Jerry Lewis, Johnny Mathis, Glen Campbell, The Temptations, The Four Tops, The O'Jays, Aretha Franklin, Dionne Warwick, Mel Torme, and many more. In New York, he played Broadway shows and for a number of jazz, funk and Latin bands. He spent a year on tour with "A Chorus Line," sailed the Caribbean on cruise ships, played for the Ringling Bros. Barney & Bailey Circus, toured with Latin salsa legend Ishmael Rivera, and performed at two presidential Inaugural balls.
His arrangements for solo trombone and piano and for small brass ensembles are published by Joseph Compello Publications, and are available through JW Pepper.
His touring has taken him to 45 states and Puerto Rico. He is listed in "Who's Who in America," "Who's Who Among America's Teachers," and was a 2020 inductee into the Maryland Entertainment Hall of Fame. He is still active in the freelance scene in the mid-Atlantic region, and fronts his own New Orleans combo, Griz Gifford & Company. He currently lives with his wife on a horse farm in southern Pennsylvania.