Misha Segal's Biography
Misha Segal, with over 150 film scores to his credit, has made significant contributions to the film industry. These include "The Last Dragon" for Berry Gordy, the critically acclaimed "The Phantom of the Opera," the beloved children's film "The New Adventures of Pippi Longstocking," and "Un Secreto de Esperanza," the final movie for Mexican diva Katy Jurado. Misha's unique style is also evident in other domestic and international films such as Chen Kaige's "Legend of the Demon Cat," as well as in animated features like "The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus" and "The Secret Garden." He has received recognition for his work in television, including an Emmy Award and an Emmy Award nomination.
Before moving to the US, Misha had an extensive career in his native Israel, where he was a vanguard and an acknowledged icon. His jazz, rock, pop, and classical compositions, (performed by the Israeli Philharmonic and the Israeli Chamber Ensemble among others,) revolutionized contemporary music in his homeland. Misha's claim to fame stemmed from his constant search for new sounds, horizons, and groundbreaking ideas. His numerous hits were due in part to his interpretation and application of western music influences to the Israeli cultural scene. He received the Israeli Oscar (Ophir Award) nomination for his score to the controversial movie For My Father.
Upon graduating summa cum laude from Berklee College of Music, Misha moved to New York, where he enjoyed a successful career. Initially, he was managed by Teo Macero, the producer of Miles Davis. He then began working with Columbia Records and RCA, and had the privilege of writing, arranging, orchestrating, or producing for high-profile artists such as Luther Vandross, Nancy Wilson, Randy Crawford, Bob James, Buddy Rich, Maynard Ferguson, Phyllis Hyman, and Dave Grusin.
After moving to Los Angeles, besides his film scoring career gaining momentum, Misha was also signed by Berry Gordy, the founder of Motown Records, to compose and write for their artists. He eventually scored Gordy's final major film, "The Last Dragon," and wrote the love theme song, performed by Smokey Robinson and Seretta.
In the US, Misha's highly-acclaimed first CD, "Zambooka" (Music Masters), featured legendary artists Chick Corea, Freddy Hubbard, and Mark Isham. It hit #1 with the Critic's Choice Awards in JAZZIZ magazine and was endorsed by Quincy Jones and Bob James. His next album, "Connected to the Unexpected" (JVC), was played heavily by top NAC stations and at over 200 colleges across the nation. Far ahead of its time, reviewers praised it as a "new genre in music."
Misha also recorded a solo two-CD piano compilation, "Female" (PrimaVista, 2005). Described by fans as a cross between Chopin's Nocturnes and a laid-back Keith Jarrett, the collection consists of improvised original music and a few cherished love songs. "Female" was at the core of Misha's concert series, "Beauty Found in Unlikely Places," which honored his mother, Elizabeth Segal. Her unbreakable spirit inspired her son's concerts. She lost a six-year battle with lung cancer on Mother's Day 2001. Misha used the concert series to raise public awareness of lung cancer and to inspire and heal those battling the disease. He also recorded a three-CD compilation titled "Christmas Healing" (PrimaVista, 2006). His latest Trio CD, Songs For My Mother – Ocean to Ocean, is an extension of the solo Female CD concept and features Ben Powell on violin and Michael Valerio on Bass.
As a producer and co-writer, Misha produced the album "Don't Say It's Over" (Warner Brothers) featuring vocalist Randy Crawford. The album spent three weeks at #1 on the New Adult Contemporary (NAC) Charts. In his album project, "The Blue Lou & Misha Project - Highly Classified," Misha collaborates with "Blue Lou" Marini and showcases his drive for creating unique compositions and arrangements. In this album Misha focuses on a cutting-edge, urban cool jazz vibe, resulting in a soundscape of edgy concepts and cliché-free tones.