Home > New Jersey > East Brunswick

Mike Stein has had the privilege to create and reimagine some of the greatest songs of our time with renowned artists in many genres.

Bernard Purdie, the world’s most recorded drummer, noticed Mike’s versatility and skill as a performer and writer and has made Mike his primary co-producer, arranger and conductor. They are currently collaborating on a new R&B record that includes five of Mike’s original songs. “Higher,” an uplifting gospel track, had its debut performance in Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola at Lincoln Center with Bernard Purdie’s R&B Ensemble. The album will be released under the 3Bs Music and Records label along with another new album featuring the Rosemary Clooney songbook. For this, Mike developed jazz/pop arrangements for a nine piece band that feel fresh yet pay homage to the original sound of the day. Currently they are producing Mehrzad Marashi, the winner of the German Idol Season 7.

Mike’s dedication to high level musicianship is also evident through his work with Glen Burtnik of Styx and the Electric Light Orchestra. Mike has arranged and performed in some of New Jersey’s premiere venues including the Count Basie Theatre, New Jersey Performing Arts Center and the State Theater, entertaining thousands of patrons. Working with Mr. Burtnik they have staged concerts honoring the catalogues of some of America’s most cherished songwriters. Along with Marshall Crenshaw, they have performed multiple albums of The Beatles. Mike was instrumental as the keyboardist and arranger for their well received note-for-note interpretation. He provided arrangements and played percussion and harmonica as well. Their Summer Of Love concert featured Mike conducting and playing the music of the Woodstock generation. Mike was able to capture the 1960s sound to emulate the aura of a bygone era. Other concerts with Burtnik include John Lennon’s 70th Birthday Celebration, The Incredible Simulators with Liberty Devitto of Billy Joel, The Complete Revolver Album, and Glen Burtnik’s Christmas Extravaganza featuring well known holiday songs.

Mike has toured with April Smith & The Great Picture Show playing venues in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, Spokane, Boise, Salt Lake City, Denver, Washington DC, New York City, Atlanta and Austin. They also came in first place in a battle of the bands competition when they performed on Garrison Keiller’s radio show “Prairie Home Companion.” Mike teamed up with his collaborating partner and vocalist, Thana Alexa, for a performance at Sweet Rhythm in Greenwich Village, NYC and has performed the pre-game show for the NBA’s Orlando Magic.

Over the years, Mike has performed and/or recorded with the following people: Tommy DeCarlo (Boston), Steve Augieri (Journey), George Naha (Sam & Dave, Darlene Love, Wilson Pickett), Steve Jankowski (BS&T, Don Henley and Shakira), Tom Timko (BS&T, Don Henley), Antonique Smith (RENT, the movie Notorious), Tony Shanahan (Patti Smith), Rashidra Scott (HAIR, Avenue Q), Marc Muller (Shania Twain), Tom Brislin (YES, Meat Loaf), Patti Smyth, Marc Pender, Richie “La Bamba” Rosenberg, among others.

Music making is not just limited to the recording studio and concert stage. He has worked in theatre, film, and television.
Mike was one of the youngest musical directors ever to work Off-Broadway. He was the musical director, arranger, and pianist for Chuckleball: The Sports Comedy And Parody Musical Revue’s original New York City Run as well as subsequent engagements and showcases. Other musical theatre credits include playing synthesizer in the orchestra for Steven Sondheim’s Into The Woods, at the Fashion Institute Of Technology. He’s also played the scores of Once Upon A Mattress and My Favorite Year.

Mike’s understanding of telling stories and building dramatic arcs are evident through his film scoring work. He studied with Sonny Kompanek, best known for his work on several Coen Brother films and The Good Shepherd. Mike was commissioned by the New School University to compose an original three-hour score for the classic silent film, The Birth of a Nation. The piece was used as part of the university’s symposium on race and representation in the United States.

For television, Mike wrote string arrangements for Glen Burtnik’s original songs that are featured on the public television – WHYY network program, On Canvas. Other project include a television pilot for a new reality show.

Mike is a graduate of the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music. He studied composition and score reading with Kirk Nurock, arranging with Charles Tolliver and Rich Shemaria and piano with Gerard D’Angelo and Mike Ledonne. Further study in orchestration and conducing with Rudy Palmer was at the Mannes College of Music. In academia, he was the Assistant Professor and substitute for the R&B Ensemble class at the New School University. Mike is currently working toward getting his Masters Degree in Music Composition.

Mike Stein is a member of New York City’s Local 802 American Federation of Musicians. He volunteers at the International Association for Jazz Education conference.

Studio Location
East Brunswick, New Jersey 08816
(732) 236-5807