Vandivier is a guitarist skilled at sparking the intellect, warming the heart, and raising the spirit of listeners. He plays with fire, sometimes smoldering, sometimes raging. He has the subtle sophistication of a premier jazz guitarist, but he plays with the energy of a rocker, the groove of a funkaholic, and the lyricism of a seasoned pro. Watching Vandivier perform, one sees a man that lives to make music, and has spent a lifetime embracing his mission of making life better by sharing music. He is a true sonic expressionist. Alexander Schmitz wrote “His trio with Dan Robbins, bass and electric bass, and Lorca Hart, drums, is called Vandivier, and he's the guitarist Rick Vandivier 63, who's the living soul legend and feels more in the heart and fingers than dozens of other string VIPs together.” (Jazz Podium, Germany, 11/1/17)
Rick Vandivier has been performing and recording in the San Francisco Bay Area for the last 35 years. He is composer and leader of his own dynamic group, Vandivier, a contemporary eclectic trio. Vandivier’s most recent album release “Under One Roof” went public in October 2017 and received robust national airplay over a twelve week period, and was tracked in the top one hundred by JazzWeek. In Andrew Gilbert’s San Jose Mercury piece from September 7th, 2017, he writes “Vandivier has..never sounded better than on his new album “Under One Roof”. His previous recordings are “Vandivier” (2008) and “Spirit of the Room” (2003). In addition, he is co-leader of Primary Colors, along with vocalist extraordinaire, Nate Pruitt. The group specializes in jazz and grooves with adventuresome interplay. Primary Colors has three CD releases to date. Rick has performed with artists that include Carl Saunders, Albert "Tootie" Heath, Bruce Forman, John Handy, Mose Allison, David Grisman, Richie Cole and Dr. Lonnie Smith.
Mr. Vandivier’s performance career has led him to performances at the The North Sea Jazz Festival in Holland, the Berlin Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, the San Francisco Jazz Festival, Summerfest in Boston, and the San Jose Jazz Festival. Other venues include Chicago Opera House, the Wilshire Theatre in Los Angeles, Insaac in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Africa, Napflio in Greece, the Berklee Performance Center in Boston, the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, and Carnegie Hall in New York City.
Born in Lima, Ohio, Rick is a graduate of the Berklee School of Music in Boston and San Jose State University. In addition to private studies with Pat Metheny and Mick Goodrick, Mr. Vandivier has taken master classes with Christopher Parkening, Ray de la Torre, Michael Lorimer, Michael Hedges, Tuck Andress and Manuel Barreuco. Mr. Vandivier is an instructor at San Jose State University and Stanford University. He has been happy to collaborate on the recordings of numerous artists such as Nika Rejto, Ed Johnson, and Kat Para.
A devoted husband and father, Rick lives in Palo Alto, California, with his wife, Kristi, and their sons, Preston and Kai.