Recognized for his signature touch, harmonic sophistication, and sense of rhythm and the blues, Pat Kelley worked many years as a Los Angeles studio guitarist, while also touring the world for five years as a member of George Benson’s band and two years with Natalie Cole. He has worked with Tom Scott, Hubert Laws, Ronnie Laws, David Benoit, Jane Monheit, Burt Bacharach, Gregg Karukas, Melissa Manchester, Al Jarreau, Eric Marienthal, and others. As the house guitarist for the final five years of the Merv Griffin Show, Pat followed in the footsteps of former Merv show guitarists Herb Ellis, Jim Hall, and Mundell Lowe. He also worked as the CBS house guitarist for the Pat Sajak and new Carol Burnett shows. With eleven albums as leader, in 2014, Pat released “Overtones 4 Two Guitars”, an album of duo guitar performances with Bruce Forman, Peter Bernstein, Howard Alden, Anthony Wilson, Larry Koonse, Frank Potenza, John Stowell, John Pisano, and John Storie. Pat was frequently featured on John Pisano’s Guitar Night concerts. On the USC Studio/Jazz Guitar faculty for twenty-four years, Pat now holds the title of professor emeritus. Born and raised in Tulsa, Pat was inducted into the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame in 2003, joining guitar idols and fellow Oklahomans Charlie Christian and Barney Kessel.
Pat Kelley with his Bambino Model.
photo courtesy of player