Obituary: Composer & Pianist James Primosch Passes at 65

By David Salazar

James Primosch, composer, producer, and pianist, passed away on April 26, 2021, at the age of 65.

Primosch was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1956 and studied at Cleveland State University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Columbia University. He was an active pianist and studied jazz piano and worked as a liturgical musician with leading artists and ensembles from around the world.

He also educated aspiring songwriters for over 30 years.

Primosch’s musical compositions were “infallible: his vocal lines always conveyed words and ideas, original, authentic and honest, while his instrumental accompaniment provided additional depth and drama.

“Songs that elegantly combined personal fervor and worldly sophistication,” said Corinna Da Fonseca-Wolheim of the New York Times. His works were always considered “impressive, surprising, grandly romantic and very accessible.”

He had a great fondness for jazz, but his music ranged from lyric, as in to “blindingly angular.” He was also a church musician and his compositions were based on sacred songs or religious texts.