Tord Gustavsen (born 5 October 1970) is a jazz pianist and composer. He tours extensively world-wide, and he has been a bandleader for a trio, ensemble and quartet at various times, all bearing his name.
Gustavsen was born in Oslo and raised in rural Hurdal, Akershus.
Gustavsen holds a Bachelor's degree (mellomfag) in psychology at the University of Oslo, before he attended the Trondheim Musikkonsevatorium for a three years study of jazz (1993-96). Thereafter he became a graduate (Cand.philol.) of musicology at the University of Oslo, where he was guest teacher of jazz piano and theory (1998-2002).
Tord Gustavsen Trio
The Tord Gustavsen Trio was made up of Gustavsen on piano, Harald Johnsen on double bass and Jarle Vespestad on drums. They released three studio albums on ECM Records. The trio won the Nattjazz prize in 2005.
Tord Gustavsen Ensemble
He followed them with an ensemble starting 2008. It was formed during Vossajazz that year and was composed of Gustavsen, Tore Brunborg (saxophone), Mats Eilertsen (bass) and Jarle Vespestad (drums). It released one studio album, Restored, Returned, which was awarded with Spellemannsprisen (the Norwegian Grammy).
Tord Gustavsen Quartet
Gustavsen formed a new quartet with Tore Brunborg on saxophone, Mats Eilertsen on double bass, and Jarle Vespestad on drums. The album The Well was released in 2012. followed by a new album in 2014.
Other collaborations and interests
In addition, he has recorded as a session musician, and guested on friends' albums. Collaborative projects have included Norwegian jazz vocalist and songwriter Silje Nergaard, musician Carl Petter Opsahl, singers Kristin Asbjørnsen and Solveig Slettahjell, actress Cecilie Jørstad and drummer Rune Arnesen, duo aire & angels and jazz vocalist Siri Gjære. He also took part in Nymark Collective established by Kåre Nymark.
Gustavsen continues to be highly interested in psychology and has written a lengthy thesis on the paradoxes of improvisation drawing on the dialectical psychological theory of Helm Stierlin and Anne-Lise Løvlie Schibbye.
2005: Nattjazzprisen (for the Tord Gustavsen Trio),
2009: Spellemannprisen in the class Jazz (for the Tord Gustavsen Ensemble)