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Traditional pop singer Ron Kaplan was born in Hollywood, CA, the son of a professional trumpeter who played in jazz bands. His early influences were the pop singers of the 1950s, including Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald. His first instrument was the drums, although he later played piano and guitar. After studying at an acting workshop, he attended Valley College in Los Angeles, from which he graduated with an associate in arts degree in 1976. After college, he turned to songwriting and performing. He continued his education at the University of California at Santa Cruz, earning a B.A. in psychology. After a decade of listening closely to instrumental jazz, in 1995 he began performing the standards of the Great American Songbook. Since then, while maintaining a non-music career as an agent for the Allstate Insurance Company, he has sung with a variety of jazz musicians, not only in Southern California, but also in Las Vegas, London, New York, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. In 1997, he recorded his debut album, High Standards, for his own Kapland Records label. In 1999, he recorded Lounging Around, which was released initially in 2000 and reissued in revised form on July 15, 2006. Dedicated, released on May 1, 2003, was his third album, and he followed it with Jazz Ambassadors on June 15, 2004, and Saloon (on which he was accompanied only by pianist Weber Iago) on August 31, 2005. New York, featuring songs written about its namesake, followed in 2007. In addition to his performing and recording activities, he founded and became the executive director of the non-profit organization the American Songbook Preservation Society. ~ William Ruhlmann