Richard Galliano studied piano and accordion at the age of 4 with his father Lucien Galliano, accordionist and teacher. Particularly gifted and invested, he quickly entered the Nice Conservatory, directed at that time by organist Pierre Cochereau, and followed courses in harmony, counterpoint and trombone. He won first prize in 1969 for this instrument.
He arrived in Paris in 1975 and met Claude Nougaro, becoming his friend, his accordionist and conductor until 1983. The author and composer found each other. They get along beautifully. From this close collaboration will be born many songs that are part of the heritage of French song, such as Allée des brouillards, Des voiliers,Vie Violence…
The second decisive meeting took place in 1980, with the Argentinean composer and bandoneonist Astor Piazzolla. Astor strongly encouraged him to create the French “New Musette”, as he himself had previously invented the Argentinean “New Tango”.
During his long and prolific career, Richard Galliano recorded more than 50 albums under his name. He also collaborates with an impressive number of prestigious artists and musicians: Chet Baker, Eddy Louiss, Ron Carter, Wynton Marsalis, Charlie Haden, Gary Burton, Michel Portal, Toots Thielemans, Kurt Elling, for jazz. Serge Reggiani, Claude Nougaro, Barbara, Juliette Greco, Dick Annegarn, Georges Moustaki, Allain Leprest, Charles Aznavour, Serge Gainsbourg, for French song. Nigel Kennedy for the classical repertoire and a large number of orchestras.
During his world tours, he has performed in the most prestigious theatres: the Lincoln Center in New York, the Victoria Hall in Geneva, the Accademia Santa Cécilia in Rome, the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, the Théâtre Marinsky in Saint-Petersburg, the New Philharmonies in Hamburg and Paris…
In 1997 Richard Galliano was awarded a “Victoire de la Musique Jazz” for his album New York Tango. He was again in 1998 for a new album Blow Up, recorded in duo with Michel Portal. In 2009, he was appointed Officer in the Order of Arts and Letters.
In 2010, he received the “SACEM Prize for the Best Pedagogical Work for the Accordion Method”, which he and his father Lucien Galliano, at the Lemoine Publishing House, realized. He recorded a Bach album with Deutsche Grammophon in 2010. This album breaks the records of classic sales and exceeds 70,000 copies sold.
He is named Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters in 2011.He won the “Victoire de la Musique Classique” in 2014 and also received the “Best Composer of the Year 2014 Award”.
Continuing more and more frequently to record classical repertoires, he recorded a new album in 2016, this time dedicated to the work of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
The year 2016 also saw the release of a new quartet album New Jazz Musette released under the Italian label Ponderosa music&art, thirty years after the album Spleen, which introduced in 1985 the musical concept called New Jazz Musette.
In 2016 he was promoted to Officer of the National Order of Merit by the President of the Republic François Hollande.