Amnor Music - The Music of Norman McGraw


About Norman McGraw

Norman McGraw inherited his musical talent from his mother, who sang in amateur talent shows. She started him with piano lessons at age five. "My parents didn't have to force me to practice", he recalls. "Rather, they had to drag me off the piano."

The family moved to Los Angeles. Continuing his private piano lessons in southern California, Mr. McGraw studied clarinet for one year when he was twelve, and drums for four years starting when he was nineteen. During that time he began experimenting with composing and orchestrating. As he put it, "When I was eighteen, I could turn down the volume on the TV and score, in my head, the show or movie I was watching."

While studying at Loyola Marymount University of L. A. in the late 60's, Mr. McGraw majored in cinema arts and also attended music classes there. Because of his knowledge in both film and music, he was called upon by many fledgling filmmakers to compose music for their projects. "I wrote everything from Elizabethan to koto music," he recalls. "Working with my fellow students gave me a resume for working after college."

After college, Mr. McGraw wrote a theme for a local L.A. TV show as well as scores for a number of industrial films, most notably for Southcoast Regional Laboratory and Lockheed. Throughout the 70's and the 80's he wrote musical arrangements for various artists, as well as for the Jupiter Records record label.

Mr. McGraw composed the music for his own film short, "Getting Home", which won first prize as the best dramatic short at the Houston Film Festival. "That was especially fun to do," he recalls. "After that, I felt the urge to produce my own musical CDs."

Since that time Norman McGraw has composed numerous songs, produced 3 CDs and taught innumerable students how to play piano. "I've taught students young and old, beginning and advanced, as well as most styles," he comments. "I keep it simple. I tell all my students that I have only two rules: 1) Try it my way. If it doesn't work, it must be my fault; and 2) Laugh at my jokes."

That's because fun is part of Mr. McGraw's teaching method as well as listening to his music.


"Norman McGraw is one of the most prolific composers I have ever worked with. His range of compositions stretch broadly across the musical spectrum with a rarely encountered, astounding versatility. Once his melodies have reached your ears, they remain in your memory forever. I am honored to know him, both as an enormously gifted composer/musician, and as a friend."

- Toni Morrell
British Singer-Entertainer


Norman McGraw