March 17, 1935 – April 16, 2020
Ronald “Ron” Gill, beloved father to Stephen, Kenneth and Shauna; and husband of the late Loyce Fairfax Gill and beloved son of the late Evelyn Gill Collins passed peacefully on April 16 in Charlotte, NC.
Ron was a local jazz champion/aficionado; producer of a jazz radio show for 23 years at WGBH; and an accomplished singer.
One of his finest recordings was Ron Gill Sings the Songs of Billy Strayhorn, released in 1998, shows his artistry for phrasing.
Ron’s final album release with his long-time collaborator, guitarist, John Stein and pianist, Gilad Barkan, was Turn Up The Quiet in 2009. Other long-time musical partners were the late pianist Manny Williams, Reid Jorgensen and Bill Hill.
He was President of The Jazz Coalition and The New England Jazz Alliance. As a producer, he produced songs for many other performers. He also toured with The Duke Ellington Orchestra, directed by Mercer Ellington.
On the Jazz Gallery, his radio show, Gill made sure to devote entire shows to specific artists so that the listener would understand the depth of the performers’ skill and artistry.
Ron was a graphic designer who served as an Art Director for the Polaroid Corporation where he designed the packaging for the SX-70 Instant Camera from 1968 to 1985. In 1986 he became a Founding Partner and Art Director of the Design Collaborative in Boston. He was also a Sales Associate for Staples. Ron retired to Charlotte, North Carolina in 2009.
Music is part of Ron’s bloodline. His musical talent has passed to his grandson, Deion Gill. Although in different genres, the talent is just as abundant. His granddaughter, Lauren Morris, is an actor who hopes to perform professionally.
He also shared his extensive knowledge of jazz with his brother, Tessil Collins, who produces the digital station, Jazz 24/7, for WGBH. Ron also leaves his grandson, DeVaughn Gill, daughter-in-law Kathy Diamond and son-in-law John Morris.