RAY KELLEY has worked as a professional cellist for over 50 years. At age 18, he worked in Hollywood [his home town] for one season as a cello player in a Country Western band on The Spade Cooley Show, broadcast on KTLA-TV. This was the 1st of many professional engagements.
In 1956, Ray began his classical music career playing one season in the Utah Symphony… and six years in the Dallas Symphony. He moved back to Los Angeles at age 25 when he joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic. During the next five years, he traveled extensively with the L.A. Philharmonic, experiencing an exciting 8-week tour around-the-world in 1967, playing in most of the great venues and concert halls of the world.
In 1968, after 12 years in classical music, he left the Philharmonic to work as a full-time, free-lance cellist on records, films, commercials and live television shows. He continues to work in the L.A. studios to this day—and is Principal Cellist on the long-running animated series The Simpsons.
In 1988, Ray founded Resort Music, Inc., a music publishing, record and tourism marketing company, producing instrumental CDs – some of which represent areas of the country including Palm Springs; Chicago; Brevard County, Florida; and the State of Wisconsin. His contemporary music CDs are heard on radio across the country and internationally, as well as on satellite background services around the world.
In 2007, Ray was asked to fill the newly created position of Music Advisor for the Palm Springs Unified School District (PSUSD). In this capacity, he also performs programs for elementary school children, exposing them to the beauty of the cello and speaking to them about the importance of all kinds of music in their young lives.