Kenneth David Kirkland was born in Brooklyn, New York, in 1955. He was just six years old when he first began to play the piano. Kirkland attended Catholic school for many years before enrolling at Manhattan School of Music to study classical piano performance, theory, and composition. His first professional gig was with Polish fusion violinist Michal Urbaniak. He toured throughout Europe in 1977 with his group and recorded the albums Urbaniak u0026 Daybreak. Miroslav Vitous, another Eastern European jazz emigre was Kirkland’s next big gig. Kirkland appears on Vitous’ ECM recordings First Meeting, and Miroslav Vitous Group. Kirkland has recorded, performed and worked with many artists over his twenty-year career.