Wayne Gratz

New Smyrna Beach, USA

Ocean Angels & Guardians


Behind the Music

With the evocative content and subject matter of The Outlaw Ocean to take inspiration from, the creative process was incredibly organic for me. As I explored the treasure trove of information and materials Ian cultivated over the years — everything from the book itself to videos and field audio — I began to improvise melodies and blend soundscapes with the clips of sound provided by Ian. It felt like all of my songs seemed to write themselves, creating an EP of music that unveils tones of frustration and concern..

I hope that listeners who hear my music become engrossed in the emotional journey of The Outlaw Ocean Project. They feel the pain, suffering and injustice spurred by what is currently taking place in and on our oceans enough to become more aware and engaged in Ian’s work. I am incredibly grateful to play a small role in this project that is bigger than any of us.

Wayne Gratz
About Wayne Gratz

Wayne Gratz is a pianist/composer, and has become one of the more recognized best-selling artists in the New Age/Piano genre. Born in Winston Salem, NC, in June of 1954, Wayne was inspired by his kindergarten teacher and began playing the piano at age six. From 1989 to 2002, Wayne released 7 albums of original compositions on the Narada Label. Wayne also contributed to some of the most memorable compositions on Narada's best selling collections, “The Wilderness Collection,” “A Childhood Remembered,” and two Christmas Collection albums. All these albums are distributed by Capitol Records and UMG and are still available on most streaming platforms. 

Wayne started his own label, Wayne Gratz Music, in 2002 with his business partner and wife, Kyra Schweizer-Gratz. Wayne has recorded, produced and released 10 albums on his own label, to include “Sleepy Baby Suite,” “Christmas Remembered,” “Soul to Soul,” “Light Lands and Shoreline,” “Two Views,” “Four Steps to the Ocean,” “Safer Places,” “An Eagle's Zen,” and a special documentary original soundtrack project, “Conquering Kilimanjaro.” Wayne's most recent release is “The Last Fifteen Years.” In addition, his music has been used for the Olympic Games specialty segments, NBC television specials, including a Tiger Woods segment, and background music for the Thomas Kinkade DVD, “Painter of Light.” Wayne’s music is featured on Spotify, Pandora, iTunes, Amazon and Music Choice, as well as numerous radio stations and streaming platforms around the world.

The Journalism behind the Music

All music in this project is based on The Outlaw Ocean, a New York Times Best-Selling book by Ian Urbina that chronicles lawlessness at sea around the world. This reporting touches on a diversity of abuses ranging from illegal and overfishing, arms trafficking at sea, human slavery, gun running, intentional dumping, murder of stowaways, thievery of ships and other topics.

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