From a young age Michael Feinstein had a strong interest in music. Born and raised in Columbus, OH Feinstein's mother hired a piano teacher to instruct him, although it soon became clear that he wasn't keen on the idea of reading sheet music. Nevertheless, Feinstein demonstrated a nearly inherent knack for playing the piano--prompting his mother to fire the piano teacher and let her son enjoy and learn compositional styles on his own terms. After graduating from high school, he would go on to play piano in a number of different lounges and bars around Ohio until he was motivated to move out to Los Angeles when he was 20 years old. Shortly after moving to California, he was introduced to Ira Girshwin who asked Feinstein to catalog his music as well as his brother's, George Gershwin. This massive project instilled within Feinstein a massive respect and love of both Gershwins' styles and although dedicating a lot of time to his archiving project, he managed to build a name for himself at the same time by performing in a number of different cabarets and musical reviews--a reputation he has managed to keep to this day.