Born in Turtle Creek, Pennsylvania, Grcevich studied tamburitza with his father and uncle, both musical directors and performers. At age 21, he made a pivotal pilgrimage to then Yugoslavia to study with legendary tamburitza prim player, Janika Balaž. In 1980, Grcevich began composing and recording original musical pieces. A master of all five instruments of the tamburitza ensemble—the prim, brač, tamburitza cello, bugarija and tamburitza bass—Grcevich is known for using “sound-on-sound” recording techniques, constructing an ensemble featuring only his own playing. As a result of his musical skills, he is able to capture the characteristic melody, harmony, counterpoint and rhythm of the layered tamburitza orchestra.
In addition to leading his own ensemble, Grcevich has recorded and toured with numerous well-known tamburitza musicians. At a performance in Slavonska Požega, Croatia, in 1994, he even realized that many of the tamburitza groups were playing songs that he had composed, a testament to his influence in the music’s homeland. In 2001, Grcevich became the youngest musician to be inducted into the Tamburitza Hall of Fame, and in 2005, he was honored with a National Endowment for the Arts’ National Heritage Fellowship.