Grillo has played electric guitar continuously from childhood. He grew up in the Santa Cruz Gardens area of Santa Cruz. He played his blue Mosrite in Full Power (formerly The Other Side of Time) at the ripe old age of thirteen. Later, he played in the Santa Cruz band Feel Machine. After leaving Santa Cruz, he played with many top-level acts as a session player and was a member of Tower of Power for several years. He currently lives with his wife, Denise, in Southern California as he continues his career as a solo recording artist.