On January 15, 2011, Gruber was honored at the NAMM Show in Anaheim, California with a lifetime achievement award for educational excellence throughout his career. The large framed award featured a classic photo of legendary jazz drummers: Buddy Rich,Jo Jones (known as Papa Jo Jones in his later years), and Gruber himself. Under the photo was a plaque, and a cymbal that was signed by Armand Zildjian's children.
Gruber's former drum student, Neil Peart of Rush, lauded Gruber in his literary and tutorial work. Peart authored a biographical obituary tribute which was posted to the Hudson Music website and to Gruber's own web site.
^Peart, Neil (2002) [originally released on VHS in 1996]. A Work in Progress (DVD video, DVD-ROM with Internet features, 2 booklets). Warner Bros. Classics (in English). produced and directed by Paul Siegel, Rob Wallis ; production, Langa Communications. Miami, Florida: Warner Bros. Publications. ISBN9780757990298. OCLC52762882. Retrieved May 23, 2013.