WGLT’s Jazz Next podcast featured an interview with Larry Slezak in last week’s episode!Listen to it here About WGLT
WGLT Music Director and Jazz Host Jon Norton and Arts Editor and Jazz Host Laura Kennedy share their jazz picks in this weekly podcast. Listen for up-and-coming artists and tunes deserving a bit more attention. You’ll also learn a little about the artist and with this weekly podcast, you’ll stay on top of what’s happening in jazz.About Larry Slezak
Saxaphonist Larry Slezak was born in Manhattan in 1946. He gravitated to the saxophone after hearing Bill Doggett's hit recording of “Honky Tonk.” Growing up in New York afforded him the opportunity, while still in his teens, to hear all the great musicians live: from Armstrong to Ellington and Basie. He was drawn to the music and was working professionally by the time he was 14.
Since relocating to Houston in 1973, Slezak has mastered the entire reed instrument family and has performed in the orchestras for Johnny Mathis, Liza Minnelli, Burt Bacharach, Tony Bennett, Joe Williams, and countless others. He also performs with the Houston Symphony and Houston Grand Opera Orchestra, and he teaches saxophone and applied jazz studies at Rice University, where he directs the Rice Jazz Ensembles.
Slezak brings an assured swing, a warm soulful tone, and a wealth of experience to No Worries, his first CD as a leader, which was released by Houston's Tierra Studios on November 25, 2008.
He is joined on the recording by the Larry Slezak Quartet and by his B3 Hammond Organ Band: veteran guitarist Clayton Dyess, bassist Thomas Helton, pianist and organ player Jos-Miguel Yamal, vocalist Sheri Lavo, and Larry’s son Joe Slezak on drums.
“The band is playing the kind of music people don’t get to hear that much anymore,” says Slezak, who first played with a B3 at the age of 15. “Small-group jazz is to American music what the string quartet is to classical music.”
This story appears courtesy of Kari-On Productions.
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