Big Tenor Man Joe Lovano is someone who can divide opinion amongst jazz lovers.
For some he’s a great example of a swinging hard bop tenor, for others, he just plays lots of notes over changes and gets more recognition than players twice as good as he is.
The truth is Joe Lovano has played with some of the greatest jazz musicians of the 20th Century and has recorded some great albums. Sure, he can grate in interviews, but then so does my mentor Branford when he gives his very qualified opinion.
Lovano was born in 1952 in Cleveland, Ohio to parents of Sicilian heritage. His father Tony was a tenor saxophonist and encouraged the young Joe to check out Coltrane, Dizzy Gillespie and Sonny Stitt. He attended the Berklee College of Music and after he left, Lovano worked with Jack McDuff and Lonnie Smith. He spent three years with the Woody Herman orchestra, then moved to New York City, where he played with the big band of Mel Lewis.
He has recorded with McCoy Tyner, Paul Motion, Peter Erskine and many others as you will see from the playlists below – enjoy and PLEASE SHARE!