Lou Marini at the Hamar Music Festival 2007, in Hamar, Hedmark, Norway
May 13, 1945 |
Charleston, South Carolina, United States
|Instruments||Saxophone, clarinet, flute|
|Associated acts||Blood, Sweat and Tears,
Buddy Rich Band,
Woody Herman Orchestra
Saturday Night Live Band,
The Blues Brothers,
James Taylor Band
Magic City Jazz Orchestra
"Blue" Lou Marini, Jr. (born May 13, 1945) is an American saxophonist, arranger and composer. He is noted for his work in the jazz, rock, blues and soul music traditions, and more popularly, for being an original member of the Blues Brothers band as well as featuring in the eponymous, very successful movie in 1980.
Early life and range of musical experience
Marini graduated from Fairless High School in Navarre, Ohio. His father, Lou Marini, Sr., was the head band director at Fairless and created the school's "Alma Mater" (official song). Each year, Fairless High still bestows the Lou Marini Award in honor of his father's work. Lou Marini, Sr. died in May 2008. Both Lou Marini Sr. and Lou Marini Jr. were inducted into the Fairless Alumni Association Hall of Honor in May 2010. In June 2010, he was named Artistic Director at the first Brianza Blues Festival, in Villa Reale (Monza, Italy). Lou Jr. attended the North Texas State University, where he played in the famed One O'Clock Lab Band. Following graduation, he gigged as a professional musician and eventually became a member of Blood, Sweat and Tears. He was a member of the Saturday Night Live house band from 1975 to 1983 and appeared in the movie The Blues Brothers and in the sequel, Blues Brothers 2000, playing the part of "Blue Lou" (a name given to him by Dan Aykroyd). He also played on Frank Zappa's 1977 album Zappa in New York, and has worked with a diverse range of artists such as Dionne Warwick, Maureen McGovern, Deodato, Steely Dan, James Taylor, Aerosmith, the Buddy Rich Big Band, and the Woody Herman Orchestra.
First recording as a leader
Marini has spent most of his professional life working as a sideman and arranger. In 2001, Marini recorded his first recording as a leader, with Ray Reach and the Magic City Jazz Orchestra, titled "Lou's Blues" (released 2003). This recording features his arrangements and compositions, many of which have become favorites for the Lab Bands at the University of North Texas. The liner notes of the CD were written by Grammy Award winning composer / arranger / producer Bob Belden. Lou is currently working on a new CD project, again collaborating with Ray Reach, with vocals by his son, Lou Marini III.
Compositions and arrangements
Marini's works as an arranger and composer display many influences, including the work of Gil Evans, Bob Brookmeyer, Thad Jones and Don Ellis, as well as rock, pop and avant garde stylistic elements. For example, his composition, "Hip Pickles," originally written for Blood, Sweat and Tears, is described by reviewer Jack Bowers of AllAboutJazz.com, as follows: "Marini's unorthodox notions surface on "Hip Pickles," whose "free" intro gives way to a melody played by screaming trumpets and Clapton-like guitar, prefacing a stormy interchange between Marini (alto) and Tom Wolfe [on guitar]."
Bob Hensley of Los Angeles, California, wrote in a review:
Lou Marini, Jr. is an unsung jazz hero. Ask any top New York jazz musician who Lou Marini is, and they will tell you he's one of the absolute best jazz musicians in New York. Yet, because he has made a name for himself as a sideman in various high profile pop groups (Steely Dan, James Taylor, Blood, Sweat and Tears, Saturday Night Live Band, the Blues Brothers, etc.), he is all but ignored by the jazz press. This is wrong, because "Lou's Blues" displays Lou Marini's incredible talent and skill as both a composer and as a multi-woodwind player of the highest possible calibre. Lou has a lot to say, and all should listen.
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- 2004 Lou's Blues
- 2010 Highly Classified
- 2012 Starmaker
In addition to his solo projects, since the early 1970s, Marini has been one of the most sought-after session musicians on the New York scene. He is admired and respected by his peers as a master of many styles, including jazz, R&B, soul and classical. An abbreviated listing of some of the recording projects in which he has participated included:
- 1967 One O'clock Lab Band (University of North Texas)
- 1972 Blood, Sweat & Tears - New Blood; Sunshine - Sunshine
- 1973 Blood, Sweat & Tears - No sweat; B.J. Thomas - Songs
- 1974 B. J. Thomas - Longhorn & London Bridges (Flute, sax); Lou Reed - Sally Can't Dance
- 1976 Elliott Murphy - Night Lights; Walter Murphy - Fifth of Beethoven; Ringo Starr - Ringo's Rotogravure; Lalo Schifrin - Towering Toccata
- 1977 D. C. Larue - Ten Dance; Laso - Laso; Andy Pratt - Shiver in the Night; Jess Band Roden - Player Not the Game; Neil Sedaka - Song (clarinet, sax); John Tropea - Short Trip to Space; Patti Austin - Havana Candy
- 1978 The Blues Brothers - Briefcase Full of Blues (sax, voice); Cindy Bullens - Desire Wire; Boyzz - Too Wild to Tame; Mike Mandel - Sky Music; Kate Taylor - Kate Taylor; Thijs Vanleer - Nice To Have Met You; T. life - That's Life; Frank Zappa - Zappa in New York; Levon Helm - Levon Helm & The RCO All-stars; Wiz - Wiz
- 1979 Magnet - Worldwide Attraction; Robben Ford - Inside Story; John Tropea - To Touch You Again; Larry Applewhite - Larry Applewhite (flute, sax); Bobbi Humphrey - Good Life; Aerosmith - Night In The Ruts; Michael Franks - Tiger In The Rain; Peter Tosh - Mystic Man
- 1980 Cameo - Feel Me; Deodato - Night Cruiser; The Blues Brothers - Made in America; Manu Dibango - Gone Clear; Brecker Brothers - Don't Stop the Music; The Blues Brothers - Blues Brothers (film soundtrack) (sax, voice)
- 1981 The Blues Brothers - Best of the Blues Brothers; The J. Geils Band - Freeze Frame, Meat Loaf - Dead Ringer; Lena Horne - Live On Broadway; Peter Tosh - Wanted Dread & Alive; Manu Dibango - Ambassador
- 1982 Luther Vandross - Forever, For Always, For Love
- 1983 Garland Jeffreys - Guts For Love; Marvin Stamm - Stampede; Carly Simon - Hello, Big Man; Spyro Gyra - City Kids
- 1985 John Tropea - NYC Cats Direct (flute, arrangements, sax)
- 1987 Claude Nougaro - Nougayork
- 1988 Various Artists - Great Outdoors; Love & Money - Strange Kind of Love; B. B. King - King of Blues; Cornell Dupree - Coast to Coast; Michael Gibbs - Big Music (flute, sax)
- 1989 Jimmy Buffett - Off To See The Lizard; Phoebe Snow - Something Real; Dionne Warwick - Sings Cole Porter; Maureen McGovern - Naughty Baby; GRP - Grp: On The Cutting Edge
- 1990 Closer Than Ever - Closer Than Ever; Eddie Palmieri - Unfinished Masterpiece; Hank Crawford - Groove Master
- 1992 The J. Geils Band - Houseparty: Anthology; Ray Simpson - Ray Simpson; Maureen McGovern - Baby I'm Yours (flute, sax); Various artists - Love Songs; One O'clock Lab Band - Best of One O'clock; Hank Crawford - South Central; Frank Zappa - You Can't do That On Stage Anymore, Vol. 6; The Blues Brothers - The Definitive Collection
- 1993 Dina Carroll - So Close; Donald Fagen - Kamakiriad (clarinet, flute, sax); Laura Nyro - Walk The Dog & Lite The Lite (fluteo, arrangements); Joe Roccisano - Shape I'm In (flute, sax); Jill O'Hara- Jill O'Hara
- 1994 Tribute to Curtis Mayfield (flute, sax); Milton Nascimento - Angelus (flute); Aretha Franklin - Greatest Hits (1980–1994); Ann Hampton Callaway - Bring Back Romance (flute, sax)
- 1995 Repercussions - Earth and Heaven (flute, sax); Joe Roccisano - Leave Your Mind Behind (flute, sax); Raw stylus - Pushing Against the Flow (flute, sax); Denise Jannah - I Was Born In Love With You; Jesse "Wild Bill" Austin - Baby's Back (sax, arrangements); Harvey Thomas - Highways of Gold (sax)
- 1996 Harolyn Blackwell Sings Bernstein (flute, sax); Tom Pierson - Planet of Tears; Frank Zappa - Läther; Freddy Cole - It's Crazy, But I'm In Love; Family Thing - Family Thing; Michael Gibbs - Big Music (flute, sax); Maureen McGovern - Out of This World (flute, sax)
- 1997 Laura Nyro - Stoned Soul Picnic: The Best of Laura Nyro (flute, percussion); Maureen McGovern - Music Never Ends (flute, sax); Eddie King - Another Cow's Dead (arrangements, saxophone); Frank Zappa - Have I Offended Someone?
- 2000 Steely Dan - Two Against Nature (sax)
- 2001 Lou Marini and the Magic City Jazz Orchestra - Lou's Blues (saxophone, arrangements, compositions)
- 2005 Amy Drinkwater. With All My Heart - A Journey to the Soul (saxophone)
- 2006 Eric Essix and the Flight Big Band. "SuperBlue." (saxophone)
- "Lou Marini alla Villa Reale: «Sono ancora in missione per conto del Blues» - Corriere della Sera". Corriere.it. 2009-12-24. Retrieved 2015-11-25.
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- [dead link]
- "Lou Marini & the Magic City Jazz Orchestra: Lou's Blues". Allaboutjazz.com. Retrieved 2015-11-25.
- "Lou Marini - Lou's Blues CD Album". Cduniverse.com. 2004-02-24. Retrieved 2015-11-25.
- Lou Marini - official website
- Lou Marini at the Internet Movie Database
- Lou Marini at All About Jazz
- Lou's Blues - Lou Marini and the Magic City Jazz Orchestra reviewed at All About Jazz
- Video of Lou Marini backing James Brown on "Saturday Night Live"
- Article about CD release party for "Lou's Blues
- Article - Lou Marini : "Blue Lou" Blows On from One FInal Note Jazz Webzine