Zachary Breaux

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Zachary Breaux
Birth name Zachary Charles Breaux
Born (1960-06-26)June 26, 1960
Port Arthur, Texas, U.S.
Died February 20, 1997(1997-02-20) (aged 36)
Miami Beach, Florida
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1969–1997
Labels NYC, Zebra

Zachary Charles Breaux (June 26, 1960 – February 20, 1997)[1] was an American jazz guitarist, influenced by George Benson and Wes Montgomery[2] and best remembered for his soul-jazz work. He played with many notable jazz musicians during his career, including Roy Ayers, Stanley Turrentine, Jack McDuff, Lonnie Liston Smith, Dee Dee Bridgewater and Donald Byrd.[1][2]


Zachary Breaux was born on June 26, 1960 in Port Arthur, Texas. He began playing at the age of 9 and after graduating from Lincoln High School, he studied music composition at University of North Texas College of Music[1] where he had been a member of the One O'Clock Lab Band. In 1984, he moved to New York, where he spent 6 years in the band of vibist Roy Ayers.[1] He was signed to Zebra Records in 1996,[2] but died on February 20, 1997 at the age of 36 while on holiday in Miami Beach. He was trying to save the life of another swimmer, Eugenie Poleyeff (1930–1997), 66 of Brooklyn, N.Y., caught by a riptide. Breaux, who saved a man from drowning while on tour in Italy in 1988, was vacationing on Miami Beach with his family when he went to help the swimmer. Breaux was also caught by the current and suffered a heart attack. Breaux was pronounced dead at the Miami Heart Institute. Poleyeff also died.[3]


  • Groovin' (1992, NYC)
  • Laid Back (1994, NYC)
  • Uptown Groove (1997, Zebra)


General references

  • Barry Kernfeld (editor), The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, second edition (three volumes), Macmillan Publishers, London (2002)
  • Biography Index, A Cumulative Index to Biographical Material in Books and Magazines, Volume 22: September 1996 – August 1997, H.W. Wilson Co., New York (1997)
  • The New York Times Biographical Service, A compilation of current biographical information of general interest, Volume 28, Numbers 1- 12. Ann Arbor, MI: UMI Co. (1997)

Inline citations

  1. ^ a b c d Mark Gilbert: 'Breaux, Zachary', Grove Music Online ed. L. Macy (Accessed November 5, 2007), <>
  2. ^ a b c "Henderson", "Alex". "Zachary Breaux". Allmusic. Retrieved November 5, 2007. 
  3. ^ "Zachary Breaux, 36, Jazz Recording Artist". New York Times. March 2, 1997. Retrieved November 5, 2007. 

External links[edit]