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Take Five With Larry Tamanini

Take Five With Larry Tamanini
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Meet Larry Tamanini:
Larry Tamanini is a professional musician with lots of experience in various high-level musical settings.



Instrument(s):
Guitar.



Teachers and/or influences?
My primary teachers for learning guitar have been Pat Martino
Pat Martino
Pat Martino
b.1944
guitar
, Dennis Sandole and Tom Giacabetti. Like most musicians, I have many influences. My big four on guitar are Grant Green
Grant Green
Grant Green
1935 - 1979
guitar
, Wes Montgomery
Wes Montgomery
Wes Montgomery
1925 - 1968
guitar
, Pat Martino and Kenny Burrell
Kenny Burrell
Kenny Burrell
b.1931
guitar
. Some other instrumentalists that I cannot leave off this list are Dexter Gordon
Dexter Gordon
Dexter Gordon
1923 - 1990
sax, tenor
, Lee Morgan
Lee Morgan
Lee Morgan
1938 - 1972
trumpet
, Horace Silver
Horace Silver
Horace Silver
1928 - 2014
piano
, Don Patterson
Don Patterson
Don Patterson
1936 - 1988
organ, Hammond B3
, Kenny Kirkland
Kenny Kirkland
Kenny Kirkland
1955 - 1998
piano
and Jimmy Smith
Jimmy Smith
Jimmy Smith
1925 - 2005
organ, Hammond B3
.



Some of my favorite musicians are drummers—namely, anything with Billy Higgins
Billy Higgins
Billy Higgins
1936 - 2001
drums
, Byron Landham, Jeff "Tain" Watts
Jeff
Jeff "Tain" Watts
b.1960
drums
, Dannie Richmond
Dannie Richmond
Dannie Richmond
1935 - 1988
drums
and Mickey Roker
Mickey Roker
Mickey Roker
b.1932
drums
.



I am a huge Weather Report
Weather Report
Weather Report

band/orchestra
fan and love the music of Steely Dan
Steely Dan
Steely Dan
b.1972
band/orchestra
, Jimi Hendrix
Jimi Hendrix
Jimi Hendrix
1942 - 1970
guitar, electric
and the Rolling Stones
Rolling Stones
Rolling Stones

band/orchestra
; I also really dig the blues, including Albert Collins
Albert Collins
Albert Collins
1932 - 1993
guitar, electric
, Stevie Ray Vaughan
Stevie Ray Vaughan
Stevie Ray Vaughan
1954 - 1990
guitar
, Albert King
Albert King
Albert King
1923 - 1992
guitar, electric
, Freddie King
Freddie King
Freddie King
1934 - 1976
guitar, electric
, B.B. King
B.B. King
B.B. King
b.1925
guitar, electric
. Bill Sims, Muddy Waters
Muddy Waters
Muddy Waters
1915 - 1983
guitar
and Johnny Winter
Johnny Winter
Johnny Winter
1944 - 2014
guitar, electric
.



I knew I wanted to be a musician when...
Initially hearing a lot of organ group records got me hooked on the music. Seeing photos of how slick the musicians looked was also a big influence. What really made me want to pursue the music was two big experiences: the first was meeting Pat Martino; the other was setting foot inside Ortlieb's Jazzhaus, in Philadelphia. I haven't been the same since.



Your sound and approach to music:
My approach to the music changes as does my sound, I have always favored an earthy and bluesy sound that swings; that seems to be the basis for my overall aesthetic. My approach varies, depending on the setting, but I try to be a supportive team player and I always want to add to the overall vibe of what's happening.



Your teaching approach:
Everyone is different, you have to find what sticks—as long as you can play good time, that is a good foundation.



Your dream band:
Wow, this one is tricky. I have been blessed to share the stage with Joey DeFrancesco
Joey DeFrancesco
Joey DeFrancesco
b.1971
organ, Hammond B3
and Byron Landham, and it doesn't get any better than that, even though I did play with Joey and Billy James
Billy James
Billy James
b.1936
once. My dream band in a straight-ahead setting would be Billy Higgins, Kenny Kirkland
Kenny Kirkland
Kenny Kirkland
1955 - 1998
piano
, and Steve Swallow
Steve Swallow
Steve Swallow
b.1940
bass
, on upright. I would be in over my head but I would love every grooving quarter note. For an organ group it would have to be Billy James and Don Patterson



Road story: Your best or worst experience:
One time, at Ortlieb's, the tail piece on my guitar split and my instrument was shattered. Luckily, Todd the bartender lived around the corner and I finished gig on his Strat. Thanks again, Todd.



Favorite venue:
Hands down, Ortlieb's was the best.



Your favorite recording in your discography and why?
I am very proud of the way my first album turned out; it was made under much duress, but everyone that helped me with the album seemed to believe in the music and gave 110%. I am proud of the work I have done for Mark Adams, Kathy Sledge's Brighter Side of Day and Rhenda Fearington's album as well.



The first Jazz album I bought was:
Kenny Burrell and John Coltrane.

What do you think is the most important thing you are contributing musically?
Trying to be an honest player and maintaining my musical roots.



Did you know...
The first session I ever went too was at Chris' Jazz Café, and I was so freaked out I couldn't get my guitar in tune, so I punk'd out from sitting in.



CDs you are listening to now:
Dexter Gordon
Dexter Gordon
Dexter Gordon
1923 - 1990
sax, tenor
, Gettin' Around;
Keith Jarrett
Keith Jarrett
Keith Jarrett
b.1945
piano
, My Song;
Stanley Turrentine
Stanley Turrentine
Stanley Turrentine
1934 - 2000
sax, tenor
, This Guy's in Love with You;
Grant Green, Iron City; Joe Henderson
Joe Henderson
Joe Henderson
1937 - 2001
sax, tenor
, Live at the Lighthouse.



Desert Island picks:
Dexter Gordon, Gettin' Around;
Don Patterson, Holiday Soul;
Horace Silver, In Pursuit of the 27th Man;
Jimmy Smith, Prayer Meetin';
Weather Report, Sweetnighter.



How would you describe the state of jazz today?
Jumbled, with a tad of Facebook-it is.



What are some of the essential requirements to keep jazz alive and growing?
Jazz is an aural and oral tradition; we need more emphasis on being mentored by seasoned players.



What is in the near future?
Hopefully all of the above. I am always writing and looking forward to my next project.



By Day:
Crime fighter.



If I weren't a jazz musician, I would be a:
Cook.




Photo Credit
Dan Loeb, Courtesy of Larry Tamanini
Larry Tamanini
Larry Tamanini
b.1979
guitar


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