I was born in 1936 in Moscow, Russia into the family
of scientists and was supposed to become a scientist
too. Following the family tradition I graduated from
Moscow University with master’s degree in Physics
and was offered a prestigious and exciting job other
aspiring physicists would kill for.
But… insidious serpent of jazz had been seducing
me since the early 50-ties. Stalin was still alive
when I started to spend nights trying to tune to jazz
programs of the Voice of America, BBC and other similar
stations. In my sophomore year at the University I
surrendered to the urge to play jazz and started first
on clarinet and then saxophone and joined the early
wave of jazz rebirth in the Soviet Union. It is worth
mentioning that at this time playing jazz in the Soviet
Union was considered not far from committing treason!
So, instead of working in physics, I went on the road
with the Oleg Lundstrem big band, then by far the
best in Russia. Then followed a 7 year engagement
with Vadim Ludvikovsky Radio and Television big band
and then until my departure to USA I worked as a studio
musician recording and composing music for Studio
Melodia and films.
In the late 50’s, 60’s and 70’s
jazz music became accepted (or tolerated) in the USSR.
In the 60’s Moscow had several jazz clubs, yearly
jazz festivals and even started to send jazz musicians
to jazz festivals in other countries.
I led and participated in many jazz groups, most famous
being my Crescendo quartet, duo with keyboardist Igor
Saulski, Barometer quintet, etc.
In 1984 I finally settled in Los Angeles where I live
and continue composing and playing. During my 50+
years in music I had the honor and pleasure to share
the stage and record with many jazz greats like Gary
Burton, Chic Corea, Pete Cristlieb, Paul Gonsalves,
Charlie Haden, “Tootie” Heath, Dick Hyman,
Keith Jarrett, Milcho Leviev and no less important
Russian musicians like Konstantin Bakholdin, Gennady
Golshtein, German Lukyanov, Konstantin Nosov, Boris
Rychkov and many, many others I can’t list for
the lack of space.
The most important events for me this year were:
the release of my new CD "Rejuvenation
Project" and almost a month long tour to
Russia and Israel. Click on the links for more information.