Education and Influences                  Return to Home  


When I first heard John Coltrane at the age of 12 years, I knew I wanted to play jazz saxophone. I was enchanted with his sound even though I had no idea what he was doing harmonically. From that day on I made it my goal to understand and learn what he was playing. I have spent a lot of time listening to jazz and contemporary composers such as Duke Ellington, Stan Kenton, Thad Jones, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, Pat Metheny. Equally inspirational have been the classical composers: Mozart, Handel, Satie, Ravel, Debussy, Schoenberg, Gershwin, Grieg, Stravinsky, Holst, etc....

Since my first introduction to the saxophone I have listened to and been influenced by many soloists including, Louis Armstrong, Charlie Parker, Cannonball Adderly, Johnny Hodges, Joe Henderson, Paul Desmond, Phil Woods, Michael Brecker, Wayne Shorter, Herbie Hancock, Oscar Peterson, McCoy Tyner, Bill Evans, Clifford Brown, Blue Mitchell, Freddie Hubberd, Jaco Pastorius, Pat Metheny, etc.

My greatest obstacle however these days, juggling two vocations, is trying to find the time to practice, compose and produce. The inspiration is there more than ever, but the time and energy is not always. It is a never ending journey playing the saxophone and still after all these years, I find that I have not arrived. I suppose if I were completely content, I would never progress or develop further. I'd rather have it this way with the realization that music, like life, is a journey. Once you arrive the journey is over.


Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Franklin
Albert Einstein
Sir Issac Newton
The Three Stoogers
Soupy Sales
Joe Brooks


1. NYS College of Ceramics, Alfred U. 1975-1977
Degree: Studies towards Bachelor Fine Arts, Music Minor

2. Berklee College of Music 1977-1979
Degree: Certificate Instrumental Performance

3. SUNY Stony Brook 1983-1987
Degree: BS Biochemistry, Music Minor

4. SUNY Stony Brook School of Dental Medicine 1987-1991
Degree: DDS

5. SUNY Buffalo School of Dental Medicine 1991-1993, Dept. of Endodontics
Degree: Certificate Endodontic Specialty


1. Phil Wilson International Dues Band

2. Contemporary Orchestra of Peru
Jamie Delgado Aparicio

3. MS World Renaissance, MS Americanus
Director: Richard Lamanna Orchestra

4. Oscar Maggi, Caracas, Venezuela

5. Richard Lamanna and "The Last Word"
Alex Acuna, Kenwood Dennard, Othello Molineaux, Otmaro Ruiz, etc.

6. Eden Jazz Quartet


Andy McGhee - 1977
Joe Viola - 1978
Phil Woods - 1980