3 Generations of Jazz
Lloyd Arntzen has been a fixture on the Vancouver traditional Jazz scene in Vancouver for many years. His love of Sidney Bichet, Benny Goodman and Louis Armstrong shining through in his clarinet and soprano sax mastery. His son Tom has forged his own musical path, often playing his thunderous piano in Lloyd’s various bands, but mostly doing his own projects with his eclectic musical tastes. Now Tom’s son, Evan, a new blip on the musical radar, has hit the Vancouver scene like a bolt from the blue, and one might have expected the dynasty to veer toward funk, alternative rock, even pop. Don’t believe it. The 19 year old is a throwback to his grand-dad’s music, blowing both clarinet and tenor sax, the latter drawing critical comparisons with Bud Freeman and Eddie Miller.
“I don’t know how that happened,” a mildly bemused Tom Arntzen laughed. “My father likes to say that he was born 20 years too late, because the music he loves most was popular before he was born, I guess that’s true for Evan and I too, we’re 40 years and 60 years too late.”
There is, it’s true, a bit of ‘if you can’t beat them, join them’ irony to the Three Generations of Jazz, the act that joins the three in a celebration of vintage jazz. In reality it’s only a formalization, Tom says, of a musical melding of grandfather, father and son that’s been going on at family gatherings for years. “We have a tradition of performing that music with my dad, at family gatherings. As far back as I can remember, right from the very beginning, Dad was playing this music in our living room, rehearsing his bands.” Tom said.
Regular gigs include North Vancouver’s Summer Concert Series, Crescent Beach Legion, West Vancouver’s Silk Purse, and New York’s Highline Ballroom, where shows include Tom’s wife Georgina (Vocals) brother Leif (Vocals, Trumpet) and his son Miles (Age 18 years, Vocals, Guitar, Piano,Drums). Who will be the next Arntzen to join the band? Stay tuned, more generations on the way!
Clarinetist, soprano saxophonist and vocalist Lloyd Arntzen has been arranging, playing and researching vintage jazz from the ’20s and ’30s for four decades. The style’s continuing survival in Greater Vancouver owes a lot to the elder Arntzen.
He founded the Jazz Band Society in 1958 and the series of jazz band balls he started helped create the Hot Jazz Club. Lloyd is a regular fixture on the trad. jazz scene in the Lower Mainland as leader of The Red Onion Rhythm Kings, and as feature soloist with Sweet Papa Lowdown and Dixieland Express. He has played with Pete Fountain, Clark Terry, Chris Barber, and Bob Wilber. He has performed at major jazz festivals in Norway, Vancouver, Chilliwack, Victoria, Pender Harbour, Sacramento, CA, Sun Valley Idaho, Helena, Montana, and Tucson, AZ. Lloyd is a respected songwriter, and his song, “Where The Coho Flash Silver” is sung by generations of BC schoolchildren.
“And jazz fans, Chet lives. All are worth watching, but Arntzen’s the one to watch.” – David Finkle, Village Voice
“Soulful and passionate, Arntzen has the same kind of magnetism for which we remember Chet Baker.” – All About Jazz
Trumpeter, guitarist, vocalist, songwriter and leader of The Leif Arntzen Band, Leif has been a respected member of the New York professional music scene since his arrival in 1985. His childhood and teenage years of constant exposure to early jazz forms through his father Lloyd, instilled an abiding love of the art of playing jazz trumpet, and was invaluable to his first New York experiences. Early on he played jazz trumpet most notably with Tito Puente, Gil Evans Orchestra, American Jazz Orchestra, Tom Pierson Big Band, as well as performing in dizzy array of original projects and collaborations. As an emerging jazz/folk singer/songwriter over the past 15 years, Leif has recorded a number of original albums under his leadership, most recently “TLAB” for the Gwendoline label. Revisiting his jazz roots, Leif recorded “Channeling Chet” in tribute to the late great trumpeter Chet Baker. Leif’s song “Playpen” won 1st prize in the Billboard Song Contest jazz category, and the record will release in Japan June 2005. Leif’s solos have also accompanied a long list of emerging New York and Vancouver songwriters on over 30 CD recordings.
“A very good singer, lots of range” -Tom Jones
Keyboardist and vocalist Tom Arntzen has been a full-time pro musician all his working life. He has toured to Europe, Asia, and throughout Canada and the U.S. He has been featured at Victoria, Pender Harbour, and Gibson’s Jazz festivals. As a stage performer and musical director, he’s done everything from Carousel and The Rocky Horror Show, to the ’50s of Red Rock Diner and Forever Plaid. As a bandleader he covers that and just about everything else for the corporate event circuit. He’s a versatile studio musician, and recently he sung chorus vocals for the new movie musical “Reefer Madness”. And onscreen, he landed a principal role in the film. He was also vocal coach to Will Ferrell on the hit movie Elf. Tom composed, musically directed and sang on the national C.B.C. TV specials the Western Alienation Comedy Hour (Leo Award winner) and Comedy Night In Canada.
EVAN NIGEL ARNTZEN
“A teen phenom…an exciting young saxophonist.” -Jazz Connection Magazine
Tenor and soprano saxophonist, clarinetist and vocalist, This Capilano College Jazz Studies major won best senior saxophone at Surrey Jazz Festival, and has won Vancouver Dixieland Jazz Society’s Jazz Stars of the Future Award, Vancouver Civic Theatres’ Rising Star Award, and the Vancouver Tech Music0 Award and scholarship. As a member of the young traditional jazz band The 51st Eight, he has performed at major jazz festivals in Vancouver, Chilliwack, Victoria, Courtney, Penticton, Sacramento, CA, Sun Valley Idaho, and Bellingham, WA. He has toured with Donnie Clark’s All-Gershwin sextet. Not only has he been doing a lot of playing with Lloyd’s Red Onion Rhythm Kings, he’s fronted his own quartet at Vancouver East Cultural Centre, is a regular soloist with The Society Seven and Capilano College “A” Band, as well as numerous combos in Vancouver.
MILES FRANCIS ARNTZEN
Drummer Miles Arntzen, at age 13, lives and goes to school in New York City. Miles is already building a reputation as a music professional. Already a veteran of 3 Generations concerts and reunion events in Canada, Norway, and America, Miles has been busy performing as the lead caixa player in Battery Drumline, a New York street-based samba band in major events such as the televised Halloween Night Parade through Greenwich Village, the Tribeca Film Festival, and the US Tennis Open. He’s performed solo for the VH1 Save The Music Foundation. He played drums for his school production of Big River. Miles has also performed as a duet with his father Leif in New York City nightclubs, playing drums, guitar, and singing. He
has even performed at Lincoln Center with a percussion ensemble. All by the age of 13!
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