Life Member. Trombone.
3/5/1935 – 5/29/2021
Robert (Bob) Edmondson, trombonist, passed away peacefully in Los Angeles on May 29, 2021.
As a young musician, Bob studied with Herbie Harper, Harold Mitchell, and Louis Maggio. He performed in Phil Moore’s Marching Band at Los Angeles City College and then his career took off. He traveled with the bands of Perez Prado and Harry James in the 1950s. Bob then worked and recorded with notable artists such as Benny Goodman, Dizzy Gillespie, Shelly Manne, Terry Gibbs, and Gerald Wilson. Continue reading
Life Member. Flute
11/30/1941 – 4/15/2021
by Carl Rigoli
I met Pat Rizzo at JHS 141 Astoria, Queens, NYC in the 7th grade and he formed his first band which included Pat on tenor sax, Andre Simone on guitar and myself, Carl Rigoli, on drums. We were all 12 years old and rehearsed at Andre’s house. I remember playing our first performance for our school’s student and faculty assembly. We played “Blue Suede Shoes” and everyone loved it. Pat was our leader and he started booking gigs for local functions such as the Moose Lodge, weddings, etc. We all attended Bryant High School and added another sax and trumpet, plus a bass player named Wally Capone Puschmann to our rhythm section. He named the band the Cavilers and we performed for all the school dances, proms and many local gigs. We played rock, standards, and jazz. Continue reading
Dan Thomason, en route to Berlin. Winter, 1959
Life Member. Viola
6/27/1934 – 5/25/2020
by Anita Thomason
We made music together, both literally and metaphorically, from the day we met in an orchestra in 1955. We married in 1959, and across the years had many memorable musical adventures. We had two sons whom Dan loved deeply — Matthew and Peter, one a fine art printmaker and the other a pianist, guitarist and piano technician. Continue reading
Life Member. Organ
10/4/1939 – 6/28/2020
by Danny Tokusato
William (Bill) C. Field was born on October 4, 1939 in Los Angeles to William Thomas Field and Gertrude Sara Hopkins, both employees of the Los Angeles Unified School District. Continue reading
Former Life Member. Percussion
10/1/1948 – 6/7/2020
David Johnson, award-winning musician, 71, died of natural causes on June 7, 2020, two years after retiring to his childhood home in Port Angeles, Washington, to enjoy the beauty and peace of the Pacific Northwest. David enjoyed an accomplished musical career, including winning a Grammy Award for Best Classical Compendium in 2015 as a member of the PARTCH Ensemble. He also performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, toured with the late pianist Roger Williams, and taught at the California Institute of the Arts for 26 years. His music both brought great joy both to David and to his audiences, and he inspired generations of young musicians as a beloved and respected professor of percussive arts. Continue reading
Life Member. Alto/Tenor Saxophone
9/11/1929 – 3/26/2020
Big band leader and alto sax great Pat Longo died on March 26, 2020 of the coronavirus. He was 90 years old. Pat was a first rate musician who lived a long life and made a lot of great music. Among the highlights of his career, Pat was lead alto on the Harry James Band. With Harry’s blessing, Pat founded and directed the Pat Longo Super Big Band and the Pat Longo Hollywood Big Band, performing and recording with L.A.’s best. Continue reading
Life Member. Saxophone
4/6/1928 – 4/29/2019
Bob Efford, 91 years young, passed away April 29, 2019, at his Malibu home. He is survived by his son, Bob Jr. and family; half-brother John Collin; and nephews and nieces. Continue reading
Life Member. Trombone/Bass
1/18/1928 – 11/30/2018
by the Burton daughters
Lifelong AFM member Roger V. Burton died on Nov 30, 2018 at home in Santa Monica, surrounded by his family. A jazz musician, developmental research psychologist, and television actor, he was 90 years old. Continue reading
Life Member. Violin
2/3/1942 – 4/5/2019
Submitted by the Farkas/Vener families
The music world lost one of its greats on Friday, April 5, 2019, when violinist Pavel Farkas, passed away at the age of 77. Mr. Farkas was a loving husband, devoted father of three and proud grandfather of 11. Continue reading
Hal Blaine’s drums can be heard as part of the Wall of Sound on the Ronettes’ 1963 hit “Be My Baby” produced by Phil Spector at Hollywood’s Gold Star Studios, founded by David S. Gold and Stan Ross in 1950.
Life Member. Drum Set
2/5/1929 – 3/11/2019
by David Gold
and sometimes conductor too,
Four bass beats to set the tempo,
And start the music too.
The bass, the toms and symbols still,
The sticks now quietly lie on the snare,
And now the stool is empty too.
For Hal is no longer there.