Lou Marini : biography
Early life and range of musical experience
Marini graduated from Fairless High School in Navarre, Ohio. His father, Lou Marini, Sr., was the head band director at Fairless and created the school’s "Alma Mater" (official song). Each year, Fairless High still bestows the Lou Marini Award in honor of his father’s work. Lou Marini, Sr. died in May 2008. Both Lou Marini Sr. and Lou Marini Jr. were inducted into the Fairless Alumni Association Hall of Honor in May 2010. In June 2010, he was named Artistic Director at the first Brianza Blues Festival, in Villa Reale (Monza, Italy).
Lou Jr. attended the University of North Texas, where he played in the famed One O’Clock Lab Band. Following graduation, he gigged as a professional musician and eventually became a member of Blood, Sweat and Tears. He was a member of the Saturday Night Live house band from 1975 to 1983 and appeared in the movie The Blues Brothers and in the sequel, Blues Brothers 2000, playing the part of "Blue Lou" (a name given to him by Dan Aykroyd). He also played on Frank Zappa’s 1977 album Zappa in New York, and has worked with a diverse range of artists such as Dionne Warwick, Maureen McGovern, Deodato, Steely Dan, James Taylor, Aerosmith, the Buddy Rich Big Band, and the Woody Herman Orchestra.
Left to Right: Lou Marini, [[Ray Reach and the late Ernie Stires at a reception following a Carnegie Hall concert which featured the music of Trey Anastasio and Ernie Stires, 2004.]]
On March 23, 2010, Marini released a new recording titled The Blue Lou and Misha Project – Highly Classified, a collaboration with Israeli pianist and composer Misha Segal.
Compositions and arrangements
Marini’s works as an arranger and composer display many influences, including the work of Gil Evans, Bob Brookmeyer, Thad Jones and Don Ellis, as well as rock, pop and avant garde stylistic elements. For example, his composition, "Hip Pickles," originally written for Blood, Sweat and Tears, is described by reviewer Jack Bowers of AllAboutJazz.com, as follows: "Marini’s unorthodox notions surface on “Hip Pickles,” whose ”free” intro gives way to a melody played by screaming trumpets and Clapton-like guitar, prefacing a stormy interchange between Marini (alto) and Tom Wolfe [on guitar]." review
Bob Hensley of Los Angeles, California, wrote in a review: