Al Belletto

Al Belletto (1928-2014) was born and raised in New Orleans. He learned to play alto saxophone and clarinet, and got a Masters Degree in music from the Louisiana State University—all at a time when such academic training was a distinct jazz rarity. And still, he chose to play rather than teach. It was 1951, and within a year he had formed his own quintet, one in which all its members performed skillfully and —drummer excepted— where they all doubled on more than one instrument. They used to play at Gus Stevens’ in Biloxi, Mississippi, where they found their first long-term booking, and a loyal crowd of followers.

It was precisely during their engagement there, that singing star Mel Tormé found himself in need of some choral assistance. Although none of Belletto’s men had ever sung a note professionally, they were anxious to please their first boss, so they just took deep breaths and...

Read more

Al Belletto Albums

1 record