Allen Lowe

Genre: 

Jazz saxophonist

Allen Lowe grew up in Massapequa Park, New York in the late 1950s and early 1960s. He started playing saxophone in jazz groups at age 15 and had some of his first jazz experiences, as a teenager, at the legendary Lower East Side club Slugs, seeing Ornette Coleman’s band and Charles Mingus, among others. Coming of age at the end of the 1960s he also saw groups like Super Session (Mike Bloomfield, Al Kooper), the Grateful Dead (at their first Central Park concert in 1967), the Mothers of Invention (at Columbia University, 1968). Not to mention Louis Armstrong at Freedomland, circa 1964. When his young band (with guitarist Joel Perry) was booked for a festival in Bedford Stuyvesant circa 1968, they turned out to be one of the opening acts for the comeback appearance of Eubie Blake. After he dropped out of college in the middle 1970s Lowe returned to New York City, at a time when jazz was in something of an eclipse. He befriended a few veterans of the bebop era, like Al Haig, Curly Russell, Bill Triglia, Percy France, Dick Katz, Dave Schildkaut, and Tommy Potter. He even spent an odd afternoon with Lenny Tristano at Tristano’s house in Jamaica Estates, became good friends with Barry Harris and Bob Neloms, got to know Jaki Byard while writing for a Boston music publication, and, in this same capacity, had some strange adventures one afternoon in Boston with Art Pepper.

Allen Lowe