In Memory

Laurence Mazel

Laurence Mazel

Per Brattleboro Reformer, March 9, 2006, and www.legacy.com
Laurence Mazel, 57, noted jazz musician, has died after a long illness. He was born in Cambridge, MA, on November 1, 1948. He had lived in Boston, Lawrence, and Andover, MA.
During his high school years, he was a Northeast Regional Tennis champion for New England and studied Mandarin Chinese through a State Department intensive language course, pursuits which he maintained throughout his life. He studied at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, then Antioch College in Yellow Springs, OH, where he studied and played music with Cecil Taylor, Jimmy Lyons and Andrew Cyrille.
In the early 1970s he moved to New York, where he began his music career as a trumpet player and composer and adopted his stage name, Raphe Malik. He played in concert with and records with Jimmy Lyons, Syd Smart, William Parker and Cecil Taylor. During the 1970s and 1980s, he traveled extensively and was recognized as an icon in avant garde music by his fellow musicians and audiences alike. He had the gift to traverse many different musical styles and genres, and his strength and endurance on the bandstand were unmistakably his own.
During the late 1980s, Larry moved back to Boston and maintained himself setting ceramic tile, marble and granite, as well as playing concerts and records CDs with his group, the Raphe Malik Quintet.
In 1992, he married Marguerite Serkin and moved to southern Vermont. He constructed their family home while teaching music at Bennington College, performing and recording in a wide spectrum of musical genres. As his health declined, he continued to document his music and play live, and traveled as his health permitted.
Larry’s survivors include his wife of 15 years; a daughter, Lena Mazel of Guilford; two sons, Miles Mazel of Guilford and Joel Ortlip of Denver; and a sister, Marjorie Hecht of Leesburg, Va.
(A post by Todd S. Jenkins on www.jazzhouse.com describes Larry, a/k/a Raphe Malik, as a free jazz trumpeter and discusses his musical career in detail. The author reports that Larry had a liver transplant in 2005 but continued to suffer ill health for the next year. Wikipedia includes an entry on Larry. YouTube includes a number of brief videos about Larry, including some in which he is playing his music.)