John Gross Bio, Age, Education, Career, Awards, Songs, Publications

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John Gross Biography

John Gross is an American saxophone, flute and clarinet player. He is the creator of a notational method called Multiphonics for the Saxophone.

John Gross Age

Gross was born on May 30, 1944. He is aged 75 years as of 2019.

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John Gross Education and Early Career

Gross was raised in a musical family, he launched his professional career at age 8 in Los Angeles, playing clarinet for the L.A. County Parks and Recreation Youth Orchestra. He studied clarinet with Phil Sobel and Vito Susca, and saxophone with Ronnie Lang and John Graas. Being a child and youth Gross played in the Burbank Youth Symphony, All-Southern California Junior High School Orchestra, American Youth Symphony, L.A. All-City High School Band, I.O.F. Robin Hood Youth Band, and Sepulveda Youth Band.

By the age of 14, Gross was playing at the Gas House in Venice Beach, the epicenter of L.A. Beat culture (which led to a police visit, and the threat of juvenile detention for John and his date). He earned his jazz improv chops in L.A.’s jazz scene playing at venues such as the Hillcrest Club on Washington Boulevard with jazz greats such as Ornette Coleman, Don Cherry, Gary Peacock, and Horace Tapscott, who were participants of the scene at the time, and the shapers of L.A. jazz.

By the age of 16, Gross dropped out of the California State University, Northridge, and hit the road with Harry James. The band was playing on a bill with the famous crooner Billy Eckstine (“My Foolish Heart”). He continued to work in top-level bands in the early ’60s, touring with Lionel Hampton, Johnny Mathis, Stan Kenton, and Woody Herman.

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