Born: June 11, 1945 Primary Instrument: Flute
Born into jazz royalty, Roger Glenn is the son of the late Tyree Glenn, who was one of 57 notable jazz musicians photographed in the 1958 portrait A Great Day in Harlem by Art Kane. Roger grew up in a jazz family around New York City with his parents Tyree and Gloria Glenn, and his brother Tyree Glenn Jr., who plays tenor sax with his own rhythm and blues band, and Roger’s father Tyree, who played trombone and vibraphone with Cab Calloway, Duke Ellington, and Louis Armstrong. Roger had an early hands-on education in jazz by working with his father in a band that also featured jazz greats such as Wynton Kelly on piano, Joe Jones on drums, and Slam Stewart on bass. Some of Roger’s earliest teachers were Julius Baker (flute), Alberto Socarras (flute), Garvin Bushell (clarinet, sax, flute), and his father Tyree on vibes.
Roger’s mother introduced him at an early age to Latin music and Latin jazz musicians such as José Fajardo, Johnny Pacheco, Eddie & Charlie Palmieri, and Celia Cruz. His total family inspiration, and later playing in the Army Band with fellow members Grover Washington Jr. and Billy Cobham, gave him the education necessary to perform and record with Mary Lou Williams, Mongo Santamaria, Donald Byrd, Dizzy Gillespie, Cal Tjader, Rosemary Clooney, and Herbie Mann. Roger’s flute playing is featured on the Grammy Award-winning Cal Tjader CD La Onda Va Bien, as well as many notable CDs by Donald Byrd, Peaches and Herb, Bobby Hutcherson, and Mongo Santamaria.
Today, he works with many different musicians, including Steve Miller, John Handy, Ray Obiedo, Jamie Davis, James Carter, Poncho Sanchez, Lavay Smith, Leon Joyce, Jr. and Pete Escovedo. In addition, Roger along with Nolan Gasser on piano, Terry Miller on bass and Andy Eberhard on drums have formed The San Francisco Jazz Quartet with a release of their debut CD Ode to Swing.
Roger with his Latin Jazz Ensemble is about to embark on a tour with a new recording of all original compositions, a Latin jazz CD titled In The Moment. This multi-instrumentalist can enthusiastically entertain and inspire an audience with every note he plays. Roger is a master musician who plays sax, flute, vibes, clarinet, oboe, and many Latin hand percussion instruments. He has performed at venues all over the world, and has gained the respect of many musicians, critics, and audiences alike.