All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Rocco Ventrella

Rocco Ventrella

One can only smile and enjoy when hearing the music of Rocco Ventrella. The joy of his music that exudes from his soul is undeniable. His passion for smooth jazz is so obvious with every note he plays.

With “Give Me The Groove” CD, released on February 2007, Ventrella has been Pre-Nominated Grammy Award Contemporary Jazz Best Album 2007.

Ventrella, began playing saxophone in his hometown of Bari, Italy at age ten. As a young boy, he remembers when his father, a lover of jazz music, gave to him an album of Duke Ellington and Ventrella was captured by the sound of the sax of Johnny Hodge and a love was born.

Ventrella was trained jazzly, but switched to the clarinet at age 15 enrolling himself at Conservatory of Music of Bari and abandoning the sax for seven years. In this time Ventrella has had an interesting experience playing classical music with the local Symphonic Orchestra and playing with great artists like Luciano Pavarotti, Josè Carreras, Placido Domingo, Katia Ricciarelli and more. During this time Ventrella had nostalgia of the saxophone, the love for the sax was so intense. “The clarinet wasn't quite expressive enough for me,” he says. “I really connected more with jazz and funk. So I picked up the saxophone changing my style immediately.”

Ventrella begins performing in alot of jazz clubs of his city and out of the city and played for over 25 years in a local jazz big band where famous artists have been guests such as Lee Konitz, Art Farmer, Dizzy Gillespie, Ernie Wilkins, Tony Scott, Chet Baker, Eddie “Lockiaw” Davis, Bob Mintzer and more. “I always loved American music and the people,” he says. After performing in over 20 different countries and playing for hundreds of others records artists for many years, Ventrella discovered the great saxophone player Grover Washington, Jr. in the mid-90s. Ventrella was captivated by the sound and the groove of Grover and for this reason Grover remains his “virtual” teacher to this day. Ventrella recorded, arranged and produced the Tribute To Grover Washington, Jr. CD in memory of the late, great saxophone player in 2005. This remarkable recording originally contained just five tracks: “Winelight”, “Let It Flow”, “Make Me a Memory”, “Mr. Grover”(original by Ventrella) and “Come Morning”. However, it was “Winelight” that made Rocco a household name on Smooth Jazz stations across the Internet. Winelight was selected by Sky.fm as one of “The Best Of 2005,” along with other 14 tracks.

Read more
Primary Instrument

Saxophone

Willing to teach

Intermediate to advanced

Clinic/Workshop Information

January 2008 Clinic at Berklee College of Boston, MA. September 2008 Clinic at "Mousikè" - Martina Franca(IT) w/Spajazzy Band

3 Photos Slideshow

Date Detail Price
Jan20Sun
7:00 pm
Rocco Ventrella
Spaghettini
Seal Beach, CA

Discography

 

Another Time

Delilah Records
2015

buy
Sweet Temptation

Sweet Temptation

Innervision Records
2013

buy
Secret Agent

Secret Agent

RV Music
2010

buy
Where Were You

Where Were You

RV Music
2009

buy
Give Me The Groove

Give Me The Groove

Smooth Sounds Music
2007

buy
Stay Close To Me

Stay Close To Me

Rocco Ventrella
Another Time

Secret Agent

Secret Agent

Rocco Ventrella
Secret Agent - single

Videos

Similar