Tito Martino (*1937), Brazilian born clarinetist and saxophonist plays enthusiastically since 1957, in the tradition of Johnny Dodds, Sidney Bechet, Albert Nicholas, Omer Simeon, George Lewis. He recorded 8 LPs and 5 CDs. Tito talked to Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington and jammed with Teddy Wilson, Oscar Peterson (that was fortunately recorded), Wally Rose, Bob Wilber, Bob Haggart, Louis Nelson, Alvin Alcorn, Louis Barbarin, Louis Cottrell Jr. and other big names of Jazz.
In 1974 Tito Martino managed to take his Band to the USA, to play some gigs in New Orleans, N.York, New Jersey, Miami and Tucson Arizona. The Band attracted attention of prestigious and respected Jazz critics John Wilson of New York Times and Hal Willard, of Washington Post. They published Tito’s photos on their newspapers and wrote very nice reviews about his concerts like the one at NY Jazz Museum, organized by Jack Bradley. Wilson wrote: “Mr. Martino revealed his affection for the style of George Lewis, the New Orleans clarinetist, in a beautifully shaded performance of Burgundy Street Blues; but although one could hear occasional reflections of well known American jazz men … he was drawing in a number of sources and putting things together in his own individual way”. After jamming together in New Orleans, Alvin Alcorn, the great black trumpetist of Kid Ory’s Band, tapped Tito’s shoulder and said: “Know what, man? you’re black inside”. The Band performed also in Wash. DC, a Concert for Potomac Jazz Club, aired by The Voice of America. As a consequence Tito Martino’s Band was engaged next year (1975) by newsman, radio producer and writer Royal Stokes, and under his supervision they did a second tour going now to Chicago Heights, Toledo, Akron, St. Louis, NY, Wash. DC, Boston, Worcester, after playing at the N. Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, were they where considered by Second Line magazine writers, the best foreign Band at the Festival.