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Bill Clinton Jams With Leo Gandelman

Jazz saxophonist Leo Gandelman may not be widely recognized in American jazz circles, but his combined jazz, funk, R&B and pop sensibilities, seven solo albums and appearances on over 600 albums have made him one of Brazil’s top jazz musicians.

On July 17, Gandelman appeared at New York’s Mansfield Hotel where he performed cuts from his latest Jazzateria CD, Brazilian Soul, in front of distinguished guests including Bill Clinton. The former President later jammed with the band on a brand new, custom-made L.A. Sax tenor emblazoned with the Brazilian flag, presented to him as a gift from Gandelman earlier in the evening.

Clinton, who makes no secret of his love of jazz, joined Gandelman in a bossa nova version of “Summertime,” after which Clinton told a journalist that he plans on taking private sax lessons in the music room of his New York home.

According to Jazzateria’s Preston Powell, Clinton graciously accepted the saxophone as a replacement for the red, white and blue sax he received during his first year as President, which strangely disappeared from the White House without a trace. Perhaps the White House staff believed Clinton wasn’t practicing safe sax.

Originally Published