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Denis DiBlasio

Denis DiBlasio is a burly guy whose personality bursts with effervescence. And that’s the way he plays his baritone saxophone. The “bari,” as DiBlasio calls his primary instrument, suits him to a tee, even though he came to it later in life, at age 27.

What happened was, DiBlasio heard there was an opening in Maynard Ferguson’s band for a baritone sax. DiBlasio took the gig thinking he’d eventually switch back to his then- beloved tenor, but that never happened. “Manny Albam once told me the instrument that best suits your personality has nothing to do with the instrument you pick to play,” DiBlasio recalls. “I didn’t want to believe it. I wanted to be a tenor player, but eventually I realized the bari was kind of my voice.”

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