Saturday, December 15, 2018

Chloe Feoranzo

Along with an incredible voice, Chloe Feoranzo plays the clarinet and saxophone. She pulls you back in time with her music. As you listen you’ll feel like you’re sitting in a 1920s speakeasy enjoying a night on the town. She’s put hard work and dedication into her craft and it shows. Every note, whether voice or instrument, shines bright in her performance. Truly a modern-day link to the past, yet a gem in our musical present.

Chloe studied under Jazz great Charles McPherson. A friend of mine’s father, Mario Rivera was also a Jazz great. He played with Tito Puente for many years. He recorded an album with Dizzy Gillespie, Afro Cuban Jazz Moods in 1975. Over the years, I’ve enjoyed hearing stories from my friend Mario about his father and that magical time gone by. Chloe’s music is reflective of this era.

Music from the past is always a treat to look back on and take in. All of its emotion captured in the recordings of the musicians from years ago. But there’s something special when you see the past alive and well here in present day. Chloe Feoranzo is that present day musician making a lasting mark on the Jazz world.

This is Chloe Feoranzo.

How old were you when you started playing clarinet and saxophone?

I was about 9 or 10 when I first started playing the saxophone in Elementary school band. I was around 12 or 13 when my middle school teacher needed an extra clarinet player and I said why not? Haha.

Have you always been drawn to Jazz as a musician?

I definitely grew up around Jazz even before starting to play an instrument. My parents used to swing dance and loved to listen to the songs they heard in classes at home so I got a taste of it then. After starting music, I was drawn to the older styles of jazz after hearing it live for the first time at the San Diego Jazz Fest. So yes, but I’ve also been drawn to other forms of music as well such as classical, Brazilian choro, old R&B, Irish music, and even pop.

Which artists inspired you when you were starting out?

A lot of my inspiration came from the musicians I heard growing up live in town (I grew up in San Diego), especially the ones that would take me under their wing such as Ron Hockett, Chris Klich, Zzymzzy Quartet, Charles McPherson and practically any group that went to the Traditional Jazz Festivals. Recording wise I loved Billie Holliday, Peanuts Hucko, Lester Young, Gerry Mulligan, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Prima, Artie Shaw, Benny Goodman... I could go on.

I watched a clip of you playing on “The David Letterman Show.” How was the experience for you?

It was a pretty crazy day! A few of the highlights for me was finding out they kept TV studios extremely cold so no one sweats on television, so I basically walked around with my travel blanket for most of the time. Another is right before we did our take (and we were really only allowed to do one even though it wasn't live) Paul Shaffer sees me with my clarinet and goes "Oh! A clarinet!" and proceeds to play a polka beat. To which I then, of course, start playing some vaguely polka-like improvisation and we just jammed on this improv polka for a little bit before the TVs were filming. Lastly, right as we ended our take and Letterman walks off I look down on my mouthpiece to see my reed had completely shifted almost off the mouthpiece, which thankfully waited until after the take to do so or else there would have been some serious squeaks haha. In my excitement to perform I had forgotten to tighten my ligature enough (the thing that holds the reed in place) and luckily the reed cooperated. Whoops.

If it were possible and you could cover any song with the original artist singing along with you, what would it be?

I'll Be Seeing You - Billie Holliday version. Her version is so hauntingly beautiful and perfectly captures the message of the song.

What have you been working on lately and what would you like for the reader to check out? 

I have an all women traditional jazz group called the Shake 'Em Up Jazz Band that is based in New Orleans, also where I currently live. Our newest album called 'A Women's Place Is In The Groove' is an album dedicated to women composers of the 1920s-30s. We have done a couple overseas tours and various festivals around the country. You can find more about the band on our Facebook page ( and at our website( I really love these ladies and the way we make music and hope your listeners enjoy us too!


  1. Check out Chloe on C Melody saxophone.

  2. This...jazz lives and Chloe is its breath of life. Can't wait to see her on a stage.

  3. Swinging !! Great sound Chloe !!


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