Jump to content

Earl Anderza


Recommended Posts

I learned a new name today, courtesy of Marc Myers's blog, JazzWax (www.jazzwax.com)

Anyone have any more info about Earl Anderza other than the little you can find by Googling? Apparently a player in the Bird/McLean/Dolphy lineage, one album as leader, resident of San Quentin.

Any more info?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

imo you can find a lot by googling (including previous discussion here)! There's the quartet album, the two tracks with Dupree Bolton which you find most easily on the Bolton Uptown CD (alternatively on the O. Matthews Select)... he was an early (high school) associate of Horace Tapscott and is mentioned in passing in Isoardi's books; there's chapter on Anderza in the San Quentin Jazz band book which I guess is as comprehensive as it gets in Anderza's case... IIRC the most noteworthy additional thing in there was that he resurfaced very briefly at some point in the 70s, don't have the book here but it was a story like "he jammed with Sonny Rollins in Chicago in 1976"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

just tried to dig up some more, can't say that any of it is really interesting but since so little is known... (no guarantee that it's him, of course, but the city (LA) and age check with what we know (1933-1982), and the name should be fairly rare)

From the "Pen Pal's Corner" of "The California Eagle" (12/15/49) comes a piece of 66 year old gossip:

"The Saturday nite hoot owls spotted on the Pasadena speedway was after leaving the home of sweet, litle Miss Rebecca Wright, were Earl Anderza, who is said to be head over heels in love with her."

Even older is this one: (9/29/1949):

"What's this I hear about Earl Anderza escorting Leodloos Morney home Friday from Jeffs sports nite"

Another September 1949 edition gives us his then current address (as a reference for prospective pen pals)
691 East 52nd Place, L.A. Calif. (he was 16 years old then)

Interestingly, it says at the end of the list of people: "Please address all news and pen pals names to 691 East 52nd Place, L.A. Calif." so the whole thing was run either by him or a neighbor... (columns were written by one Barbara Jean) (that's what it looks like today)

Slightly more interesting is that one of the other kids that frequently visited the same birthday parties was Roy Milton's son Roy Milton Jr.

From a later edition of that newspaper, we even learn that "Earl Anderza and his Combo" had a gig at the Elbow Bend in early 1954,

While I'm at it here's a 1962 photograph of Horace Tapscott at the piano...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Small progress, columnist Barbara "Bobbie" Jean Anderza (*(8/8/1932) was the older sister of Peter Earl Anderza - so I guess they really lived at that address (their parents were Peter and Helen Anderza, the third daughter was Leona June Anderza --- I guess this is all information that's also in the SQJB book). Peter Anderza had been a columnist for the California Eagle himself in the early 30s ("Ask me another", he answered trivia questions). He was shot in a "justfiable homicide" in 1936 at the age of 30 when trying to enter the home of one George Freer at 10621 Croesus Street. Apparently, Anderza was "under the influence of liquor" and most likely just tried to get home (ref). In the 1949 eagle there's also an ad from the younger "Peter Anderza" offering "SAXAPHONE lessons, beginners or advanced."

Some further research could probably provide a complete list of all the girls Anderza went out with before ca 1952)

another bit of information from the early days of the San Quentin Jazz Band:

CA Eagle 11/4/1948

"Nat Meeks, popular young trumpet star, is organizing a small Be-Bop combo complete with bongo drums. Meeks, a local boy who
plays terrific trumpet, has Clyde Dunn, Eric Dolphy, Hadley Caliman, Morris Edwards, Joe Harrison, Johnny Lawson, and Leroy McCray lined up as personnel."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In 1952, Earl Anderza married Leonabelle Huven. They had a son Thomas Earl Anderza (*1954), a daughter Erlinda Anderza (*1955), a daughter Sheri D Anderza in 1965, possibly also a son named earl born in 1960. The marriage ended in divorce in 1967.

Peter Anderza had married Earl's mother Helen B. Langford in 1931, spelling his name "Andarza" on that occasion. On the marriage license he gives his job is listed as "printer". He is divorced. (Possibly, the first marriage was to one Geneva Wright in 1925. And possibly, he was the Peter Anderza who is listed as a married inmate on the 1930 census).

It's amazing how much you can "find by Googling"...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:-) just got home and looked through the Anderza chapter in the SQJB book - most of what I found (except for the childhood girlfriends) is in there. Briancon talked to some of Anderza's family, to his friend Ron Clark (who founded a drug rehabilitation program (Rap Inc))... he also had access to a long interview with Bobby Bradford (from Steven Isoardi's files), Bradford knew Anderza in the early 50s... Briancon's specialty are, of course, all the details from the legal files... my French really isn't good enough to get all the details but apparently Anderza was behind bars for most of 1960-1975, then went through Clark's program (in Washington, where he also jammed with Rollins at Howard University), and taught at Malcolm X College in Chicago in his final years

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Pacific Jazz LP was on CD, used copies are available at affordable prices.


Yes, it was reissued on CD in the late nineties in my much beloved Pacific Jazz Classics series by Capitol. I'm afraid it's OOP now. But maybe some copies can be dug up.

I gave it a listen yesterday and liked it more than I did remember. Recommended.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 7 years later...
2 hours ago, Erlinda said:

Hi all,  this is ERLINDA Anderza Ochoa, today is Xmas eve... 2022. Taking care of my mother Leonabelle Anderza. Thank you for this wonderful conversation 

Thank you for joining in! I really enjoy your father's recordings!

Edited by bertrand
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...