Voodoo Fest 2008: Washboard ChazWatch
Though comfortable in all
forms of our diverse American musical heritage, Washboard Chaz Leary has
achieved dominance and international recognition in acoustic country
Originally from New York, Chaz lived in Boulder, CO from 1975-1997, and played with a wide variety of bands including the legendary Ophelia Swing Band, Prosperity Jazz Band, BBQ Bob & Washboard Chaz, Judy Roderick and the Forebears, and Bleecker St. During this time, Chaz was a two time finalist in KBCO’s Boulder songwriting contest.
He has played professionally with an impressive array of world-class musicians, both on the stage and in the recording studio. His reputation as a consummate musician and performer – along with a delightful stage presence has brought him countless excellent reviews and wide popularity.
Upon arrival in New Olreans in December 2000, Chaz established himself as a seasoned musician, forming his Washboard Chaz Blues Trio with Ben Maygarden on harmonica and Roberto Luti on slide guitar. Shortly afterward, Chaz joined Alex McMurray and Matt Perrinne on sousaphone to form the Tin Men, one of New Orleans’ most unique and recognized bands. Since then, Chaz has also played with the cream of New Orleans musicians, including the New Orleans Nightcrawlers, The Iguanas, Tuba Fats, Royal Fingerbowl, and The Jazz Vipers.
Chaz’s talents are becoming synonymous with New Orleans and he was recently featured in a 2005 New Orleans commercial. He is currently playing a small part in the upcoming CBS movie titled “Just Like the Ones”, about miraculous snow storms that hit all over the country, co-starring Mary Tylor Moore and Poppy Montgomery.
Chaz has shared the stage with Bonnie Raitt, John Hammond, Taj Mahal, Anders Osborne and Corey Harris among others. He has opened for many blues greats, including Muddy Waters, Robert Cray, Doc Watson and Keb Mo. Chaz’s musical talents have been featured on over 70 recordings, including John Hammond’s 1998 Grammy nominated “Long as I have You”
He has played festivals and clubs from coast to coast, including the Bottom Line in New York City, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Telluride Blue Grass Festival, the AmericanMusic Hall in San Francisco and Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Denver. He has played successful International tours, with his band Bleecker St. in Germany, in Holland and Germany with David Booker, and in Japan with Chris Mule.
Washboard Chaz Leary has become a fixture on the New
Orleans club scene, a constant presence fronting his own band or
playing with the Tin Men, The Palmetto Bug Stompers, Andy J. Forest and many others. One of the
alternative programs opposite this year’s Jazz and Heritage Festival was even
dubbed “Chaz Fest.”
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