Serving the San Francisco Bay Area New Music Community

Larry Ochs
Saxophonist, composer, Rova member, band leader
Larry Ochs works on and breathes music. He composes. He plays saxophone. He looks for adventurous ideas to take on and for other artists - musicians and friends in other art mediums - to take them on with him.

Ochs is primarily found in the worlds of “avant-garde” or “improvised music.” That means that he composes music for “structured improvisation” in general, and in particular for musicians steeped in the art of improvisation, an art form that has really only come into its own in the past 50 years in Western music, primarily thanks to the development of jazz as influenced by the blues and then Western art music, as well as to the increased exposure of Western musicians to the music of Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe. But any artists in the visual arts or other performance-based arts that have an interest in taking chances are welcomed in. Thus, for example, he has worked recently with Shinichi Iova Koga and his dance group inkBoat; he is at the beginning of a relationship with We Players, a very cool theater company in the Bay Area, and is into ongoing work with Korean performance artist and vocalist Dohee Lee.

Rova Saxophone Quartet: Since 1978, Ochs's professional activities have been primarily centered around the Rova Saxophone Quartet, ( which has made over thirty-five European tours plus numerous concerts throughout the U.S. and Canada, as well as recording over 30 CDs/LPs as a quartet and/or in collaboration with other artists. Ochs has created roughly two dozen compositions for saxophone quartet as well as other pieces for Rova when working within larger ensembles, many of which are recorded, and some of which were commissioned by Chamber Music America/Doris Duke Foundation and Meet the Composer. He has been acting executive director of Rova:Arts since 1988. A recent concert video and accompanying documentary on the making of “Electric Ascension” recorded at 2012 Guelph Jazz Festival will be screened at film festivals in 2014-15.

In addition Ochs currently composes for and leads Larry Ochs Sax & Drumming Core with Scott Amendola, Don Robinson, Satoko Fujii, and Natsuki Tamura ("Stone Shift"- 2009 CD) and Kihnoua with vocalist Dohee Lee, Scott Amendola and special guests ("The Sybil’s Whisper"- 2012 CD). He is performing in and composing for more “collective” bands such as: East-West Collective - with Didier Petit, Sylvain Kassap, Miya Masaoka, Xu Fengxia ("Humeurs" - 2014 CD); Ochs-Robinson Duo with drummer Don Robinson; Jones Jones - with Mark Dresser and Vladimir Tarasov ("We All Feel the Same Way"- 2010 CD); Maybe Monday - with Miya Masaoka and Fred Frith (Unsquare -2008 CD); Shelton-Ochs Quartet with Aram Shelton, Kjell Nordeson and Mark Dresser; Trio Dave Rempis- Darren Johnston- Larry Ochs (“Spectral“- 2014 CD). Details on tours and recordings, and several interviews at

One final major indulgence for those of you with some time for a good story. At the top of this "Bio" we mention the search for adventure through music. One thing that can lead to is unexpected encounters with various parts of the general public. Here's a reflection on one such encounter in Spain, its ramifications, and well, it's just a good story that few have seen, since it was published in 2012 in French only, in the French avant music and arts magazine Les Allumés du Jazz. If you'd like to see a copy contact Ochs via eMail
Contact information:
Email: lmo49 (AT) earthlink (DOT) net
Phone: 510-548-1817
Upcoming Events:

Friday, June 14 2024 6:00 PM
Medicine for Nightmares [3036 24th St SF]
Other Dimensions in Sound: Darren Johnston, Larry Ochs, Lisa Mezzacappa, and Ben Davis  More...
CDs on which Larry Ochs appears:
Room Room
Artist: Room
Title: Room
Label: Sound Aspects SAS CD 028
Label page on this site: Sound Aspects
Sound Aspects SAS CD 028
John Lindberg Ensemble A tree Frog Tonality
Artist: John Lindberg Ensemble
Title: A tree Frog Tonality
Label: Between the Lines 001
Label page on this site: Between the Lines
Between the Lines 001
Maybe Monday Saturn’s Finger
Artist: Maybe Monday
Title: Saturn’s Finger
Label: Buzz Records ZZ 76007
Label page on this site: Buzz Records
Buzz Records ZZ 76007
What We Live Quintet for a Day
Artist: What We Live
Title: Quintet for a Day
Label: New World Records 001
Label page on this site: New World Records
New World Records 001
Room Hall of Mirrors
Artist: Room
Title: Hall of Mirrors
Label: Music and Arts CD-4700(1)
Label page on this site: Music and Arts
Music and Arts CD-4700(1)
Glenn Spearman Double Trio Mystery Project
Artist: Glenn Spearman Double Trio
Title: Mystery Project
Label: Black Saint BS 120147
Label page on this site: Black Saint
Black Saint BS 120147
Glenn Spearman Double Trio The Fields
Artist: Glenn Spearman Double Trio
Title: The Fields
Label: Black Saint BS 120197
Label page on this site: Black Saint
Black Saint BS 120197
Glenn Spearman Double Trio Smokehouse
Artist: Glenn Spearman Double Trio
Title: Smokehouse
Label: Black Saint BS 120157
Label page on this site: Black Saint
Black Saint BS 120157
Larry Ochs The Secret Magritte
Artist: Larry Ochs
Title: The Secret Magritte
Label: Black Saint BS 120177
Label page on this site: Black Saint
Black Saint BS 120177
Ben Goldberg Eight Phrases for Jefferson Rubin
Artist: Ben Goldberg
Title: Eight Phrases for Jefferson Rubin
Label: Les Disques Victo
Label page on this site: Les Disques Victo
Les Disques Victo
Audio Samples: