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Tony Rizzi

Tony Rizzi (1923 – 1992) was one of the forgotten treasures of classic jazz guitar. He started his career in the 1940's with such organizations as Alvy West, Carl Fisher's Orchestra, Les Brown and Boyd Raeburn.

His most interesting work from this period is the Alvy West material from 1947. Produced on 78 RPM records under the title Alvy West and the Little Band, the eight sides have Rizzi playing rhythm, unison passages with West and a couple of solos. There is also an extended piece entitled Tony's Guitar penned by West for Tony Rizzi.

In the 1950's Tony Rizzi played and recorded with the Paul Smith Quartet and the Dave Pell Quintet. He appears on several recordings by both. During this period he also cut his first recording as leader, Tony Rizzi Plays The Music of Frank Comstock.

In the 1960's Tony Rizzi was found on the recordings of Ted and Dick Nash, Herbie Mann and others. In the 1970's he formed Tony Rizzi and His Five Guitars producing the famous Plays Charlie Christian.

Tony Rizzi was one of the most active studio musicians in the television and radio studios and was often heard (unknown to the viewer) on such TV shows as The Smothers Brothers.

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