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Pete Souders

A difficult bop saxman located in Philadelphia, Pete Souders has owned Ortleib’s Jazz Haus–one from the city’s top jazz clubs–since 1987 and has shared his bandstand with such accomplished Philadelphians as Shirley Scott, Mickey Roker and Bobby Durham (most of whom possess played the golf club regularly). Souders was created and elevated in Reading, PA, where he analyzed the clarinet as a youngster before switching towards the sax at 14. Souders (whose affects consist of Coleman Hawkins, Sonny Rollins, Gene Ammons, Sonny Stitt and Lucky Thompson) relocated nearer to Philly in 1966 and majored in mathematics at Ursinus University in Collegeville, PA. The 1970s and early-to-mid 1980s discovered Souders making his living like a pc programmer in the Philadelphia Region while playing jazz and R&B gigs several nights weekly. Souders shifted gears in 1987, when he bought Ortleib’s. Booking mainly Philly occupants, Souders discovered himself playing alongside talented local people like trumpeter John Swana; tenor saxmen Bootsie Barnes, Larry McKenna and Jimmy Oliver; vocalist Lou Lanza; and pianist and previous Jazz Messenger Sam Dockerty. Coincidently, two from the drummers who performed Ortleib’s frequently, Mickey Roker and Bobby Durham, experienced both followed Ella Fitzgerald. People to Philly that Souders frequently sat along with on his stage included Al Gray, Cecil Payne, Eric Alexander, Ralph Bowen and Tim Warfield. Actually George Benson and Branford Marsalis possess sat in at Ortleib’s during appointments to Philly. Though he considers the tenor his primary instrument, Souders offers frequently performed the alto, soprano and baritone saxophones as supplementary tools at Ortleib’s.

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