Tribute to jazz great Joe Maneri

The Brooklyn Paper
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This February 9, the Irondale Center will hold a tribute to Joe Maneri, a Williamsburg-born jazz musician and composer who died this past summer due to complications of heart failure.

The tribute is even more touching, given that Maneri was the father-in-law of Lucy Walters-Maneri, the public relations and marketing manager for Irondale, as well as the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, where Maneri also taught for a time.

“He created his own language,” said Walters-Maneri. “He also touched many people’s hearts in the music world and personally.”

In his 82 years, Manerimade several contributions in the experimental jazz realm, as co-inventor of a microtonal keyboard and co-author of “Preliminary Studies in the Virtual Pitch Continuum.” He also composed a piece for the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and had several compositions performed at the Carnegie Recital Hall and at Alice Tully Hall in New York’s Lincoln Center.

Walter-Maneri’s husband, Mat Maneri, is also an accomplished musician, and can be thanked for bringing his father out of his shell. A teacher at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston for nearly 40 years, the elder Maneri hardly ever performed publicly, until his son encouraged him to play live. Soon enough, the Joe Maneri Quartet formed, with Joe on clarinet and saxophone, Mat on violin and viola, John Lockwood on bass and Randy Peterson on drums. They developed a cult following in Boston and beyond, performing and improvising around the world.

In remembrance of Maneri, over 35 musicians, including John Medeski, Matthew Shipp, Tony Malay, and Joe Morris, quartet member Randy Peterson, and his three sons — Sal, Abe and Matt — will gather to honor him in music, words and song.

There is a suggested admission of $10, to be donated to the Boston Microtonal Society, which Maneri founded. The concert starts at 8 p.m. The Irondale Center is located at 85 South Oxford St. For more information, go to or call 718-488-9233.

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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