Bob Berg

I was very saddened to learn in early December of 2002 that my good friend and one of the best saxophone players I ever heard, the great Bob Berg, died in a traffic accident near his home. To all of us who knew him either personally or through his playing, this was a great blow and the world of music and saxophone lost one of its most treasured and respected members.

I first remember hearing Bob on one of the records he did with Horace Silver in the mid 70's and recall that his tone, ideas, and execution seemed to be just perfectly molded for the context of the tune. All I thought was "Wow, I've got to hear more of this HAPPENING PLAYER!!" And hear him we all did with hard bop pianist veteran Cedar Walton in the later 70's-early 80's, in The Miles Davis Band of the mid 80's, where his highly personal tone and style provided such a strong compliment/foil for Miles and became an integral part of the total sound of the band. Then on to the early to mid 90's when he was in front for piano legend Chick Corea's group as his driving, intense and sheerly beautiful solos highlighted just what that band was all about. Recently Bob was heard in his own acoustic band as well as the fantastic group "STEPS" and in tours and gigs with other top musicians.

It's not an exaggeration to say that Bob Berg was one of the top tenor/soprano saxophone players in the world and he will be sorely missed not only as a musician, but also as the great guy and true friend he was..

We used to talk a good deal about reeds, horns, mouthpieces etc. Bob told me many times about how happy he was with the way his Superials responded and how they had changed his tone for the better. It was a great honor for us to be able to contribute in some way to giving him the sound he was after.

He was also jazzed about the pristine gem of an early Selmer MK VI tenor which he had bought that summer and was really excited about his new-found tone. He told me how much fun he was having playing with a variety of musicians and looking forward to more. Bob Berg had so much more music to play and things to say and his leaving us this soon just seemed so tragic and unfair.