Remembering Al Vega

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Dec. 6, 2011

LISTEN: The Al Vega Trio plays live at WGBH's Fraser Performance Studio on Jun. 7, 2011.


Al Vega, a longtime Boston musician who played with some of nation's finest jazz talents through a 70-year career, died on Dec. 2 at the age of 90.

At WGBH, we knew him well. In fact we recorded his trio live at the Fraser Performance Center not six months ago.

Vega, born Aram Vagramian, was the house pianist at the Hi-Hat jazz club in the late 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s, according to WGBH host Ron Della Chiesa. He played with many jazz greats including Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Count Basie and Duke Ellington. He later led his own trio, which performed live at WGBH’s Fraser Performance Studio on June 7, 2011.

Vega was, Della Chiesa said, a legendary musician and teacher, and a friend to generations of Massachusetts politicians, regardless of their party. Vega, a World War II veteran, was also a longtime Little League and Babe Ruth baseball coach in Everett, Mass., where a square was dedicated in his honor in October.

Boston Globe obituary

Washington Post obituary

Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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