Thursday, September 20, 2012

Mat Domber - R.I.P.

Mat Domber
A true hero of classic jazz has left us. Arbors Records founder Mat Domber died yesterday (September 19) from cancer. He was 84.

In 1989, Domber, who was a lawyer, created Arbors and began recording classic jazz artists - from Dixieland to mainstream swing - who weren’t getting the attention they deserved. Over the next 20+ years, they found a welcome home on his Clearwater, Florida-based label. What began as a labor of love for Mat and his wife/business partner Rachel, and evolved into a significant force on the jazz scene. In many cases, Arbors was a career revivalist for many significant elder statesmen of jazz and a career nurturer for younger players who loved and felt most comfortable in the classic jazz style.

The many, many players recorded by Mat ranged from Ruby Braff, Kenny Davern, Bob Haggart, Dick Hyman, Dave McKenna, Bucky Pizzarelli, Flip Phillips, Ralph Sutton, Johnny Varro and Bob Wilber to Howard Alden, Harry Allen, Dan Barrett, Scott Hamilton, Rebecca Kilgore, Nicki Parrott, Ken Peplowski, Daryl Sherman, Rossano Sportiello and Aaron Weinstein. The list goes on and on. More than 300 recordings have received the Arbors touch. 

The annual Arbors Invitational Jazz Party, which was scheduled January 11-13, 2013 in Clearwater Beach, is certain to be an emotional weekend for all participants - celebrating not only the music, but a man who did so much for it rather quietly and without fanfare. has been cancelled.

Thanks go out  to Mat for his efforts and the legacy he created and sympathies to Rachel Domber and the entire Arbors Records family for their loss.

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