Fonds P0065 - Johnny Reno fonds

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Title proper

Johnny Reno fonds

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  • Graphic material

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the provenance of the fonds.

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  • 1943 (Creation)
    Reno, Johnny

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Physical description

2 photographs

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Name of creator

(May 11, 1917 -)

Biographical history

Giovanni Roco Johnny Reno was born in Montreal May 11, 1917. His parents were from Sicily. He learned to play clarinet at age nine and had private lessons with Joseph Fiori. At 14, he taught himself to play alto and tenor saxophone. By 16, while still in school, he began playing in dance halls in Montreal's St. Henri district. His full-time career started at the Montreal Press Club in 1938 with pianist Al Buckwald. During the 1940s he led his own bands and worked with Jimmy Jones at Rockhead's Paradise (1944-1945) and with Lloyd Duncan at Café St-Michel. He was also the lead alto saxophonist for various big bands, including those conducted by Bix Bélair, Maynard Ferguson, Russ Meredith, and Stan Wood. From 1952 to 1963 he led quartets which played at Café Montmartre. For a year and a half, he worked with Marcel Doré in a show he presented at the Casa Loma night club.He then played in different clubs sporadically before he began working for Joe Christie, accompanying dancers at Chez Paree 1973-1974. Reno also worked as a music copyist, music teacher, studio musician, and composer.

Custodial history

The Johnny Reno documents were donated to Concordia University Archives by Jack Gibbons. The fonds was transferred from Concordia University's Records Management and Archives Department to Concordia University Libraries' Special Collections March 16, 2016.

Scope and content

The Johnny Reno fonds consists of two photographs of Percy Ferguson's Victory Serenadors, including Oscar Peterson, at Canadian Pacific's Rosemont Hall in Montreal in 1943.

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      The photographs are copies made by the Concordia University Archives. The originals were returned to Jack Gibbons.

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