Bob Brozman


Bob Brozman (March 8, 1954 – April 23, 2013) was an American guitarist and
ethnomusicologist Ethnomusicology is the study of music from the cultural and social aspects of the people who make it. It encompasses distinct theoretical and methodical approaches that emphasize cultural, social, material, cognitive, biological, and other di ...


Brozman was born to a Jewish family in
Long Island Long Island is a densely populated island in the southeast part of the U.S. state In the , a state is a , of which there are currently 50. Bound together in a , each state holds al jurisdiction over a separate and defined geographic ...
, New York, and began playing the guitar when he was six. He performed
gypsy jazz Gypsy jazz (also known as gypsy swing, jazz manouche or hot club-style jazz) is a style of small-group jazz originating from the Romani people, Romani guitarist Django Reinhardt, Jean "Django" Reinhardt (1910–53), in conjunction with the Fren ...
calypso Calypso refers to: *Calypso (mythology), a nymph who, famously in Homer's ''Odyssey'', kept Odysseus with her on her island of Ogygia for seven years. *Calypso (nymphs), other nymphs called Calypso. Calypso may also refer to: Places *Calypso ...
blues Blues is a music genre A music genre is a conventional category that identifies some pieces of music as belonging to a shared tradition or set of conventions. It is to be distinguished from ''musical form'' and musical style, although in ...

ragtime Ragtime – also spelled rag-time or rag time – is a musical style that enjoyed its peak popularity between 1895 and 1919. Its cardinal trait is its syncopated Syncopation is a musical term meaning a variety of rhythms played together to ...
Hawaiian music The music of Hawaii includes an array of traditional and popular styles, ranging from native Hawaiian folk music to modern rock music, rock and hip hop music, hip hop. Styles like slack-key guitar are well known worldwide, while Hawaiian-tinged ...
, and
Caribbean music Caribbean music genres are diverse. They are each syntheses of African African(s) may refer to: * Anything from or pertaining to the continent of Africa: ** People who are native to Africa, descendants of natives of Africa, or individuals who t ...
and collaborated with musicians from India, Africa, Japan,
Papua New Guinea Papua New Guinea (PNG; , ; tpi, Papua Niugini; ho, Papua Niu Gini), officially the Independent State of Papua New Guinea ( tpi, Independen Stet bilong Papua Niugini; ho, Independen Stet bilong Papua Niu Gini), is a country in Oceania th ...

Papua New Guinea
, and
Réunion Réunion (french: La Réunion, ; previously ''Île Bourbon''; rcf, label= Reunionese Creole, La Rénion) is an island in the Indian Ocean The Indian Ocean is the third-largest of the world's five ocean The ocean (also the or t ...

. He has been called "an instrumental wizard" and "a walking archive of 20th Century American music". Brozman toured often in North America, Europe, Australia, Asia, and Africa. He recorded numerous albums and won the ''
Guitar Player ''Guitar Player'' is an American popular magazine for guitarist A guitarist (or a guitar player) is a person who plays the guitar The guitar is a fret (in the background, coloured white) and first four frets A fret is a space betwee ...

Guitar Player
'' Readers' Poll three times for Best Blues, Best World, and Best
Slide Guitarist
Slide Guitarist
. In 1999, Brozman and
Woody Mann Woody Mann is an American blues guitarist. Biography He was born in New York, where he studied acoustic guitar with blues guitarist Reverend Gary Davis Reverend Gary Davis, also Blind Gary Davis (born Gary D. Davis, April 30, 1896 – May 5, 197 ...
founded International Guitar Seminars, which hosted over 100 students annually at sites in California, New York, Washington and Canada. From 2000 to 2005 his collaborations landed in the European Top 10 for World Music five times. He was an adjunct professor in the Department of Contemporary Music Studies at
Macquarie University Macquarie University () is a public In public relations Public relations (PR) is the practice of managing and disseminating information from an individual or an organization An organization, or organisation (English in the Co ...

Macquarie University
, in Sydney, Australia. Brozman played
National National may refer to: Common uses * Nation A nation is a community A community is a social unitThe term "level of analysis" is used in the social sciences to point to the location, size, or scale of a research target. "Level of analysis ...
resonator instruments from the 1920s and 1930s. He also used
Weissenborn Weissenborn or H. Weissenborn is a brand of lap slide guitar manufactured by Hermann Weissenborn in Los Angeles in the 1920s and 1930s. These instruments are now highly sought after, and form the base for most non-resonator acoustic lap steel ...
-style hollow-neck acoustic
steel guitar A steel guitar ( haw, kīkākila) is any guitar The guitar is a fret (in the background, coloured white) and first four frets A fret is a space between two fretbars on the neck (music), neck of a stringed instrument. Frets usually extend ...

steel guitar
s. Among his National instruments were a
baritone A baritone is a type of classical music, classical male singing human voice, voice whose vocal range lies between the bass (voice type), bass and the tenor voice type, voice-types. The term originates from the Greek language, Greek (), meaning ...
version of the tricone guitar, which was designed in conjunction with him in the mid- to late 1990s. This instrument is part of National's range of products. Brozman's book ''The History and Artistry of National Resonator Instruments'', a guide to National Guitars from 1927 to 1941, includes a list serial numbers and production dates. Brozman was a member of R. Crumb & His Cheap Suit Serenaders from 1978 until his death in 2013.Lynch, Megan
"The Cheap Suit Serenaders," Accessed Nov. 17, 2019.
Brozman committed suicide on April 23, 2013, amid allegations of
child molestation Child sexual abuse, also called child molestation, is a form of child abuse Child abuse or child maltreatment is physical Physical may refer to: *Physical examination, a regular overall check-up with a doctor *Physical (album), ''Physical ...
.Palopoli, Steve
"The Dark Side of Genius," (June 4, 2013).
He was survived by a wife and a daughter from a previous marriage.


* ''Your Pal'' (1977) * ''Blue Hula Stomp'' (1981) * ''Snapping the Strings'' (1983) * ''Hello Central...Give Me Dr. Jazz'' (1985) * ''Devil's Slide'' (1988) * ''A Truckload of Blues'' (1992) * ''Slide a Go-Go'' (1994) * ''Blues 'Round the Bend'' (1995) * ''Golden Slide'' (1997) * ''Kika Kila Meets Ki Ho'Alu'', with
Ledward Kaapana Ledward Kaapana (born August 25, 1948) is a Hawaii Hawaii ( ; haw, Hawaii or ) is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of S ...
(1997) * ''Kosmik Blues & Groove'' (1998) * ''The Running Man'' (1999) * ''Four Hands Sweet & Hot'', with
Cyril Pahinui Cyril Pahinui (April 21, 1950 – November 17, 2018) was a slack-key guitarist and singer of Music of Hawaii, Hawaiian music. Biography He was born in Waimānalo, Hawaii, Waimānalo at the foot of the Ko'olau mountains on the Hawai'ian island ...
(1999) * '' Tone Poems 3'', with David Grisman and Mike Auldridge (2000) * ''Get Together'' with
Woody Mann Woody Mann is an American blues guitarist. Biography He was born in New York, where he studied acoustic guitar with blues guitarist Reverend Gary Davis Reverend Gary Davis, also Blind Gary Davis (born Gary D. Davis, April 30, 1896 – May 5, 197 ...
(2000) * ''Jin Jin/Firefly'', with Takashi Hirayasu (2000) * ''Ocean Blues'', with Djeli Moussa Diawara (2000) * ''Live Now'' (2001) * ''Nankuru Naisa'', with Takashi Hirayasu (2001) * ''In the Saddle'', with Ledward Kaapana (2001) * ''Digdig'' , with René Lacaille (2002) * ''Rolling Through This World'', with Jeff Lang (2002) * ''Mahima'', with Debashish Bhattacharya (2003) * ''Metric Time'' (2003) * ''Songs of the Volcano'' (2005) * ''Blues Reflex'' (2006) * ''Lumiere'' (2007) * ''Post-Industrial Blues'' (2007) * ''Kani Wai'', with George Kahumoku, Jr. (2009) * ''Six Days in Down'', with Dónal O'Connor and John McSherry (2010) * ''Fire in the Mind'' (2012)



* Douse, Cliff. ''The Guitarist Book of Guitar Players'', Music Maker Books, 1994, * Gregory, Hugh. ''1000 Great Guitarists. Rock, Jazz, Country, Funk ...'', Balafon Books, 1994. * Larkin, Colin. ''The Encyclopedia of Popular Music'', Third edition, Macmillan, 1998,

External links

Bob Brozman biography
- from his website.
Santa Cruz Weekly article on his death

Bear Creek Guitars Bob Brozman page

{{DEFAULTSORT:Brozman, Bob 1954 births 2013 suicides American blues guitarists American male guitarists Linguists from the United States Guitarists from New York (state) Slide guitarists Weissenborn players Suicides in California Jewish American musicians 20th-century American guitarists 20th-century American male musicians