Larry Green’s enduring passion for jazz made him a key figure in fostering Canada’s future generations of musicians.
Green helped build CJRT-FM into JAZZ.FM91 in the early 2000s, hosting the station’s afternoon program for several years.
Green’s enthusiasm for supporting young musicians led to the creation of Jazzology in 2006. He took his role as host and mentor seriously, and was deeply proud of the development and evolution of the program. To date, more than 180 students from the University of Toronto, York University, Humber College and Mohawk College have participated in Jazzology.
Sadly, Green died on Jan. 2, 2021, in Toronto. He was 80.
“On behalf of the JAZZ.FM91 community, we are saddened by Larry’s passing and forever thankful for his generous spirit,” said Dana Wigle, general manager of JAZZ.FM91. “To Marc and Rosemary and Larry’s entire family, may his memory be a blessing.”
Green was born in Toronto on April 8, 1940, to Anne and Fred Greenstein. He was the father to Marc Yamaguchi and Rosemary Green and had two granddaughters, Linka and Lisa.
He was a jazz saxophonist in his early years and went on to have a long career in Canada’s music business and radio industry. According to his obituary, he retained his great love of jazz music to the very end of his life, “listening happily to old jazz greats and classics as well as new artists.”
“Larry Green was a key figure in helping to build Toronto’s CJRT-FM into JAZZ.FM91 back in the first decade of this century,” said Terry McElligott, former JAZZ.FM91 host. “[He shared] his clear love and deep knowledge of many old-school, timeless jazz aces … Listeners were lucky to be along on Larry’s always-interesting afternoon jazz ride.”
“He was passionate about his family and friends, and about music and radio. He loved the music community,” said Laura Fernandez, host of Café Latino. “His musician friends — who he supported wholeheartedly — loved Larry. Those of us who were fortunate to love him and know him on a personal level know that Larry was kind beyond words, funny, charming, sweet and steadfastly loyal. He did his job with love.”
“How many were nurtured by Larry Green in more than one era of his and their lives?” said Danny Marks, host of BLUZ.FM. “Those of us who knew Larry well recall his kindly manner. The man knew and loved jazz and the people who make it.”
“Larry Green set the bar for jazz radio broadcasting in Toronto,” said John Devenish, host of Dinner Jazz. “Much of how we do what we do, and how we do it on the air, reflects how Larry presented the beautiful and important music and the artists supported and played on JAZZ.FM91. Thank you, Larry. Your legacy and passion for the music and the artistry lives on.”
A memorial is not currently scheduled, but will be announced in the future. To offer sympathy, you can donate to the Regent Park School of Music.