DENVER (CBS4)– There is a lot of noise in LoDo, but the sound that will be missed the most belongs to Freddy Rodriguez Sr., Denver’s saxophone playing jazz legend. You could often find him at El Chapultepec where he had a standing gig for 40 years.

(credit: El Chapultepec)

“The house that Freddy built!” said friend and KUVO General Manager Carlos Lando.

He is a Colorado native born in the San Luis Valley and educated at Denver’s West High School, but the music was all his own.

“He was a self-taught musician,” said his son Freddy Rodriguez Junior.

He was good enough to play with some of the top jazz musicians in the world.

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“The Marsalis brothers, we had guest people just pop in like Harry Connick Jr.,” said Freddy Junior.

(credit: CBS)

“Musicians loved to come in and practice their craft,” said Carlos.

He was also great enough to pass his gift on to up and comers.

“Numerous young musicians I feel my dad groomed,” said Freddy Junior.

Freddy Junior was one of them, and was for many years his dad’s piano player. His dad gave him a lot but for him and his two sisters he was more than just a jazz giant.

“He was a heck of a father. He really was” says Freddy Junior.

Freddy Rodriguez Sr. was not a young man and had health issues, but recently he came down with COVID-19.

“It just pushed him a little quicker than we wanted him to go,” says Freddy Junior.

(credit: El Chapultepec)

So, add to the ever growing list of names taken too soon by this new disease, Freddy Rodriguez Sr., a Denver jazz legend.

“We’re just going to miss him,” said Freddy Junior.

His family says once it is safe to do so they plan on having a celebration of life for Freddy Senior that will include a jam session. You can find updates on the Freddy Rodriguez Sr. Memorial page on Facebook.

Michael Abeyta

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