Leo Pellegrino

Leo Pellegrino, sometimes also referred to as Leo P, is a baritone saxophonist based in New York City, born in Pittsburgh. He graduated from the Manhattan School of Music in 2013.[1][2] He is a member of the "brass house" band Too Many Zooz[3] and former member of the Lucky Chops brass band. On November 30, 2019, Pellegrino and alto saxophonist Grace Kelly announced a long-term collaboration project known as 2SAXY.[4]

Leonardo Pellegrino
Pellegrino on the baritone saxophone in 2020
Pellegrino on the baritone saxophone in 2020
Background information
OriginNew York City, New York, U.S.
GenresJazz, Brass house
Years active2014–present
Associated actsToo Many Zooz (2014–present), Lucky Chops (c. 2014-2017)

While at the Manhattan School of Music, Pellegrino recorded with its Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra.[5] Scott Yanow's review of the album noted "Pellegrino's use of extreme high notes as punctuation during his passionate solo on 'Let There Be Swing'."[5]

Pellegrino is "perhaps best known for his impressive dance moves while performing on the baritone saxophone. A number of videos with Pellegrino have gained wide popularity on YouTube, due in equal parts to his playing, dancing, and loud hair and dress styles."[6]

Many videos of Too Many Zooz have gone 'viral' showing the band busking in New York City Subway stations, particularly the always busy Union Square station."[7] Too Many Zooz featured on Beyoncé Knowles's 2016 album Lemonade[8] and joined her for a performance of "Daddy Lessons" at the 2016 Country Music Association Awards.[9][10]

Pellegrino was a guest player with the Metropole Orkest in a 2017 BBC Proms concert on the works of Charles Mingus.[11][12] John Fordham of The Guardian commented on "Pellegrino's hook-punctuated sax playing and busker's line in simultaneous pirouettes, knee-trembles and high kicks [...] by accident or design, the newcomer did emphasise the joyous impulsiveness of an American musical giant often characterised as only a tortured genius."[12] Pellegrino performed with Too Many Zooz at Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club in London in November 2017.[13]


In March 2019 Pellegrino was announced as a Yamaha artist; he plays a Yamaha YBS-52 baritone saxophone.[14] He endorses the Theo Wanne Durga 4 mouthpiece.[15]


  1. ^ "Alumni News". Manhattan School of Music. Retrieved 16 November 2018.
  2. ^ Bellamy, Cliff (21 June 2017). "Trio Too Many Zooz traces origins to busking in the NYC subway". The Herald Sun. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  3. ^ "Too Many Zooz". Too Many Zooz. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  4. ^ https://www.facebook.com/weare2saxy/videos/500245000575858/
  5. ^ a b Yanow, Scott (July 2014) "Manhattan School Of Music Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra with Bobby Sanabria – Qué Viva Harlem!". Down Beat. p. 69.
  6. ^ Mruk, Frank (11 November 2014). "Leo Pellegrino Rocks it at TEDxNYIT". Retrieved 15 April 2020.
  7. ^ "Leo P". JazzBariSax.com Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  8. ^ Murphy, Tom (24 March 2017). "Beyoncé Collaborators in Too Many Zooz Owe Their Success to "Subway Gods"". Denver Westword. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  9. ^ Havens, Lyndsey (3 November 2016). "Brass House Trio Too Many Zooz on Backing Up Beyonce & Dixie Chicks for CMA Awards Showstopper". Billboard. Retrieved 17 October 2017.
  10. ^ Britt, Grant (28 June 2017). "Too Many Zooz Wrestles With a Quickly Growing Career Far Beyond Its Busking Beginnings". Indy Week. Retrieved 17 October 2017.
  11. ^ "Charles Mingus Revisited". BBC Proms. Season 123. Episode 53. 25 August 2017. BBC. BBC Four. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  12. ^ a b Fordham, John (25 August 2017). "Prom 53: Charles Mingus Revisited review – starry tribute to jazz revolutionary". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  13. ^ "Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club, Soho, London – listings and news for November 2017". Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club. 27 September 2017. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  14. ^ "Leo P | Yamaha Artists". www.yamaha.com. Retrieved 2019-03-15.
  15. ^ "Leo P – Theo Wanne". theowanne.com. Retrieved 2019-03-15.