I first met Zamorano shortly after moving to Houston in the mid-90s. I had heard that a close friend from college, Denver Courtney, was singing in a band and I went downtown to some Mexican food restaurant off Market Square (if I remember correctly) to check out the band. It was a sloppy, drunken show–as many of the early Fondue Monks shows were–yet, despite the missteps with Morrison-esque mysticism and fumbled lyrics, one thing most certainly stood out: the bass player.
Since I was close to Courtney, and somewhat responsible that night for his condition, I had a kind of trial by fire between sets with Rozz, his brother Ronnie, and guitarist Steve Olson. I quickly became a fairly ardent fan of the Monks, introducing many of my friends to the band, attending countless shows, and spending time with the band in the studio and during practice sessions.
Rozz and I had many conversations over the years about Fondue Monks’ direction, his solo work, his desire for success as a musician, and his frustrations with the music industry. He introduced me to Jaco Pastorius and helped give me a deeper appreciation for the different styles of jazz, and I will always be thankful for that. When Houston Calling launched in 2003, Rozz was the obvious choice for the first interview.
You can read that interview, along with a few others, below.
The memorial service for Rozz is at 11am today (Saturday, 3.1.14) at Bridgeport Bible Church on the Katy Freeway in Houston, with a reception to follow. After the reception, friends and family will be gathering at Rozz’s home away from home: Dan Electro’s Guitar Bar (1031 E. 24th St. in the Heights). More information may be found on Facebook.
Also, a benefit concert is planned for March 15th at Warehouse Live. More details as they are received.
Courtney often referred to Zamorano onstage as his “brother from another mother.” Brother, you will truly be missed.