Azar Lawrence grew up during an era of prolificacy and transcendence in Jazz music that to this day has stood the test of time. He's composed, produced and performed with acclaimed jazz luminary McCoy Tyner for over five years and Elvin Jones for many years. While very young Azar began playing with many jazz legends and at such an early age his first professional gigs abroad were when he was seventeen with Clarke Terry and Muddy Waters.
He's produced and performed for decades with musicians on the cusp of the vanguard, whether it was the late great Frank Zappa or wailing on the sax in a rap video with Busta Rhymes.
Over the years Miles Davis would attend Azar's New York concerts when he was with McCoy Tyner; and,as well as when he was with Elvin. Miles approached Azar about joining his group. Azar’s first performance with Miles was in Washington DC and then they performed in New York at Carnegie Hall where Dark Magus was recorded. After five years with McCoy Tyner, Azar rejoined Elvin Jones for a while, and during that time he recorded with Roberta Flack.
A force since he graduated from high school, he released several albums of his own before the age of twenty-five; Bridge Into the New Age, People Moving People, and Summer Solstice, Shadow Dancing and People Moving. In recent years he released Legacy and Music of John Coltrane, Speak The Word and Prayer For My Ancestors, Mystic Koirney and The Seeker; recorded live at the Jazz Standard, New York, NY and released on Sunnyside Records, 2014.
Azar is known to bring jazz to popular music and he can also be heard on the late Frank Zappa’s music to playing in Busta Rhyme's video, In The Ghetto. His credits are numerous from early on one being the highly acclaimed Grammy award winning album; Marvin Gaye’s, Hear My Dear.
Also during the eighties Azar began melding his sound with what some have described as "psychedelic Jazz Funk" and began to write songs even more seriously than when preparing for his first three projects while recording for Fantasy records. He began working with Chuck Jackson who is known in part for his role as producer for all of Natalie Coles hit recordings. They co wrote twenty songs all of which were placed on projects such as Stanley Turentine’s, Coming Home. He formed the band, Chameleon, which recorded for Electra Records. Patrice Banks, Chocolate, of Grande Central Station was a member of that team.
Recent productions Azar can be heard on are 'The Cookers, Cast The First Stone' - 2011 and 'Platinum' The Headhunters -2011. Hitting hard live and in recorded music these days Azar has written new compositions as a follow up to his 2010 release, (that received several Best of' 2010's) 'Mystic Journey.' His co-production of his new CD with Seth Abramsom, Grammy Winner and Artistic Director for the Jazz Standard in New York, The Seeker is being considered for a Grammy nomination.