Monthly Archives: January 2019

Episode 020 – Who the Heck is that Kid in the Clarinet Section?

Charleston, West Virginia Symphony concert-goers of the 1950’s may have been surprised to see a 13 year old boy playing bass clarinet at concerts. Over the next four years, young Larry Combs would gradually graduate to the first chair in the section, at the ripe old age of 17. Larry would go on to Interlochen, the Eastman School, where he paired with world famous jazz musicians, on to the military, and on to the symphony orchestra positions and career that catapulted his name to the heights of the clarinet world. Larry literally built his name and reputation into a brand, and was one of the titans of the clarinet world for 3 decades, holding the principal clarinet position of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra from 1978 until his retirement in 2008.