Why he's interesting For 17 years, Reedus has been playing his alto sax outside PlayhouseSquare concerts and sporting events in downtown Cleveland. Now he's the subject of Sax Man, a documentary being shot by local filmmakers Joe Siebert and Todd Bemak.
Like father, like son Reedus' father, Maurice Reedus Sr., played tenor sax for blues legend Robert Lockwood Jr. and inspired his son to learn to play. "I wanted to walk like him, talk like him, play my horn like him, dress like him. He was real debonair, real cool."
First change One day in 1995, Reedus was downtown with his sax, but no bus fare. "Just put your horn out and start blowing it," a friend advised. Reedus set up at Euclid Avenue and East Ninth Street and played. "People started dropping money in my case. [When] I got my bus fare, I just kept on playing."
Behind the music Reedus played with the Cleveland R&B band Sly, Slick and Wicked in the '70s and The Metronomes in the '80s. At the 1975 Kool Jazz Festival in Kansas City, Mo., Reedus shared a dressing room with Count Basie. The legendary bandleader gave Reedus, who plays by ear but can't read music, words of encouragement. "Don't worry if you can't read the notes," he says Basie told him. "Just play what you feel."
Set list Reedus' regular repertoire includes crowd-pleasing TV and film themes, from The Flintstones to The Addams Family. Sometimes he'll include a Beatles medley or a '40s big band standard. He'll often slip into a PlayhouseSquare musical, but only to listen to a song or two. "Whatever the last song is playing on the stage, I want to play it out front when [the audience] comes out the door."