Al Orlo - Guitarist


Al toured and recorded with the legendary singer Ben E. King for 25 years and was his Musical Director from 1996 until his passing on April 30, 2015.

Al currently performs with Soul Blues artist Vaneese Thomas. He has played shows in the US and Europe to support her 2016 CD “The Long Journey Home”. He is currently writing and recording new music for her 2019 release.

Al held the Guitar 1 chair at Kinky Boots on Broadway from February of 2018 until it’s closing in April 2019. He has also performed at many other Broadway Shows including, Beautiful the Carole King Musical, Something Rotten, Hairspray, Aida, Smokey Joe's Cafe, Catch Me If You Can, Motown The Musical, Footloose, Saturday Night Fever, Rocky Horror Show, and Little Shop of Horrors.

Al also wrote and co-produced songs for The SOS All Stars, which made airplay charts for contemporary jazz in 1988 - 2000 and featured many notable musicians; including Dave Weckl, Chris Botti, Bob Baldwin, Bob Franceschini, Fred Vigdor, Richard Tee, Michel Camilo, Will Lee, and Anthony Jackson.

Al is currenty accepting students for private instruction.

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Vaneese Thomas

Vaneese Thomas

Al is currently performing with Soul Blues artist Vaneese Thomas, and recorded with her on her most recent CD, "The Long Journey Home". Released on September 16th 2016, the CD stayed in the top 10 of The Roots Music Report's Contemporary Blues Album Chart for many weeks. The song "The More Things Change" co-written by Al and Vaneese, reached Number 7 on the song chart. They have had concert appearances at Blues Festival Baden, Switzerland, Pennsylvania Blues Festival, Lucerne Blues Festival, Switzerland, LuganoBlues to Bop, Switzerland and The Halloran Center, Memphis TN. Al is currently writing and recording with Vaneese for a new release in 2019.

Ben E. King

Ben E. King

"I worked with Ben E. King for almost 25 years before his passing in 2015. I was his Musical Director/Band Leader for the last 19 years. When I first met him he was still a young man of 51, which was younger than I am today. I have spent the greater part of my adult life and professional career working next to Ben E. During that span we played 1000 shows together in every conceivable venue from small clubs and private parties to theaters, parks, arenas, stadiums and racetracks. We did TV shows and radio broadcasts. The band ranged from quartet to the standard R&B band with horns, to Jazz style big bands, and pops concerts with 60 piece symphony orchestras."

Read Al's full statement »

Spanish Harlem

In memory of Ben E. King.
This is Al's tribute to this great artist and friend…" Special thanks to Charlie Lagond on Keyboard.

Cameras : L. Staley, Simon O'Keefe, Stu Staley
Post production: ENC Media
Audio: Kris Lagond

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