Andrew Mazzone, 57, a presence on stage, in court

Andrew Mazzone was a gifted bass player and an anchor in the Boston music scene who also toured nationally.
Andrew Mazzone was a gifted bass player and an anchor in the Boston music scene who also toured nationally.

At 15, Andrew Mazzone could pick up a guitar and play the entirety of the Who’s “Live at Leeds” album.

Like many in his family, he eventually pursued a legal career. But before joining their ranks, Mr. Mazzone became a gifted bass player and an anchor of the Boston music scene, and he also played national tours with Kim Richey and Mary Chapin Carpenter.

At 6-foot-2 and 240 pounds, he left an equally sizable imprint as the kind of lawyer friends say was guided by a moral compass.


Mr. Mazzone died of melanoma Jan. 15 in Massachusetts General Hospital. He was 57 and had lived in Cambridge for many years.

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“Andrew was one of the kindest and funniest people I ever had the pleasure of knowing,” Richey said. “He was also the one I could talk to when I wasn’t feeling so great. Andrew was always taking care of everyone.”

Mr. Mazzone’s father, A. David Mazzone, was the US District Court judge whose rulings prompted the cleanup of Boston Harbor, a process he oversaw until his death in 2004.

The second of seven children, four of whom became lawyers, Mr. Mazzone grew up in Wakefield and at first bucked the family trend toward law.

“It was a struggle,” said his sister Marty of Boston. “Our dad was Italian and grew up in Everett, and played football and went to Harvard on a scholarship. It was hard for him to understand Andrew’s love of music. But then he became very proud of Andrew’s music later on and would go see him play. He mellowed and Andrew mellowed, and they came together.”


Mr. Mazzone played locally with musicians and bands such as Robin Lane, the Twinemen, the Dennis Brennan Band, the Asa Brebner Band, Jimmy Ryan & Hayride, Tim Gearan, the Laurie Sargent Band, and the Family Jewels.

He ended up doing legal work for his musical peers and was instrumental in creating the Center for Arts at the Armory in Somerville, and Hi-n-Dry Records and its recording studio. In addition, Mr. Mazzone was executive producer of the multiple CD/DVD set “Sandbox,” featuring the music of Mark Sandman.

“Andrew was the go-to guy,” said Dana Colley, a saxophonist who played with Mr. Mazzone in the Twinemen. “Andrew was an amazing guy to work with. He could play any instrument and also tell you what was wrong with your record contract — and he would do it all for nothing.”

With boundless energy, Mr. Mazzone studied law during the day, played gigs at night, and studied more when he returned home.

“He tackled whatever was in front of him,” said his wife, Annette Duclos, whom Mr. Mazzone met on the Red Line. They married in 1992. “Some people get overwhelmed, but he would tackle everything.”


He also did much of the rehab work on their Cambridgeport home. “I came home one day and he was taking the bathroom apart,” she recalled.

Amid all the work, she said, Mr. Mazzone “was a very present, loving, committed father” to their 6-year-old daughter, Tessa.

“He taught her to swim and dive under the waves,” Annette said. “She’s a fearless swimmer now. And they would make these little sculpturing projects together. I have them all over the house. With his big, huge hands he’d make these tiny, clay models.”

Like his father, Mr. Mazzone played football and was a tight end.

“He was a great athlete,” said his brother John of Belmont. “He won the Punt, Pass, and Kick skills competition twice in Wakefield. He was also the president of the class of 1973 at Wakefield High School, but he knew from the time he was a little kid that he wanted to be a musician.”

Mr. Mazzone went to the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and spent a year at Berklee College of Music. He graduated from the University of Massachusetts Boston and Suffolk University Law School.

In the late 1970s, he joined a vaudeville-like tour backing Tiny Tim, Smokin’ Joe Frazier & the Knockouts, Jake LaMotta, and Sherman Hemsley, who played George Jefferson on TV in “The Jeffersons.”

“Those early years really shaped him so he could play anything,” said Billy Beard, a drummer who performed with Mr. Mazzone in many bands. “He had an impeccable groove. He was obviously very strong and was a quick study.”

Asa Brebner, who started the Family Jewels with Mr. Mazzone, said he was “judicious in what he played. His dad was a federal judge, so maybe that played a role.”

Another local band leader, Dennis Brennan, said Mr. Mazzone “never overplayed. I had to beg him to step out on the bass, but he never did that. He always played in service to the song.”

Such strengths carried over into Mr. Mazzone’s legal work, where in addition to working with musicians he handled family and probate matters. Among his clients was Steven Moore, a musician Mr. Mazzone represented in a child custody case.

“He was the opposite of every stereotype of a lawyer,” Moore said. “When he went into court, I think in his mind he imagined his dad on the bench in some part, and knew when not to be the kind of lawyer his dad didn’t have respect for, from listening to his dad talk about it at the dinner table.”

Mr. Mazzone continued to work even when he was ill, Moore said, and “never let on how serious it was, not once.”

A service has been held for Mr. Mazzone, who in addition to his wife, daughter, sister, and brother leaves another brother, Robert of Darien, Conn.; and three other sisters, Jan of Newton, Carolyn of Wakefield, and Margaret of Nashville.

Mr. Mazzone’s legendary energy did not flag when he was diagnosed with melanoma.

“In the last two years he had six operations,” his wife said. “His spirit never wavered for a second. He was very upbeat and could take almost any sickness or body aches. He’d say, ‘I can live with this.’ ”

Steve Morse can be reached at