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Al's Biography

Alonza McKenzie was born August 20, 1961 in Detroit, Michigan. Being born into a supportive and musical family, it was only a matter of time before Al accepted his fate as a musician. With his mother having a piano in the house, he took to the piano at a very young age. Recognizing his talent and interest, his parents quickly found him a teacher.

In a very short period of time, he began playing in the church and gained the title of "Child Prodigy". He surprised everyone by being able to play a host of instruments with ease and proficiency. Living in Detroit, many comparisons were made to the genius Stevie Wonder with whom Al ironically accompanied in 1997.

Many well known and respected jazz artists acknowledged his talent and took him under their wings. Some of these great musicians are etched in the history books and are on many classic Motown hits (i.e. Ernie Rodgers, Teddy Harris, Edward Gooch, and the late Earl Van Dyke).

Al received a special invitation to attend the prestigious Interlochen Music School. While in high school he won numerous awards and competitions.

Immediately after graduating high school and still a teenager, he was recruited to go on tour with the Motown Legend, Martha Reeves. As he toured around the world, it wasn't long before he was promoted and became her musical director and arranger.

Being a first call and in demand player, Al made artists in the Detroit area pursue him for hire during his off the road time, including Jazz Master Marcus Belgrave, Orthea Barnes, Millie Scott, Teddy Harris Big Band, Randy Scott, Joan Crawford, David Miles ("Mile Stones") and Brain Storm 11. The Rev. Jessie Jackson called on him to put together a band to help rally support for his presidential campaign tour.

Al has gone on to work for many Legends and Hall of Fame Artists and groups in the music industry. To see him conduct an orchestra or hear him play his piano is the true testament of a great musician. It was very clear why he is and has always been in demand.

You can see Al now on tour as the musical director for the Legendary Temptations, supporting their Platinum CD, "Phoenix Rising", their grammy awarded cd "Ear-Resistible", and their new CD "Awesome" as well as the "Classic" hits.