JazzFest History

Bob Fraser

Awarded: 2011
Born: Cleveland, Ohio

"No, that’s OK. You play in L.A., just leave me in Cleveland."

- Bob Fraser


Bob Fraser is a legend among Cleveland area jazz guitarists but his influence is felt around the globe. An applied guitar instructor for decades at the University of Akron and Cleveland State University, you can hear many of his successful students performing worldwide. Fraser holds a degree in engineering from Case Western Reserve University but chose to pursue music as his life’s passion. He is the guitarist for the Cleveland Orchestra and has performed under Christoph von Dohnanyi and the late Pierre Boulez. He also plays with the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra and at various jazz clubs throughout northeast Ohio with local musicians. During his long and distinguished career, he has supported musical greats including Luciano Pavarotti, Maria Schneider, Pat Pace, Carol Welsman, Benny Golson, Bill Dobbins, Ernie Krivda, Jack Schantz, Grover Washington, Jr. and the great Marian McPartland.