Wacko Jazz

Mob Members:
The late Johnny Ellis
Composer, Drums, and voice
Conrad Gary Csogi
(alternating w/Johnny)
Ben Miller
Composer, alto saxophone
Larry Miller
Composer, Bb clarinet
Donny Davis
Composer, alto saxophone


THE NOVA MOB  (a name taken from William Burroughs' NAKED LUNCH)  was a Boston based band, born from the ashes of  THE CRUZONIC JAZZ ENSEMBLE, shortly after their recital concert at Berklee College, February 19th, 1974.
Though still retaining their lose edge free form freak out improvisation, compositions were generally more closely knit and higher in contrast.  A remarkable difference in character than the heavier handed Cruzonic approach. 

The Heart of  THE NOVA MOB
Photo session / June 1974 Boston

Larry Miller: Bb clarinet    Ben Miller: Alto Saxophone    (the late) Johnny Ellis: Drums and voice



By 1974 Larry was waking up to music in his head which seemed to be composed by the clanking rhythms of the steam radiator in his bedroom. Inspired by such subconsious nonsense, he devised a simple if not barbaric system he called "Mirror Image Harmony". Concert C was C, B was C#, A# was D and on until you got back to C being C. This made developmental guess work in composition as close to John Cage as he hoped he'd ever get. 

By spring of 1974 THE NOVA MOB formed.  The band took on a fresh, lighter approach to the avant garde mess they'd become so accustomed to with their previous horn-based Boston bands.  Larry will never forget a jamb session that summer.  A new guitarist form Berklee School of music was sitting in, and after a few compositions asked him "What kind of harmony are you using here?" Larry promptly retorted without losing a beat  "Mirror Image."   The young man's response --  "Ah..." The music of THE NOVA MOB will some day be digitally remastered, set forth on an independent Cd collection.  That'll be the day.


Larry Miller, playing his bass clarinet bell-mouthpiece combo, with (the late) Johnny Ellis
expressing attitude on the roof of Symphony Road apartments, summer 1974.