Trumpeters to be Thankful For

Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn’t learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn’t learn a little, at least we didn’t get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn’t die; so let us all be thankful.
~
Guatama Siddharta, 563-483 BC
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Want to learn more about the best ways to practice? Get an e-mail with a discount code when The Practice of Practice by Jonathan Harnum is published (June, 2014). To learn more about the book, check out a sample from The Practice of Practice.

Over the next several days, as we all contemplate what it means to be thankful–and if we’re truly lucky, to enjoy family, friends and food–I thought I’d feature some trumpeters for whom I’m eternally grateful. I’m going to go, in order, from the order I remember them in my life, chronologically.

First up is Chuck Mangione. Jazz purists pooh-pooh the guy and his music, but millions love his music, and still do, but whatever. When I hear anything from his Live from the Hollywood Bowl double-album, the wave of nostalgia I feel is physical and undeniable even though my taste in jazz trumpeters has moved on. I’d fall asleep to that album as a middle-school kid. It was this album that introduced me to two of my most favorite musicians of all time: Dizzy Gillespie (who was a long-time friend of the Mangione family) and Chick Corea, who played 4th trumpet on that album, if memory serves correctly. So in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I’d like to start with these 2 videos (I couldn’t find anything with Chick Corea playing 4th trumpet….).

Chuck Mangione (CD, mp3), Children of Sanchez

Dizzy Gillespie’s appearance on The Muppet Show happened after my exposure to this album, but that appearance made me fall in love with the guy’s sense of humor and ability to not take himself too seriously, yet still kick some serious ass on trumpet. The guy was a wonderful man. I wish I’d met him, or even seen him live. RIP, Dizzy.

Here he is with Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem playing (and singing!) St. Louis Blues

Dizzy’s Cdsmp3, and especially this interview/appearance on Piano Jazz with Marian McPartland

I’m so thankful both of these men did their thing with music. They’ve both made my life richer.

Want to learn more about the best ways to practice? Get an e-mail with a discount code when The Practice of Practice by Jonathan Harnum is published (June, 2014). To learn more about the book, check out a sample from The Practice of Practice.

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