Trumpet Bushido

[WARNING: Some of this post gets extremely technical and is primarily written for trumpet players. This is the obligatory musical equipment post.] The word ‘bushido’, the way of the warrior, thus requires some explanation. Bushi was the original term for the upper-class warrior. The Chinese ideogram used for this word has two component parts whose joint meaning has been variously interpreted. In any case, it seems to be a designation, in the Chinese cultural mode, of an upper class that ruled by knowledge (learning) and military leadership. Both qualities were considered essential to the “superior man” in China as well…

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The Other New York

I was talking with the guys on the gig this past weekend down at Fat Cat, and they were asking how things were going for me here in New York. Having no “other” vision than the current reality of “New York” and all that that implies in my head, I told him things are fine; really good in fact. I’ve learned that things weren’t always this way. First off, and seemingly the most obvious difference between reality and, well, the “other New York” is our economy. The unemployment rate in New York City is around 10%, we’re clearly in the…

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Gig from Hell

This is the best “gig-from-hell” story that I have ever heard; and it happened to me. The story was big news for a while, I even remember reading about it in a regional dance band magazine. It’s been about 20 years since this gig and some of the small details may be off, so if you happen to know any of the key dramatic figures, go ahead and ask them about the trip. The Reflections Orchestra: 11-piece dance band based out of Lincoln, NE, owned and operated by five real-life brothers whose father also ran a dance band. Mike: Lead…

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Definition of Jazz

“Jazz is a global art form; which, primarily through improvisation, combines both the traditional and popular music of multiple cultures within a modern social context.” -Kelly Rossum 12:05am, October 1, 2007

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Shugyo

What a view! This is what I see as I practice each day. This photograph was taken in late October from Fort Tryon Park overlooking the Hudson River. Some days are just amazingly beautiful up here on the hill. I can see the George Washington Bridge to my left and just barely see the Harlem River connecting off to my right. This is the perfect place to play, partially because I’m directly over the Henry Hudson Parkway (HWY 9A), which means that I will never bother anyone with my obnoxious trumpet calisthenics. The first priority in realizing the life (my…

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The Move

Renting the apartment (July 24th – August 12th) The strategy was simple: Suzanne would go to New York and find an apartment while I stayed in Minneapolis for the summer to finish teaching and to pack up our old place. We decided to make the Inwood / Washington Heights neighborhood of Manhattan our focus for finding a place to live. We had both spent some time up there, beautiful green spaces, right off the A and 1 Trains, plus we have good friends already within shouting distance. We were told that you must be fast when renting in NYC. Have all…

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