The creative musician; Joshua Trinidad and his quest with his trumpet
Denver based trumpeter, closes the distance to New York.
"I want to explore all of the possibilities that a trumpeter can do in our current time of history..."
Joshua Trinidad has been labeled as a jazz trumpeter, classical trumpeter, rock and hip hop trumpeter; but he likes to call himself just a trumpeter trying to make creative music. He has performed all over the world and nation with many prolific musicians and groups including, country folk rock band Tiny Television, jazz vocalist Sunny Wilkinson, saxophonist Lee Konitz, members of the rock band The Mars Volta, Cake, Karl Denson, Ok Go, The United States Air Force Falcon Aires, George Clinton, The Bad Plus, Greg Gisbert, Edgar Myer, The New York Voices and the Denver band, The Fray. Along with these outstanding performances and tours, he has also recorded on many albums with these artists.
I called Joshua this morning and had a brief discussion with him about his music and his quest in New York. He will be back in town April 2nd through the 8th playing three shows.
NYCM: How would you label your music?
Trinidad: To be honest, I have made an extreme effort to try not to label the music I make. I think it is a lot of pressure to simply be a jazz musician or a classical musician; I would rather say that I play trumpet.
NYCM: Why do feel that labeling your music is a lot of pressure?
Trinidad: I feel that there are so many preconceived notions about jazz and classical music; well, trumpet music in general that I would rather keep the opinions of my music open to the listeners, versus doing that for them. Plus, I don't think I sound like Wynton Marsalis or Marice Andre (while I do love those trumpeters).
NYCM: I noticed you play with a lot of bands. Can you tell me a bit about some of the projects you are working on right now?
Trinidad: Currently I have been spending a lot of time on my solo career and releasing this new album in the Spring titled " Evidence". Its a five track EP that I am going to release as purely a blend of trumpet and ambient electronic compositions. I am also playing with a great hip hop band in Denver called Wheelchair Sports Camp along with sitting in with other genres of music such as folk, rock rap and even country.
NYCM: Tell me about your connection to New York and your quest to play here so much.
Trinidad: I was always told as a growing musician that New York was not only the place to play with some of the worlds best, creative and talented musicians, but also a place to pay my dues as a trumpeter and to go full force with my music. I was surprised that over the years I began to know a lot of amazing musicians and people in New York and have now found myself out there every few months. New York to me is like a big office, where I go into work my a** off and hustle and then go home to re-energize.
NYCM: The way that we learned about your music was through your recent project with New York photographer Chris Buck. Can you tell me about your relationship with him and how you both came to work on your last album?
Trinidad: It is an interesting long story, but I will try to shorten it a bit. I began with the idea to do a soundtrack to photography, because I noticed that it hasn't truly been accomplished yet. When I first began to brainstorm who I wanted to work with, I initially was going to work with a Denver photographer, but I was pushed by my wife to think bigger and to branch out a bit. Those were the best words of advice. I began to look online at some of the worlds best photographers and there he was; Chris Buck. I looked at his pictures for days, even weeks and then I gained the courage to email him to see if he would be wiling to work with me on this project; writing music to his photos. He got back to me quickly and agreed! I was pretty excited! I then spent a good part of 2012 raising money, writing music, and planning how I would making this project a success. Last August, I did three album release shows throughout New York performing with my jazz quartet. Chris is an inspiration to me and it is great to call him my friend.
NYCM: On this upcoming visit (April 2nd-8th) to New York, who will you be playing with and where?
Trinidad: I am playing on Wednesday night at Goodbye Blue Monday in Bushwick with New York guitarist Larry Corban, then on Thursday I will be at Sycamore in Flatbush with my quartet; Mike Brown on bass, David Cieri on accordion, and Jay Frederick on drums, and then Friday night at Spike Hill in Williamsburg. It is going to be a busy and fast visit to Brooklyn, but I always try to make the most of it.
NYCM:Lets get a bit deep here and talk about your inspirations and people that have helped you along the way. Who are some of your influences as a growing musician?
Trinidad: That is such a big question, but I will try to limit it down to a few. As I was growing up I had amazing parents that listened to really good music, so by the time I was 10 years old I already had a lot of the Temptations, Johnny Cash, Frank Sinatra and Santana albums memorized, but as I began to get into 'real' trumpet playing I would have to say that Ron Miles and Hugh Ragin really shaped me to be a better trumpet player and the overall approach to playing. I also spent some serious time listening and studying the music of Radiohead, Bjork, and 20th century classical music. Later in life I had some great mentors and friends that came from music such as Cuong Vu and The Bad Plus; whom I play with often.
NYCM: Final question here; what do you hope to accomplish with your music?
Trinidad: First and foremost I hope to inspire and reach people. I thrive on relationships with people and I hope that my music can be that component for people everywhere to be happy, inspired and to be moved enough to do something creative on their own. In our world today, as an instrumentalist, it is very tough to get people to even consider listening to my music more or less buy it or come out to see it live. The appreciation for instrumental music in our current time in history is dismal, my hope is that it will change and that the younger generation of music fans will began to to see a new appreciation for creative music as once was done in the 20's, 30's and 40's of the 20th century.
Joshua Trinidad will be performing throughout New York April 2nd- 8th and you can find more information by visiting his website: joshuatrinidad.com
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