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Wycliffe Gordon: Sing It First!

In video interviews from the Jazz Cruise, the trombonist talks about his early musical development, his approach to teaching jazz and the power of Louis Armstrong

Tom Kennedy, Wycliffe Gordon, John Allred, John Fedchock, & Butch Miles on The Jazz Cruise 2011

During the Jazz Cruise, JazzTimes set up a make-shift video production studio. Throughout the week, a succession of artists-including Kurt Elling, Freddy Cole, Ann Hampton-Callaway, Don Braden, Ken Peplowski, Laurence Hobgood, Bill Charlap & Renee Rosnes and many others-came in to talk about the cruise, jazz education and their own projects. You can also see more of these video interviews at the JazzTimes YouTube channel. Gordon will be appearing on both the Jazz Cruise and the Blue Note at Sea cruise in 2018.

Trombonist Wycliffe Gordon is a regular on the Jazz Cruise, as a bandleader and as a guest soloist, just as he is on the New York City jazz scene. Possessing both chops and humility, Gordon is a favorite of fans and musicians. Inspired in part by one of his early bandleaders, Wynton Marsalis, Gordon has also evolved into an active jazz and music educator. He has taken a leadership role with the Swing Central program that has become a significant part of the Savannah Music Festival.

In this In Person set of interview segments, Gordon spoke about his early development as a musician and trombonist growing up in Georgia, about how he created “Sing It First,” his own approach to teaching jazz, based on vocalizing the music, and about the power of Louis Armstrong.

Wycliffe Gordon on his first jazz album and first paid gig:

Wycliffe Gordon on his own music education:

Wycliffe Gordon on teaching jazz and Swing Central:

Wycliffe Gordon on “Sing It First”

Interviews done by Irene Lee.

Originally Published