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The Gig: Brass Class

Wynton Marsalis. Terence Blanchard. Dave Douglas. Jon Faddis. Ralph Alessi. What do these people have in common? Well, they’re all jazz trumpeters, of course. But beyond that, each currently plays a significant role in the realm of jazz education, and in the development of the music’s young talent. Lately I have come to wonder whether those two things-the choice of instrument and the pedagogical inclination-bear some mysterious correlation. What is it about the trumpet that cultivates the cultivators?

It’s no secret that the trumpet has been an emblem of leadership since time immemorial.

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Originally Published
Nate Chinen

Nate Chinen

Nate Chinen is the director of editorial content for WBGO and a longtime contributor to JazzTimes, which published 125 installments of his column “The Gig” between 2004 and 2017. For 12 years, he was a critic for The New York Times; prior to that, he wrote about jazz for the Village Voice, the Philadelphia City Paper, and several other publications. He is the author of Playing Changes: Jazz for the New Century (2018) and the co-author of George Wein’s autobiography Myself Among Others: A Life in Music (2003).