Dave Douglas Live Recording at The Jazz Standard – Nov 19-22

If you haven’t heard yet – FONT Music’s President, Dave
Douglas, is embarking on a what will likely be a historic 4 day, 8 set LIVE recording with his most recent Quintet Dave Live Recording(with Jon Irabagon, Matt Mitchell, Linda Oh and Rudy Royston) at The Jazz Standard in New York City, starting tomorrow November 19th until Sunday November 22nd.  They are fresh off a three continent tour with over four albums of Douglas’ music all memorized!  This will truly be a run you won’t want to miss.

There are a couple of ways to get involved:

    If you’re in the NYC area, take a train, bus, walk, hail a cab, dial an uber – whatever – just come on down and be a part of what will be a great recording session. This is your chance to be a part of that live audience on classic recordings – your applause might be the one that people listen to for ages!  Buy your tickets here
  2. PREORDER RECORDINGS OF THE WHOLE RUN OR SPECIFIC NIGHTS: Dave and Greenleaf Music has made a lot of options for you to either preorder all the sets, preorder individual nights (Thurs, Fri, Sat and Sun) or become a Greenleaf Music Level 3 Subscriber and get access to the whole series (and other great Greenleaf audio goodies).  Click here for more info on the recording from Greenleaf.

John Raymond & Pablo Masis – Interview Spotlight


Pablo Masis

John Raymond_PressPhoto2 (Photo credit Eric Ryan Anderson)

John Raymond





John Raymond
and Pablo Masis both moved to New York City in 2009 – since then they’ve spent a lot of their time creating a career in the ever evolving jazz world here.  They will be sharing the stage this Wednesday October 17th at Cornelia Street Cafe starting at 8pm with their respective bands.  Pablo will bring his quintet with a new set of music inspired by his residency in Kabul, Afghanistan and John Raymond will bring a new quartet featuring the music from his latest record “Foreign Territory”.  In preparation for what will be a great night of music, Benje Daneman of The FONT Music Team, sat down with John and Pablo to talk about the night at Cornelia Street, their adjustment to the music scene in NYC and their personal music:

Interested in listening to the recording of this interview? Here it is! 

B: Thank you John and Pablo for doing this interview with me today I appreciate it and looking forward to the concert this Wednesday at Cornelia Street Cafe.  I wanted to just talk with you guys about a few different things.  Right off the bat for everyone who is reading, how long have you guys known each other and can you give us a little background as to how you guys met, your history, as friends or colleagues?

P: I believe our connection was through a mutual friend.  Was it through Ben?

J: Yeah it was through Ben, yeah.  The saxophonist Ben Dobay – I know Ben because I went to school with him in Wisconsin.  And how do you know him Pablo?  I can’t remember.

P: I met Ben Dobay at The Banff Center a few years back when we were there together.

B: At some point I knew Ben too – he might be the common ground between all of us.

P: Yeah I remember Ben telling me not longer after I met him that summer that you John were moving to town.  I think we met officially at The 55 Bar at someone’s gig.

J: Oh yeah, I think I do remember that.

P: That’s kind of a vague memory and can’t be more specific, but I think that’s how it happened.  So it’s been a few years, John have I have known each for four years now.

B: Now you guys both moved to town about the same time.  When did you guys move to New York?

P: I moved to New York early 2009.

J: And I moved in later 2009.  Pretty much the same time.

B: John, you moved to New York to study at SUNY right?

J: Yep, at SUNY Purchase.

B: Pablo, what was your reason to move here other than it being an amazing city?

P: That I had a lot of friends that had moved here after school.  I went to school in New Orleans and after that a lot of my friends moved out here.  I had been living in the midwest and decided I needed to make the move.

B: This is a little offshoot since I have you both here, I like to talk to different people about this especially in our generation.  Making the move here (NYC) is very different than what it used to be years and years ago.  A lot of people, like John, come here to study and they create a community through that and then from there they go off into the world.  And Pablo is on the other side of that.  Can you guys talk to us quickly about your experiences in getting integrated into the scene here.

J: I went to SUNY Purchase which is outside of New York City.  But I was really intentional and kind of had my sights set on living in New York.  And actually a part of the reason I chose the program at Purchase is because at that time for me it was three days a week.  And I could commute up there via metronorth and so I could go up there three days a week and pretty much every night I went out and heard music and went to jam sessions and kind of did the historical thing that jazz musicians do when they move here.  So that’s kind of for me how I started to get into the scene.

B: Did you notice a big change once you graduated officially?  Did it open up a world for you or did you feel like you had already started making a presence?

J:  I feel like I had already started making some progress and establishing something even if it wasn’t much because I don’t think it was at that point.  But just to have a familiarity with the scene and to know some people and have some people know me and at least have a rough idea of how things work because I got out of school and already knew to some extent what I was getting into. Whereas I think some of my peers who maybe stayed on campus might not have that experience that I had.

B: Now Pablo, can you tell us how your process was getting in and compare it John maybe?

P: Yeah my process, I feel, might have taken a little bit longer than someone who came here for school maybe because I was trying to survive and support myself.  I was working odd jobs here and there.  I was working at a music store and a lot of my time was focused on just surviving initially.  So it was hard initially for me to go out and make all the jam sessions and see everyones gig that I would loved to have seen and I had moved here to see.  And as time got on I got a little bit more stable here which afforded me the opportunity to go out more and just you know have a presence, to use that from earlier.  It’s been a real interesting learning experience.  Like you said, this is New York City and learning to just live here is a school.

B: It’s a school in itself.  How long do you think it took for you to get over the initial hump of just surviving to get to that point?

P: Oh boy.  That’s a great question.  At least a year.  I was really bouncing around wondering, will I really live in New York?  For a while I was wondering if I’d move to the west coast because I didn’t really like the lifestyle here and then overtime things got more solid, but I would say that first year was really up in the air.

B: I did my masters at Manhattan School of Music and I remember Dave Liebman who was kind of running the masters program said you need to give it at least five years.  You have to be on the five year plan to give New York a chance.  First get integrated – even if you go to school, after school you have to give it a five year run.  You guys are just over that hump now and it seems like you both are finding your place and getting things happening.

We’ll come back to that to get more of your stories, but to get back to the Cornelia Street stuff.  You guys first shared a bill there in January, but John was with his trio, now called Real Feels.  What was the initial thing that brought you guys together for that and what was the thought process of doing it again?

J: Well for me it was from known Pablo for so long, I remember when we first got it together I think it was probably because we both approached the guy who books Cornelia Street about doing a gig there and if I’m not mistaken Pablo, you can correct me, I think he suggested us doing a night together and might first thought was, Yeah, totally!  I think it’s great to do shows with other people on your instrument.  We all kind of learn from each other.  I know for me over the years whenever I’ve heard Pablo or we’ve played together or something, I’m always trying to understand – Okay, what’s his concept?  How is he thinking about the trumpet and how is he thinking about his music and how is that different from mine or how can I learn from that?  For me that was definitely appealing just on that front alone.

B: Pablo, what are your thoughts on that.

P: I have a very vivid memory of hearing John play in a larger ensemble at The Tea Lounge before they closed their doors.  This was maybe a little over a year ago.  Remind me John, like a little big band maybe?  And John sounded so good and thought, man I’d like to do something where we could do something together and the opportunity came up with the Cornelia Street guy.  And I jumped on the chance.

J:  You have a different band this time than last time too, right?

P: Yeah and that is something I’m moving forward with, with this new suite of music I’ve been working on.

B:  Right and I want to talk about in a tiny bit – so maybe we can save that for second.  From a conversation we had earlier, maybe something to hit on a little deeper.  So you did that in January, this time did you approach Cornelia saying: Hey, we want to do this again? or was it more like them asking, Will you guys do this again?

P: Yeah, when I contacted the booker again just to stay in touch with him, I suggested that John and I had done this in January and it’d be really great if we could have another night sometime this year.  And that was how we found a place for that.

B: That’s great – and just to interject.  You guys were just hitting on what FONT Music is trying to integrate even more into the community which is supporting collaboration in the trumpet community and the new music community.  And i think what John was talking about when he was able to compare himself to other people on his own instrument he was able to look at different concepts and approaches and grow from that.  And I think that’s one thing that we as FONT Music are trying to really support and put out there. 

Really quick, this is slight offshoot, but because we’re here – within our community, what are some things your are seeing that are positive things – or what would you like to see more of?  You don’t need to go in too deep.  But that is something that as we’re the younger generation coming up, do feel that’s a strong thing or should be stronger?

J: Do you mean in regards to trumpet players?

B: It could go both ways.  It could be with trumpet or the music community you find yourself in.  Maybe just some commentary on what you’re noticing.

john at subculture

John Raymon performing with his quartet with Joe Martin (b) and Billy Hart (d) at SubCulture during his CD Release for “Foreign Territory” in April.

J: I guess something that I’ve noticed personally is that I get this sense that musicians in our generation are maybe sticking together in a different kind of unique way.  I don’t know if that’s similar or different than in past generations but I do know how it’s different in one sense and that is just how the industry has changed and how much, just for example, at this point most people in our generation are releasing records independently.  And many of us, especially horn players, haven’t gotten many opportunities to be sidemen with other musicians who can give us our “big break”.  And so I’ve felt personally that even in myself that a sense of wanting to stick together and support each other and wanting to just keep the community of musicians in our generation, at the very least, thriving.  Because I think when we all look at each other we see everyone’s doing cool stuff and unique stuff.  And we all know that we’re fighting hard to make it happen and there is a mutual respect for each other in that.  And that’s something that I think is unique and kind of cool.

B: Pablo, what are your thoughts?

P: Well, I was just nodding along with everything there.  That’s really great.  I just want to say to piggy back on that would be, to see people doing projects together and then watch over time, I’ve only been here for five years, but to watch over time and see how the projects and when certain people come together and have a chemistry together and then you hear when they’re on the bandstand you think, Holy cow! And you always go back and think, oh these two people working together again – this is great!  And just seeing that come out of this sort of mutual respect, we need to do something.  That’s just what I was thinking about while you were talking.

B: I think that’s really good and I think another aspect too, that you guys were talking about – John was saying our generation is a little bit different, I think social media has played a huge difference since we are able to track each other easier at all times and are able to get our music out too.  We’re a generation that, when you’re able to do that it kind of changes the game.  I think we can follow each other in a different way.

Jumping back to Cornelia Street.  You both are coming to this specific show with either different groups or different musical concepts.  I was hitting that John has a new trio “Real Feels”, but you’re going to bring your quartet, right?

J: Yep.

B: Tell us about that real quick.

Quartet MN photo

John Raymond Quartet to appear at Cornelia Street Wed Oct 17 with Jay Sawyer (d), Sullivan Fortner (p) and Rick Rosato (b)

J: Well the particular group that I’m playing with – let me back up, I guess.  I released my last album in April which is a quartet record and right before it came out actually I had this cool opportunity to do a guest residency at a high school in Minneapolis where I’m from.  And so I kind of wanted to intentionally put  a band together.  A little bit different from the record and would involve people who would really good at connecting with these high school students.  And so I put a band together that includes Sullivan Fortner on piano, Rick Rosato on bass and Jay Sawyer on drums. All of them are incredible players but really great teachers.  It was a really special couple of days on and off the bandstand.  We had some really great conversations and times hanging together just the four of us and we had a great time teaching together.  And we had one set of music kind of for this special concert that happened at the end of our residency.  And it was one of the most gigs I’ve done in a long time and I think there was just this very special chemistry – and there is a special chemistry between all of us.  So I’ve been looking for opportunities to get that band back together to do a gig or just to do something because I felt like Pablo was alluding to – when you see people and projects that evolve and see who they’re collaborating with and you start to realize when certain things have some special chemistry.  You want to just go back to that again and again.  That’s just for me what was my goal in trying to put a gig together, so that’ll be the band that I’m playing with on Wednesday.

B: That’s exciting – that’s a really fantastic band they’re doing their own unique things as individuals players, but as you said, it’s different from the band you recorded with which is all a little bit more seasoned, been around the block a little longer – these are kind of the young lions of our time essentially, especially in the New York scene.  Sullivan is with Roy Hargrove all across the world, but Rick is doing all sorts of things and Jay is too.  They’re all kind of on the edge of it, which is really cool.  Are you guys going to be playing the music from “Foreign Territory”?

J: Yeah, well – I had hoped to write some new music, but as you know the new daddy life has made that very difficult.  So the desire was there, but the time was not.  So we are going to be playing music from that record, “Foreign Territory”.  I think one of the interesting things about it – at least when we played back in April – this particular group of musicians I think, I don’t know how to describe it in words, but it’s a much different feeling and vibe from the recording, but it’s still very – we’re still really listening and bringing the music into some unknown places…

B: Foreign Territory?

J: Exactly.  And that was kind of my goal from the beginning and it just started turning out very different with this band in kind of a unique way which is cool because I feel like I can play with these guys and I think it’s going to be a much different experience for the audience than what it would be with Billy Hart, Dan Tepfer and Joe Martin. 

B: Sure.  Pablo, talk to us about your music that you’ll be bringing on Wednesday and your band.

pablo at cornelia

Pablo Masis Quintet at Cornelia Street Cafe in January with Austin Walker (d), Andrew Gould (b) and Dylan Shamat (b)

P: The focus on my music this time will be a suite of music that I wrote earlier this year while I was teaching in Afghanistan and I’ve been sort of tinkering with the music that I wrote during my time there.  I think the band that I put together to explore this with me includes Andrew Gould on saxophone, Isaac Darche on guitar, Or Baraket on bass and Christian Coleman on drums.  What can I say about that time?  It’s really influenced my whole year.

B: Yeah, tell us about why were you in Afghanistan?  What brought you there?

P:  There’s a gentleman in Afghanistan that’s a trained musicologist and when the Taliban came to power he was forced out of the country.  And when they were removed or whatever it was, he was able to come back and start his dream of having a music school for the kids of Afghanistan.  That’s been going for five years. Every February they bring in guest teachers for the month to teach the kids more of a western musical perspective.  So I went over there and sent most of February living in Kabul in a hotel, which was foreign hotel – it was an interesting time.  I had a lot of down time – not much to do there.  So wrote a bunch of sketches and sort of spent the time fleshing that out and I’m pretty happy with the result.  This will be the first time this band has played this music publicly, so I’m a little hesitant in that sense but I’m hoping that if everything is – this is sort of what I’m planning for my next recording.

B: That’s exciting!  That’s enough to get folks out there a premier.  Do you have a title for this suite of music?  Did you say it was a suite of music?

P: Tentatively I’m calling it just “Kabul Suite”.  I need to think more of a name.

B: Well, Foreign Territory is already taken.

J: Yeah!

B: Is it influenced by the music you were hearing there or is it more of a different kind of introspective that still sounds like your other stuff?  Or what can we expect out of that?

P:  That’s a good question. I would say it’s a mix of the music that I was hearing at the school from the kids.  They teach of the traditional Afghani instruments – one I was hearing was called the Rubab (corrected from audio interview) which is like an Afghani sitar.  There was also a lot of singing because there is a lot of traditional singing taught in the school there.  And also during my downtime in the hotel there was a couple that was living in the room next to me that were also teaching at the school from India, and they were classical Indian musicians.  So every night they’d be working on their own music for their upcoming concerts so I’d hear them practicing classical indian music for hours everyday.  So that is also a sort of influence.  But then you know, it’s coming from my head so my own idiosyncrasies will be there.

B: Of course.  That sounds really exciting.  I think we could talk for hours – literally, about a lot of this stuff.  But maybe the conversation can just continue after the show on Wednesday.  I guess, maybe let’s do a closing statement for you guys.  Anything you’d want to get off your chest at this time?  If not then, then we’ll just call it, but I guess on my end thank you for being a part of this.  We’re really looking forward to checking your music out. Do you want to say anything?  Now’s your chance!

J: Oh boy… I don’t know what to say.  I probably exhausted all of my words at this point.  I am looking forward to it.  Last time was really fun doing this kind of a thing with Pablo.  It’ll be a great night.  I’m looking forward to it.

B: Pablo – do you have any last words?

P: This has been a fun little chat and hope that we can continue the conversation.  And it’d be great just to hear in the future if you decide to do a sort of FONT curated interview again.  I’d like to see this continue within the trumpet community.

B: That’s what we’re trying to expand on – so thanks for being our test subjects for this essentially our first double interview and podcasts.

The concert will be Wednesday October 17th at 8pm with John Raymond Quartet with Sullivan Fortner, Rick Rosato and Jay Sawyer.  It’s a $10 cover and $10 minimum.  Does that get you into both sets, or just one?

J: I believe it’s per set.

P: Yes, that’s what I’ve been told.

B: Awesome – and Pablo is on at 9:30 with his band.  Thank you guys so much for doing and looking forward to seeing you on Wednesday.  Tune in next week and we’ll do a little review of the concert.  Snap some shots and take some video for those of you that couldn’t make it out.  Is this being streamed online for those not living in New York City?

J: I’m not sure, we’ll look into that.

B: I think Cornelia Street usually does that for some of their stuff.  If they do, we’ll try to get a link up for people.  But if you’re in New York City you gotta be there – hear it live!  Thank you guys so much and hope you have a fantastic day and thanks for bringing your music.

Cornelia Street Cafe (29 Cornelia St) on Wednesday October 17th:
8pm w/ John Raymond Quartet
featuring Sullivan Fortner (p), Rick Rosato (b) and Jay Sawyer (d).
9:30pm w/ Pablo Masis Quintet
featuring Andrew Gould (s), Isaac Darche (g), Or Baraket (b) and Christian Coleman (d)

$10 cover & $10 minimum per set (cash only)

john 1John Raymond is an American jazz trumpeter, composer and educator living in New York City. Rooted in both traditional and modern forms, his music incorporates jazz, classical, folk, indie-rock and electronica influences. John has collaborated with musicians such as Billy Hart, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Orrin Evans, Linda Oh, Ethan Iverson, Dan Tepfer and Gilad Hekselman among others. In addition, he has recorded with Grammy-nominated singer Sara Bareilles, been a featured artist at the FONT Festival, and performed at events such as the Austin City Limits Music Festival and on NPR’s ‘Toast of the Nation.’

John’s latest album “Foreign Territory” was released in April 2015 to critical acclaim from the New York Times, Downbeat Magazine and others. Of note, his composition “Deeper” was chosen as a winner of the 2015 Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer Award presented by ASCAP. John currently teaches at the United Nations International School, the New York Jazz Academy and various summer music workshops. In addition, he is an active guest artist and clinician at high schools and universities around the country.


headshotPablo Masis – Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Pablo spent his childhood years in northern Arizona on the Navajo Indian Reservation before moving to Billings, Montana.  After graduating from High School, he studied classical trumpet with Robert Levy and received a Bachelor of Music degree from Lawrence University.  After pursuing a year of Graduate study in classical trumpet under Dennis Najoom at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, he moved to New Orleans, where he studied with Terence Blanchard, Clyde Kerr Jr. and Ed Petersen, and received a Masters Degree in Jazz Studies from the University of New Orleans.

He has appeared across the United States and Europe including New York, Seattle, Portland, Omaha, New Orleans, Washington DC, Belgium, The Netherlands, and Poland. He has also performed with acts such as Michael Buble, Josh Groban, Gladys Knight, and the Temptations. He attended the Betty Carter Jazz Ahead Residency at the Kennedy Center in 2007 and also participated in the Banff Centre’s Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music in 2009, led by jazz icon Dave Douglas.
Since moving to New York City in early 2009 he has become an active freelancer and educator, and has performed at local venues including Joe’s Pub, The Blue Note, Arlene’s Grocery, the Bitter End, Kenny’s Castaways, The Baryshnikov Arts Center, Music Hall of Williamsburg, Irving Plaza, The Garage, and The Cornelia Street Cafe, among others.
Pablo’s 2012 release, “Intrinsic”, features several of New York’s finest players, including Chad Lefkowitz-Brown on Tenor Sax, Alex Brown on Piano, Linda Oh on Bass, and Jared Schonig on Drums.  His previous recording, “Half Past” (2009), was described as “a refreshing example of innovative jazz in our times.”
“Rubicon”, released June 30th, 2014 is a Kickstarter-funded project including five original compositions written for Trumpet/Bass/Drums.  Recorded in August 2013 at Peter Karl studios in Brooklyn, it features Aidan Carroll on Bass and Jared Schonig on Drums.
In February 2015 Pablo traveled to Kabul Afghanistan where he was a guest artist with the Afghanistan National Institute of Music for their Winter Academy.  While there he gave individual and group lessons to the school’s brass students, taught a series of introductory jazz classes, performed in recitals, and assisted with outreach for Afghanistan’s only music school.


FONT Music 2015 – THANK YOU!

4 trumpet banner

On behalf of ALL of The FONT Music Team we THANK YOU…
Please stay tuned for many pictures and videos taken throughout the festival as we unveil them over the next few months on our blog and social media.  Enjoy a sneak peek below of some of the highlights of the festival.

Thank you again for all that attended and all that supported through social media shout outs, donations and words of encouragement.  We couldn’t do it without you!

We welcome any and all feedback to how we can improve and grow FONT Music for next year – we’d love to hear from you!

Much Trumpet Love,
The FONT Music Team
Dave Douglas, Stephanie Richards, Aaron Shragge, Susan Ryan & Benje Daneman


Dave Douglas & Eddie Henderson in a masterclass at The New School


Visionary Night #1 Artists: Chad McCullough, Leo Hardman-Hill, John Blevins 


Visionary Night #2 Artists: Joe Moffett, Jaimie Branch, Brandon Lewis


Eddie Henderson Panel with David Adler, Eddie Henderson, Randy Brecker, Marquis Hill & Dave Douglas


Brandon Lewis at Downtown Music Gallery

Asphalt Orchestra

Asphalt Orchestra at Rockwood Music Hall

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Jesse Neuman & Blast of Brass at Brooklyn Children’s Museum

blue note 2

Jonathan Powell at The Blue Note

thomas B Ensemble

Thomas Bergeron Ensemble at Dimenna Center

trumpet summit 1

Signatures in Brass at The Jazz Gallery with Marquis Hill, Josh Evans, Philip Dizack, Keyon Harrold, Billy Buss and Ingrid Jensen.

FONT ’15 Preview – Sept. 29, 2015 – Eddie Henderson Panel, Award Ceremony & Concert

Tuesday, September 29th

  eddiehendersonn_wide-4eb67b2858a603ad4093a209f6e6fb9dd47773d4-s800-c85On our final day of FONT Music 2015, join us as The New School as we’ll be honoring and featuring a living trumpet and musical legend of our time, Dr. Eddie Henderson.  Please join us for what we are sure will be a truly special evening.

7pm – Panel Discussion About Eddie’s Work and Life
The New School
55 West 13th St. New York, NY
Hirshorn Suite, 2nd fl.

Eddie Henderson, Randy Brecker, Marquis Hill, Dave Douglas

Panel Moderator:
David Adler

8pm Eddie Henderson Concert & Award Ceremony
55 West 13th St. New York, NY 

Arnhold Hall, 2nd fl.

The Eddie Henderson Quartet
Eddie Henderson – Trumpet
George Cables – Piano
Doug Weiss – Bass
Billy Drummond – Drums

With Special Guests: 
Marquis Hill, Randy Brecker and Dave Douglas
marquis 2randy breckerdave douglas

Buy Tickets to Dr. Eddie Henderson Concert & Award Ceremony:

Full Festival Pass ($100 all ticketed events & VIP Reception):

FONT ’15 Preview – Sept. 28, 2015 – Eddie Henderson Masterclass & Visionaries (Night 2)

Monday, September 28, 2015

Public Master Class – Eddie Henderson
The New School
(55 West 13th Street  New York, NY)


“Visionaries – Night 2″
Downtown Music Gallery
(13 Monroe St, New York, NY)

Nate Wooley

nate wooleyFrom the Curator:

“The term “visionary” comes with a lot of baggage. Who is to say
which ways of thinking will prove to be visionary and which will be well intentioned ideas that never quite make it. For that very reason there are many that don’t take the opportunity to find their own musical and aesthetic limits, whether it is with the idea of staking a claim as a “visionary” or not. The three trumpet players I chose for this series are the ones that are taking the chance and are heavily engaged in an attempt to push beyond the already possible systems of playing to form a new one that is best suited to who they are and what they think.”

Buy Tickets to “Visionaries – Night 2”:

Full Festival Pass ($100 all ticketed events & VIP Reception):

7 pm
Jaimie Branch – trumpet
Anthony Pirog – guitar
Jason Nazary – drums

joe moffett 2 (rob miller)


Joe Moffett – Solo trumpet

Joe’s Website:

Joe’s FONT Blog Feature:

Brandon Lewis – trumpet
Ben Carr – bass
Kevin Theodore – keyboard
David Frazier Jr. – drums

Brandon’s Website:

FONT ’15 Preview – Sept. 27, 2015 – Jonathon Powell, Blast of Brass & Visionaries (Night 1)

Sunday, September 27, 2015
Five Bands,
Three Venues,
One Day

j powell 311:30am & 1:30pm
The Jonathan Powell
Latin Jazz Sextet

The Blue Note
(131 W 3rd St, New York, NY)
(Includes brunch & drink)

Music performed by:

Jonathan Powell – Trumpet
Louis Fouché – alto sax
Manuel Valera – piano
Ricky Rodriguez – bass
Henry Cole – drums
Mauricio Herrera – percussion
& Special Guest Jeremy Powell – tenor sax

j powell 1About The Jonathan Powell Latin Jazz Sextet:
The Festival of New Trumpet (FONT Music) and The Blue Note (NYC) present the debut of
Jonathan Powell’s new Latin Jazz Sextet featuring some of the brightest talent on the NYC Latin Music scene. Jonathan has been a mainstay of the New York Latin music scene since 2001 playing regularly with the ensembles of Eddie Palmieri, Arturo O’Farrill, Gregorio Uribe, Pedro Giraudo and many others.

What They Say About Jonathan Powell:
“Powell’s crackling range and the electricity of his imagination reminded me of the first time I heard Lee Morgan and Clifford Brown. His voice is his own.”
– Nat Hentoff, Jazz Times

Buy Tickets to “Jonathan Powell Latin Jazz Sextet”:

Full Festival Pass ($100 all ticketed events & VIP Reception):

Jonathan Powell’s Website:

FONT Music Blog Feature on Jonathan Powell:

jesse neuman shot
2 & 3pm
Blast of Brass
Brooklyn Children’s Museum
(145 Brooklyn Ave, Brooklyn, NY)

jesse w student
About Blast of Brass:

Jazz trumpeter and educator
Jesse Neuman presents a concert for the whole family. Learn about (and try out!) trumpets, trombones, tubas, and other instruments of the brass family. See how serious science meets serious swing, as the musicians perform and explain several styles of brass influence music, and give kids ages 5 to 12 an up close listen to these joyous instruments.

Music Performed By:
Aaron Shragge – Trumpet
Rob Jost – French Horn
Jesse Neuman – Baritone
Brian Adler – percussion

Jesse Neuman & Blast of Brass’ Website:

FONT Music Blog Feature on Jesse & Blast of Brass:

“Visionaries – Night 1”
Downtown Music Gallery
(13 Monroe St, New York, NY)

Aaron Shragge

From the Curator:
Aaron Shragge
“The term ‘visionary’ can be a difficult to define. For that reason I think it’s all the more important to search deeply and find a way to actualize its essence. The artists that I’ve chosen for this series are all wonderful examples of the unity and diversity of the trumpet. I feel they have each committed themselves to the visionary path by continuing to search for their own unique musical voice without being swayed by convention or novelty.”

Buy Tickets to “Visionaries – Night 1”:

Full Festival Pass ($100 all ticketed events & VIP Reception):

chad 2

Chad McCullough/Dan Cray Duo
Chad McCullough – Trumpet
Dan Cray – Keyboard

Chad’s Website:
Chad’s FONT Blog Feature:

John Blevins

John Blevins & MATTERHORN
John Blevins – Trumpet, Compositions
Jeff McLaughlin – Guitar
Marty Kenney – Bass
Nathan Ellman-Bell – Drums

John’s Website:

Leo Hardman-Hill Group
Leo Hardman-Hill – Trumpet
Katherine McShane – Cello
Zoe Christiansen – Accordion
Dennis Zurilovitch – Tenor Saxophone

FONT ’15 Preview – Sept. 26, 2015 “Signatures in Brass” @ The Jazz Gallery

Saturday, September 26, 2015
“Signatures in Brass”
Jazz Gallery (1160 Broadway, New York, NY)
7:30 & 9:30 PM – $22

marquis 1

Marquis Hill

Marquis Hill

Philip Dizack.

Phillip Dizack

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Billy Buss

sign - Josh Evans

Josh Evans

Music performed by:
Marquis Hill
Phillip Dizack
Keyon Harrold
Billy Buss
Josh Evans
Ingrid Jensen
Piano: Theo Hill
Bass: Eric Wheeler
Drums: Obed Calvaire

World Premiere by: FONT Music Roy Campbell Jr. Commissioning Grant recipient, Kendall Moore: Signature in Brass

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Ingrid Jensen

From the Curator:
Marquis Hill
“This music presents the wide variety of sounds and styles that uniquely constitute contemporary jazz trumpet music. In earlier times, jazz was more easily associated with a singular specific sound. Today, we feel there is an immense increase in the stylistic breadth of jazz. Our goal is to demonstrate how diverse musical voices now authentically fall under the jazz umbrella. This program showcases these voices and personalities through a very special night of original compositions, both orchestrated and spontaneous. I’m happy to be working with the range of trumpeters and their musical visions in this collaborative effort.

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Kendall Moore

Buy Tickets to “Signatures in Brass”:

Full Festival Pass ($100 all ticketed events & VIP Reception): http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2125774

Marquis Hills’ Website:

FONT Music Blog Feature on Marquis Hill:

FONT ’15 Preview – Sept. 25, 2015 – Thomas Bergeron’s “Sacred Feast”

Friday, September 25, 2015
Thomas Bergeron’s “Sacred Feast”
DiMenna Center – Norman S. Benzaquen Hall
(450 W 37th St, New York, NY)

8pm – $22

tom 1Music performed by:
Thomas Bergeron – trumpet, flugelhorn
Becca Stevens – voice
Jason Ennis – guitars
Chris Doyle – piano
Michael Bates – double bass
David Palazola – percussion
Sara Caswell – violin
Tomoko Akaboshi – violin
Colin Brookes – viola
Hamilton Berry – cello

About “Sacred Feast”:
For this special FONT performance, Thomas Bergeron adds a string  quartet  to  his  flexible  jazz  quintet,  as  well as vocalist Becca Stevens and Pakistani tabla master Yousuf Kerai. The 11-piece ensemble will perform new arrangements of Thomas’ music, including material from his critically-acclaimed albums “Sacred Feast” and “The First of All My Dreams,” as well as brand new music for the ensemble.
tom 2
Praises for “Sacred Feast”:

“What  an  accomplishment  this  is. Sacred Feast speaks to Messiaen’s creativity, Bergeron’s ingenuity, and the talents of the band that brings this music to life. Bergeron takes the seeds of Messiaen’s work and plants them so they can sprout into different shapes in a wholly different scene and context.” – Dan Bilawsky, All About Jazz

Buy Tickets to “Sacred Feast”: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2068207

Full Festival Pass ($100 all ticketed events & VIP Reception): http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2125774

Thomas Bergeron’s Website:

FONT Music Blog Feature on Thomas Bergeron:

FONT ’15 Preview – Sept. 24, 2015 “Without A Frame” @ Rockwood Music Hall

Thursday, September 24, 2015
“Without a Frame”
Rockwood Music Hall
(185 Orchard St, New York, NY)
8:30pm – $15 (21+)

CJ Camerieri & Stephanie Richards

Music performed by:
cj ymusic ben folds
Asphalt Orchestra
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brandon founders

World Premiere commissioned by FONT Music:
OMNI by Mick Rossi, Performed by yMusic.

From the Curators:
Stephanie Richards

steph“The program “Without A Frame” is about new ways of hearing new music on the trumpet. We worked to feature forward-thinking performers and composers who have fresh sounds and fresh outlooks without, necessarily, an institutional bent.”

C.J. Camerieri
CJ 2“I wanted to focus on people who are creating mixed ensembles and commissioning peer musicians to write for themselves.” Genre-bending groups like yMusic, Asphalt Orchestra and Founders with composers such as Nico Mulhy, Deerhoof’s Greg Saunier and the premiere of the FONT Music-commissioned new work by Mick Rossi feature some of the outstanding unique voices on the scene of new music today

Buy Tickets to “Without A Frame”:

Full Festival Pass ($100 all ticketed events & VIP Reception: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2125774

FONT Music Blog Feature on C.J. Camerieri (yMusic):

FONT Music Blog Feature on Brandon Ridenour (Founders):


Catching Up with FONT Music 2015 Artist & Curator: C.J. Camerieri

CJ 2C.J. Camerieri has been a staple in the FONT Music cast of characters (er… trumpeters) since its inception.  Over the past decade, C.J. has been developing a career that defies stylistic definition – we love these kind of musicians here at FONT Music.  Graduating Juilliard, playing with Bon Iver, Sufjan Stevens, forming a contemporary classical (you can’t really call it that) group yMusic and recently recording with Ben Folds.  What’s next?!

We’re very lucky to have him this year curating and performing at our Opening Concert at Rockwood Music Hall on September 24th on a program we have titled “Without A Frame” (Buy tickets here).  We hope you can join us for that, but check out what C.J. has to say today as we sit down with him for a few questions.

C.J. thanks for chatting with us today.  You’ve been a foundational member of FONT Music over the years, right?

I’ve been lucky enough over the years to play with FONT Music since (maybe) the very beginning.  The first time I played on a FONT Music concert was at Tonic which has sadly been closed since 2007.  Since then I’ve played with a variety of groups including Butch Morris, the New York Trumpet Ensemble, and with my group yMusic.  A few years ago FONT Music commissioned the great composer Andrew Norman to write a piece for yMusic and it was a huge success.  The piece was the featured single off of our last record “Balance Problems” and has been met with much critical acclaim.  This year FONT Music has commissioned Mick Rossi to write a piece for us and I’m excited to start learning that new work in the coming weeks.  I am very grateful for FONT Music and feel lucky to be a part of this community.

I think the luck is ours, or at least mutual!  Thanks for all you’ve done over the years.  You’re a pretty unique player and all over the map stylistically (I mean this in a great way!).  How did you get to where you are today?

CJ w Bon Iver

CJ Playing keyboard and trumpet with Bon Iver

I graduated from Juilliard in 2004 and was trying to do a little bit of everything.  I played with orchestras, broadway shows, jazz, free jazz, studying harmony/arranging and was really happy but a bit musically unfulfilled.  I found myself searching for a musical scene that would allow me to play a variety of styles, to improvise but also play technically challenging material, to play other instruments (I also play the French Horn and piano) and get a chance to shape the music through arrangements and my own creative ideas.  I also wanted to be on bigger stages playing for more people!  I was lucky enough to find that scene in alternative music.  I started playing in 2006 with Sufjan Stevens and immediately joined his band as a featured soloist.  I then began touring with bands such as The National, Rufus Wainwright, The Plastic Ono Band, Angus and Julia Stone, Martha Wainwright, My Brightest Diamond, Gabriel Kahane, and many other artists.  I joined Bon Iver in 2011 and won two grammy’s for the band’s sophomore record in the same year that my group yMusic released it’s debut record which was named Time Out New York’s Number 1 classical record.  Since then I have become a member of Paul Simon’s band, toured and played with Sting, and played on over 200 recordings total in the last ten years.

Dang!  You’re a busy guy and playing with some the best musicians from so many different styles – that’s what we’re all about here at FONT Music, as you know.  So yMusic will be playing at Rockwood for our opening night – what is up with yMusic these days?

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yMusic with Ben Folds

yMusic is a lot of my musical focus these days.  We are releasing a record this fall with Ben Fold’s that I co-produced/arranged called “So There” and will tour that a bit.  yMusic is in residency at New York Live Arts and we have  a number of exciting commissions we’ll be premiering there including a performance with Bill T. Jones.

That all sounds awesome!  What else can we expect to see you doing coming up?

I’ve been recording a bunch with Paul Simon, Jose Gonzalez, The Tallest Man on Earth, and many other exciting artists and hope to get back into the studio with yMusic in early 2017 to get started on our 3rd record.

So you’re curating our opening night at Rockwood Music Hall with Stephanie Richards called “Without A Frame”.  We recently chatted with Brandon Ridenour (see article here) who will be playing at that concert with his group FOUNDERS.  yMusic will be playing and so will Asphalt Orchestra.  It looks to be an amazing evening!  Give us some insight into how you got to curating this evening.

CJ 1When I was asked to curate an “indie classical” concert at FONT Music this year my initial reaction was to not do it!  I think that the classical trumpet repertoire is in my opinion probably one of the worst collections of pieces in existence and I just don’t know why!  So many other instruments have so many great pieces but I’ve always found our repertoire extremely lacking.  I don’t want to go to a concert and hear the Hadyn Trumpet Concerto or the Arutunian ever again (isn’t that what college is for)?  That’s just my opinion.  I started to look around though and there is so much interesting music happening in the trumpet world right now that has a strong classical backbone yet is hard to put a label on.  I wanted to put together a night that featured these kinds of classical trumpet centered ensembles/performers that are really pushing the boundaries of what we call classical music.  I think it should be a fun night.

Totally agree – we can’t wait to check out this amazing night of music.  Thanks again C.J., we’ll see you next week!

Buy your ticket to our FONT Music 2015 Opening Concert “WITHOUT A FRAME” on Sept 24th (8:30pm) @ Rockwood Music Hall here!!

More info on C.J.: As a trumpet player, french hornist, arranger, and keyboard player, C.J. Camerieri has enjoyed an active, diverse, and exciting career since completing his classical trumpet training at Juilliard in 2004. He has become an indispensable collaborator for numerous indie rock groups as a performer, arranger, improviser, and soloist and is a co-founder of the contemporary classical ensemble yMusic. yMusic’s debut record was named Time Out New York’s #1 Classical Record of 2011, the same year that Camerieri won two Grammys as a member of Bon Iver for the band’s sophomore record, which later reached gold status. He is currently the newest member of Paul Simon’s band, joining for 2014’s “Paul Simon and Sting: On Stage Together” tour.

CJ began working in alternative music as the trumpet player and keyboard player for Sufjan Stevens in January of 2006.  He then went on to tour the world as a member of Rufus Wainwright’s band in 2007-2008 before starting yMusic with Rob Moose in the spring of 2008 and later joining Bon Iver in 2011 while also touring with the Plastic Ono Band and The National.  In 2014 CJ became the newest member of Paul Simon’s touring band.

As an arranger, trumpet player, french horn player, and keyboardist C.J.’s discography includes well over 200 recordings including current and forthcoming releases by Paul Simon, Bon Iver, yMusic, Sufjan Stevens, Rufus Wainwright, The Tallest Man on Earth, David Byrne, Antony and the Johnsons, Martha Wainwright, Loudon Wainwright III, Aero Flynn, Gabriel Kahane, The National, Angus and Julia Stone, Ingrid Michaelson, The Staves, My Brightest Diamond, Sean Lennon, Yuka Honda, GOASTT, Jesse Harris, She and Him, Harper Simon, Chris Garneau, Clare and the Reasons, Welcome Wagon, Anthony Coleman, ACME, The New York Trumpet Ensemble, Argento New Music Ensemble and the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra.

Check out this great video interview with C.J.: 

Here’s ymusic’s website: http://ymusicensemble.com
Here’s C.J.’s website: http://www.cjtrumpet.com

Catching Up with FONT Music 2015 Artist: Thomas Bergeron

tom 1Thomas Bergeron is one of those trumpeters who does it all – and really well!  As comfortable in the jazz world as he is in the classical world and in the creative contemporary music world, he continues to blur the line of what these genres might even mean to someone.  This is why we are big fans of him here at FONT Music.

He will be presenting music from his latest project “Sacred Feast” at The Dimenna Center (Benzaquen Hall) on Sept 25th for FONT Music 2015.  We are seeing this as a DO NOT MISS performance (buy your ticket here).  Not only is he a great artist, trumpeter and composer – he’s also a great guy and we had a blast chatting with him today.  Here’s what he had to say…

Hey Thomas, thanks for chatting with us a bit today, we’re really excited to experience your show in couple weeks at The Dimenna Center – we’re so glad to have you on the program this year.  I was surprised to hear this is your first time presenting with us.  You are a great example of a “Crossing Genre Artist” we like here at FONT Music. We’ve found that FONT Music means different things to different people and artists, what does it mean to you?

I’ve been an admirer of FONT Music for years, and has become an important and influential force in the creative trumpet community, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it.  To me, FONT Music is one of the most forward-thinking “New Music” festivals because it recognizes and embraces the many forms and genres that should fall under the heading of “New Music”, and focuses on the post-academic paradigm where performers are composers and vice-versa.

Right, that’s a great point about the performer being the composer and vice versa.  In our community, you rarely are seeing the sole “composers”, but more so the performer is writing for themselves and others they are closely related to.  In some ways, it becomes a bit more personal that way I suppose.

Among the many accolades for your new album “Sacred Feast”, the head honcho here at FONT Music Dave Douglas  has said some pretty awesome stuff about your new project.  “A really fine, beautiful statement. Subtle and rich … I can’t think of another player anywhere that could pull this off”. That’s pretty awesome…

Because Dave is such a model for me as an artist, as soon as “Sacred Feast” was finished, I sent the tracks over to him.  I assumed that I was one of dozens of artists sending him material every week, so didn’texpect a response.  He not only listened to it, but wrote me an email from the airport with his thoughts!  How cool is that? This meanttom 2 so much to me, and again shows how committed Dave is to supporting young artists and trumpeters.  I was obviously thrilled when he asked me to perform at FONT Music this year.  I hope that in time I can pay it forward by supporting future generations of FONT Music artists.

Dave Douglas has long been a huge creative and professional inspiration to me, and this Festival is a perfect example of why that is. On top of being a prolific creative force, stunning improviser, and virtuosic trumpeter, Dave is devoted to furthering the art form by supporting other creative artists, especially trumpeters.

Yeah, Dave’s a pretty amazing guy!  So, for those of us new to Thomas Bergeron, can you give us a brief history?  What have we missed thusfar?

This is a loaded question! I spent a good portion of my early years working in the classical world, both orchestra and chamber music.  During this time I was mostly focused on honing my trumpet playing.  Because I was taking orchestra auditions (and every freelance gig felt like an audition), I became obsessed with developing my soundtom 3 and perfecting my technique. I soon realized that sound development and technical work would be never-ending pursuits.

It wasn’t long before I grew hungry for more creative outlets. I had played jazz for as long as I was a trumpet player, but after college I became more intensely interested in improvising and composing (and their intersections). It wasn’t until I arrived at Yale for graduate school that this became a career focus. Yale is primarily focused on classical chamber music, but there were a few fantastic jazz musicians in the program (and luckily for me they were rhythm section players :)).  We put together a small jazz group, which provided an oasis of creativity for me. I wanted to convince the school that jazz performance practice had a place within their established chamber music curriculum. My strategy was to arrange jazz versions (written for jazz players) of the music of classical composers like Debussy, Villa Lobos, Chopin, and Ravel.

I love it – change the system from the inside out!  Including your musical history and interests creating something unique.  And this brought you to your first album?

My first jazz album interpreted the music of Claude Debussy (“The First of All My Dreams“).  I was encouraged by the response to the music, especially when we performed live.  We would constantly hear jazz fans saying they didn’t realize how cool Debussy was, and classical fans saying they never thought they’d enjoy a jazz show so much. While I was working on this creative outlet in the jazz realm, my classical career continued to have a life of its own.Betts Family, March 1, 2014,Bedford Ma

I’m now going into my fourth season as principal trumpet with the Springfield Symphony, my third season with the Atlantic Brass Quintet, and I recently finished a two-year residency at Carnegie Hall with Ensemble ACJW.  Working with these ensembles is of course immensely rewarding, not only because I get to perform alongside some of the worlds greatest players, but because I’m constantly exposed to some of the greatest music ever created.  As a composer, jazz musician and improviser, I feed heavily off of the music that I’m exposed to in classical settings.

Wow – you’re ALL over the place musically, that’s so cool!  And you’re drawing all areas of your musical interests into your creative playing and writing!  So unique and personal!  What can we expect next from you?

While promoting “Sacred Feast“, I’m always thinking about new material.  I’m currently working on some ideas for smaller jazz groups (trios and quartets), and I’m also writing some new music for the Atlantic Brass Quintet.  This is exciting to me because Atlantic is a traditional brass quintet made of up virtuoso players, but most of the players are also stellar improvisers with firm footing in the jazz world (like our trombonist Tim Albright, for example).  The variety of skill sets in the ensemble opens up a lot of doors compositionally.  I tend to pick a point on the horizon to sail towards, but allow the winds to blow me to a new course if they want to. So who knows, man?  In general just trying to stay creative, stay healthy, and continue working hard to serve the world of music.

Yes… serving the world of music, that sounds about right. Do you have any big classical projects coming up?

As for nerve-wracking classical projects … there are a few coming up.  Most notably, I’m performing the Haydn Trumpet Concerto, as well as Copland’s Quiet City with the Springfield Symphony in November (along with Handel’s Music for the Royal Fireworks … yes all on the same program … yikes).

So, Sacred Feast is your newest album out taking a “different” look at the music of Messiaen.  Can you give us some insight?

I became captivated by the music of Olivier Messiaen when I was studying with one of his students, Joan Panetti, who teaches a course at Yale called “Hearing”.  What struck me most was his ability to manipulate harmony and tone color to magical effects.  Messiaen was known as a mystic, and perhaps more famously as a devout Roman Catholic (someone tell the Pope this concert is happening on the day he’s in NYC!).

Right!  He’ll be a half mile away from you when you’re performing “Sacred Feast” – we’re seeing that as more providence than coincidence here.  We’ll save him a seat.

Seriously … Tell the Pope this show is happening while he’s in town.  He will love it.  He probably already loves Olivier Messiaen’s music.  If he hasn’t heard of Olivier Messiaen, he should.  If ever there was a Pope in history who would enjoy a jazz Messiaen show, it’s Pope Francis.

We totally agree.  We’ll see what we can do … Speaking of spiritualness of the music, how does the music affect you?

tom 4I am not a religious person per se, but Messiaen’s music takes me to a place that I can only describe as spiritual.  That’s why I created this project.  I wanted to expose people to his music who might not otherwise find it.

The band has only sunk deeper into the music through the numerous performances we’ve given since the recording sessions (I’ve often thought that bands should re-record their albums at the end of the tours that promote them. It could be like a musical version of one of those before/after pictures in weight-loss ads).

Ha!  Yeah, the music evolves so much over time – that’s actually kind of a cool idea.  The before and after musical shots… I’d be totally interested in hearing something like that.  Tell us a little bit about what to expect on Sept 25th for your concert at The Dimenna Center (Benzaquen Hall) for the Festival?

This FONT Music performance has turned into quite a special affair, with the addition of a fantastic string section and the brilliant Becca Stevens (who sings a 3-part song cycle of Messiaen’s on the record, in addition to his Vocalise).  The icing on the cake is that my friend and Pakistani tabla master Yousuf Kerai will be in town that weekend, so I’m re-arranging a number of our pieces to allow him to join us. I met Yousuf while visiting Karachi in January.  Just a few days after meeting him, we put together a concert with some local musicians in which we combined Eastern and Western musical practices.  Yousuf is the real deal when it comes to tabla.  He grew up in Pakistan and studied with Ustad Khurshid Hussain.  I remember him describing tabla as a “means of discourse”, which is a particularly apt description in the context of our collaboration.

It’s been such a pleasure talking with you, and we can’t wait to hear this pretty special concert!

Thank you for supporting contemporary music and people crazy enough to devote their lives to playing the trumpet. You’re making the world a better place.

We seem to think so too – glad you agree!  Okay, so if we DO get a hold of The Pope, how can we entice him to stop by?

My suggestion, if you have his ear:“Excuse me Your Holiness, there is a concert happening across town tonight entitled ‘Sacrum Convivium’ (use the latin, trust me). Music inspired by the great Catholic composer Olivier Messiaen, including performers from Pakistan, Japan, and the US.  Would you like to attend?”How could he say no?

Well, if you didn’t convince him, you’ve convinced me!  Thanks Thomas!

Get more info about Thomas at his website: http://www.thomasbergeronmusic.com

Here’s a great clip of “Porquoi” from the “Sacred Feast” recording session:

Thomas Bergeron’s Bio: A trumpeter, composer, producer, and educator known for excelling in both the jazz and classical realms, Thomas Bergeron exemplifies a new breed of 21st century artists. In addition to his own hybrid jazz chamber ensemble, Thomas performs as a sideman with many jazz groups in NYC, is member of the Atlantic Brass Quintet and principal trumpet with the Springfield Symphony. He recently concluded a 2-year residency at Carnegie Hall with Ensemble ACJW, and has performed with Vampire WeekendThe Danish National Symphony Orchestra, The American Symphony, The Temptations, Idina Menzel, Judy Collins, Jon IrabagonArlo Guthrie, Ernie Watts, and the Radio City Christmas Orchestra, among others. His network television appearances include Saturday Night Live, Jimmy Kimmel Live, and CBS This Morning.As an educator, Thomas is dedicated to sharing music in communities that would not otherwise be able to access it.  He currently teaches inmates at Sing Sing Maximum Security Correctional Facility through Musicambia, and is an educational consultant for The Harmony Program in New York City. Thomas has held teaching positions at Williams College, Bennington College, Yale, and Amherst College.  He holds two advanced degrees from Yale, where he won the Woolsey Hall Concerto Competition and received the John Swallow Award for excellence in brass playing.  He also holds a business management degree from UMass Amherst.Thomas is a Conn-Selmer Artist, performing on Bach Artisan Stradivarius Bb and Eb/D trumpets, the Bach Stradivarius Chicago C trumpet, and the Conn Vintage One flugelhorn.