2017 was an inspiring, challenging, and deeply rewarding year. I was thrilled to be a part of several musical projects, both as a trumpet player and as a composer-arranger. I am deeply grateful to be a part of a professional music scene in Vancouver filled with warmth, positivity, and immeasurable talent. I routinely get to share the stage with my musical mentors, teachers, and role-models. Without exception, I leave those events with a renewed sense of focus and drive towards my musical pursuits.
I was thrilled to collaborate with Canadian pop band Hey Ocean and be able to contribute my playing and horn arrangements to their stellar upcoming record. I had the good fortune of working with studio veterans Bill Runge, Rod Murray and Kent Wallace on the recording. Dave, Dave, and Ashley are a dream to work with and I hope this won’t be our last musical collaboration. (www.heyocean.com)
In 2017 Ingrid Stitt, Rod Murray and I formed Sonny’s Cousin, a hardbop project. We had an exciting first year. Included in our first year were gigs at Hermann’s Jazz Club, Pat’s Pub and Frankies Jazz Club. Our Calendar for 2018 is already filling with exciting dates.
Michael Kim and Fred Stride’s Vancouver Legacy Jazz Orchestra is a stellar ensemble of which I feel lucky to be a part. It’s a thrill to be in a trumpet section with trumpet heavyweights Derry Byrne, Michael Kim, Brad Turner, and Eric Weiden. This year included several exciting and thoughtfully curetted theme shows. My personal favourite was the show dedicated to Oliver Nelson’s big band music. What a writer!
The Daniel Hersog Jazz Orchestra had a tremendously exciting year. In April I was thrilled to welcome my friend and mentor Frank Carlberg to join the ensemble for a special evening. We played an evening of music I had written to feature Frank as well as music from Frank’s brilliant new big band effort Monk Dreams Hallucinations and Nightmares. (frankcarlberg.com). Though the big band performances were thrilling that night, it was Frank’s solo performance of Pannonica that stood out most to me. In October, we completed our most ambitious work to date. That one was so exciting it warrants its own separate blog post. As Fun as 2017 was for the big band, 2018 will leave it in the dust and I can’t wait to share that music with all of you.
Though I mentioned it at the top of the article, it was worth saying again. None of this music would be possible without the consistently positive and spirit and immense talent that exists in this city.