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Maynard-Part 1

February 5, 2013

The first time I saw Maynard Ferguson was at the Texas A&I Jazz Festival when I was in 7th grade.  We packed up the middle school jazz band in two vans, left school brutally early, and after performing early in the morning, spent the rest of the day watching high school jazz band performances.  After the dinner break was the big concert, at which the awards would be given out.

Once the concert started, I forgot about the ridiculously early morning, the long uncomfortable van ride, the hours and hours of high school bands, and sat in amazement.  I remember very clearly the thought in my 11-year-old head:

I didn’t know a trumpet could do that


After hearing a spectacular evening of music, I went home and started buying records.  One of my favorites was a Maynard record that had just come out a few years before:  M.F. Horn Two.  It starts with the brilliant excitement of “Give it One” but my favorite piece on that album has always been the one that follows.  So this week I took that chart and arranged it for 6 trumpets.  Here’s a snippet of “Country Road”:

Country Road

As always, please let me know what you think.

Next week, the place to be is West Chester, Pennsylvania.  My good friend JC Dobrzelewski is once again hosting the West Chester Trumpet Festival.  It is a spectacular event.  You can learn more about it here:

West Chester Trumpet Festival

I’ll see you in West Chester next week.

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3 comments

  1. Awesome!!! Thanks


  2. I had a similar high school experience. Although I was a sax player in our jazz band, that music was in some way inspirational. It was different. I saw MF in 1983 or 84. It was in a high school auditorium and it was LOUD. At some point someone yelled out, “can you turn it down a little?” Clearly annoyed, without missing a beat Maynard very politely suggested they were in the wrong seat, and that their seat was on the other side of the door at the rear of the auditorium. It was hilarious. Then he proceeded to play louder.


  3. I saw Maynard in 1988, long after spending many years committing every note of every record to memory. It was also in a high school auditorium. He walked up the aisle during a solo, stopped next to me, and with one hand held high in the air he lipped every note of his solo–pointing right over my head. I think he actually parted my hair with that solo. Love M.F. Horn Two, and “Give It One” will always be a favorite.



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