Who or what has been your greatest inspiration?
My greatest inspiration has always been those closest to me. It continues to evolve and change as my career progress. To name one person would leave so many other people out. Family, friends, teachers, and even other artist I've never met offer me endless inspiration.
In which direction do you plan to your work in the future?
Right now my goal is to find my voice in the music and continue to working trumpet player and educator in New York City. With my newest album due out at the end of August, I'm hoping to expand the reach of my performances beyond New York City. Right now NYC is the perfect fit, but I have dreams of Italy.....
Tell about your time on the Queen Mary
The Queen Mary 2 experience was made possible by my time at The Juilliard School. Andrew Gutauskas and myself worked for three weeks with the trio on board the Queen giving performances and lectures to further help audiences appreciate and understand jazz. It was quite nice to see England, Germany, and Norway from one of the worlds biggest ocean liners as well!
Tell us about your first album
For this project, I put together a band of my closest friends to officially promote my music. Now that I'm done with Juilliard, I've had time to organize my musical thoughts into one project. It feels GREAT to put this all together. The first half of the album is completed and the second half will be recorded on the 16th of this month. I'm really excited about this project because I've been working with a great friend and producer, Ulysses Owens. It's a good feeling knowing someone else has my back in making this project the best it can possibly be.
Favorite City? Haven' t traveled quite enough to give a good answer, but let's say NYC for now!
Travel Destination? I'm a big fan of cruises....and beaches. Bermuda, St. Thomas..etc.
Hotel? The Bellagio.
Restaurant? Used to be a place called The Spaghetti Warehouse back in Rochester. It's closed now:(
Museum or gallery? Smithsonian Air and Space Museum
Film? Casino Royal(new one)
Book? Fear and Loathing In Las Vegas
Cause(s) closest to your heart? The New Orleans Project at the Juilliard School.
NY Artist? Love John Mayer, Terence Blanchard, Kneebody, LCJO. Can NOT pick one.
Bar? Bar Basque
Top 3 songs? Heard It Through The Grapevine(Marvin Gaye), Over There(Derrick Hodge), I've Got A Crush On You(From Sinatra At The Sands)