Cool Guest at the GWC Big Band Last Night

11 May

So I showed up for the Golden West Big Band rehearsal last night and noticed a couple different faces that I hadn’t seen there before. There were several people just sitting watching, and a new face in the trumpet section. I didn’t know who it could be. The dude looked a little ‘Clauseesque’, but I knew not to judge this book by its cover for good or for bad. I did know that he was subbing for Gary Halopoff who is the resident bad ass in the trumpet section, therefore this dude could be a heavy cat. Sure enough on our first tune, ‘Theme In Search of a Spy Movie’, the guy takes an incredible solo. It’s not a chopsy shredder solo either. It’s an intriguing, melodic, thought provoking solo, and it’s a thrill playing under it. As we’re playing I’m wondering who that could possibly be. I thought I knew the faces of most of the great L.A. trumpet players. After the tune Tom says to the class, ‘and of course playing trumpet with us tonight is the great Ron Stout.’

RON STOUT! He’s the one great trumpet player in L.A. whose face I DON’T know. Well him and Clay Jenkins. But I do know Ron and his work, and his reputation certainly preceded him. My friend Eitan studied trumpet with him for awhile.

So after the class I went over and was able to take a picture with him, even know he doesn’t know me from Adam. But he’s very cool (unlike SOME of the L.A. trumpet players who have reputations for being real ^$@#^$s). I said to him, ‘You don’t know me, but I was hoping to take a picture with you’ and he kindly obliged me and said that he enjoyed my playing very much. Sure buddy. Then I mentioned that he had taught a friend of mine, Eitan Avineri, and Ron said ‘oh sure! Great player.’ I was stunned that Ron was such a gentleman and had only kind things to say to and about everyone.

So here are 2 pics:

And here’s a brief but lovely clip of him soloing with Woody Herman in the 80s.


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