Lead Trpt Sound - "big and fat "or " cutting

Discussion in 'Jazz / Commercial' started by Larry Gianni, Dec 15, 2003.

  1. Larry Gianni

    Larry Gianni Piano User

    Nov 11, 2003
    Los Angeles
    Hi all,

    OK here's another one that my be answered somewhat across generational lines but tell me, what do you like or what do you strive for.

    A large, wide, fat lead trumpet sound in the tradition of Johnny Audino, Conrad Gozzo, Charlie Davis, John Harner, George Graham, Wayne Bergeron , Chuck Findley or Mike Williams

    Or a sound that tends to cut thru the band, very intense, focused and " lazerish ". ( if that’s a word? )
    A sound that is very identifiable to the player like a Bill Chase, Roger Ingram , Scott Englebright, Jon Faddis , Lyn Biviano or Dave Stahl.

    I know I've left alot of the very finest player out of the “names†used but I'm trying to describe a sound concept which is hard to do with mere words.

    Or do you disagree with my “type casting “totally.

    Again, there are no wrong answers.

    I did leave out the traditional " New York " sound of Bernie Glow , Bob McCoy, Johnny Frosk , Jimmy Maxwell, Clyde Reisinger, Bob Milikan, Gino Briscotti, etc. Where do they fit in ?The whole New York concept of big band lead player was the section came first and you didn't want to stick out as the lead player. You lead the section by playing on top of the section not over the section. Check out some of those Skitch Henderson big band albums or Dave Mathews with Lew Soloff.

    And answer this , where do you place guys like Snooky Young, Gene Goe, Paul Cohen, Byron Strippling , Chuck Schmidt , John Thomas , Gary Grant , Victor Paz, Wes Hensel, Charlie Turner, Dalton Smith , Buddy Childers , Mike Manethy ?

    And then there's Bobby Shew what type of sound - big and fat and intense and cutting - is there such a thing?

    Let's hear what you think.

  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous Forte User

    Oct 21, 2003
    Very interesting thread Larry! I will make a comment on this soon however I wanted to throw something out there.

    West Coast Lead players vs. East coast players

    What influence do you think the working enviornment and the work available in the differnet sides of the country have to do with sound concept and style of the players mentioned.

    For example I know that studio work and sound tracks for movies etc have played a big role on the West Coast. What influence if any do you think this has had on the players. I am less familiar with the situation on the east coast. I am sure there is (was) studio work available in New York but I doubt it was to the extent of that in some place like LA in the 70s 80s 90s?

    Now I know we are talking about Lead Playing in the "big band" setting but I'm curious to learn more about possible outside influences. Also how many toruing bands were out of west coast vs the east coast?

    This might not make any sense. I will try to write more later and gather my thoughts a little bit bet better :)

  3. Jarrett

    Jarrett Piano User

    Nov 11, 2003
    Richland, MO
    When I'm playing lead, I like to try and have the "Big fat" sound, because I've always had the lazery, drill you in the forehead thing happening from the beginning. In other words, I like to strive for both. It also comes down to the music you are playing. Some things call for the Walter Whitish, Scotty Engelbright type sound and some don't. IMHO
  4. trptdork

    trptdork New Friend

    Dec 16, 2003
    Big Fat And Intense

    Hello all,
    It's my first time posting, and I wanted to say hello to all, and to say that I prefer the Big Fat Intense sound of the Salsa/latin Jazz world. I don't think, personally, you can match that tone with any other kind of music on the planet. It's just too distinct. Just my two cents.

    Hope You All Have A Happy Holiday Season
  5. PH

    PH Mezzo Piano User

    Dec 2, 2003
    Bloomington, Indiana
    As in sumo wrestling, big & fat wins every time!
  6. Mikey

    Mikey Forte User

    Oct 24, 2003
    I prefer both types, depending on the context. Audino's sound on the first 2 Tonight Show Band albums is perfect, while I still get a rush from listening the the Chase CD's, with him cutting through the band.

    Larry, do you think mouthpiece diameter makes a difference in how your "lead" sound is, whether wide and fat like Audino et al, or a laser beam like Chase?

    Only reason I mention this is that Audino played a Reeves 43N (Purviance 10), which is very close to a 3C diameter, while Bill Chase used a 6A4a (bent dime)

  7. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    To me, Chase had a big fat sound, although he certainly did cut through. I wonder how much of that sound can be attributed to the horns those guys are using? Chase played on a beryllium belled Schilke B6, which would certainly have an effect on his sound. Bobby Shew plays the Z horn, the original of which was desingned after the B6/B7. (not sure which, I've heard both) That would make sense why both of those guys seem to have that cutting, yet fat sound.

    I prefer the big fat lead sound over the cutting sound, although, the big sound, due to the very nature of the range of the part, is going to cut as well.

    Interesting topic.
  8. TrentAustin

    TrentAustin Fortissimo User

    Oct 28, 2003
    KC MO
    When I play Lead I want to sound like Earl Gardner, Byron, Snooky, etc...

    I don't sound like them but I'd really like to! :)


  9. Larry Gianni

    Larry Gianni Piano User

    Nov 11, 2003
    Los Angeles

    About Johnny Audino and Bill Chase.

    2 totally different concepts in lead trumpet sound, yet both fantastic.

    I knew Johnny Audino personally and he was considered the “ primeir “ lead trumpet in Los Angeles since the death of Conrad Gonzo. Held in the highest regard by everyone and hand picked by Doc for the lead chair on the Tonight Show when he came to Los Angeles from New York and took over for Skitch Hendeson as musical director.

    Bill Chase, it goes without saying, will be considered the " bar " for what a lead trumpet player should be. There's Bill Chase and then there's everyone else.

    Johnny Audino did play a purviance 6*3 which has a 43/64 diameter rim and a large bore ( hand picked by Doc ) Getzen Eterna. ( Snooky Young got one also ) The mouthpiece was made for Johnny by Bob Reeves when he was working for Purviance before Bob opened his own shop - If you play a Bach 3c and want a “ Kick-Ass " lead piece, try the purviance # 10 ( the old 6*3 ). I think the purveyances are a very over-looked mouthpiece on the market today.

    Bill Chase did play on a jet-tone (BC and BC -b ) and a Schilke 6a4a and originally on a Martin Committee with Woody's band ( tilted bell for a while ) then on a his Schilke B6l-b with a 4-6 ounce custom-made beryllium bell, both considered M bore instruments.

    What he did on that mpc/trpt combo is amazing. But to be fair, the “Chase “albums were heavily engineered so Bill would have that amazing sound and presence in the final recording. Listen to the 62'63 Herman herd to hear what Bill Chase could do with a big band. Woody told him it was his job to " light a fire under the band " ever night, and that he did.

    For this question, I'm talking about a lead trumpet / big band sound. Jim Manely has a fantastic sound on his Reeves piece and V- Raptor ( lightweight ), but I've never heard him in a big band setting so I don't have an opinion about him in that context. He’s probably fantastic. Jim can do things on a trumpet that are unbelievable.

    Describing sound in words is a difficult thing. How would you describe a sound like George Graham on those Bob Florence albums ( Mt Vernon Bach large bore , tunable bell and Mt. Vernon Bach 3c shaved down slightly and rounded , last album a Bel Canto large bore ) and Roger Ingram with Harry Connick ( Schilke S42 / Marc. ‘ Ingram model†base on a Giradinelli 10s that Bobby Shew gave him and he played since he was 18) .Roger for many years played the original Bobby Shew Yamaha trumpet the 6310b

    Describe those 2 styles and sounds. Big equipment vs. smaller equipment?

  10. MPM

    MPM Pianissimo User

    Nov 10, 2003
    "Lead Trpt Sounds"

    Wow Larry, that's a big 'ol can you opened up! Pwew ...

    There's a guy down here, Jimmy Sedlar, who was a NYC studio trpt player around the same time Severinsen was an NBC "staff musician" (wow those were the days). Now this was before Doc was a big name for being the Band Leader on the Johnny Carson show. Jimmy said to me once that when Doc hit the scene there in NYC, he kind of re-defined the way guys were expected to sound in the studio! Going back and listening to old LP's with Urbbie Green playing trombone, Doc & Mel Davis & Snooky, Jimmy Maxwell, Bernie Glow, Ernie Royal ... Those guys had a certain "sound".

    What was the original topic question ... oh yea .... what kind of lead trumpet sound do we strive for? Wow ... guess it depends on the gig. A Big Band type setting ... I guess I 'think" along the lines of a Gozzo, Al Porcino, Audino type of sound. If it's a top-40 / R&B type of thing, I guess I 'think' a more contemporary type of lead sound. I think you used the term "lazerish". I guess for me it's a "concept" thing depending on the music in front of me.

    I really admire guys like (and I'm going to leave a lot of names out becuse there's not enough time to type them all) the Findleys (Bob & Chuck), Shew, Jay Daversa ... and the guys that did all that LA studio work. They could wear different hats, play different styles so well ...

    But ... I guess I go for that big fat, wide open with lot's of sizzle sound.

Share This Page