HP: What inspired you to record this CD?
SR: This CD was a chance for my wife Ashley and I to test our skills and solidify some arrangement ideas. For me, recording on keyboard was a new and exciting challenge, and working with my wife is something I really enjoyed.
HP: How would to characterize the music?
SR: All of the song choices are jazz standards, and almost every arrangement was inspired by a great jazz artist that we love and study. The title track and a few others were inspired by Anita O'Day, the great jazz singer, while the arrangement on "You Don't Know What Love Is" is more of a current fusion style.
HP: As a trumpeter, who are some of your favorite trumpeters?
SR: My first trumpet album was Wynton Marsalis' Carnaval. His technique and musicianship amazed me and sent me on the road to becoming a professional musician. Since then I have loved and been influenced by many other greats. On this album you can hear direct influences of Freddie Hubbard and a current New Orleans trumpeter Jeremy Davenport.
HP: The recording sounds wonderful. Where was it recorded, and who engineered it?
SR: Here at UAB we are lucky enough to have a great recording studio and a world-class sound engineer. Everything on the album was recorded in the UAB recording studio and was engineered by James Bevelle*, a very skilled, experienced sound man.
HP: How important is it for today's musicians to be as diverse of a musician as you?
SR: For me, the most important thing about being a diverse musician is that I get to enjoy a lot more different aspects of music than a musician who limits themselves. I love the precision of orchestral trumpet playing and the beauty and perfection of sound of a good classical ensemble, but I also really love being in a jazz combo where creativity is at a premium and I am in control of the musical flow. I actually began playing jazz piano to help with my improvisation skills on trumpet, but I have grown to love it so much that it has become much more than that to me. The piano now serves as a new musical voice for me with which I can express a lot of things that I never could as a trumpet player. It has really enhanced my understanding of all types of music. For today's musician it is important to realize that the music world is incredibly competitive and any edge that you can have over your competition could mean the difference between having a career in music and waiting tables for a living.------------------------------------
Again, you can purchase the CD at the UAB Music eStore. You can also go to CD Baby to listen to the project, download individual tracks, download the entire project, or purchase the CD.
*James Bevelle is Chief Engineer at Audiostate 55 Recording Studios in Birmingham, AL.