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Thomas Erdmann has an article published in the International Trumpet Guild Journal

The professor of music had an article published in the professional trumpet journal.

Professor of Music Thomas Erdmann had a 6,000-word article published in the March 2018 issue of The International Trumpet Guild Journal.

The article is on a top studio musician in Los Angeles who is now working in Branson, Missouri — trumpeter, and pianist Jay Daversa. He’s performed on more than 200 movie and television show soundtracks, held the solo chair with Stan Kenton, and toured and/or played for such artists and musicians as Johnny Mathis, Michael Jackson, Diana Ross, Barbara Streisand, Ray Charles, Andy Williams, Smokey Robinson, Gladys Night and the Pips, Lionel Richie, Tony Bennett, Elvis Presley, Louie Bellson, George Duke, Herbie Hancock, Hampton Hawes, Roger Kellaway, Henry Mancini, Shelley Manne, Don Menza, Oliver Nelson, Joe Sample, Bud Shank, Bill Watrous, Gerald Wilson, and Frank Zappa, to list a few.

Starting on the bugle at the age of four, Daversa didn’t get formal lessons on the trumpet until the age of eight. At nine, Daversa’s virtuosity led to success in talent shows leading to work with the Dixieland Small Fry led by Bill Hollingsworth. The band played extensively including on Tennessee Ernie Ford’s television show. From 1959 to 1960, when Daversa was just 14 and 15, Hollingsworth’s band got their own Sunday night show on KTLA Channel 5 in Los Angeles and can be heard here. Interestingly enough, Daversa first met Kenton when he was a guest on the show, foreshadowing later developments.

Graduating high school in 1962 Daversa joined the service playing the first and solo chairs in the Sixth Army Band at the Presidio in San Francisco. Leaving in 1965 he joined the Junior Neophonic directed by Jack Wheaton which was loosely associated with Kenton. When Gary Barone left Kenton’s band Daversa was asked to take the Solo Chair, staying from 1966 to 1968. Upon leaving, he moved back to Los Angeles. The next significant job came from Kenton’s old drummer Dee Barton who was working with Clint Eastwood. The famous contractor Sandy de Crescent at Universal Studios heard Daversa’s playing on those Barton scored soundtrack sessions, liked it, and started hiring Daversa for other work, which quickly led Daversa to seven-days-a-week work for all the studios.

After working all-day 24/7 for 30 years, for example starting with the "Donnie and Marie Show" at 8 a.m. followed by studio dates all afternoon and then doing record dates for others at night, burn out set in and Daversa left L.A. in 1980. First teaching in Oklahoma, then teaching and playing in Sacramento and later at the L.A. Dick Grove School of Music, as well as clinics throughout the country, Daversa now plays six days a week in Branson.


Thomas Erdmann,
2/20/2018 2:25 PM