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Tom Harrell

As most of you are aware I'm a huge Tom Harrell fan.  (Need proof, check out my shop.)  I've had the opportunity to see him perform live about a dozen times and last night at the Jazz Estate in Milwaukee, I got to see him again in a quartet setting.  The quartet didn't have the opportunity to rehearse so the rep for the set I saw was standards.  I have to say this was some amazing trumpet playing.  Tom is arguably one of the greatest living improvisors so saying the music that was made was…


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David Cooper is the host and author of All Things Trumpet; the blog for research, education and reviews of musical issues pertaining to the trumpet.

UW-Platteville Director of Jazz Studies – Trumpet
Madison Symphony Orchestra
Conn-Selmer Artist

Pietzsch 8

Pietzsch #8 strikes me as a very "orchestral" sounding etude.  Meaning, I want to play with a big, broad sound and play the dotted rhythms as squarely as possible.  I don't mean square as in a non-jazz sense but I'm thinking the shapes of squares…


Pietzsch 7

This one is quite a physical workout. Lots of "Clark-like" slurring in the mid to upper register. It helps me to think of creating a really good foundation of air - "bedrock" - and focus on using my embouchure and aperture to manipulate the pitches.…


Pietzsch 6

This was kind of an annoying little etude, in my opinion.  But, a good workout for triple tongue.  Be careful that the occasional slurred triplet like the ones that occur on beat two of the first two measures stays a triplet and doesn't turn into…


Musician Etiquette

Doing a quick search for "Musician Etiquette" will bring up dozens of hits like this one.  I've read through a bunch of them and they all share good common sense advice.  So, I thought I might as well post a set of etiquette ideas on this site as…


Pietzsch 5

I chose to do this one as a slow double-tongue but there would also be benefit in doing it as a fast single-tongue.  I focused on relaxing the articulation to flow and try not to sound "pecky".  About halfway down the first page there are some…


Sight Reading

Who wants to do some sight reading!?  Who wants to do some sight reading in front of your teacher!?  How about in front of a jury committee?  Or, how about sight reading at an audition for your “dream job”? I am guessing that these ideas were not…


Just Another Song and Dance

I had a teacher say to me a long time ago that all music, whether it is a piece, movement, section or phrase, falls in to one of two categories; it’s either a song or a dance.  What he meant by that is our interpretation is guided by a set of…


Friedman Solus

Title Solus Four Movements for Unaccompanied Trumpet (1975) Stan Friedman (1951 - ) Biographical Info STANLEY FRIEDMAN'S music has been premiered by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, l'Ensemble Intercontemporain, the Los Angeles Philharmonic…


My Ideal

Hello everyone.  I created this website to be a resource for educational thoughts and posts.  I've tried to not use it as a platform to advertise my gigs and other self-promotion.  However, this particular post is just simply documentation of one of…


Mad Toast Live! w/Johannes

A few years back UW-Madison hired Johannes Wallmann to head their jazz program.  He is a pianist, composer and educator and now good friend.  As way of "introducing himself" to our music community he put together a few very cool musical projects.…


Pietzsch 4

This one incorporates some triple tonguing.  For these moving triplets I used TTK.  That seems to get a better flow for me where TKT creates more rhythmic emphatic-ness.  Think of slightly crescendo-ing through the triplets.  This will keep the air…


Have You Met Miss Jones?

“Have You Met Miss Jones” is a tune written by Richard Rodgers for the musical comedy “I’d Rather Be Right”. Lyrics were written by Lorenz Hart. This tune has been recorded and performed by many notable jazz musicians. It’s a common jam session tune…


Pietzsch 3

This one looks intimidating at first.  But after you get into it you should find that it lies pretty idiomatically.  There are lots of arpeggios, major, dominant and minor, that have a lowered half-step as the second note of the triplet.  Good luck…


All the Things You Are

All the Things You Are A very informative resource site for getting the basics for tunes is learnjazzstandards.com Once there, you can search for a tune and, as in this case, many options for blog entries come up. If you click the link above it will…


Pietzsch 2

My summer project is to record all the Pietzsch Etudes (22).  I am using #13 for the ensemble audition requirement for the trumpets at UW-Platteville, so I thought that I would make a demo recording of it for them.  That little project was so much…


Pietzsch 1

My summer project is to record all the Pietzsch Etudes (22).  I am using #13 for the ensemble audition requirement for the trumpets at UW-Platteville, so I thought that I would make a demo recording of it for them.  That little project was so much…


Pietzsch Etude 13

My summer project is to record all the Pietzsch Etudes (22).  I am using #13 for the ensemble audition requirement for the trumpets at UW-Platteville, so I thought that I would make a demo recording of it for them.  That little project was so much…


A Tale of Three Tom Crowns

Here is an incredibly “trumpet-nerdy” post for all you trumpet-nerds, like me.  I recently bought two Tom Crown straight mutes, an all-brass Gemini, and aluminum with the brass bottom Gemini.  I have owned over a dozen straight mutes over the years…


Carnival of Venice

One of the most enjoyable things I get to do as a musician is perform with the Isthmus Brass.  It consists of ten brass players from around Wisconsin, founded by Mike Forbes and directed by John Stevens.  (We have a CD out that can be found on the…


A review of “Petite Monde”

Recently, I decided to reprint my first solo jazz CD.  My daughter Skye, redid the layout and packaging giving it a much needed fresh look.  I also came across a Wisconsin State Journal review of that CD.  Lots have changed since then as 2003 was a…


A review of “The Journey”

Hi Everyone, A little while ago a writer-friend Kevin Lynch, did a review/article about my jazz CD "The Journey". The Journey: A Deathly Odyssey Teaches David Cooper about Music and Life. For virtuoso trumpeter David Cooper, the horn of plenty…


InDIGenous Jazz Series Concert

Hello Friends, I hope that you all know that I rarely promote musical events with which I am involved.  However, I would like to make an exception and let you know about a very special concert for me on October 9, at 7:30pm at the newly renovated…


Dana Wilson – “I Remember…”

  Title I Remember… (1998) Dana Wilson Biographical Info The works of Dana Wilson have been commissioned and performed by such diverse ensembles as the Chicago Chamber Musicians, Formosa String Quartet, Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings,…


New Jazz CD – The Journey

Hi everyone, I am very happy to announce the release of my new jazz CD, "The Journey". I recorded this with my good friends, Johannes Wallmann, Mark Urness and Ernie Adams this summer (2014).  I was diagnosed with cancer a few months earlier and…


The Jam Session – Madison Style

I was a member of a jazz group called "The New Breed Quintet" for about four years.  "New Breed" was the house band for a jam session that happened every Wednesday night for over a decade.  There was a time when the group needed to find a new venue…


Stephenson – Concerto for Trumpet, no. 1

Title Concerto for Trumpet, no. 1 (2003) For trumpet and orchestra, or wind ensemble, or piano reduction By James Stephenson Biographical Info The Concerto for Trumpet, James Stephenson’s second major work written for the trumpet, is a product of a…


The “other” Stevens Trumpet Sonata

Title Sonata for Trumpet and Piano (2008) By John Stevens Biographical Info John Stevens was born in Buffalo, New York (USA) in 1951. He holds degrees in Music Performance (tuba) from the Eastman School of Music (1973) and Yale University (1975).…


Bradshaw Trumpet Sonata

Title Sonata for Trumpet and Piano (2003) Robert Bradshaw (1970 - ) Biographical Info Focused on producing socially relevant art, Robert J. Bradshaw's music is inspired by historical events and influenced by his multi-cultural family.  His…


Marvin Stamm

Like most of us, it seems like I have heard the name Marvin Stamm for as long as I've played trumpet.  I'd heard about the Kenton years and the fantastic recording years and had seen his name advertised at ITG conferences for years.  So, at the…


Clifton Williams – Dramatic Essay

Title Dramatic Essay (1958) For Trumpet and Band (Wind Ensemble) By Clifton Williams Biographical Info James Clifton Williams Jr. (1923– 12 February 1976) was born in Traskwood, Arkansas. He began playing French horn, piano, and mellophone early on…