Saturday, January 21, 2017

Wynton Marsalis has Class to Go Along With a Towering Talent.

As someone who has played the trumpet, and someone who loves to hear well played trumpet and brass music, I have long respected the ability of Wynton Marsalis to play the instrument with seeming superhuman ability.  His classic recording of Baroque Music for Trumpet sets new standards for the interpretation of music, and includes a moving version of Pachelbel's Canon in D that my Wife considers the absolute greatest recording of that piece ever done, bar none. I have gone to Wolf Trap twice to see Mr. Marsalis perform, as well as Dizzy Gillespie, and I have attended the Lincoln Center on two occasions to see performances of the original Canadian Brass.  Of course while his great classical recordings set new benchmarks, his jazz recordings are incredible.  I have Standard Time vol. 1 and 2.  I see there is a 3 that I need to obtain at some point.

One thing that has impressed me about Wynton Marsalis is that he has kept his political opinions to himself. Marsalis is a towering talent, putting to shame many lesser lights who sound off really just to get attention. He works with young students extensively, and as noted, performs occasionally as well. So, it was with interest that I read Clarice Feldman's blog on American Thinker entitled Wynton Marsalis Nails It on Performers Boycotting the Inauguration. There was a time when if a President asked someone to perform at a function, if that someone could arrange to do so, he did. It didn't matter whether he was the one for whom you voted. Respect for the office compelled even the loyal opposition to accede to such demands.  After all, if the President wants you to perform, he clearly finds you talented and accomplished enough to showcase for his guests.  Can one not feel honored for that?

With the election in 2008 of Barack Obama, I did not cry, or throw a fit, or riot, or do any of the things Leftists have done.  I knew what Obama was, and I considered McCain to be really no better.  My one nod to protest was to take down the flag that I have flown in the yard.  It is still folded up, by the way.  When people ask why I no longer fly my flag, I point out that we no longer live in the United States of America.  We now live in the territory once occupied by the United States of America.  It is true, Barack Obama and his minions have turned the once great USA into a banana republic.  None of the things he believes about this country are true.  We were not colonial powers, we did not steal the resources that made us the biggest economy on the globe.  It was, after all Texas oil, not Middle Eastern oil that fueled much of our industrial expansion, and we bought the Middle Eastern oil, we didn't steal it.  And the steel used to fight WWII, that came from the Great Lakes region.

 When the same people came out in support of Obama in 2012, I was again appalled, but I still did not protest beyond keeping my flag down.  I have watched as Obama and his administration have torn the fabric of this nation, starting with the rule of law, and the Constitution.  But they did not do it alone.  No, it was more a case of Gulliver being tied down by the Lilliputians.  Now that the Lilliputians are on the run, we must finally destroy them (not literally) or drive them out.

I read a lot or enthusiastic things about Trump's agenda from people that, as far as I know, have little knowledge of it,   Truth be told, however, it Trump puts good and decent Supreme Court Justices in place, honors and defends the Constitution, and brings back the rule of Law, it will be enough.  I will be able to fly my flag again..  In the meantime, I think I will put on my copy of Baroque Music for Trumpets once again.  Good on ya, Mr. Marsalis.


  1. I too have always been impressed by Wynton Marsalis, and also his brother Brandon. I am a musician, as well, now only playing for my own amusment. I am a sax player by trade, but have also played many other wind instruments. The work that Wynton does with young people has always impressed me. I was fortunate enough to have seen Woody Herman and the Thundering Herd when in high school. I was able to sit in with the sax players for an informal session, before the concert, and it is something I will never forget. How could anyone refuse a request to perform for the president, no matter who that might be? It saddens me, that we have fallen that far. I hope we come back up again.

  2. pigpen51, thank you for commenting. It is good to hear from a brother musician, and I hope you keep playing for the love of it.


  3. I actually have said that after I learned to read, the only reason for school was to learn to play music. I picked up on it quickly, and watched the other players, when they were being tutored during our class, on their parts of a song. By watching their fingering, I was able to learn how to play brass horns, and the other woodwinds came naturally as well as flute, with some help from my friends in the class. I also had the good fortune to have a brother and a sister who had a cornet and a clarinet at home, which allowed me to practice on those. My twin brother is a drummer, and he also played music part time professionally after high school. He sang and fronted bands as well. My singing was fortunately limited by playing wind instruments. I get a lot of requests when I sing. I have been asked to sing long age and far away. And to sing solo. As in so low that no one can hear me. I played in a rock and roll band, called tradewinds. By doing so, I was able to learn to play guitar and bass. Music is not my life, my family and God and my friends are, but music is what makes my life joyful when they are not around. It is no wonder that the Angels sing to God. Music is indeed a heavenly sound. I have played for money, and I have played for fun, but mostly, it has always been fun. Blessings to you as well, and keep the music alive.