My last great trip before the pandemic, described previously, took me to Texas, where I spent a few days with my buddies Mike Starbird and Tony Plog and had a hilarious time with Wiff Rudd and Mark Schubert, trumpet professors at Baylor University.
A few months later, stuck at home, Wiff suggested that we start a regular trumpet Zoom session. The following day, the Texas and Tennessee contingents (Wiff, Mark, and I) got up early, the German contingent (Tony) was already up, and the four of us visited by Zoom.
Trumpet players laugh more than most people. They tell stories, rant, reminisce, and mythologize, and that’s what we did for the next hour. By the end we felt refreshed and ready for another day between four walls.
We did that for a few months, and then Wiff said he’d like to invite Roger Stoner, longtime trumpet professor at the University of Kansas. Roger joined in, and we didn’t miss a beat. In fact, thanks to Roger, we added a few new ones.
The following month Tony invited Nick Norton, formerly principal trumpet with the Utah Symphony, and Eddie Ludema, trumpet professor at Idaho State University and producer of Tony’s podcast and website.
We were becoming a small crowd, a United Nations of Trumpet, and we've continued even with the pandemic winding down. I don’t know who will be there next month, but one thing is certain.
We’ll tell stories. We’ll laugh. And we’ll feel better.
Shown above (top to bottom, left to right): Tony, Wiff, Mark, Ron, Eddie, Nick, Roger