Patrick guest solos with the Goddard High School & Goddard Middle School Jazz Ensembles
March 8th, 2017
Influenced by a recently purchased Hession's Sessions Guide, Brett Morrison invited Patrick to participate in a "Maynard Day" with his Goddard High School and Goddard Middle School Jazz Ensembles in Goddard, Kansas. Patrick rehearsed with the High School Jazz Ensemble at 8:30 AM followed by a tornado drill, and then finally a clinic with the trumpet section. After lunch, Brett then took Patrick to teach another clinic at Friends University in Wichita, Kansas. After a little break and less than 45 minutes to showtime, Patrick rehearsed with the Goddard Middle School Jazz Ensemble for their portion of the evening's concert. The evening was a huge success and the bands got a well-deserved standing ovation.
Thank you letter from Brett Morrison.
Patrick plays Holiday Concert & 12th Annual Michigan Music Conference with J.F.K. M.S. Jazz Ensemble
January 20th, 2017 14:00
Patrick was asked by director Christopher Kauffold to be the guest soloist with the John F. Kennedy Middle School Jazz Ensemble for their Holiday Band Concert on December 13th, 2016, to play Gonna Fly Now. Christopher also asked Patrick to participate with them in a presentation at the 12th Annual Michigan Music Conference on January 20, 2017, in Grand Rapids, MI. The presentation is listed below, and near the end of the presentation, Patrick spoke briefly about developing the upper register on high brass instruments before closing out with the playing of Gonna Fly Now.
Hey...This Jazz Thing Isn't Really That Tough!!
Christopher Kauffold, Kennedy M.S., Lake Shore Public Schools
Date: Friday, January 20
Time: 2:00 PM - 2:45 PM
Room: Amway - Ambassador
Learner Outcome 1: Jazz ensemble will "swing" and play in the correct style.
Learner Outcome 2: Players will utilize many easy JAZZ articulations.
Learner Outcome 3: Techniques in rhythm section playing will be understood and utilized.
Aided by the Kennedy Middle School Jazz Ensemble, techniques to make a jazz ensemble swing and play with the rhythmic drive that it should will be highlighted. Articulation techniques, easy rhythm section "tricks" and lots of helpful hints that ANY teacher can use will be highlighted. You will take home many easy "tricks of the trade" that will have your middle or high school group swingin' like the pros! YOU CAN DO THIS, and here's how.
A very nice thank you letter to Patrick.
UAM, David Kane, and Patrick get a standing ovation at the 2016 Hot Springs Jazz Festival!
September 4, 2016 18:57
"You KILLED it Patrick...........sounded great........here is a video that was posted to YouTube.
(Video taken by Tammy Vanhouten on Saturday, August 3, 2016 @ 100 Broadway under the Regions Bank Sky Bridge; Hot Springs, Arkansas) Patrick's portion with the University of Arkansas at Monticello Jazz Band 1 at the 2016 Hot Springs Jazz Festival!"
-Roger D. Spencer
Patrick's portion with the University of Arkansas at Monticello Jazz Band 1 for the 2016 Hot Springs Jazz Festival!
17:30 - Over The Rainbow followed by Angel Eyes
32:07 - Good Riddance - 35:23 (Piccolo Trumpet)
45:28 - Last Dive
PATRICK HESSION WOWS THE 2012 ITG AUDIENCE!
Dec 1, 2012
The Boss was smiling down on
Glenn Kostur after Patrick
played Glenn's arrangement of ANGEL EYES with the house big band
at the ITG conference. Patrick was completely OFF MIC - he played
acoustically just filling the hall with sound... and the audience
Here's a side story about
this performance that the audience was not aware of at the time.
Patrick came out on stage expecting to find his music on the
stand, but in the confusion of multiple soloists and lots going
on, there was NO STAND AND NO MUSIC! So when the band kicked off
the tune he just shrugged his shoulders, picked up his horn and
started playing! No one ever knew the difference and Patrick
Patrick plays the MF STC
trumpet we designed specifically for him a few years ago. This is
one of our most popular models, designed for extreme lead trumpet
playing but also great for all around work too. This is the
lightest Monette Bb trumpet we have ever made, but you will
notice Patrick's sound - as recorded way out in the hall and
completely off mic - is as big as a house!
Patrick is available for
clinics and concerts, and he has an excellent website with
videos, pictures, schedule information and more. Congratulations
on the amazing job at the ITG conference Patrick!
Patrick plays with the Lafayette Citizens Band for
the Fourth of July!
July 5th, 2011 00:00
Patrick Hession prepares for his trumpet solo Monday
behind a giant American flag, before going on with
the Lafayette Citizens Band during the Stars and
Stripes celebration for the Fourth of July.
2. Gonna Fly
YouTube Channel - HESSIONSSESSIONS
(Video taken by Matt McComb on Monday, July 4, 2011 @
Riehle Plaza; Lafayette, Indiana)
Report on this morning's 100th Anniversary
November 14th, 2010 18:31
By Ernie Skuta
November 14, 2010
It was a full house at Holy Family Catholic Church
(Sacre Familia) for their 100th anniversay
celebration this morning. For a Sicilian/Italian
parish, my "Roman Fanfare" was perfect. Patrick
Hession (Maynard Ferguson lead trpt alumnus) was
magnificent on 1st trpt on "Trpt Voluntary" ("Prince
of Denmark") on his piccolo trpt. in A. The
congregation applauded during exiting after our
Another conquest to add to our extensive
John Clayton debuts a new work rooted in Detroit jazz
history at festival
August 30th, 2009 00:00
DETROIT FREE PRESS MUSIC WRITER
John Clayton leads the Scott Gwinnell
Jazz Orchestra of Detroit through a recent rehearsal
at the Detroit Institute of Arts. (REGINA H.
BOONE/Detroit Free Press)
John Clayton is a large, handsome man, with an
athletic, 6-foot-4-inch frame, dignified carriage and
massive hands that seem engineered specifically for
the double bass. He also has one of the great smiles
in jazz. When he strikes a groove, walking a blues
line on his bass or conducting one of his natty
arrangements in front of a big band, Clayton's
ultrabrights spread across his dimpled face like an
invitation to a party.
He had a full house feeling the spirit at Cliff
Bell's in downtown Detroit two weeks ago on the eve
of his 57th birthday. Clayton, artist-in-residence at
the 2009 Detroit International Jazz Festival, was
presiding over an open dress rehearsal of the
ambitious 30-minute commission he has written for the
30th annual festival, which opens Friday.
Titled "T.H.E. Family, Detroit," the piece honors the
Pontiac-bred jazz legends Thad, Hank and Elvin Jones,
with a nod to the downtown Guardian Building, whose
art deco grandeur provides a metaphor for Detroit's
golden age of jazz. The suite, scored for the Clayton
Brothers Quintet and the 18-piece Scott Gwinnell
Jazz Orchestra of Detroit, will have its official
premiere on Labor Day at Hart Plaza.
Clayton counted off the band with a flourish,
inaugurating a souped-up Motown boogaloo with a
basement churn of baritone sax, bass, guitar and
piano and a dense, brassy strut -- the "Guardian
Fanfare." Gwinnell stepped in to conduct and Clayton
dashed to the corner of the stage. He picked up his
bass and -- bam! -- the quintet sprinted into a
swinging, minor-key theme. Clayton smiled, and the
club smiled back.
"I'm a conduit," Clayton said before the rehearsal.
"I don't feel I'm capable of creating what people
think I'm capable of creating. It comes from another
source, be it the universe, God, a tree, a Cadillac,
a woman, whatever. You're kidding yourself if you
A consummate pro, Clayton has mastered just about
every facet of the jazz life. Based in his native Los
Angeles, he's a first-call bassist who cut his teeth
with pianist Monty Alexander and Count Basie in the
'70s and whose calling cards remain a swinging pulse,
bear-hug tone, impeccable diction and taste and an
infectious spirit he channels from his mentor, the
late Ray Brown.
On another front, he's the charismatic chief
composer-arranger for the Clayton-Hamilton Jazz
Orchestra, one of the top big bands in jazz, which he
leads with his brother Jeff, an alto saxophonist, and
drummer Jeff Hamilton. Clayton is a Grammy
Award-winning arranger who has written for Diana
Krall, Queen Latifah and many others, and he's a
noted jazz educator and a top administrator at jazz
He even had his own, albeit anonymous, pop culture
moment, writing the orchestral arrangement of the
National Anthem sung by Whitney Houston at the 1991
Super Bowl during the Gulf War, a performance that
became a Top 20 hit when it was released as a
Still, it has been easy for critics and others to
take Clayton for granted, partly because standard
bearers for mainstream values like Clayton don't get
the ink of cutting-edge innovators and partly because
the jazz press has always been biased in favor of the
But make no mistake: Clayton's musicianship takes a
back seat to no one's, and his Zen-like focus,
intelligence, humility, generosity and decency in an
industry that often rewards the opposite have earned
him universal respect among his peers.
"He makes you feel like the most important person in
the world in his presence," said Hamilton. "You walk
out of a meeting feeling like he treated you with the
utmost respect and heard everything you said and
feeling really good about yourself -- even though
later you might realize that he didn't agree with
anything you said! But he was a gentleman."
At peace with life and art
Clayton speaks in a resonant baritone, his easy humor
and sincerity suggesting a man at peace with his life
and art. He lives with his Dutch-born wife, Tineke
Scholten, a linguist, in Altadena at the foot of the
San Gabriel Mountains. When he's working on a piece,
he likes to take hikes to clear his head and entice
Clayton met his wife in the Netherlands on tour in
the '70s, and when he left Basie in 1979, they
settled in Utrecht, where Clayton made his living as
principal bassist of the Amsterdam Philharmonic while
also playing jazz. The family moved to Los Angeles in
1984. Today the Claytons are empty nesters, with a
son, Gerald, 25, making a splash as a jazz pianist
and an older daughter studying at Harvard Law
Clayton maintains his relaxed countenance when he
plays, though he grows more visibly intense when he
steps in front of a big band. His shoulders sway back
and forth to the beat, he leans in to cue the
saxophones, sings along and gestures broadly and
expressively; his wingspan seems to stretch across
the entire stage.
His rehearsal manner is direct, detailed, polite and
encouraging but firmly in command. "Let's make sure
we cut off our chords together," he told Gwinnell's
band after a sloppy passage during a rehearsal at the
Detroit Institute of Arts in June. "No hangover. Then
you get a wall of sound with no jagged edges."
Aggravations that might drive others over the brink
barely raise his temperature. At the DIA, a young
sound engineer with an attitude refused to follow
Clayton's instructions for miking his bass. Clayton
kept repeating his request, subtly increasing
pressure without raising his voice or escalating the
confrontation until the engineer surrendered.
"I don't do stress," Clayton said. "Stress is a
choice. I don't want an accelerated heart rate."
Jeff Clayton said his brother's personality was
forged as the eldest of seven children raised by a
single mother: You learn to be organized when you
have to help iron three dresses, make six lunches and
get the entire posse off to school. The Claytons'
mother worked at the post office, cleaned houses,
played piano and organ in church and directed the
choirs, oversaw the renovation of a house and took
classes for years in her spare time to get a college
"She was amazing, and by example very clear, focused
and pragmatic," said Jeff Clayton.
'The joy of discovery'
Clayton's career as a composer-arranger traced a very
different arc than his development as a bassist. He
picked up the bass at 13, began playing gigs in high
school and studied formally with classical teachers
and Ray Brown, a seminal bebop bassist, before
attending Indiana University.
Clayton didn't begin to seriously pursue composing
and arranging until his two years with Basie
beginning in 1977. Largely self-taught, he learned
the old-fashioned way: by embarrassing himself. "I'd
write something, bring it in, think I knew what I was
doing, discover I didn't and go back to the drawing
board," he said.
His first arrangement was a muddy mess. "It sucked,"
said Clayton, laughing. Then he transcribed Neal
Hefti's "Splanky" from a Basie LP. The roaring shout
chorus was a tutorial. Among other details, Clayton
discovered that the lead trumpet, lead trombone and
lead alto saxophone all were playing the same
"That's where I learned the power of the triple
lead," he said. "I didn't read about it in a book.
That's one of the things I try to do as a teacher. I
don't give students the answers. I try to allow them
to experience the joy of discovery. When you find out
something for yourself, you don't forget it for
Clayton's second arrangement was an original song
called "Blues for Stephanie," a groove maker with a
curlicue saxophone melody and driving shout chorus
that fit Basie like a custom suit. During the first
run-through, players tapped their feet, and at the
end Basie uttered his highest praise: "Let's do that
one more time."
Clayton's vocabulary remains deeply rooted in
tradition. Like Basie's stable of arrangers, he loves
blues forms and contrasting dynamics and builds swing
into his charts via punchy rhythms and riffs. Like
Thad Jones, who wrote for Basie before pursuing a
more modern idiom, Clayton uncoils complex,
astringent harmonies through the ensemble and puffs
his chest with peacock bravura. Like Duke Ellington,
Clayton writes for individuals, not instruments -- so
much so that when players retire or leave his band,
Clayton retires arrangements written for them.
Along the way, he sought out elders for lessons,
including ex-Basie-ite Frank Foster and Hollywood
giant Johnny Mandel, who warned against writing at
the piano. "When you sit at the piano, you end up
playing the piano," said Mandel. "People don't sing
hip chord changes. They sing melodies."
Above all, Clayton's writing is defined by clarity,
honest emotionalism and a meticulous craftsmanship
that at its most inspired turns regal and sublime.
Sophisticated, yes. Cerebral, no.
"John isn't writing to show off himself, he's writing
to show off the band," said Dennis Wilson, a
trombonist and composer-arranger who played with
Clayton in the Basie band and now teaches at the
University of Michigan. "He's not trying to show that
he's a great arranger -- although he is."
Back at Cliff Bell's, the restored art deco club in
Foxtown, Clayton celebrated the maiden voyage of his
suite with a post-performance bottle of
Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Wine has been a
passion since his band mates in Diana Krall's group
introduced him to its pleasures on a plane bound for
Paris in 2001.
Clayton's smile beckoned. He greeted well-wishers at
the back of the club, looking each in the eye and
giving each their moment. He refilled friends'
glasses and delved into conversation, traversing
classical music performance styles, criticism, the
endless quest to master composition and what, for
him, is the ultimate payoff.
"I don't get goose bumps when I write," he said. "I
get goose bumps when I hear what the musicians do
with what I've written."
30th annual Detroit International Jazz Festival
Hart Plaza, Woodward Corridor, Campus Martius,
Cadillac Square in downtown Detroit
The Clayton Brothers Quintet and Scott Gwinnell
Jazz Orchestra's performance will include the
premiere of John Clayton's "T.H.E. Family, Detroit"
at 8:30 p.m. Mon., Carhartt Amphitheatre
John Clayton also appears with fellow bassists
Christian McBride and Rodney Whitaker at 6 p.m. Mon.,
Mack Avenue Pyramid Stage
Contact MARK STRYKER: 313-222-6459 or
Copyright © 2009 ... Use of this site
signifies your agreement to the Terms of Service and
updated March 2009.
Detroit Free Press
Monette 25th Anniversary Party! - Shop Concert - June
30 ~ July 2, 2008
May 26th, 2009 00:00
one opened with a piece titled "Fanfare for Dave",
written by trumpeter Phil Snedecor. The fanfare
covered most of the notes playable on the trumpet and
then some. It starts on a concert F below the staff
and ended on a D above double high C on the Bb
trumpet. Let me tell you it was a kick to play with
these guys. I (Mike Thompson) played the low part on
my Prana 1 C, Urban Agnas on part 3 playing his Prana
LT C, Charlie Schlueter on the top C trumpet part
playing his Raja Samadhi and Patrick Hession burning
the 8va part on his MF Prana.
Day 1 - Part
1 of 3
Patrick Hession shows us that he can play with
control and a beautiful sound in all registers of the
trumpet, low, middle, high and OMG!
Day 2 - Part
2 of 6 (8:52)
The night ended with an all-star jam including the
Gary Hobbs Trio and trumpeters Adam Rapa, Patrick
Hession, Urban Agnas, Marlon Jordan and Antoine Drye.
The place caught fire and burnt down.
Day 2 - Part
5 of 6
Day 2 - Part
6 of 6
Here are some informal moments during the three days
of rehearsals, plus performers being witty, funny and
sometimes just plain goofy for the camera. Included
is video of Ron Miles playing his SATTVA informally
for Wynton just before Wynton's concert.
Rehearsal Goofs and Funny Moments...
View All of the Videos!
MONETTE'S 25TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION!
July 3rd, 2008 00:00
Monette shop just spent the week celebrating the 25th
anniversary of the completion of the first Monette
trumpet! Great players came in from four continents
for three days of concerts, great food and a
seriously fun hang! More on this will follow soon,
including lots of video from the shop concerts and
video interviews with Wynton Marsalis, Charlie
Schlueter, Ron Miles, Charles Gorham, Adam Rapa,
Marlon Jordon, Urban and Joakim Agnas, Scotty
Barnhart, Patrick Hession, Katsu Kameshima, Alfred
Willener, Antoine Drye and more.
Sneak Preview Video Slideshow!
Toledo Jazz Orchestra's Tribute to Maynard
January 13th, 2008 11:16
This doesn't have a lot to do with running, but I
went to the Toledo Jazz Orchestra's Tribute to
Maynard Ferguson featuring Patrick Hession and Ric
Wolkins with my pals from CrossRoads Community
Church's worship band brass, Jeremy, Leo, and Vicki.
It was phenomenal! Brought back a lot of memories of
high school when we listened to the album Chameleon
perpetually, the Interlochen concert, and camping
road trips with Mom and Dad and Vicky listening to
the album, Carnival, over and over and over again.
The screaming trumpets last night courtesy of Mr.
Hession and Mr. Wolkins definitely jacked me up for
today's race so, I guess this does have a bit to do
with running. My trumpeting pal, Leo, has run 6
marathons in his now ended running career including
the Toledo, Columbus, and Boston. I've been gleaning
some tips from him. My other band-pal, Vicki, is also
a marathoner having done one in her college days.
Dad, wish you coulda gone to the concert with us, you
would have loved it!
View full Thread
Lafayette Citizens Band Performs a Spectacular July 4
July 5th, 2007 00:00
was a lot of red, white and blue music at the
concert, and some special soloists and groups were
featured. Lafayette's native son Patrick Hession, who
played for six years with the Maynard Ferguson Band,
and his brother Phil, were featured on a Bill
Kisinger arrangement of "MacArthur Park," and the
"Theme from Rocky."
Visit Lafayette Citizens Band Website!
fan fare - umass amherst department of music &
dance - summer 2007
June 21st, 2007 00:00
Outstanding visiting artists and ensembles joined
with Department of Music & Dance faculty and
student performers for five evening concerts that
included UMass Amherst Professor Jeff Holmes' Big
Band with Wayne Bergeron and Patrick Hession, The
Washington Symphonic Brass, The New England Brass
Band with Terry Everson, Philip Cobb and Rene
Hernandez, and Gordon Goodwin's Big Phat Band.
ITG 2007 Event Reports - Friday
June 1st, 2007 17:00
pm - David Monette: Design, Fabrication and
Performance - A Guided Video Tour
Written by Elisa Koehler
A large crowd gathered to hear the latest information
from custom trumpet maker David Monette about his new
innovations in instrument design and manufacture.
Following the traditional ITG trumpet ensemble
prelude by students from Drake University, Phil
Snedecor introduced another trumpet ensemble playing
one of his own compositions, Fanfare for David.
Performing with Snedecor were fellow Monette players
Charles Schlueter, Manny Laureano, and Patrick
Hession, who wowed the audience with his white hot
View full Article
ITG 2007 Event Reports - Thursday
May 31st, 2007 19:00
7:00 pm - Washington Symphonic Brass "At The
Written by Neville Young
For a moment I was surprised when the "Rocky" fanfare
started up again - surely they're not just going to
repeat that? - but all was explained when the music
took a turn in the direction marked "loud" and
Patrick Hession strolled on stage - my goodness, what
a Maynard-style extravaganza this last tune became.
Like the rest of the audience I left bowled over by
the versatility and skill of the Washington Symphonic
Brass and with the memory of a really great concert
full of variety and flair. Nice one, Milt and the
View full Article
ITG 2007 Event Reports - Wednesday
May 30th, 2007 19:00
pm - Jeff Holmes Big Band
Written by Gary Mortenson
If you like to hear lead trumpet playing featured in
the jazz ensemble setting, then this concert had to
make you feel like a kid in a candy store. Patrick
Hession (Maynard Ferguson's last lead trumpet player)
was featured on three tunes on the first half
including arrangements of "Danny Boy," "Superman,"
and "Rocky." It was obvious to all why Maynard hired
Patrick as his last lead trumpet player. Through all
three tunes he displayed great power, presence,
range, and volume. Hession's ability to "power-up"
the trumpet in the highest register and still play a
nice melody in the middle and extremely low registers
is astounding. Maynard fans got exactly what they
wanted, and audience members who might not have been
familiar with that type of trumpet playing got a true
initiation into what that special fraternity is all
about. The last tune of Hession's set, "Rocky,"
really brought me back to my youth as a high school
trumpet player in mid 1970s suburban Chicago, and to
the many times I went to various area high schools to
see Maynard with his big band perform for his fanatic
following (of which I was a fully-vested member).
Thank you Patrick, for bringing back those great
View full Article
ITG 2007 Event Reports - Wednesday
May 30th, 2007 09:00
am - Maynard Ferguson Tribute
Written by John Irish
How does one sum up the career, importance,
influence, or the person as unique as Maynard
Ferguson. A panel discussion led By Ed Sargent, paid
tribute to the great Maynard who passed away in
August, 2006. Contributors on the panel included
Wayne Bergeron (started in the band 1986), Carl
Fischer (started in 1993), and Patrick Hession (from
2000 -- Maynard's last lead trumpet
player), and Dan Potts, who helped with the video
montage and historical information. Maynard's
daughters, Lisa and Wilder were also in
View full Article
UVSC JAZZ ENSEMBLE PAYS TRIBUTE TO THE LATE MAYNARD
March 21st, 2007 00:00
Thanks again for the remarkable job last December.
You and Reggie made a great team. The alumni magazine
at UVSC picked up the story of the MF tribute and
published a short article. It is on page 12 of the
online version found at: Click and
turn to page 12.
Director of Jazz Studies, David Fullmer, recently led
his UVSC jazz and percussion students on an
unforgettable journey into the life and talent of the
late jazz trumpet player and bandleader, Walter
Concluding the phenomenal concert in the Ragan
Theater, students who idolized Ferguson (many their
entire musical careers) had the opportunity to
showcase their talents by performing a variety of
Ferguson pieces. The highlight of the experience,
however, was when Patrick Hession and Reggie Watkins,
two longtime members of the Maynard Ferguson Band,
traveled to UVSC to conduct a workshop and then
perform with UVSC students.
According to Jared Herald, UVSC student trumpet
player and member of the jazz ensemble, "We not only
saw a great display of brass wizardry, but we
actually had the opportunity to learn from two
terrific performers. Except for Maynard, I have never
heard anyone nail the songs the way Patrick did."
According to Fullmer, who has a doctorate of musical
arts from the University of Washington, "Maynard was
a very important historical figure in jazz history.
Many jazz purists looked down on Ferguson's
rock-style jazz, but he was a heavy influence that
sparked in many young musicians a lifelong affinity
and desire to learn and play jazz."
Today, Ferguson is known as one of the most
influential musicians in Jazz history. He passed away
Aug. 23, 2006, in Ventura, Calif., at age 78. He is
known for playing with big band pioneers including
Count Basie, Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie.
Ferguson recorded more than 60 albums.
UVSC Sequel - Spring 2007
Patrick Hession and Reggie Watkins performed at Utah
Valley State College in Orem, Utah
February 26th, 2007 10:21
Review by Jared Hearld
Concert Date: December 8, 2006
Utah Valley State College, Orem, Utah
Patrick Hession and Reggie Watkins recently performed
at Utah Valley State in Orem, Utah. They arrived in
town on thursday just in time for one rehearsal
before the show on friday. On tap for rehearsal was
"Chameleon," "Rocky," "Gospel John," "MacArthur
Park," "Danny Boy," "Birdland," "Superbone Meets the
Badman," "The Way We Were," and "Frame For the
Blues." Through the three hour rehearsal the band was
no less than amazed at the talent of Patrick and
Reggie. We not only saw a great display of brass
wizardry, but saw two great educators. The night
rehearsal ended with powerful and slick soloing from
Reggie and Patrick just wasting Double C's on
"Chameleon." I could have swore these two had enough
chops for another three hour rehearsal.
The show started with Reggie and Patrick on
"Chameleon." The band started it's groove on
"Chameleon" and within just a minute or so in came
Patrick with ear bleeding descending lines starting
on Double G. Just as we were ending up the 'A'
section Patrick led us in to the 'B' section with a
Maynardesque Double C. Reggie soon took over with his
JB's inspired solo. I believe he even threw in a
quote from "Pass the Peas Please." Put some pounds on
Reggie and I swear I was listening to Fred Wesley
with more grace. To end the song Patrick electrified
the crowd with his over Double C usage.
Just in case the crowd didn't get enough of Patrick's
high wire act he began playing "Frame For the Blues."
Except for Maynard I have never heard anyone nail the
beginning and end of this song the way Patrick did.
Maynard would be proud! The soloing moments again
belonged to Reggie. This guy is so diverse with his
playing. I could just imagine myself being at
Birdland listening to Slide Hampton playing his own
Next on the list was a favorite ballad of Maynard's,
"Danny Boy." Patrick's chops just never seem to quit.
Patrick gets to show his delicate side as well as his
lyrical playing in all registers. Remember, this is
all after a long rehearsal the night before and a
dress rehearsal the day of. This piece really does
show how complete a player Patrick is. The descending
lines from G, A, and finally Double C were all done
with such grace. If I didn't know which notes he was
playing from seeing them on the page I would have
never guessed they were that high. He just played
with such ease all the way to low F# at end the
Next up was "Superbone Meets the Badman," featuring
Reggie. This hard swinging chart was just more
evidence of Reggie's diversity. As Utah Valley's bari
player and Reggie went head to head it was fun to
hear the mingling of ideas. Always a playful
conversation! What a spark that was given to the band
through Reggie's heavy swingin', hard hittin' solo.
Reggie was also featured on "The Way We Were." Reggie
demonstrated a great lesson in ballad playing to the
To end the show Reggie, Patrick, and the Band hit the
packed house hard with "MacArthur Park," "Gonna Fly
Now," and "Birdland." Throughout the night there was
flawless execution on the part of Patrick and Reggie.
The love for the audience, music, and Maynard
Ferguson were all very apparent in their playing. The
crowd was left electrified!
The Louisville All-Star Big Band: Remembering Maynard
September 27th, 2006 06:56
show was incredible!!!
By The BST
What a show! I mean, WOW!!! I'm not just blowing my
own horn (pun intended). Sure, I put it together -
but I take no credit for all the musicians' talents.
Patrick Hession (Maynard Ferguson's last lead
trumpet) was absolutely phenomenal. His tone and
mastery of the stratosphere immediately made jaws
drop. Many couldn't believe their ears. His double-C
at the end of "Danny Boy" was held out longer than
I've ever heard! It really made the audience
reminisce about their favoite Maynard
concert/recording. The only thing that would've been
better? Maynard himself. It was obvious more than a
little of M.F. rubbed off on Patrick in the 6+ years
he occupied the most gruelling chair in jazz!
The whole ensemble was very inspired. Myself
included!!! I dipped into the depths of my own
Fergunousity (as measured with a Fergunometer!)
to pull of my most accurate M.F. impersonation
to date! All the soloists were incredible - Chuck
Mahronic's solo on "Chameleon" was some of the
funkiest piano I've heard in my life! That man
is a genius. Andy Mill blew everyone away with
his treatment of the Maynard book on "Footpath
Cafe". The conversation between he and alto
saxophonist Jacob Duncan was a true exhibition
of intuition. Chris Fortner was an absolute
showstopper with his valve trombone work on
"Superbone Meets The Badman". Then he turned
around and did it again and again throughout the
night with his slide trombone! I really loved
Charlie Niehoff's trumpet solos. . . PERIOD! That
cat can swing! Tim Whalen's treatment of everything
was perfect. I don't know how he always does it,
but every solo sounds like they should never be
played another way. I'd like to go on, but there
were too many shining moments in the show to
mention them all! Sorry, Mike Smith, Craig Wagner,
Miles Davis, Drew Miller, . . . you get the idea.
I want to express my gratitude to every musician,
audience member, audio engineer, and everyone else
that helped make the show a success. I really want
to thank John La Barbera for attending. It was a
good thing I was exhausted from putting this show
together. I was so tired I forgot to be terrified
while playing alongside Patrick Hession - with the
best musicians in town - in front of John La Barbera!
The last person I wish to thank is my wife, Lori.
This is the biggest/best event I've ever put together
or performed. I felt very driven to make this happen
to honor the biggest influence in my life (and many
others), Maynard Ferguson. Without her help, I
wouldn't have come close to pulling it off. She may
not take credit for her contributions, but we've
always worked as a team and always will.
Gonna fly now.
Bradley Scott Tharp
View full Article
ITG 2006 Conference Coverage
June 9, 2006
Patrick Hession - The Trumpet is a Soprano Instrument
Chuck Tumlinson, reporter
Patrick Hession has been Maynard
Ferguson's lead player the past 6 years. His morning clinic
opened with a brief performance of Ferguson's solo on Macarthur
Park in typical dramatic style. He then introduced himself and
related his life story, including early influences (starting with
Maynard and including Maurice André, Harry James, and Bill
Chase) and musical associations.
The clinic consisted mostly of
helpful tips for the trumpet player, particularly in a lead and
high note context. He emphasized using the body while playing to
help keep the chops strong. The body can work when fatigued, but
the chops cannot. He also emphasized pacing and waiting for the
peak in a long musical phrase, both for musical and endurance
Hession related some things he
learned in his college marching band years that have continued to
help, such as playing the mouthpiece into gloves or a cloth to
warm up. He then played the mouthpiece along with recordings
(particularly Maynard) to help internalize the music. He also
recommends practicing shakes and lip trills into a
He addressed vibrato and the
Harry James vibrato that sounded somewhere between a vibrato and
a shake. He also advocates adding lip trills to pretty melodies.
He related advice from Maynard that the ability to play with
vibrato in upper register is an indication that you are not using
too much pressure.
The clinic included several
ideas for high range playing. If you improve in the normal range,
this will also help your higher range. Also practice pretty
melodies in higher keys. Either practice up in half steps, or
take those melodies up an octave. (Hession learned this from
These are just a few of the
ideas that Patrick Hession imparted to the receptive audience. He
is obviously a strong player with an easygoing, pleasant
personality. Hession is a goldmine with regard to his perceptive
insights in the lead and bravura tradition of trumpet
[TPIN] ITG Conference 2004 - Monette, Patrick, and Manny