Gregg Stafford
er en af de bedste nulevende trompetister i den klassiske New Orleans tradition! New Orleans Delight havde fornøjelsen at spille med han i Den Norske Sømandskirke i New Orleans i april 2003 i forbindelse med French Quarter Festival. Gregg var saa glad for vores samspil at han paa stedet tilbød at komme til Danmark hvis vi kunne skaffe job. Det har vi nu. Men der er flere muligheder end november 2004. Den bedste tid er om sommeren. Der er for varmt i New Orleans, og Gregg har ferie fra sit job som skolelærer. Ring og få en snak om mulighederne for at få ham i jeres Klub eller Festival.

Læs hvad andre har skrevet om Gregg:


GREGG STAFFORD – AN INTRODUCTION

Today a lot of connoisseurs of New Orleans jazz consider Gregg Stafford to be the best traditional trumpet player in the city…and rightly so. Unlike many of his colleagues Gregg had no direct links to other musicians in his family. He got into music purely by accident. In the fall of 1969 he had enrolled into an Industrial Arts class at school, only to find out that that class was already overcrowded. As a substitution he enrolled in a class of Instrumental Music because, after all, it had always been his wish to play an instrument but his parents couldn’t afford to buy him one. Gregg doesn’t consider his musical studies as a formal training, but it was enough to inspire him to further research. In 1979, visiting relatives in Lockport, Louisiana, he was talking to his grandmother and her older cousins and found out that he was related to Henry” Red” Allen, the famous New Orleans trumpet player. So there was a family tradition after all!

In the fall of 1970 Gregg played his first job with the Gibson Brass Band led by trumpeter Johnny Wimberley. One year later, working in a restaurant on Bourbon Street, he met trombonist Worthia “Showboy” Thomas who introduced him to Danny Barker who led the Young Fairview Christian Church Brass band. In September 1971 Gregg joined that band too. The Fairview at that time contained many musicians who became well known afterwards, people like Leroi Jones, Anthony Lacen, Darryl Adams, Lucien and Charles Barbarin and Herlin Riley.

On Christmas evening of 1972 he was given the opportunity to become a member of the Young Tuxedo Brass Band. This band once led by the legendary John Casimir, and later on by Wilbert Tillman and Andrew Morgan, was led at that time by Herman Sherman. After Sherman’s death in 1984 Gregg became leader of the Young Tuxedo and still is today.
Less than two months later he joined his fourth brass band, the Olympia, led by Harold “Duke” Dejan where he played alongside veterans like Manny Paul, Kid Sheik Colar and Harold himself.

In 1974 Leroi Jones formed his own Hurricane Brass Band and Gregg became a member of that band too. In March 1975 he recorded with that band, an album produced by the well known New Orleans photographer Jules Cahn on the LaAn label .For some reason Gregg is listed on that album as Gregg Vaughn, Vaughn being his middle name.

Gregg toured with all these marching bands all over the United States and in several European countries including Holland, Belgium, France and Germany. Working with these bands not only provided him with a lot of experience but also helped him to develop the remarkable power on his horn he possesses today. He also played sousaphone and bass drum in those marching bands. I have heard him on bass drum with Teddy Riley’s Royal Brass Band, with Andrew Hall’s Society Brass Band and with the Young Tuxedo, and I must say he is one of the most exciting bass drum players I ever heard.

When I first met Gregg in 1977 he was eagerly sitting in at any late hour jam session he could find. Already then he showed a very individual style. Soon his youthful prowess and enthusiasm won the hearts of old-timers like Danny Barker and Chester Zardis who began to invite him for jobs for their sit-down bands of which he became a regular member as well. In that year he also recorded for the first time under his own name for a privately issued LP, today as rare as a mint Gennett of King Oliver.

In Chester’s band he was playing together with another young musician, clarinet player Michael White. From then on their musical careers have run very much together. When Michael White formed his own Liberty Street Jazz Band, Gregg became a regular member. Both began to replace ailing musicians at Preservation Hall and eventually became regulars at that sacred place of traditional jazz in New Orleans.

Since 1991 Gregg leads his own band at Preservation Hall, the band formerly led by Kid Sheik. He has become a welcome guest star with New Orleans style bands all over the world and has recorded extensively for Jazz Crusade co-leading an exciting group together with Michael White and another one with British clarinet player Brian Carrick. He can also be heard on a CD recorded live with Toronto’s Hot Five Jazzmakers. He can be seen (video!) and heard on George Buck’s GHB label playing for a dance at the old Dew Drop Hall in Mandeville, Louisiana.
While other young black trumpet players in New Orleans have incorporated elements of more modern styles in their playing, Gregg plays a pure traditional style. While he mentions Louis Armstrong, Teddy Riley, Jack Willis and Percy Humphrey as his influences, just like his famous predecessors, he has developed a completely original and individual sound that can be recognised immediately. His style shows a perfect balance between hot and sweet, between exciting exuberance and tender thoughtfulness. He is a real master in the almost forgotten art of ensemble playing.

In the fall of next year he will tour with New Orleans Delight, one of the finest New Orleans bands on the European continent. This meeting is something to look forward to for every New Orleans fan and will hopefully result in another marvellous CD.

- Marcel JOLY, The JazzGazette





"New Orleans' jazz is black music. So how come so few black Americans play it today? Where is today's King Oliver, Louis Armstrong, or Bunk Johnson? Well it ain't Wyston Marsalis as he but rarely plays in the style. Nicholas Payton doesn't live up to the hype. Wendell Brumous shews some potential. Gregg Stafford? Oh yes, he der man!
...
If you have read any of my other reviews of Dr Michael or Gregg Stafford, you will know that I consider them to be two of America's finest living jazzmen. So, it should be no surprise to find that with the two of them together in the same band I am blown away. This is black American jazz getting back to its roots, albeit with some fine white boys in the second line giving them excellent support.
...
The sleeve notes tell that Gregg is a snazzy dresser, wearing what at times must be startling outfits. Silk shirt and cravat one minute, a pin stripe suit complete with patent leather shoes the next, and then a racoon skin coat! He is also said to be compulsive, like cancelling his air flight and instead driving from New Orleans to Toronto and gaining his first experience of tackling snow in the process. His playing is as sharp, punchy and snappy as his clothes; as impulsive and dynamic as his personality."

Geoff Boxel, New Zealand





"Gregg Stafford is a New Orleanian, and he trumpets the third of my envisaged units composing the full group of five. Odd, you might say enabling units of one jazz artist, but that is how thoughts came to me during my first listening run of the album.
...
A half a minute of warm, sentimental muted trumpet introduction on the opening and title number Streets Of The City, a truly beautiful sound leading into wonderful harmonious rhythms governed by unique, yet I'd say, New Orleans clarinet tones, which bring back memories when I was young, singing the song "Red River Valley" to this tune. The number is over seven minutes long and I just did not want it to end, for the lilting and dancing inculcation movements make for a special mindset."

Kings Jazz Review




"The lines between blues, jazz and old time gospel sometimes get blurred when traditional jazz players get together. The three genres are honored on this meeting between Gregg Stafford and Dr. Michael White, both members of a generation when the traditional music no longer held the same place in the hearts and minds of jazz fans it once had. But these two keepers of the flame are New Orleans natives and for them, the music is in their blood. For almost 70 minutes, they reveal just what that heritage means as they present a program worthy of Preservation Hall."

All About Jazz




"When they performed in the Jazz Tent with the Jazz Hounds, which featured Gregg Stafford on trumpet and quite often Michael White on clarinet, the music drew people like steel filings to a magnet."

New Orleans Magazine




"True, on hearing the Marsalis concert and having watched his input to the Ken Burns films on TV, I cannot deny that he must be one of the greatest jazz trumpeters in the world today, and I'll add, that by the same token, Gregg Stafford on this Jazz Crusade album "At The Cross" also lies not far off that KJR proclaim.

Kings Jazz Review



Gregg Stafford i Preservation Hall, april 2003


Foromtale af koncerten i Støberihallen i Frederiksborg Amts Avis.


Gregg Stafford til Hillerød

Den amerikanske trompetist Gregg Stafford fra New Orleans giver koncert i Støberihallen den 9. november sammen med New Orleans Delight.

Hillerød: I april sidste år skulle det danske jazzband New Orleans Delight give koncert i Den norske Sømandskirke i New Orleans under French Quarter Festival. Men trompetisten blev syg, og i stedet sagde Gregg Stafford, der bor i New Orleans, jatil at være stand-in.


Kjeld Brandt, der er leder af New Orleans Delight, blev så gode venner med Gregg Stafford, at de aftalte nogle koncerter i Danmark, og miniturnéen bringer den nye konstellation til Støberihallen i Hillerød den 9. november.

Gregg Stafford er en af de bedste, nulevende trompetister i den klassiske New Orleans-tradition. Han ernærer sig som skolelærer, men spiller en masse jazz ved siden af, både derhjemme i New Orleans og i udlandet. Eksempelvis spiller Gregg Stafford hversøndag, når han er hjemme, på Hotel Continental, han er bandleder i Young Toxido Brass Band og endvidere fast gæstesolist i Helsingfors.

Kjeld Brandt var ikke, da han første gang mødte Gregg Stafford, klar over, at denne har enoverordentlig og meget tæt kontakt til Hillerød, hvor han for 15 år siden for første gang spillede i Hillerøds gader sammen med Carlsberg Brass Band. Han var nemlig forud for det første besøg i Hillerød blevet "opdaget" på gaden i New Orleans af HansHurtigkarl og Flemming "Dølle" Larsen. Gregg Stafford har godt nok i herværende organ for fem år siden i en større artikel fortalt, at det var ham, der spottede danskerne.


Hvert år i Hillerød
Hvorom alting er, så har Hillerød siden haft en storplads i Gregg Staffords hjerte, og han besøger sine venner i byen mindst én gang om året. Når verdenstromeptisten er her, kan han godt finde på at spille med ved lokale jazzarrangementer, som han gjorde første gang i 1989, men der har aldrig været arrangeret en rigtig koncert med ham i Hillerød. Det har Kjeld Brandt nu sørget for.

Koncerten den 9. november i Støberihallen er den eneste på Sjælland med Gregg Stafford og New Orleans Delight. Forud går to kirkekoncerter i henholdsvis Nakskov og på Fyn, mens der sluttes af med kirkekoncerter i Sverige.

Forsalget til den 9. november er allerede i gang i Støberihallen.

mavi