Flock of trumpeters to sound salute to the late, great Gillespie


Some 100 trumpet players will be blowing their own horns tomorrow in New Jersey. All at once. And for free.

Hopefully, it will also sound heavenly.

The 100 horn players -- including such names as Ted Curson, Chuck Mangione, Jonah Jones, Kenny Barron, Randy Brecker, Doc Cheatham, Mike Leonhart, Donald Byrd and many, many more -- will be led by Jon Faddis, a Gillespie protege.

They will blow away at the First Annual Trumpet Salute to Dizzy Gillespie, a benefit for the Englewood Hospital and Medical Center, where the good-natured, popular and highly innovative Gillespie died in January after a long illness.

(There will be other musicians besides horn players -- Max Roach, Billy Taylor, Mike Longo, Jimmy Owens, for example, will also be on hand. So will trumpet students from Juilliard and the Manhattan School of Music, as well as musicians from the Salvation Army Band, Montclair State College, Rutgers and local high schools.)

It's all coming together tomorrow afternoon at 5, at the Shakespeare Festival in Haworth, N.J., just a few miles from Englewood where Gillespie and his wife, Lorraine, lived.

Admission is free but contributions will be solicited. The money raised will go to establish a memorial fund in Gillespie's name at the hospital.

"There was no problem getting musicians to appear," said John Anthony, who with Mr. Faddis and Cindy Kaplan (who runs the Shakespeare Festival) helped put the show together.

"Dizzy was someone everyone loved, so everyone wanted to do it for him. Soon as we mentioned his name, musicians signed up.

"We could probably have made it 1,000 trumpet players if we'd had the time. Clark Terry was among the first to agree to come, then it turned out he isn't going to be able to make it -- he's being honored himself (elsewhere on the same day)."

The musicians will parade onto the open park in the center of town, where Mr. Faddis will lead them through Gillespie's "Manteca" in a arrangement put together by jazzman Jimmy Owens.

That will be followed by a salute by the various performers, playing either music written by Gillespie or tunes he made famous simply by playing them.

For travel and other information, call (201) 387-7421.

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