I have been dreading this since I started this thread on the Death Defying blog – it is my turn to talk about my first album experience. Everyone had a cool album with a great story – mine is so lame by comparison. Here goes –

I was in grade 8 and I had played the trombone for a year and a half and for Christmas my brother bought me a jazz trombone cassette (remember those?). The cassette was called Mutual Street and featured duets from valve trombonist Rob McConnell and guitarist Ed Bickert. I remember borrowing my older brothers walkman and listening to the whole cassette from beginning to end in the car from Edmonton to Calgary. I am not really sure that I even liked the album, but I was determined to like it and make the trombone as cool as the tenor sax that my brother was playing. I sort of approached it like – if this is what the trombone does then I better like it. Well, as it turns out – I grew to like it and even to this day I think fondly of that album. The music itself wasn’t the real inspiration, it was just listening to trombone music in general. That cassette led me to Frank Rosolino, JJ Johnson and Curtis Fuller – all early influences. Incidentally my brother has had a habit of buying me the most influential trombone albums in my development. Years later he bought me Hal Crook ‘Only Human’ – THE game changer.

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