Photo of the trumpeter of New Orleans Louis Armstrong.
In many aspects, the position that the trumpet has had in the jazz has been inverse to the one that the saxo has occupied, and especially the saxo tenor. From the first times of the hot, and up to the revolution bop, the trumpet has been “the king of the instruments of the jazz”, so much for the big number of big soloists that has given, as for its domineering role in the bent ones of traditional jazz and in the big bands of Swing.
In the beginning of the jazz, the cornet was used basically, on having been then much cheaper and easy to achieve that one trumpet Cornetistas there were the leaders of the first bands of that news has, only a few years after the War of Secession, in the prehistory of the jazz (Louis Ned, Sam Thomas, Robert Baker, James L. Harris) and of the most famous bands of ends of this century, like James Williams or, especially, Buddy Bolden. Cornetistas was also the main names of the first “historical” generation of the jazz, which rides on the step of the XIXth to XXth century: Freddie Keppard, Manuel Perez, Bunk Johnson, Pope Mutt Carey, Pope Celestin, Natty Dominique and King Oliver. These are the first jazz cornetistas in being recorded, and its sound is revealed as “primitively”: rough, hard and earthy, in Berendt words. They established, especially Oliver, a model of solid and imaginative cornetista hot, whose role as leader of the band was indisputable and which was assuming the weight of the interpretation of the main topic, with the harmonic and rhythmic counterpoint of the clarinet and the trombonist, the “sacred trilogy” of the hot.
The second generation of cornetistas of New Orleans supposed the first big change in the sound and approach of the instrument. Much influenced by Oliver, they began to contribute to the sound of the cornet a vigor and expressiveness that till then was not usual. Kid Rena and Tommy Ladnier were the first ones, accentuating the serious records of its instrument, but the main figure of this generation was, undoubtedly, Louis Armstrong who would establish, at the beginning of the year, the sound model that would mark the trumpet until the year. He was also the main person in charge of that the jazz was stopping being a collective style and it will transform in an art of soloist Sus main disciples were Teddy Buckner, Hot Lips Page and Jonah Jones. This was the generation who, in the second half of the decade of, left massively the cornet to pass to the trumpet of pistons, which was allowing them major technical resources. There belonged to her also the first big white hot trumpeters: from the dixieland of Nick La Rocca, happening for the style Chicago of Sharkey Bonano or Muggsy Spanier, up to the most sophisticated style New York of Network Nichols and Phil Napoleon. Although the most influential of the white trumpeters of the epoch was Bix Beiderbecke, who never left the cornet, in spite of which it enriched the jazz harmonica.
The way opened by Armstrong and Beiderbecke was domineering between the trumpeters of big band of the year. Much influenced by the last one, find trumpeters like Bunny Berigan, Jimmy McPartland, Bobby Hackett, Max Kaminsky, Wild Bill Davison or Rex Stewart. Precisamente some of the said musicians, like Stewart, they can be framed in a style very typical of the beginning of this decade, developed in the bosom of the big band of Duke Ellington and that was known as “jungle style”. The first one of the trumpeters of jungle was Bubber Miley, who belonged to the same generation of King Oliver, with whom it was often comparado. It was using the damper to obtain sound effects, in a way that then it was continued, not only for Stewart, as it has already been said, but for the later generation, with Cootie Williams, Ray Nance and Clark Terry like more out-standing figures. The big bands gave impulse, also, to a type of trumpeter specializing in the sharp records of the instrument, up to almost impossible tessituras, like Cat Anderson, To The Killian or Maynard Ferguson. Also to brilliant trumpeters, of more commercial court, many of white them, like Harry James. All these trumpeters can be assigned to the “school Armstrong”, including more young people as Terry, who adapted the peculiar style of Rex Stewart (who was pressing only by half the pistons) to the modern jazz.
Also Network Allen was initially an “armstrongniano”. Nevertheless, it was precisely Allen who initiated a new route of development of the trumpet of jazz, moving the emphasis from the tone to the phrasing. This tendency towards a “new style” was becoming clear with the trumpeters of the generation who was consolidated at the beginning of the year : Especially Roy Eldridge, although also Harry Edison, Charlie Shavers and Buck Clayton. As a result of the gradual preponderance of the saxophone, the “fluency” begun to be considered to be an ideal for the trumpeters, and the proper Eldridge was admitting that a nice saxophone was touching in trumpet younger Trumpeters were clearly their disciples, like Joe Newman, Ruby Braff or Warren Vache.
The way initiated by Allen and continued, especially, by Eldridge, ended in Dizzy Gillespie. Gillespie is, for many authors, the big figure of the trumpet of jazz, after Armstrong, and all the trumpeters of modern jazz are influenced by him, beginning for the most important of the generation of middle of the : Navarrese Fats, Kenny Dorham, Howard McGhee and Thousands Davis. The last one began with a style almost traced to that of Gillespie, although soon it evolved towards much more personal formulae. In fact, as Berendt indicates, it ended up by turning into the following phase of the modern trumpet of jazz: lyric melodic arches, less vibrato even that Dizzy, melancholic sound and slightly obliging concepts. Direct followers of Thousands, were Chet Baker, Johnny Coles y Art Farmer, who was also the first specialist in fliscorno, an instrument that from the decade of became more and more usual between the jazz trumpeters. Much more linearly related to Gillespie and Navarrese, there is the main trumpeter of the year, Clifford Brown; along with him, musicians of West Coast jazz, like Dupree Bolton, Don Fagerquist or I Counted Candoli.
Nevertheless, and in spite of the instrumentalists’ presence of high value, the position of the trumpet in the jazz had drooped opposite to the more and more preponderant role of the saxo. The s and s of the XXth century gave birth to a big number of level trumpeters, so much inside the line of the hard bop (Donald Byrd, Thad Jones, Lee Morgan, Bill Hardman, Nat Adderley, Woody Shaw, Blue Mitchell, Du ko Gojković. . . ) as the free jazz (Don Cherry, Lester Bowie, Clifford Thornton, Don Ellis, Mike Mantler. . . ), although there was already not between musical them with the weight that other instrumentalists had. Of the said ones, which obtained more fame, and for some authors the most brilliant of this generation, was Freddie Hubbard, who also was one of the trumpeters first in following the footpath of the jazz rock, influencing the youngest generation (Chuck Mangione, Randy Brecker, Eddie Henderson, Jon Faddis, Lew Soloff. . . ). Other trumpeters of this generation must be emphasized, well for its work with artists of the first level (like Jack Walrath with Mingus), well by its quality, inside the mainstream of the neo bop: Bobby Shew, Tom Harrell, Jimmy Owens or Wynton Marsalis.
In the last decades of the XXth century, and beginning of the XXIst, the merger styles have given relief to trumpeters less attached to the influence of the tandem Gillespie-Davis, especially out of the United States. Between them, stand out the Britons Kenny Wheeler, Harry Beckett and Ian Carr; the Italian Enrico Rava; the Germans Manfred Schoof y Till Brönner; the Danish Palle Mikkelborg; the Norwegian Nils Petter Molvær; the Frenchman Erik Truffaz; the Israeli Avishai Cohen; or the North American, Dave Douglas.