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Ray Brown

Ray Brown

Known For: Acting

2 Movies


Raymond Harry "Ray" Brown (born November 7, 1946) is an American composer, arranger, trumpet player, and jazz educator. He has performed as trumpet player and arranged music for Stan Kenton (early 1970s), Bill Watrous, Bill Berry, Frank Capp – Nat Pierce (Juggernaut Big Band), and the Full Faith and Credit Big Band.Brown joined Kenton in September 1971, succeeding Gary Lee Pack [b. 1950; Director of Jazz Studies (retired), University of Southern Maine], holding the jazz trumpet chair and serving as an improv clinician. The Kenton trumpet section included Mike Vax, Jay Saunders, and Dennis Noday. Brown also contributed arrangements for Kenton, including "Mi Burrito" and "Neverbird." Brown remained with the Kenton Orchestra until November 1972. Before joining the Kenton Orchestra, Brown had served as arranger and trumpeter with the Studio Band of The United States Army Field Band at Fort Meade, Maryland (1968–71). His tenure with the Army Band and Kenton coincided closely with that of Jay Saunders — trumpet player, and jazz educator, who, while with the Kenton Orchestra, eventually played lead trumpet. Brown also has performed with Mundell Lowe, Leroy Vinnegar, Ray Brown, Thad Jones, Jimmy Heath, Steve Gadd, and Billy Hart. Brown conducted the recording session of the Roy Hargrove Quintet entitled Roy Hargrove with Strings, Moment to Moment, released May 2000 on Verve. He has appeared at the Monterey Jazz Festival frequently as conductor of his wife Susan Cahill Brown's Monterey Jazz Festival Chamber Orchestra in collaboration with Charlie Haden, Kenny Barron, Michael Brecker, Ralph Towner, Gary Burton, and Terence Blanchard. Brown currently leads his own big band, the Great Big Band, which has performed at the Monterey Jazz Festival, the San Jose Jazz Festival, the Santa Cruz Jazz Festival, the Lake Tahoe Music Festival, and jazz venues in the San Francisco Bay area. Ray is currently on the faculty of Cabrillo College in Aptos, California, teaching jazz improvisation, arranging, and jazz ensembles.

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