The Early Years. It all started as a ‘get out of class’ scheme. It was the 5th grade, and whomever wanted to play an instrument could get out of class early. Anne’s hand shot up and it all began.
Originally, like most every other student, she wanted to play the drums. But when handed sticks and a rubber mat, Anne handed them back and requested something “more exciting”. This time she was handed a trumpet mouthpiece. That was all she would get for the first week, with instructions to practice buzzing. That first week was filled with anticipation. Trumpet awareness kicked in. Gabriel… the Cavalry,,, Reveille… ducks came from far and wide.
Before long, a nice lady from church offered to loan Anne a coronet in exchange for performing at Sunday service. Though petrified, it was too good a deal to pass up. She accepted and began performing in public.
In junior high school a jazz band was formed, which led on to high school jazz band. Increasingly music became a major passion in Anne’s life.
One day, there were auditions for a student orchestra led by none other than Chuck Mangione. Auditions were held throughout the Bay Area and Anne was thrilled to win First Chair. But that was nothing compared to playing Chuck’s arrangements, complete with full strings and his touring rhythm section. Standing within the excitement of that well written, massive sound, her dedication increased.
She listened daily to horn bands like Earth, Wind & Fire, Tower of Power, Chicago, and bebop bands like Horace Silver and Art Blakey, and to the cross-over band The Brecker Brothers. Blue Mitchell, Tom Harrell and Randy Brecker became her favorite trumpet players to listen to.
Growing up in the Bay Area there was a lot of inspiration to be heard. Tower of Power at the Old Waldorf, Maynard Ferguson at the Great American Music Hall, Sarah Vaughn… Art Lande…
As often as possible, Anne would venture up to the Fairmont Hotel, put her ear to the door of the Venetian Room and listen to the faint sounds of Tony Bennett. Once in a while, the ‘hard on the inside, soft on the outside’ Maitre d would allow her to step inside with a warning to stay silent and still. That wasn’t difficult. It was sheer breathtaking. The showroom was filled with elegant people sitting at elegant tables. Onstage under magnificent lights, smiling and singing to the world was Tony Bennett. Behind him was the most swingingest band Anne had ever heard. There was no question at this point that Anne was hooked, and she never looked back.
After high school, Anne decided to move to Los Angeles to attend CalState Northridge and study music. Within months of her arrival Ann Patterson invited Anne to do Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show with Ann’s band Maiden Voyage, which included playing a 24-bar solo. After three years at CSUN Anne decied to pursue a full time music career.
Born in Oakland, California, Anne now lives in Los Angeles with her husband Mike and their two much-loved pound puppies.