All that jazz
Trombone Shorty warms up for Mardi Gras in Houston
It's not surprising that New Orleans-born trombonist and trumpeter Trombone Shorty (aka Troy Andrews) would distance himself from a hometown filled with jazz and brass-blowing talent. The music has been in his blood for generations.
Shorty is the brother of bandleader James Andrews and the grandson of R&B singer/songwriter Jessie Hill, who played drums for Professor Longhair and wrote songs for Ike & Tina Turner and Willie Nelson half-a-century ago. Shorty himself wasted no time getting into the family business. As this picture suggests, he was a presence even at age five when he added a jolt of youthful hometown flavor to a performance by Denmark's Carlsberg Brass Band at the 1991 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
Shorty, who performs on Saturday night at the House of Blues, graduated from the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts (fellow alumnus include Harry Connick Jr. and Wynton Marsalis) and started getting noticed in recent years playing backing horns for Lenny Kravitz and participating in a few of the post-Hurricane Katrina all-star tribute albums in support of the town he still called home.
Absolutely no one, however, could have predicted the last year of uber-success that Trombone Shorty and his band, Orleans Revue, have enjoyed. The band's debut major label release, Backatown, went to No. 1 on the Billboard Contemporary Jazz Charts and took residence in the spot for two months.
Since then, Shorty has traveled from the Austin City Limits Music Festival to Japan performing and blowing his horns on new and upcoming albums by Kravitz, Galactic, Dr. John, Eric Clapton and more.
Now, just in time to warm up for a long weekend of great weather and a pre- Mardi Gras party, he brings his jazz pipes to Houston. Let's get out there and show Shorty that the Gulf Coast groove doesn't stop at the Louisiana border.
Trombone Shorty & Orleans Revue, 8 p.m. Saturday at House of Blues