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The Other Side of the Bell – A Trumpet Podcast: Episode #2; Bud Brisbois, Charley Davis

The Other Side of the Bell - A Trumpet PodcastWelcome to the show notes for Episode #2 of The Other Side Of The Bell – A Trumpet Podcast. This episode features Bob Reeves telling stories about famed trumpet player Bud Brisbois. Then, John Snell sits down for a trumpet talk with Hollywood studio musician, Charley Davis.

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Bud Brisbois – More than a high note trumpet player

This is a flyer from Bob's collection of Bud Brisbois and his band Butane.
This is a flyer from Bob Reeves’ collection of Bud Brisbois and his band Butane.

Bud Brisbois was a top call studio player in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Many know of him today because of his incredible upper register, but he was also an amazing musician.

Bob Reeves was fortunate to hear Bud on many occasions. He recounts the first time hearing Bud sit in with a big band at Dante’s jazz club in North Hollywood. Then meeting Bud at the 1972 Trumpet Guild conference that lead to Bud coming into Bob’s shop for work. Here are some photos of Bud’s mouthpiece that Bob mentions in the podcast.

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Bud Brisbois' original trumpet mouthpiece, made by Burt Herrick and altered by Dominic Calicchio.
Bud Brisbois’ original trumpet mouthpiece, made by Burt Herrick and altered by Dominic Calicchio.

Here are some links to more information on Bud Brisbois:

Trumpet Interview with Charley Davis

Charley Davis has been one of the top call studio players in Los Angeles for decades and developed the successful Charles Davis line of trumpet mutes.

Trumpet player Charley Davis warming up his Bach.
Trumpet player Charley Davis warming up his Bach.

In this interview, Charley shares his experiences growing up in a small town in Indiana, his time studying with Bill Adam at Indiana University, life on the road with Woody Herman and Buddy Rich, and then how he grew roots and settled in L.A.

Charley shares his insights into being a successful trumpet player and the sacrifices necessary. He also discusses he development of his successful trumpet mute line.

Here are three of the original prototypes of Charles Davis trumpet mute line (cup mute, harmon mute, and straight mute).
Here are three of the original prototypes of Charles Davis trumpet mute line (cup mute, harmon mute, and straight mute).

Listener Call In Line

We have set up a new call in line that you can use to leave us a recorded message that may be answered in an upcoming podcast. Just leave us a message at (661) 776-5537. This is a great way to cross promote your work if you have a web site as it will be announced on the air and we will link to your web site in the show notes.

Bud Brisbois Story

Bud Brisbois's Original Mouthpiece
Bud Brisbois’s Original Mouthpiece left at our shop in 1978.

Bud was a long time friend and customer of mine. I had done some work for him before, including aligning his Holton Bb trumpet #516449, when in 1978 he visited my shop.

When I asked Bud what I could do for him he said, “I want you to make a new and improved Bob Reeves’ version of my Herrick mouthpiece.”

“You got it!” I replied.

He was playing a custom Burt Herrick piece (pictured left) that I had altered the shank on before. It was a completely custom mouthpiece – hand carved rim and cup, short length and a complex backbore.

It took me most of the morning and afternoon to get the piece done. I was able to modify the piece from the original to give him a little more sound for less work.

I had barely taken it out of the silver-plating tank when he grabbed it out of my hand and started running for the door.

“I have a session I have to get to. Thanks for the piece!” Bud said running out of the shop.

“Hey, don’t you want to take the old one with you just in case?” I yelled out, chasing after him with his old Burt Herrick piece in my hand. I couldn’t believe he would show up to a studio session with a new, untested piece.

“What the hell do I need that old thing for…yours is better isn’t it?”

I stood there speechless.

The session ended up being one of his best recordings with Henry Mancini. He never came back for his old piece, where it has been sitting in the same drawer for 30 years.