Every time we ask the group what (other than being a good player) it takes to get a steady stream of trumpet gigs, most people say that you have to have connections and be the type of person that other people will speak highly of.

Other people need to recommend you.

But what does that mean? You can't control what other people say or think about you... so how can you improve this area of your life?

I have one idea.

Make a point to be a good wing man for others. By that I mean always be thinking about how you can solve other people's problems and enrich their lives.

Here's an example from my life. A few months ago I made friends with a guy who plays the bass in the orchestra I'm in (btw, if you really want more gigs make friends with bass players) and he asked me to play in his jazz combo.

I've been working on getting us a gig at a bar ... and we're at the "smoothing out the logistics" stage.

He mentioned that he is leading a youth jazz band. My first question was, "Do you need a trumpet player?"

Because there was a student that I knew who would be perfect for his group. I was starting to get worried for him because he was showing signs of wanting to quit school band... out of boredom... and I would hate to see him quit the trumpet. He is really good and he is starting to play by ear and improvise. He could really use a challenge right now.

I called the kid's mom and told her about the group and he's probably going to do it. My friend will make more money and the student will have something to keep his interest.

What I didn't do was try to wedge my way in there and sell more lessons or get a cut somehow.

But this is the type of thing that you do for others to establish a relationship that leads to them wanting to recommend you when the time comes.

Talk to you tomorrow!


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