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John Madrid (January 2, 1948 - February 21, 1990) was a jazz and pop trumpeter, active mainly from 1965 to 1987. He is noted for his remarkable accuracy and power in the upper register (which led to him being hired mostly to play lead or scream trumpet), but he was also capable of playing tasteful jazz solos in the middle register.
Madrid grew up in an East Los Angeles suburb, Monterey Park, California, graduating from Montebello High School in 1966. In high school, he played with a local rock 'n roll band called Thee Enchantments. His first popular high note recording to hit the charts was in the 1966 pop hit "Time Won't Let Me" by The Outsiders.
After high school John joined the Stan Kenton Orchestra ('67-'68), in early '69 he joined Woody Herman's big band for its annual European tour splitting the lead book with Bill Chase. In '70 & early '71, he played lead with Buddy Rich's orchestra, lead with Harry James' orchestra ('71-'72) and briefly worked with Si Zenter's big band as well in '72. In '73 he worked with Louie Bellson's big band in Los Angeles and played lead with the Orange Co. Rhythm Machine and worked with Bud Brisbois' jazz-pop group Butane. Johnny was so inspired by Brisbois he named his dog "Bud". Late in '73, he was asked by former Herman band member Tom "Bones" Malone to replace Lew Soloff in Blood, Sweat & Tears and became one of the highest paid sidemen in that band. In early '74 Johnny moved out to Hawaii and worked with all the top acts that played there.
In late '75 he returned to L.A. to work with Toshiko Akyoshi's big band and in early '76 he began traveling with Boz Scaggs for his Silk Degrees tour. In '77/'78, in between tours with Scaggs group, Johnny was back working in Hawaii and was asked to play lead in a band Bud Brisbois was forming in Scottsdale, Arizona. Sadly, before the project could be assembled Bud tragically took his own life. Later in '78 Johnny was back in L.A. playing lead for Paul Cacia's pop group. While in L.A. Johnny also worked with Bob Preciado's big band. By '82 John had settled in Las Vegas working primarily with Wayne Newton, whom he was featured with for several years.
Johnny was involved in the fast life out in Vegas and the years of pushing himself to the limits caught up with him. In the mid-'80's he contracted an aggressive form of the HIV virus and died in February 1990.
Madrid's teachers include lead trumpeter Conrad Gozzo, famed LA teacher and player James Stamp, Claude Gordon, John Clyman (former 1st trumpet with 20th century fox for many years), Carl Leach (Claude Gordon student), Tom Holden when in high school (Claude Gordon student), embouchure expert Donald Reinhardt, Vince Penzarella and high note trumpeter Bud Brisbois. He was not officially a teacher but did informally teach trumpet technique to many players, including trumpeter Paul Cacia, who frequently mentions Madrid in interviews.
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With Stan Kenton