We are happy to chat with Jonathan Dely, an award-winning trumpet soloist from Long Island, New York. He is a finalist in the International Trumpet Guild Jazz Competition and the National Trumpet Competition.
When I was younger, I had braces for a couple years. This totally changed my ability to play the trumpet, and believe it or not I almost quit performing out of frustration. The trumpet was hard enough, but now I had to cope with sharp metal inside my mouth! Eventually, the braces came off and I re-developed my embouchure, but this was a very important lesson in perseverance, and I owe a debt of gratitude to my parents for encouraging me through a difficult situation.
Jonathan, what’s important in a music teacher, in your opinion?
Personal connection, respect, reliability, availability, admiration. Those characteristics are very important in my opinion.
Any tips on how to practice productively?
Fundamentals on any instrument are the most important part of a practice routine. You can only get so far without excellent technique. Try to avoid developing bad musical habits. The best musicians have the best technique.
What is your favorite or most memorable concert(s)?
The Clark in Williamstown, MA. I performed with my band in front of a packed, sold-out venue in the same town where I did my undergraduate studies. Sounds of Brazil in New York, NY. I performed with world-famous pianist Eric Lewis (ELEW) to a large crowd while we filmed a live music video. Django in New York, NY. I performed with my band to a sold-out crowd at this new jazz club in NYC. Audience members included Robin Wright, Dylan Penn, and Kate McKinnon. Princeton Club of New York in New York, NY. I have sold out this club 5 times in a row with my band! Avatar Studios in New York, NY. Performed my debut music videos here March 2017.
Jonathan, can you share any advice with our readers?
Sure, in any genre, listening is a crucial part of practicing. Much of the practicing I do is either listening, rehearsing in my head, or just thinking about music. Internalizing music is what builds musicianship, style, and your individual persona. Practicing your instrument is what builds technique. The most important piece of advice I could give anyone is to create your own future. Discover what makes you happy and pursue that dream until it’s yours.
Jonathan, we wish you well and continuing success!