August 8, 2022

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2021 U.S. Army Blues Solo Competition

2 min read

Each year, high school and college students from across the country compete to solo with The U.S. Army Blues. We are so proud to announce this year’s winners: Austin Ford (collegiate) and Jonathan Orellana (high school)!

Austin Ford is a jazz trumpeter, composer, and teacher from Portland, Oregon. He recently completed his undergraduate degree at the University of North Texas where he was a two year member of their Grammy nominated One O’Clock Lab Band. During his time there, he had the opportunity to perform with artists such as Maria Schneider, Gary Smulyan, Regina Carter, and Tom Harrell. When the One O’Clock Lab Band traveled to New York City for the inaugural Jack Rudin Jazz Championship, Austin received an outstanding trumpet solo award from Wynton Marsalis. Austin has been a 3 time semifinalist in the National Trumpet Competition (jazz division), as well as a 2nd place finisher in the ITG Ryan Anthony Memorial Competition. He also is an avid composer/arranger, with 2 songs – 1 original and 1 arrangement – being featured on the upcoming One O’Clock lab band album “Lab ’21”. Austin currently lives in Denton, Texas where he gigs and teaches private lessons. In his spare time, he loves to hang out with his friends and play music as much as possible.

Jonathan Orellana is a graduate of Westfield High School in Chantilly, Virginia. His musical career began when he was asked to play the drums for his church at the age of six and then soon became part of the worship band. Jonathan began playing the trumpet at the age of ten but didn’t like it until he got to high school and joined the marching band. Throughout high school he dug deeper into the music eventually studying with Dave Detwiler, former lead trumpeter and soloist for the U.S. Army Blues. Jonathan’s introduction to jazz was through the National Jazz Workshop led by former lead trombonist of The U.S. Army Blues, Matt Niess. Jonathan will attend the University of North Texas this fall pursuing music education and jazz performance.

"Osie Mae," composed by Freddie Hubbard; arranged by Charley Gray; featuring High School Winner Jonathan Orellana-Sanchez

"The Intrepid Fox," composed by Freddie Hubbard; arranged by Alan Baylock; featuring Collegiate Winner Austin Ford

"Portrait of Louis Armstrong," composed and arranged by Duke Ellington; featuring both winners



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Source: The United States Army Band "Pershing’s Own"

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