Jordan, Marlon

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Jordan, Marlon

Jordan, Marlon, American trumpeter; b. New Orleans, La., Aug. 21, 1970. He is the youngest of seven children of Edward “Kidd” and Edvidge Jordan, grew up in a musical household. His father, a saxophonist, is noted for his journeys into free-jazz, and three of Marlon’s older siblings are music performers. Brother Kent plays flute, and introduced Marlon on his 1988 CBS album, Essence.Rachael plays violin with the New Orleans Symphony, and Stephanie is a vocalist. As a boy, he was accompanying his dad on the bandstand even before he really knew how to play. After experimenting with saxophone, violin, and drums, he finally settled on trumpet when he was in elementary school. Like the nearly decade-older Wynton Marsalis, he has performed classical concerts with orchestras from a young age. He spent two summers at Tangle wood performing in the Young Artists orchestra with Leonard Bernstein and Seiji Ozawa, and studied with Roger Voisin, principal trumpeter of the Boston Symphony, and with Ralph Smedzig, leader of the Empire Brass Quintet. He also studied with Marsalis in New Orleans, with George Jansen (who also taught Marsalis) at Loyola School of Music in New Orleans, and with New Yorker trumpeter John Longo. He plays a Monette trumpet, the same horn Marsalis used to record J-Mood.Marsalis gave it to him as a Christmas gift and the younger trumpeter has used it to record all of his albums. Like many other New Orleans musicians of his generation, he has a mature, confident, easygoing interpersonal style that comes across in his music. He recorded three albums for Columbia. In the early 1990s, he switched recording labels from CBS to Arabesque, took six months to recover from a serious 1995 auto accident in New Orleans, had a second daughter, and moved his family from southern Ohio to hometown New Orleans, where he taught at a private school and performed festival and club dates.


For You Only (1990); Learson’s Return (1991); The Undaunted (1993); Marlon’s Mode (1997).

—Nancy Ann Lee