It is with deep sadness that we report the passing of Carl Saunders, the legendary jazz trumpeter, composer, and educator, on February 25th, 2023. His legacy will undoubtedly continue to inspire future generations of jazz musicians for many years to come.
Who was Carl Saunders?
Carl Saunders was a highly talented jazz trumpeter, composer, and educator who had the privilege of performing alongside some of the most notable musicians in the industry, including Stan Kenton, Buddy Rich, Bill Holman, and Clare Fischer, among others. Despite being born in Indianapolis, Indiana, Saunders spent much of his early years traveling, thanks to his mother, Gail Saunders, who was a vocalist that worked with the Sherwood Orchestra and Stan Kenton. Saunders’ uncle, Bobby Sherwood, was also a famous trumpeter for the Sherwood Orchestra.
As a musician, Saunders drew inspiration from various sources, including the Dave Pell Octet, whose recordings had a significant impact on him. He was particularly influenced by the style and phrasing of Don Fagerquist, the former trumpeter for the Dave Pell Octet. In addition to performing alongside other musicians, Saunders also recorded and played his own music, leaving a lasting impression on the jazz music scene.
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Carl Saunders died: What was his cause of death?
The music industry is in mourning following the sudden and unexpected passing of trumpet player, Carl Saunders. According to reports, Saunders had been battling various health issues for the past few years, which required him to spend extended periods in and out of hospitals. While it is not entirely clear what the underlying cause of his death was, it is apparent that his health struggles have played a significant role.
Saunders had a long and successful career as a musician and was widely regarded as one of the most talented trumpet players of his generation. His passing is undoubtedly a significant loss to his family, friends, and fans around the world.
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Carl Saunders’s Career
Saunders, a talented musician, discovered his passion for the trumpet in seventh grade, and it was evident that he had a natural gift for it. He did not require formal training because he learned by ear. His raw talent eventually landed him an audition for Stan Kenton’s orchestra, where he was promptly hired. Saunders chose to wait for a trumpet opening rather than joining the mellophonium section.
Following his stint with Kenton’s band, Saunders relocated to Las Vegas to play lead trumpet for twenty years with some of the most significant names in music, including Ella Fitzgerald, Tony Bennett, and Frank Sinatra. Prior to this, he had also worked with notable artists such as Maynard Ferguson, Benny Goodman, and Charlie Barnet, among others.
Carl Saunders RIP. Here's an original of his I arranged called "Baby Blues." I thought it came out great. To me, this was one of his best solo's. I loved this song because it was different.https://t.co/DXzPx5YEy1— Michael J Barone (@MichaelJBarone1) February 26, 2023
Saunders then moved to Los Angeles in 1984, where he continued his career, playing lead trumpet with Bill Holman’s Orchestra, Supersax, Bob Florence’s, and Gerald Wilson’s big ensembles, as well as the Phil Norman Tentet. He replaced Don Fagerquist in the Dave Pell Octet in 1994. With an illustrious career spanning several decades, Saunders has undoubtedly left a mark on the music industry.
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Obituary and Funeral Arrangements
The family of Carl Saunders has announced that his obituary and funeral arrangements will be released at a later date. It is unclear at this time when this information will become available to the public. In this difficult time, his loved ones are asking for privacy to mourn their loss and grieve in peace. Saunders’ legacy as a musician will undoubtedly continue to inspire future generations of musicians for many years to come.
Tributes to Carl Saunders
RIP Carl Saunders Jazz trumpet legend— Scott LaFata (@V3CEO) February 26, 2023
Mike Vax Wrote,
It is with a heavy heart that I must let all of you know that Carl Saunders passed away last night. He had been in and out of the hospital and had quite a few medical problems over the past couple of years. We had been great friends and musical “soul mates” for so many years, and of course he made many tours with the SKLO and played my festival here in Arizona many times. For me, he was truly one of the greatest trumpet players I have ever played with. He would call me countless times just to tell me his latest joke. I will miss him more than I can say. Rest in Peace, friend.