I met Marcus when I came out of the military back in the ‘50s. He was in the Air Force in Wichita Falls, Texas. He would come down to
on weekends where
we would have the jam sessions. He was getting out of the Air Force. They
brought him down to a jam session, and I just got out of the Army – that’s how
long ago I met him. He figured that the guys in Dallas couldn’t play too much.
He’s got people in New York so he figured he’s coming down south and these were
nobodies. Well, he plays trumpet now, but he brought this trombone to the jam
session. He was experimenting and those guys I played with were hot. He was
He said, “Next Sunday I’ll bring my trumpet.” Never underestimate your adversaries.
Interview with Marcus Belgrave - August 2009
Where are you from originally?
We did a tribute to Ray in Chicago last year  at the jazz festival. They wanted someone there who had been in the band so they asked me to put the band together from Ray’s small band. Leroy came up for that. They gathered us together; the ones who had played in Ray’s small band. Leroy was number one, Phil Guilbeau on trumpet, Hank Crawford, David Newman, and me on trumpet. Cynthia Scott was there, too. Leroy and David Newman are the ones I kept in touch more than the others. I’ve always been in contact with Cooper. The great reunion. Previously we had done one with Ray in Chicago in 1997.