Steve Howard: Trumpet, the N'Awlins Gumbo Kings

Steve Howard: Trumpet

Born in Dallas, Texas in 1951, Steve grew up in a home filled with music. Steve’s father played piano and guitar, introducing him to jazz standards and Dixieland music at an early age. The family took frequent trips to New Orleans where his father took him to Bourbon Street to hear the Dixieland greats perform live at Preservation Hall and at the clubs owned by Pete Fountain and Al Hirt.

Steve began playing trumpet in the school band in fourth grade. By the time he was in high school, he had become skilled enough as a trumpet player to be chosen for the Texas all-state high school band. Believing he was destined for a career in music, Steve accepted a music scholarship to Henderson State College in Arkansas. After two years in Arkansas, he transferred to the famous jazz school at North Texas State University.

Steve jumped at the opportunity to move to New Orleans a few years later to work with famous songwriter/record producer Allen Toussaint. As first call lead trumpet player at Allen’s studio, Steve performed on such hits as Patti LaBelle’s “Lady Marmalade” and Allen Toussaint’s “Southern Nights” LP. Paul McCartney met Steve on a trip Paul made to New Orleans to study the regional musical styles and to record. Steve was hired away from Touissant’s Sea Saint Studio by McCartney and asked to join the Wings Over America tour. He performed and recorded with McCartney from 1975 to 1980.

For the next two decades Steve continued to record and perform with artists such as Dr. John, Albert Collins, Ray Charles, Junior Wells, Clarence Gatemouth Brown, Edgar Winter, and German superstar Peter Maffay.

Steve’s playing has always been influenced by New Orleans music. Those early days on Bourbon Street with his dad made an indelible imprint on his style and infused him with a lifetime love of New Orleans jazz. The N’Awlins Gumbo Kings represent a joyous return to his musical roots. Seasoned by years of experience, Steve is realizing a longheld dream to assemble the finest musicians available to play what is to him the most exciting music in the world.

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