Kiku Collins

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Primary Instrument: Trumpet

Born: September 2    

”Ms. Collins plays trumpet and flugelhorn like a twenty-first century Miles Davis” Derek Ansell - Jazz Journal International

“ of the best out there on the current trumpet community. Your section playing, tone, control, and solo chops, outstanding!!” Eric Miyashiro

“Her phrasing, sound and lyricism remind me of great singers. For me, that is one of the best compliments that I could give to any trumpet player!” Mike Vax

Classically trained at Manhattan School of Music and Interlochen Arts Academy, Kiku brings professionalism to every job in every style, with her sense of humor and sense of adventure that leads her to play and sing with a diverse group of artists....
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There is a contemporary sound to this music, a mixture of modern jazz trumpet, fusion and rock that all blends together surprisingly well. Ms. Collins plays trumpet and flugelhorn like a twenty-first century Miles Davis; there is a Spanish tinge to many of these improvised solos and also a touch of melancholy, similar to that which was always present in Miles's music. Flute and vibes solos are pretty much straightahead jazz contributions and the rock flavoured bass and drum punctuations are somehow quite appropriate and suitable for this music. The Messenger is essentially a slow ballad with Ms. Collins blowing moody, atmospheric trumpet and Harris shining with a mournful guitar solo. Confidential Obituary continues the dark, sad mood and offers more, intense trumpet playing...

... the result is really good music; in the contemporary manner, in terms of instrumentation and recording practices but sounding fresh and inspired all through. I would urge all enthusiasts to put aside pre- conceived notions of any kind and just listen. It is well worth the effort. Derek Ansell - Jazz Journal International

Kiku is a MUSICAL trumpet player. Her phrasing, sound and lyricism remind me of great singers. For me, that is one of the best compliments that I could give to any trumpet player! I really enjoy listening to her CD and would highly recommend it to others. (Trumpet players or not.) --Mike Vax

...Upon first hearing Kiku Collins, that overwhelming feeling of discovering something extraordinary is unavoidable. To those of us with the overpowering lust for the aesthetics of Melody...these occurrences are special. Someone who consistently dishes- out, track after track...after track of unbelievably beautiful melody is surreal and definitely calls for a celebratory bonfire among devotees of tuneful improvisation. Well beyond her years --- as evinced by the language of her finely accented phrasing --- she can hang a note like a sky on fire over a steady, potent Latin rhythm or do a mid-air pause to highlight ( she pauses to highlight ) the sweetness of a chordal turn. Musical improvisation requires unfaltering instinct, listening and as equally --- timing. Kiku wields and uses them at her disposal to fully facilitate the vigor of a melodious interplay...from player to player; the free-flow always leads to sonorous mind-vistas, woven together by the spontaneity of a craftily circulating woodwind... “Levitation” calmly takes you on a wonder-sojourn without leaving your physical space...the lift is total. “Blues Again” has the steady radiance of a quiet fire. It smolders but, doesn't burn...the cool glow draws you in...slowburning...riveting. 1,2,3--- Go!...”Cartoons of the Prophet” is hip-vibery. Tuned-in to the world but, wound around a charming melody; detached from the pretty Ninja Princess evokes harmony--not only musically-- but to “those who listen with a Center”--The beauty in all things is apparent. --Julian Ardella - Julian's Flight

Kiku Collins “Here With Me,” is almost a force of quiet, but determined, Nature. I met Kiku in New York City just before I escaped to Austin, Texas when she was gigging with the New York City Blues Devils. At the time, I thought they were slumming from New Orleans and parts South. They were that convincing and the horn solos, mostly expertly played by Kiku, were that authentic. Her talent seems second to none, having learned it at a very early age, enrolling at the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan, after doing a 2 summer stint at their National Music Camp. From there, she went on to study classical performance at Manhattan School of Music. She's very easy on the eyes. Most recently, she's been Beyonce Knowles' trumpet player since June 2006. When I say she's that good, I mean she's THAT good. The overall mood of the album is almost cinematic, and as you listen to it from beginning to end, you'll see the most amazing scenes playing in your head. This is a film score that needs a film. I’ll freely admit that I am not as much of a Jazzhead as I would like to be, but certainly not as much as you are. My forte is Indie and many things Pop, so it would be unfair to comment upon each of these amazing tracks with the opinion of an expert. However, I know good, pristinely produced music when I hear it, and I know what I like. Here With Me doesn’t suffer from the same self-produced unmastered genericism that some music that is sent in to my radio network does. Furthermore, there are only two covers included here. The remaining eight tracks were written by Kiku herself and they sound like instant classics . The album is an understated Wall Of Sound that deserves to be heard outside of the Jazz World. -- Mike Perazzetti - Radio Mike

There is no mistake about it, Kiku Collins' new album ”Here With Me” is incredibly exciting and very well-done. Great jazz! I have perused my personal collection of some of the best players in this genre of great trumpet players from Louis Armstrong, Maynard Ferguson, Miles Davis, all the way down to Arturo Sandoval and Derek Watson, and this album is one of the best SOUNDING in my collection. The ”Dynamic Duo” of Kiku Collins and Julian Harris have put together some very tasteful arrangements that is sure to make this album one of the hottest jazz releases of 2007. The two ballads on this album that are especially impressive are the title song, “Here With Me” and “The Messenger”. Collins' sound has never been captured better and she plays with a brilliant fire, a wonderful clarity AND definitely taste. Her funky mid-range statement of the melody in the middle of the “Blues Again” chart blew me away! ”Cartoons of the Prophet” and “Confidential” also both give Collins a chance to shine playing the MELODY and knocking it totally out of the park. What else to say? Yes, “Here With Me” has a great sound, a first rate band and some of the best and cleanest Kiku Collins playing I've heard. The sound on this CD is especially wonderful. --Musi Faisal, President and CEO - Black Owl Music

Primary Instrument:

New York, NY

Willing to teach:

Getzen 3001MV trumpet, Getzen Custom Flugelhorn, Getzen Eterna Tenor 998 Valve Trombone, Schilke Piccolo Trumpet, Generic Pocket Trumpet, Loud Mouthpiece 3Z, RB3C, LM64 and 3FL, Landress mouthpiece sleeves

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