Born: May 16, 1974 Primary Instrument: Trumpet
Michael McKenna was born on May 16, 1974 in Sioux City, Iowa. From an early age he was exposed to Jazz music by his father who enjoyed listening to Lee Morgan. Mike started playing the trumpet in elementary school, but it wasn't until high school that he developed an appreciation for Jazz. While in his high school Jazz band, he was encouraged by the band director as he was given solos and praised for his ability. It was also during his high school years that Mike began attending jazz camps. He went to Jamey Aebersold's Jazz Improv Camp in Elmhurst, Illinois. This camp allowed Mike to gain experience in improvisational trumpet playing and led to his attending the Clark Terry Jazz camp in Wisconsin during his junior and senior years in high school. Under the tutelage of Stephen Fulton, Mike really learned to play the trumpet correctly. In addition to these ventures during his high school years Mike traveled with the high school jazz band to play in the Montreaux, Switzerland jazz festival. After graduating high school in 1992, Mike attended the University of South Dakota and majored in music. Through his time at USD, Mike still kept in contact with Clark Terry and Stephen Fulton. Eventually Mike was invited back to the Clark Terry Jazz camp as faculty and took charge of small group ensembles. After two years at USD, Stephen Fulton offered Mike a full scholarship to the Clark Terry Institute of Jazz Studies in Lemars, Iowa. Mike accepted and while there he received one on one instruction from Stephen Fulton and Clark Terry as well as guest artists such as: Red Holloway, Jessie Davis, Butch Miles, and Lynn Seaton. During that time at the Institute, Mike formed the group, “Bop-eration” with Marc Devine. The band played weekly gigs for three years and as Mike says it was “crucial for developing skills.” In 1997 Clark Terry and Stephen Fulton encouraged Mike to audition for The Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Studies in Boston, Ma. He took their advice and was the only trumpet player accepted. While attending the Institute, Mike studied with Ron Carter, John McNeil, Clark Terry, Jon Faddis, and Charlie Banacos. Guest artists included: Barry Harris, Phil Woods, Jon Faddis, and Clark Terry to name a few. Mike graduated from The Thelonius Monk Institute in 1999. He currently resides in Dracut where he freelances and gives trumpet lessons.
Willing to teach:
Lessons available online at http://mikemckennamusic.com and in the Boston, MA area