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A Musical Life

A Musical Life: Josué Estrada

Hugo Phan / KMUW

Josué is a trumpet player and percussionist based in Wichita. He plays with a variety of acts including Carrie Nation and The Speakeasy, Lewelheds, Odisea, and Soul R. System with Rudy Love, Jr.

“My oldest brother was a guitar player. He played in band. I had never touched an instrument in my life before. He was playing piano one day and said, ‘Hey! Sing C.’ [Sings.] He goes to the piano and hits the key and [it was the same]. I found out I had perfect pitch when I was seven.

When I got to sixth grade I really wanted to play saxophone. I was, like, ‘Oh my god sax is so cool.’ They gave me a bunch of mouthpieces to try. There was a saxophone reed and I tried it. No sound came out. The teacher said, ‘Alright, try this trumpet mouthpiece.’

I didn’t really know that many famous trumpet players yet and then I found out who Louis Armstrong was and Dizzy Gillespie and little by little I started realizing how super cool the trumpet is. When I got to play, especially in the live setting, I try to think as little as possible and feel as much as possible. I’m not thinking, ‘I’m going to play a B flat to a D to an E to an F sharp.’

A lot of times, if you’re doing it right, you can totally play ideas together that intertwine and they’re not distracting to one another. They just kind of blend together and create a really cool effect.”