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Maynard Ferguson in Ohio

Submitted by Matt Jones

On October 23,1997, myself and 11 of my other jazz musician friends/schoolmates had the experience of a lifetime-our second MF concert at The Bistro in Boardman, Ohio. The concert started at 8:00, but we arrived at 4:45 just to make sure of getting good seats. We went in, and the crew was running sound checks while the band was warming up. After we ate, we claimed our table-front and center. I was so close I could have grabbed his mic stand or snatched his immaculate Holton horn. Needless to say, we anxiously waited until show time. As soon as "he" was announced, we all exploded in cheering and yelling "Maynard!" The entire night was unbelievable. We were all sporting the black MF concert shirts and at one point during the concert, Maynard looked at our table, pointed, and said "Here's my family!" Afterwards, we all waited around and talked with the band. We hung out with Brian McDonald, Tom Garling, Matt Wallace, and the others. Then the big guy came out. We were all awestruck-here we are talking with one of the greatest trumpet players ever. After the autographs, he said "How about a picture?" The group and Maynard all got together, and we all got the greatest picture you could ever ask for with MF. He was such a nice guy. One thing that will forever stick in my mind will be the response Maynard gave to another fan. An older gentleman with a little too much to drink asked him, "Maynard, when will you ever get tired?" Maynard responded, "When I die." What a consummate musician and person.