Trumpeter, composer and educator Abram Wilson died on Saturday 9th June 2012 at the age of 38 after a short battle with cancer.
Just 14 days ago, Abram posted a message on his website saying how much he was enjoying a UK tour with his quartet performing ‘Philippa’, a jazz theatre project based around the life and times of mixed-race, Harlem-born classical pianist Philippa Schuyler. Characteristically, he also mentioned how much he had enjoyed a day of teaching at Truro College. His last concert was in Teignmouth, Devon, on 24th May 2012. Abram also worked with Shez Raja during the bassist’s Pizza Express concerts.
Abram had a vibrant trumpet style influenced by Wynton Marsalis, Freddie Hubbard and Miles Davis. He was born and raised in New Orleans but based in London since 2002. His US-based projects included work with the Roy Hargrove Big Band and blues legend Ruth Brown. In London, he quickly established himself as a valuable sideman and foil for Soweto Kinch during the recording and touring of the alto saxophonist and rapper’s Mercury Award-nominated Conversations With The Unseen album. I fondly remember a raucous Soweto/Abram gig at the Ealing Jazz Festival in the summer of 2003.
Abram also played extensively with other key bands on the UK scene, Gary Crosby’s Jazz Jamaica, Tomorrow’s Warriors and the Julian Joseph Big Band. He recorded three well-received solo albums for Dune Records – Jazz Warrior (2004), Ride! Ferris Wheel To The Modern Day Delta (2006) and Life Paintings (2009).
Abram Wilson, trumpeter, composer and educator, born 30th August 1973; died 9th June 2012