Catch Sebastian Isler at our Friday night Gala!
When asked about how he originally discovered the HMB, he says “About 17 years ago, I was in a small taco shop in ‘Old Williamsburg’ and noticed a sign on the wall – a paper sign cut at the bottom in which one could tear off the phone number – that read “Mobile brass musicians and drummers wanted for a Reclaim the Streets demonstration.” I called up, and the following Sunday found myself surrounded with noise-art revelers providing the soundtrack to a flaming-fire soccer match in the middle of Avenue A in which the soccer ball had been soaked in gasoline and lit on fire. I could not tell how many teams were playing but I knew that scoring a goal did not matter. Of course, no permits were required, nor did they exist. That was fun.” (N.B. – yes it was!!)
Some of his favorite venues include the now-closed Zebulon Cafe Concert in Brooklyn as it had great sound and such a positive vibe. “I like playing atSOB’s (Sounds of Brazil) with salsa bands as people go there to dance. Another place that stands out for the quality of sound is that pedestrian tunnel in Central Park, just north of the zoo at 65th Street. It is a tunnel with an architecturally perfect amount of bounce and dissolve suited for the tone of the trombone, played solo, low, and slow.”
In Seb’s opinion, New York City presents musicians with the opportunity to figure out how to correlate gig payments with rent payments, as well as how to balance playing nightly concerts with taking the time for serious daily practice sessions.
He says, “My trombone has taken me to South America, Russia, the Middle East, the Caribbean, South Africa, Madagascar, and Europe, but in a “win a free trip to anywhere” contest, I’d like to bring a fine group of friends to play an all-night concert at the base of the pyramids in Giza.”
His final thought for us today: “It is fantastic to witness, and an honor to participate in, the living power of music.
It unites people with its universal language and beauty; its nobility and expression of freedom.
The sounds resonate and infuse the air, and that air is in our every breath.
I hope everyone has fun at HONK NYC!”
Say hello to Seb when you see him marching by this year!