“Trombone Shorty” is a New Orleans Prodigy. His real name is Troy Andrews, and has the ability to steal the stage with his trombone playing. He started playing the trombone before he’s learnt to tie his shoe. He performed with Bo Diddley at the age of 4, was the second band leader at age 6 and a year later was fast on his way to stardom. He was so young that people had a hard time believing it, especially when it was time to pay for the gig. “We showed up, and they didn’t want to pay us for some reason. I’m 6 or 7 years old, and the people say, well, who do we pay, and I’m real small and I say, well, right here, and it was like, no, you got to be kidding me,” said Trombone Shorty who had to eventually call his family in order to get his money.
Around 20 years later Andrews is working towards giving back to the New Orleans community. His music academy called Trombone Shorty Academy at the Tulane University teaches high schoolers the technical skills that go with the talent. An art that Andrew things is dying because of the lack of experience musicians in the city. “A lot of older musicians are not around anymore, and the Treme neighborhood is a different place after the storm,” said Trombone Shorty, referring to a musically rich neighborhood in downtown New Orleans. The storm he mentions is Katrina, and the scars still run deep in the city. “Everyone in New Orleans knows struggle. That’s just the fabric that we deal with here,” said Trombone Shorty. “We all deal with struggle in different ways, but music has been a light for us and to see and to be happy and to know there is a purpose that we can get through whatever it is we are doing or going through.”