LINDA HUDES     Composer
Based in New York City, trumpeter Rik Albani has spent his career performing and creating music. During thousands of performances, Rik gained notoriety as a unique trumpet player, Music Director, band leader, conductor and arranger. Rik possesses an unusual gift for melodic trumpet playing, combined with a wild soloing style.
After a tour of duty with the U.S. Navy band, for which he received a Naval Commendation, Rik recorded an album on Capitol Records with his original band, Sunship, produced by Donny Ienner, current president of Sony Music. This jazz/rock band highlighted Rik’s brassy sound and memorable trumpet solos. The band’s success was magnified by concert tours opening for Steely Dan, Hot Tuna, Rick Nelson, The Crusaders and NRBQ.
Rik experienced a growth period by next becoming heavily involved in the innovative Downtown New York New Music scene. Exposure to this groundbreaking milieu left Rik with a deeper understanding of new horizons in music, where new sounds, ensembles, and forms were the goal. It was a very creative period that showed Rik that there are no boundaries. From lofts to Lincoln Center, Rik performed with LaMonte Young, Rhys, Chatham, Arthur Russell, David Van Tieghem, Ned Sublette, Allen Ginsburg, Arto Lindsay, Peter Zummo. Rik was the only trumpet player in New York who would play a tone row concert one night and cumbias in Jackson Heights the next. The integration and synthesizing of the extremes is what enables Rik to hear and play in his own way.
Rik has also had the good fortune to have performed or recorded with Wilson Pickett, The Four Tops, Talking Heads, The Brecker Brothers, Clyde Otis, Lenny Pickett, Yogi Horton, Doc Powell, Glen Velez, Bob Clearmountain, Michael Oldfield, Tom Tom 84, Lew Soloff, John Fadis, Abraham Adzenya. As  member of Jazzmobile Big Band, Rik toured extensively and performed for President Jimmy Carter.
The great epiphany came when he joined musical forces with his wife, composer Linda Hudes. It was in the Linda Hudes Power Trio and the expanded ensemble, Power And Glory, where Linda’s compositions created the setting for Rik, as trumpeter and Music Director, to focus exclusively on expression, transcending all previous experience. In the Power Trio, the essential (bare bones) ensemble of Linda’s keyboards, Rik’s electric trumpet, and a drummer was the vehicle to create some of the most innovative music heard at CBGB, Mudd Club, Danceteria, Max’s Kansas City, Coney Island, battery Park City, Central Park. Never before had the melody, harmony and rhythm of the trumpet been featured in such a unique setting. It was a critical and popular success. The Power Trio also performed with dance companies at Dance Theatre Workshop, Merce Cunningham Studio, and created original recordings for dance companies in Europe and Asia.
It was inevitable that a broader audience would want Linda’s sound. The Big Apple Circus had the fortuitous foresight to ask Linda and Rik to be their Composer and Music Director respectively. For almost twenty years, their music helped to transform the show into an award winning New York cultural institution. The couple, with Linda’s score and Rik’s band, performed at 350 shows each year, including an annual three month season at New York’s Lincoln Center. Unlike a high tide rising all boats, Linda’s music was more like a tidal wave washing away tradition and replacing it with a sound unique to the new one ring circus. It is music for circus, not circus music. Rik performed and conducted a band that became famous as one of the hottest in NY. (For Rik, spirit was a job requirement.) The reaction was overwhelmingly positive. Everyone from Yoyo Ma to Bruce Springsteen came to the Lincoln Center venue and praised the music.
Producer Kenneth Feld asked Rik to Music Direct Linda’s original score for the Ringling Bros. Show, Barnum’s Kaleidoscape, and the response was the same during a two year national tour. The Rik and Linda combination has proven to be a resounding success.
They have composed, arranged and performed with the Boston Pops Orchestra on a national broadcast of ‘Evening At Pops’, and also for film, television, advertising and festivals. Whomever seeks out this Power and Glory team already knows that they will hear a sound of inspired beauty.
Rik earned a Bachelor Degree in Jazz Studies (University of Bridgeport) under the tutelage of Neal Slater (Director of Jazz Studies, North Texas University), and also holds a Bachelors of Economics (Boston College) and a Masters Degree in Education (University of Hartford). He has studied with master teachers Carmine Caruso, Jackie McLean, Neil Slater, Vince Pensarella, Laurie Frink and Jimmy Owens. In addition to his experience as a trumpet player, Music Director and Conductor, Rik is a skilled Latin percussionist, and a music historian with a vast knowledge of twentieth century jazz and popular music.
After years studying music and practicing trumpet, and a multitude of experiences as a performer and bandleader, Rik recently completed a year long position as Artist In Residence at Booker Visual And Performing Arts School in Sarasota, Florida. Here, and in private teaching to brass students of all levels, Rik is able to pass on to the next generation the techniques of brass playing. His message is, keep the music alive to make the world a better place.