Magazine article International Musician

Rick Baptist: Hollywood's Trumpeter

Magazine article International Musician

Rick Baptist: Hollywood's Trumpeter

Article excerpt

Trumpet player and composer Rick Baptist, of Locals 7 (Orange County, CA), 47 (Los Angeles, CA), and 369 (Las Vegas, NV), is one of those musicians who believes he never works a single day in his life because his job is so much fun. Still, he might never have discovered his passion for music, if not for a near-fatal incident as a child in San Francisco. "One day running around track at school, my kft lung collapsed," he says. They saved about half of it. The doctor suggested I play a wind instrument to build up my lungs."

Baptist performed with a band for the first time at age 12, and by 15 years old, he had subbed with both the San Francisco and Oakland symphonies. From there, Baptist launched his music career, moving from San Francisco to Reno to Las Vegas to Hollywood.

Today, with more than 50 years' experience, 64-year-old Baptist is one of the world's most recorded soundtrack artists. From big blockbuster movies like Star Trek to Disney cartoons to television hit shows like Dancing with the Stars, Baptist is all over the entertainment map. He finds himself working nearly every day on different sets in Hollywood. In fact, Baptist says he used to be even busier, working as many as seven gigs at a time, sometimes all in one day.

To Baptist, working this much is exhilarating. "When I take a break, I'm miserable, because I love it so much," he says. "The day I wake up and it's not fun, is the day I quit."

Baptist says he only ever worked one job that wasn't music related. After a day as a dishwasher at age 13, he knew he never wanted to be anything else but a musician. "I did it one day and made $15, then worked a dance job that night and made $25, so I said to myself, 'What do I want to do for the rest of my life?"' he recalls.

A union member since the age of 12, he says membership has been important to his career. "The way it has paid off for me is the pension and the benefits that the union brings. …

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