David Perrico: the trumpeter who conquered Las Vegas

2018-03-21

After working for a handful of years in the legendary Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, as well as with many other artists and shows (including Natalie Cole and Toni Braxton), David Perrico settled permanently in Las Vegas where he triumphed with the Pop Strings Orchestra, a group of singers and musicians living in the famous hotel and casino of Caesars Palace. His shows led him to win the Best of Las Vegas award in 2013.

David Perrico has become one of the musicians most in demand in Las Vegas. Born in Youngstown, Ohio — at Youngstown State University — after obtaining his bachelor's degree he toured with Tommy Dorsey and his orchestra for seven years (from 1994 to 2001), as well as with the cruise company Crystal Cruises.

His valuable experience was taken into account at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas, where David Loeb (director of the Jazz department) offered him an assistant position. He became an adjunct professor, a position in which he remained in for 6 years, and took the opportunity to do a master's degree in Jazz and Composition. Throughout this time, he continued to work in the shows: the Donny & Marie Show, the Cirque du Soleil (Viva Elvis), The Rat Pack is Back, etc...

With this enormous trajectory behind him, it was logical that sooner or later he would end up wanting to find a stable group in which to use all his knowledge and experience he acquired over the previous years; then came Pop Evolution, his first big band, which excelled in Las Vegas, and finishing his career by engraving his name in gold with his second creation: the Pop Strings Orchestra.

In Trumpetland we wanted to speak directly with the trumpeter who has achieved all of this success, and ask him a couple of questions to share with our thousands of members around the world (surely to inspire many).

Trumpetland — David, thank you for being with us today. What led you to found your first project - Pop Evolution?

David Perrico — Pop Evolution (20-piece) pop big band was the first which headlined at the Palms, South Point Hotel, Stratosphere, and The Smith Center for the Performing Arts.

Pop Strings Orchestra debuted November 28, 2014 at The Tuscany Hotel. I formed it mainly as a side project to showcase 8 strings and original music, but was offered a position at The Red Rock Hotel which I developed into a High Energy Club Dance Show.

Trumpetland — As we can see in your videos, you are a real show on the stage, and you are receiving many compliments from both the public and the critics. How many performances do you offer at the end of the year?

David Perrico — The Pop Strings Orchestra is a 14-piece band featuring some of the most talented musicians in the world. For example: we have musicians that play with a lot of headlining shows in town such as: Rod Stewart, Martina McBride, Richard Marx, Terry Fator, Donny & Marie, Carlos Santana, and many others. The band has been in residency at Caesars Palace since 2016 performing at The Cleopatra's Barge every Friday/Saturday 10 pm show no cover! Prior, Pop Strings had residencies at Red Rock Hotel & The Palms, and continues to perform 4-6 themed concerts per year at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts. Also, many private and corporate events.

The pressure that Perrico must be subjected to every week is unimaginable for us (just look at his calendar of performances). Not only does he have to lead the group in each show, but he also has the role of lead trumpet, and he is permanently exposed in a city that lives precisely off shows, a city that does not forgive mistakes. It is inevitable to ask the question that every trumpet player would ask under these circumstances: what mouthpiece does he use to be able to give his all, always, every day, in such an exhausting activity?

Trumpetland — Having as much activity as you have, we assume that you must have good “work tools” that allow you to endure this demanding calendar with confidence. Although this is a very typical question: what mouthpiece do you use?

David Perrico — I use one mouthpiece: The David Perrico Las Vegas Showroom Legends Brass mouthpiece.

Ok, we know the model, but we want to know a little more about it, so we insisted...

Trumpetland — Could you talk us about what Legends Brass mouthpieces offer you? We mean - what can a trumpeter expect from a Legends Brass mouthpiece?

David Perrico — Legends Brass helped me design an all around "commercial" mouthpiece. People can expect the highest quality, and knowledgeable staff when it comes to all styles of music. Legends Brass has it all!

We are trumpet players, we are geeks, so we access the official website of this American brand of mouthpieces, to see if we could find the Perrico model and know a little more about them. And, indeed, here it is: the David Perrico Las Vegas Showroom mouthpiece.

According to its technical specifications, it seems that it is a super comfortable mouthpiece for its wide rim diameter, and a shallow cup (it could not be otherwise). In other words: a mouthpiece that is comfortable for the lips and that helps you with the higher register, designed in collaboration with a trumpeter who  climbs to the most demanding stages of the world every week to give it his all. It becomes logical: Perrico (and anyone who dedicates himself to the same thing as he) needs something like this to work successfully.

Looking through YouTube, you will find a dozen of videos of David Perrico and his Pops Strings Orchestra.  It is noticeable that his show is valued by the public and the critics, and this is something in which the press corroborates:  

A Las Vegas Favorite.

by Mike Weatherford, LV Review Journal

David Perrico's scorching-hot live band belts out great music to propel the fun and nonstop action.

by Robin Leach, Las Vegas Sun

We had never seen anything like it, this full on orchestra 'blew the lid off the place you are in for a treat!

by Chris Cognac, Food Network, food.think.drink

Robust, topnotch, and fully satisfying.

by John Katsilometes, Las Vegas Sun

Evolving popular music to the next level.

by Gabe Ginsberg, Examiner.com

Bandleader and trumpet ace Perrico has performed one of the great magic acts in Las Vegas by assembling 18 of the best musicians in town.

by John Katsilometes, Las Vegas Sun

Musical director David Perrico has a knack for arrangements that energize tunes without 'modernizing' them with synths or drum machines.

by Mike Weatherford, Las Vegas Review-Journal

The trumpet has sounded in Las Vegas and it's David Perrico.

by Tim Spraldin, FreeTips4Vegas.com

For now, we thank David Perrico for the attention he has given us while preparing this article. We really wanted to meet the trumpeter who conquered Las Vegas. Hopefully one day we can enjoy his live show. Meanwhile, we will continue to watch him in videos like this:

Trumpeters related to this news

David Perrico
Bandleader at Pop Strings Orchestra (United States)

» David Perrico in the Encyclopedia of Trumpet Players

David Perrico performs on accessories made by:

Legends Brass