Jazz Star Trombone Shorty Reveals What’s Kept Him ‘Centered’ & Sane While Self-Isolating

It's time to raise your glass. New Orleans' own Trombone Shorty – aka Troy Andrews – reveals why he teamed up with Crown Royal to help support bartenders hurt by COVID-19, who'd he'd love to IG Live with, and more.

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Image Credit: REX/Shutterstock

After viewing the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, one might want a stiff drink. In addition to the number of confirmed cases and coronavirus-related deaths, the outbreak’s impact on the music scene has been devastating. So many bars, restaurants, and music venues are at risk of being shuttered for good and need a helping hand. Thankfully, that helping hand comes with a glass of Crown Royal and a song by New Orleans jazz star, Trombone Shorty. The musician – born Troy Andrews – has teamed up with the whisky brand for the May 8 edition of #GenerosityHour.

Since the outbreak, Crown Royal has been trying to raise spirits through its virtual happy hour. Every time someone makes a social media post with the #GenerosityHour tag, the whisky brand makes a $1 donation to the USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance Fund. Still, one might not be in the mood to celebrate happy hour – and that’s where Trombone Shorty comes in. The multi-instrumentalist has worked with practically everyone in the world of rock, funk, jazz, and hip hop. He’s played with CeeLo Green, LeAnn Rimes, Mark Ronson, Jeff Beck and more. To kick off the weekend, he’s going to raise a glass of whisky and play some music on his Instagram Live @tromboneshorty today (Friday 5/8) at 6 pm EST / 5 pm CT.

Before the party gets started, Shorty tells us how he’s been coping during quarantine, which artists he’d love to drop in and duet with during this IG Live session, and why Crown Royal holds a very special place in his heart. 

HollywoodLife: You’ve teamed up with Crown Royal to kick off the weekend with a virtual Happy Hour and concert. This is going to be a saving grace for those struggling with another week of quarantine and self-isolation. What has been YOUR saving grace (i.e. your rock) during these past few weeks? Netflix? The collected works of Miles Davis? YouTube yoga videos?

I’m excited to be partnered with Crown Royal for the Generosity Hour supporting bartenders.  My saving grace while being at home in New Orleans has been having my studio to go and rehearse by myself or work on ideas for songs and that type of thing. I’m isolating at home with my family, having meals with them, but being able to head to the studio to play my horns for a few hours before coming back home for dinner has helped me stay in shape musically and keep me centered.

Crown Royal

Specific IG Live sessions – particularly Dance-A-Thons, DJ battles, and Verzuz showdowns — have become hotbeds of cameos. If you were to have any three people drop in during your performance this Friday (whether they have an IG account or not), who would it be?

I think I would pick Dr. Dre first, and then maybe go for some different artists like maybe Garth Brooks and then Alicia Keys–kind of mix it up and see what kind of a gumbo we could get going with that lineup.

Crown Royal’s #GenerosityHour has helped raise money for the USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance Fund. Is there one bar that you could visit right after the pandemic gets under control, which one would it be?

My favorite bar is the one where I have a gig!  Many of the clubs, theaters, and sheds that my band & I play have bars in them, and those are crucial to concertgoers having a good time, and helping the club make money and keep musicians and bartenders employed.  Those bartenders work as hard as we do onstage to make the night special.  So, I’m looking forward to the first gig back once this is over, and that will be my favorite bar by far.

COVID-19 has affected the perception of the music released during the pandemic. New love songs about finding a connection suddenly resonate with those in self-isolation, and tracks about looing on the bright side of life take on a deeper meaning. No one has really gone out to write a coronavirus anthem, but if you could pick two songs – one of your compositions, and one by any other artists – that were to be used as the music of the moment, what would you pick?

Of my songs, I would probably pick “Dirty Water” because it has a line about washing my hands and also says, “When you believe in love, it all works out.” By another artist, I would pick “It Ain’t Over Til It’s Over” by Lenny Kravitz–the title says it all.

Finally, how do you take your whisky?

I drink it however my grandmother serves it to me! Crown Royal always reminds me of her. She’s the royalty – the queen – of my family, and it’s one of her traditions to drink Crown and keep the purple bags.

This week Crown Royal is excited to partner with New Orleans jazz musician Troy Andrews, also known as Trombone Shorty, to kick off the weekend by raising a glass of whisky for those in need and playing some music on IG Live (@tromboneshorty) this Friday at 5:00 pm CT / 6:00 pm ET.

For the last several weeks, Crown Royal has hosted virtual #GenerosityHour happy hours, where consumers 21+ can toast with their favorite cocktail on social (IG, Twitter and/or Facebook) to bring people together in the name of generosity. For every post using #GenerosityHour, Crown Royal will donate $1 to bartenders in need through the USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance Fund, up to $400,000. 


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