Samson Trinh | Very Strange Night

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Jazz: Swing/Big Band Jazz: Big Band Moods: Solo Male Artist
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Very Strange Night

by Samson Trinh

Debut compositional album feat. the Upper East Side Big Band, and members of Agents of Good Roots, Bio Ritmo, Devil's Workshop, Fighting Gravity, & Modern Groove Syndicate
Genre: Jazz: Swing/Big Band
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Intro: Drop The Needle
0:08 $0.99
2. To You, Near You, With You
3:05 $0.99
3. I Can't Believe I'm Addicted To The O.C.
4:34 $0.99
4. Signs Are Full Of Jive
2:47 $0.99
5. Thank Goodness
4:05 $0.99
6. I Tried To Talk To Her, But She Thought I Was Too Weird
5:16 $0.99
7. Time After Time
4:55 $0.99
8. That's Why
4:08 $0.99
9. Piece For Trumpet And Piano
0:25 $0.99
10. Very Strange Night
5:44 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes

23-year-old Samson Trinh’s debut jazz compositional album, “Very Strange Night” was a project he worked on during his last year as a Jazz Studies major at Virginia Commonwealth University. The majority of the songs on the album were school assignments. For the recording, Samson hired 48 of the best musicians in Richmond including his 17-piece Upper East Side Big Band and vocalists Adrian Duke, Jackie Frost, Terri Murphy and international jazz trumpeter, Rex Richardson. All the songs were composed, arranged, orchestrated, conducted, and produced by Samson Trinh.

“Very Strange Night” is a concept album, which takes the listener on a musical journey across genres. The disc itself looks and feels like a record vinyl that starts the album off with a needle-drop sound effect. The night’s exhilarating experience includes lush jazz string orchestra arrangements, big band, country influences from the 1960s, classical, funk, and long song titles that also challenges the listener’s ear such as “I Tried To Talk To Her, But She thought I Was Too Weird.”

In conclusion, Samson was the first student ever in VCU history to have a CD release party at his Senior Recital, which covered works from “Very Strange Night.” All the seats were filled at the concert hall and hundreds of CDs were sold. Samson also encouraged students that night to make an album during their last year of school. “Very Strange Night” is not just a student project; it is an album crafted by a hard working composer and his colleagues to capture professionalism. Most importantly, it’s all about writing a good tune that will make a listener smile again.



All songs arranged, orchestrated, and conducted by Samson Trinh
Strings on "To You, Near You, With You" conducted by Doug Richards

1. "DROP THE NEEDLE" - Record Player; Vinyl

2. "TO YOU, NEAR YOU, WITH YOU" - Terri Murphy (vocals); The Lounge Union Strings, Winds, & Percussion

3. "I CAN'T BELIEVE I'M ADDICTED TO THE O.C. - J.C. Kuhl (tenor sax); Emily Avesian (Bari Sax); Bob Miller (trumpet); Charles Gregory (trumpet); Daniel Clarke (piano); Jonathan Cannon (bass); Brian Jones (drums)

4. "SIGNS ARE FULL OF JIVE" - Adrian Duke (vocals/piano/B-3 Organ); The Upper East Side Big Band

5. "THANK GOODNESS" - Jackie Frost (vocals); Skip Gailes (piano); Charles Arthur (lap steel guitar); Scott Burton (guitar); Malcolm Pulley (mandolin);
Rusty Farmer (bass); Brian Jones (drums)

6. "I TRIED TO TALK TO HER, BUT SHE THOUGHT I WAS TOO WEIRD" - J.C. Kuhl (tenor sax); Daniel Clarke (wurlitzer); Jonathan Cannon (bass); Brian Jones (drums)

7. "TIME AFTER TIME" - The Upper East Side Big Band

8. "THAT'S WHY" - Terri Murphy (vocals); Daniel Clarke (piano); Jon Cannon (bass); Brian Jones (drums)

9. "PIECE FOR TRUMPET AND PIANO" - Rex Richardson (trumpet); Laura Candler-White (piano)

10. "VERY STRANGE NIGHT" - The Upper East Side Big Band



REEDS - Mike Cemprola (lead alto/clarinet/flute); Dave Hood (alto/tenor); J.C. Kuhl (tenor); Richard Wray (tenor); Jason Arce (tenor); Emily Avesian (bari); Bruce Woodson (bari)

TRUMPETS - Bob Miller (lead); Rex Richardson; Taylor Barnett; Mark Ingraham; Charles Gregory

TROMBONES - Pete Anderson (lead); Toby Whitaker; Reggie Pace; Reggie Chapman (bass trombone); Stefan Demetriadis (bass trombone)

TUBA - Stephanie Fairbairn

WASHBOARD - Ben Anderson

PIANO - Adrian Duke

GUITAR - Scott Burton

BASS - Rusty Farmer; Jonathan Cannon

DRUMS - Brian Jones; Aaron Thompson



STRINGS - Susanna Klein (violin); Stacy Markowitz (violin); Molly Sharp (viola); Neal Cary (cello)

REEDS - Eve Debordenave (flute); Adrian Sandi (clarinet); Adam Butalawicz (clarinet); Bruce Hammel (bassoon)

TRUMPETS - Bob Miller (lead/soloist); Matt Wittig

TROMBONES - Toby Whitaker; Reggie Chapman (bass trombone)

PIANO - Skip Gailes

GUITAR - Scott Burton

BASS - Rusty Farmer

DRUMS - Brian Jones

PERCUSSION & OTHERS - Mike Boyd (xylophone/chimes); Aaron Thompson (timpani/bells); Molly Berg (whistler); Joe Mager (finger snaps); Samson Trinh (finger snaps)



At 23 years old, composer, arranger, orchestrator, bandleader, musical director, producer, and saxophonist, Samson Trinh has had a lot on his plate! Born in Richmond, Virginia on May 8th, 1983, Samson received a Merit Scholarship to attend the Berklee College of Music's Summer Program and several Merit Scholarships from Virginia Commonwealth University where he has earned his B.M. in Jazz Studies. At VCU, he studied composition and jazz arranging with Doug Richards (founder of the school’s jazz program) and saxophone with Skip Gailes, John Winn, and principal New York Philharmonic saxophonist, Albert Regni. In 2005, he was the winner of Richmond Jazz Society's prestigious Joe Kennedy, Jr. Scholarship. Samson is an alumnus at New York's Manhattan School of Music where he studied jazz composition with well-known composer, Michael Abene.

From December 2003 to November 2005, Samson became co-owner and booking manager for Richmond, VA's Upper East Side Jazz Lounge, which featured a great wealth of talented musicians in the Richmond scene. He has performed, composed, opened, and recorded with/for Plunky Branch, Fighting Gravity, Al Jarreau, Nellie McKay, Mulgrew Miller, Desiree Roots, John Winn, Richmond Jazz Society, Virginia Commonwealth University's Jazz Orchestra I, and members of the Richmond Symphony.

Samson is also the founder and musical director of the 17-piece Upper East Side Big Band. The organization is made up with the finest young musicians in the capital of Virginia. Their repertoire features the swingin’ big band sounds of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Benny Goodman, and Glenn Miller. The Upper East Side Big Band’s vocalist and pianist, Adrian Duke, will also blow listeners away as he croons popular standards from the Frank Sinatra and Ray Charles songbook. In 2005, the band opened up for Kool & The Gang at Richmond, VA's Jazz on the James.



to write a review

Style Weekly

Goes well with Richmond jazz and “The OC.”
With 48 of the area’s best musicians taking part, it’s a bit like the Richmond Jazz Circus. All get their spin in the spotlight, but Trinh remains the ringmaster. The 22-year-old former Upper East Side Jazz Lounge entrepreneur wrote every song but one, and arranged and conducted everything except for a string section led by his model and mentor, Doug Richards, a Virginia Commonwealth University professor and big-band leader. Richards’ influence is reflected in Trinh’s complex but uncluttered architectures; each instrumental voice shines through with clear, Technicolor individuality.

The CD works on a variety of levels: as varied entertainment, as a surprising mature statement from a young artist, and as a vivid snapshot of the Richmond jazz scene circa 2006.

Anna Marcella

Beautiful compositions. Love the piano and vocals, and everything in between! Keep up the wonderful writing!

Shareef Taher

SOLID, SOLID, SOLID!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bernadette Stephens

Great Tunes!!!
Great tunes- your singer (Terri Murphy) has a beautiful voice, really lovely.


Love It
Love your music man! Jazz is where it's at!

Jesse Palter

I totally dig it! Way to keep it classic. I look forward to hearing more of your work!


This CD is killin'!!!

Darrell Clark

a great big band mellow flavor
a big band mellow groove flavor with a count basie influence spiced with a splash of King Creole/and Dr. Buzzard's Savannah Band


An absolute talent!
No idea you were so talented. You sound great, man.


Great Work!
I just listened to your tracks last night. All are great! Extra kudos for "Very Strange Night." You have really done well and at a very young age! Great work man. Keep it up.
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