New York City-based trumpeter, composer and Doctor of Musical Arts, Jonathan Saraga, is a Blue Truffle Music and Fresh Sound Records recording artist. He took 1st place in the 2007 International Trumpet Guild Jazz Trumpet Solo Competition and competed as a finalist in the 2009 Carmine Caruso International Jazz Trumpet Solo Competition. He has been awarded selected participation in the 2011 School for Improvisational Music Summer Intensive Program, the 2015 Banff International Summer Intensive Program in Jazz and Creative Music, and the 2019 Banff Early Fall Musicians in Residence program.

Jonathan received the Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composer Award presented by the ASCAP Foundation in 2016, was a 2-time Semi-Finalist as well as a Winner in the International Songwriting Competition in 2016 and 2017, and achieved finalist status in the 2019 New Jazz Works grant presented by Chamber Music America. In 2020 he was one of three trumpeters to make it to the final round of auditions for the GRAMMY-winning Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra’s 4th Trumpet Chair, and was selected to present at the International Society for Improvised Music conference (Melbourne Conservatorium of Music-Melbourne, Australia) and the Association for Popular Music Education (APME) conference (Edinburgh Napier University-Edinburgh, Scotland). Also in 2020, Saraga received a commission from the International Society of Jazz Arrangers and Composers, as well as grants from the Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation, the University of Colorado Boulder, Music Advisory Board, the Actors Fund/Local 802 Musicians Union, the Jazz Foundation of America, the Afro-Latin Jazz Alliance, and the Recording Academy/MusiCares.

Since 2006, Saraga has performed throughout Europe, Asia, the Caribbean and across the U.S. as a leader and in ensembles led by highly acclaimed artists such as Steve Coleman, Henry Cole, Maria Schneider, The Mingus Big Band, Remy Le Boeuf, Darcy James Argue, Orrin Evans, Jihye Lee, Migiwa Miyajima, Jason Marshall, Manuel Valera, Josh Evans, Jimmy Greene, Tyshawn Sorey, Eric Bergen and the Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra to name a few. He teaches for NYC-based organizations such as The Afro-Latin Jazz Alliance, The Gramercy Brass Orchestra of New York, New York Ensemble Classes, Jazz Empowers and The New York Jazz Academy, and has served as a Graduate-Part Time Instructor for the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Screen name:
Jonathan Saraga
Member since:
May 24 2006
Active over 1 month ago
Level of commitment:
Years playing music:
Gigs played:
Over 100
Tend to practice:
More than 3 times per week
Available to gig:
6-7 nights a week
Most available:


Clifford Brown, Adam Rogers, Tom Harrell, Steve Coleman, Freddie Hubbard, David Sanchez, Joe Henderson, Woody Shaw, Jerry Bergonzi, Chet Baker, Jonathan Kriesberg, Ryan Kisor, Charles Blenzig, Blue Mitchell, Alex Sipiagin, Miguel Zenon, Sam Rivers, Steve Wilson, Ravi Coltrane, Andrew Hill, Wayne Shorter, Vijay Iyer, Nicholas Payton, Herbie Hancock, Steve Swallow, Donny McCaslin, Art Pepper, Loren Stillman, Joshua Redman, John Ellis, Chick Corea, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Art Farmer, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Miles Okazaki, Chris Potter, Art Tatum, Ben Monder, Jimmy Greene, Miles Davis, Aaron Goldberg, Jon Gordon, Donald Byrd, Walt Weiskopf, Kenny Dorham, Seamus Blake, Le Boeuf Brotheres, Adam Larson

Instrument experience:



TRUMPETS: I play a Bach Stradivarius Model 37 Bb Trumpet with a gold lacquer finish, which produces a crisp warm open sound. I also play a Yamaha Xeno 8345 RG Bb trumpet a "shot-blast finish," which produces a darker, richer tone.

FLUGELHORN: In addition I play a Blessing Bb Flugel Horn w/ red brass bell. This instrument can add a smooth, mellow color to any project.

MUTES: Also, I possess a wide variety of mutes, which can add a nice change in timbre and color. I currently possess the following types of mutes:
Cup, Straight, Harmon, Plunger, Bucket, and Pixie

PEDALS: At the moment I use a Piezo-Barrel mouthpiece pick-up, Line-6 DL4, Boss Harmonist HR-2, and MXR Blue-Box pedals to create loops, effects, and desired sounds.

AMP: Lunchbox Mini. Perfect for small theaters, and intimate recording sessions.

KEYBOARD: Yamaha P-35 Digital Piano

MICROPHONE: Beyerdynamic M-160

AUDIO INTERFACE: Audient iD4, Rogue Ameba's LoopBack (Audio Routing)


DAW: Logic Pro X, GarageBand, Audacity

VIDEO PRODUCTION: Final Cut Pro, iMovie

VIDEO EQUIPMENT: iPhone 6, iPad 5th gen, MacBook Pro 2018

AUDIO EQUIPMENT: Bose Companion 20 Multimedia Speaker System, Anker Soundcore bluetooth speaker, MPow H7 bluetooth over-ear headphones

MISC. MUSIC EQUIPMENT: Music Stands (2X), HP Photosmart C4780 printer (for printing sheet music), manuscript books, abundant digital/physical sheet music library



Past Events

I'm very much looking forward to being back at Cornelia St. Cafe, this time with a quartet featuring:

Jonathan Saraga - trumpet/compositions
Anthony Wonsey ~ piano
Rick Rosato ~ bass
Johnathan Blake ~ drums

1st Set: 8-9pm
2nd Set: 9:30-10:30pm
$10 Cover/$10 Minimum

Come to the first set, stay for the second for no additional cover charge!

We will be playing originals and standards for you, and will do our very best to make some good vibes and good music happen.

I hope to see you there :)

Location: SUNY Purchase, Conservatory of Music, Room 0081, 735 Anderston Hill Road, Purchase, NY. 10577, 914-251-6000

Time: 8:30 PM

Details: Trombonist and Bachelor of Music student Mathew Atfield presents his Senior Recital, which will feature am array of musicians, and ensemble formats. We will be playing traditional jazz compositions, as well as original arrangements.

Location: SUNY Purchase, Conservatory of Music, Room 0081, 735 Anderston Hill Road, Purchase, NY. 10577, 914-251-6000

Time: 7:00 PM

Details: Drummer John Hubbell presents his Master of Music recital which features a quartet. We will be playing traditional jazz compositions, however it will be approached creatively, with a sense of innovation.

Location: The Kingston High School, 403 Broadway Kingston, NY 12401, (845) 331-1970

Time: 3:30 PM

Details: Kingston City Schools Jazz Bands are pleased to be hosting a very exciting Jazz musical event in our local community to honor the importance of jazz music in American Culture. We are thrilled to present our guest artist, John Mosca, who is one of the most respected instrumentalists in the world, a brilliant soloist, and one of the best jazz trombonists ever to grace the scene. John is a graduate of Juilliard, and has been actively involved in jazz education for over twenty years. He has served on the faculties of numerous university jazz programs including the Manhattan School of Music, The New England Conservatory, and The University of Connecticut. John has appeared in numerous ensembles and on many records with such great artists as Dizzy Gillespie, Sarah Vaughn, Joe Williams and Stan Getz. For more than thirty years, he has played with the Grammy award nominated, Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, formerly the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Orchestra, and currently serves as its director. He has also performed with countless Broadway musicals and has appeared in the Carnegie Hall Jazz Band. The Hudson Valley Jazz Orchestra (HVJO) is co-directed by Dan and Bob Shaut. HVJO consists of some of the best professional jazz musicians in the Hudson Valley and metro NYC area. Though in its infancy, the HVJO is becoming a premiere ensemble showcasing the high quality of musical talent found within our Hudson Valley while highlighting the national heritage of America?s music. The HVJO?s main function is to be a domestic ambassador of the American art form of jazz through education and performance. April is Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM). JAM is designed by the Smithsonian Institute to draw greater public attention to the extraordinary heritage and history of jazz and its importance as an American cultural heritage. In addition, JAM is intended to stimulate the current jazz scene and encourage people of all ages to participate in jazz. The Kingston Jazz Invitational is daylong series of workshops, master-classes, rehearsals and performances for our local middle and high school students that will pair student ensembles/musicians with the professional jazz musicians of the Hudson Valley Jazz Orchestra. Students from all four Kingston schools? jazz bands attend and all local schools have been invited to participate in this event. The day culminates with a performance of the Hudson Valley Jazz Orchestra at 3:30 pm. The concert is open to the public. Admission: $10 General. Tickets will be available at the door. Email dshaut@kingstoncityschools.org to reserve tickets. The Kingston High School Jazz Ensemble, the premier jazz band in Kingston Schools, has achieved numerous awards over the past 12 years including; 5 consecutive years of achieving the highest level rating (gold with distinction) at the highest level of music (level 6) at New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA.) The JE has been selected to perform at the two largest music conferences in New York State?NYSSMA and NYSBDA. The KHS Jazz Ensemble has performed at countless community events and fundraisers including (but not limited to); Alzheimer?s Association, Kingston Hospital ICU, The Linda Young Ovarian Cancer Support Program, Lion?s Club, Catskill Ballet and the Palmer Center. In 2009 the Jazz Ensemble was selected as a finalist in the Essentially Ellington competition at Jazz at Lincoln Center. The JE was selected from over 1,000 high school jazz bands in North America that began the competition. The KHS Jazz Ensemble under the direction of retired director Bob Shaut had the honor of working with Wynton Marsalis and the entire Jazz at Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra. Kingston?s Cool?s Jazz Festival is the culminating presentation of the jazz program. The Kingston High School Jazz Ensemble and Jazz Band, M.C. Miller Jazz Band and J.W. Bailey Jazz Ensemble will perform in the KHS auditorium at 7 pm on Thursday, April 19. Suggested Donation: $5 general admission and $3 student/senior citizen. This event is made possible by the generosity of the Rosendale Music Festival.

I will be performing with my trio from 8:30 - 11:30. We will play 3 sets with breaks in between. Great food and great vibe here, so please come enjoy yourself!