“Trombone Shorty” Andrews (with an authorial assist from Taylor) and illustrator Collier bring to life another compelling, true story of Andrews’ early life.
As a young boy, Shorty loved playing music with his friends so much that they created the eponymous band (so named because they practiced at 5:00 after finishing homework and chores). In this picture-book account, Troy becomes so caught up in playing his own music that he arrives late for the band’s performance and planned parade to discover that they left without him. Disappointed with himself, Troy wonders how he might ever become a bandleader after letting down his own band members. Crestfallen, he journeys through town, looking for his band. On his way, he encounters three New Orleans institutions—musician Tuba Tremé; Queen Lola, Creole chef; and a troupe of Mardi Gras Indians—who help him understand the ingredients for success. Collier’s characteristic collage illustrations effectively represent Troy’s emotional struggle for self-improvement, and the level of detail in the images portrays the liveliness of New Orleans well. Backmatter includes extensive notes from the author and illustrator and information about the Trombone Shorty Foundation, which exists to “preserve the rich musical culture of New Orleans.”
An excellent story about a man who remembers the community he came from and actively works to ensure its future success. (Picture book. 4-8)