Music Career

by Warren Roche

I was formerly a trumpet player.  I did my Bachelor's Degree at The University of Southern California and my Masters at Arizona State.  I also did some arranging, conducting, teaching, producing and contracting. 

I played Principal Trumpet in the Orange County Symphony (now the Pacific Symphony) and the Phoenix Symphony as well as a few others. I briefly went out on the road playing lead trumpet with Aretha Franklin, Lou Rawls and a few others.  I went out conducting for Connie Stevens and did eleven months in Waikiki conducting for Don Ho.  

In between all this, starting in the late fifties until I quit the biz in 1980, I did jingles (radio and TV commercials), TV shows, movies, opera and probably played on at least a thousand records.  Most of the records were forgettable and I only remember a few that I did.  I also worked at MoWest, MoTown's L.A. studio, from the time they opened it in 1972 until i hung it up in 1980.

The usual routine was that we would record four songs in each three-hour record date or "session".  We would most often do all the songs for an album in two or three sessions.  So, for example, when I recorded September for Earth, Wind and Fire, that was during two sessions over two days where I played with the other trumpet players Oscar Brashear on one day and Bobby Findley on the other, recording about eight tunes for the album that September was a part of.  I remember September because it was so challenging and for the sad fact that the contractor, Ben Barrett, made a mistake and didn't put me on the roster and I never got paid or credited.  At the time, I was so busy I never caught the oversight until I noticed years later that I wasn't getting residuals for the hit song being reused in movies, etc.  By then it was too late.

 I remember Can't Get Enough of Your Love because Gene Page, the arranger, forgot to write the trumpet parts.  Bud Brisbois, the other trumpet player, and I had to play the lick Barry White sang for us when he would cue us from the recording booth.

Listed here are a few records that I remember doing or for which I received a "re-use" payment i.e. you get paid when the recording is reused for a movie, TV, a commercial or when it is "sampled" into a new song, etc.  To this day I am still being surprised by receiving a re-use check for a song I don't recall recording.  Anyway, here are a few.  Perhaps you'll recognize some of them.


Barry White

  • Can't Get Enough of Your Love
  • Oh Love, We Finally Made It (Sampled in Twenty G's by KRS-One)
  • Never, Never Gonna Give You Up

Marvin Gaye

  • Trouble man (Sampled in FT by Brolic)
  • After the Dance (Sampled in Get Retarded by Cannibus, Play On Playa
  • by Nas and With Me by De La Soul)
  • Life’s Opera (Sampled in Get Down by Cam'Ron)
  • Cleo's Apartment

Earth, Wind and Fire

  • September (from the I Am Album)
  • After the Love Has Gone
  • Boogie Wonderland (with The Emotions)
  • In the Stone
  • Can't Let Go
  • Let Your Feeling Show
  • ​Star
  • Wait
  • ​You and I

Diana Ross

  • Touch Me In the Morning
  • My Hero Is a Gun (Sampled in Stop Being Greedy by DMX)

The OJ's

  • She Used To Be My Girl

Smokey Robinson

  • Tears of a Clown

Boz Scaggs 

  • You Make It So Hard (and the rest of the Slow Dancer album)

Bill Withers 

  • She's Lonely (Sampled in Different Kind of Lady by Benzio)
  • Hello Like Before (Sampled in Bridging the Gap by Black Eyed Peas and
  • in One For The What, Two For The Where by Kick the Can Crew)

Eddie Kendricks 

  • Each Day I Cry a Little (Sampled in God Gave Me Style by 50 Cent, Fan
  • Mail by Az, I Tried by Geto Boys)
  • Time in a Bottle (Sampled in You Made Me by Harlem World W Mase)

Edwin Starr

  • Easin’ In ( Sampled in Crime Story by DMX)
  • Runnin' (Sampled in The Bidness by Snoop Dogg)
  • Big Papa (from Hell Up in Harlem)

The Commodores

  • Mary, Mary (Sampled in Hey Fred by Rehab)

Tower of Power 

  • So Very Hard To Go

Hues Corporation 

  • I Caught Your Act (and the album from those sessions)


  • Whodunit
  • More Than a woman

Al Wilson 

  • Show and Tell
  • La La Peace Song

Rose Royce

  • Car Wash
  • I wanna Get Next to You
  • I'm Going Down

Michael Jackson

  • With a Child’s Heart (Sampled in Watch Me by Little Brother)

The Miracles 

  • Give Me Just Another Day (Sampled in Movin On Up by 50 Cent and Mr. 17.5 by Young Jeezy)
  • Where Are You Going To, My Love (Sampled in The Turn by Method Man)

Freda Payne

  • Band of Gold
  • Bring the Boys Home

Willie Hutch

  • I Wanna be Where You Are (Sampled in Can't Hide From Luv and What You Made Of by Mary J. Blige)

Lamont Dozier

  • Album:  Out Here on My Own

Jimmy Jackson

  • Something's Burning
  • You Say You Love Me More
  • Romeo and Juliet

Frankie Crocker

  • Album:  Frankie Crocker and the Heart and Soul Orchestra

T-Boy Ross

  • Album:  Changes

The Olympics

  • Looking for a Love

Ben E. King

  • Let Me Live in Your Life (Sampled in Love and Appreciate by Murs)

Aretha Franklin

  • Break it to Me Gently

Also albums for Jack Jones, Shirley Jones, Barry Manalow, Tennessee Ernie Ford, Don Ho, Rod McKuen, Dennis Wilson, Leon Russell, Fifth Dimension, Nancy Wayne

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