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Trumpet player Al Strong is well known in the Triangle's growing jazz scene. He is a gifted musician, arranger, and composer; a respected instructor in his role as adjunct professor at NC Central University's Jazz Studies program; and as the co-founder of the Art of Cool Project, a non-profit jazz presenting organization that has been working to expand the audience for jazz in the Triangle since 2011. Strong has had the pleasure of performing for artists such as Brandford Marsalis, Aretha Franklin, Clay Aiken, and Linda Eder. He has also lent his trumpet playing to an array of talent including The Foreign Exchange, Yazarah, Soul Understated featuring Mavis 'Swan' Poole, and Big Daddy Kane, along with a number of others. Strong's debut album, LoveStrong Vol. 1, showcases his distinctly robust sound and musical versatility. It is appealing to both new listeners of the genre as well as jazz aficionados.