Michael Ray is a trumpeter known for his work with the Sun Ra Arkestra and Kool and the Gang, as well as for leadership of his own ensemble, Michael Ray and the Cosmic Krewe. In addition to his work as a performer, he worked with his friend and Kool and the Gang bandmate Clifford Adams to promote music education. Ray credits his teachers and mentors at Junior 3 and Trenton High School, including Tommy Grice and Tom Passarella, with providing the foundation for his music career.
In 2016, Ray sponsored “Trenton’s First Music Symposium, a day of workshops and master classes designed to help aspiring musicians understand what it takes to succeed in the industry. In this 2016 interview with Jeff Edielstein from The Trentononian, Ray explained why the Symposium was important to him,:
“You hear kids and adults talk about they want to learn how to get in the entertainment industry but don’t have a clue, Anyone who attends the symposium will walk away with a clearer understanding of how the business works and what to expect.”
Cosmic Krewe website