‘Why we joined the union’

Volume 116, No. 4April, 2016

Josh Plotner

Josh PlotnerI originally joined AFM Local 9-535 in Boston to play on the Today Show with Meghan Trainor (of “All About That Bass” fame), but it ended up falling through. I moved to New York almost a year ago, and joined Local 802 for benefits like instrument insurance as well as the connections and gig opportunities that the union opens up to me, especially on Broadway. For the moment, I’m hoping to play on Broadway, but I’m also interested in playing in some of the big bands around town. Eventually, I’d like to have my own big band, as well as write and arrange music for other shows, including on Broadway. A favorite recent gig was at the Berklee Performance Center with Esperanza Spalding. When I’m asked what my principal instrument is, I usually answer alto saxophone, but it’s actually hard to say these days. I get called equally for saxophone, flute and clarinet, and it’s hard to say what’s truly my principal instrument.