MUSIC - Reginald Cyntje, Trombonist and bandleader


Reginald is from the island of Dominica, began his musical career at age 12, at that time he chose the trombone as his tool of expression with the goal of becoming a great trombone player.

To this end, he has studied at Interlochen where he was exposed to the virtuoso trombonist Christian Lindberg. In 1993 Reginald began studying jazz trombone at Berklee College of Music. During his time at Berklee Reginald performed with well-known international artists.

Since that time, he has performed and/or recorded with world renowned musicians/ poets which include Nasar Abadey, Wayne Andre, Amiri Baraka, Ron Blake, Michael Bowie, Herman Burney, Marc Cary, Benito Gonzalez, Amin Gumbs, Michael Hawkins, Buck Hill, Ron Jackson and Illinois Jacquet to name just a few.

Reginald has released three albums. Fredom's Children: the Celebration (2011), Love (2013) and Elements of Life (2014). He is currently leading The Reginald Cyntje Group and working as a sideman in other jazz, Latin, and Calypso groups.


born on the island of Dominica and raised on St. Thomas, USVI, trombonist Reginald Cyntje has been mixing cultural heritage with Black American Music since the beginning of his formative years.

Growing up in the US Virgin Islands (USVI), he was steeped in the rich cultural music known as Quelbe (the official music of the USVI).

Quelbe was Reginald's introduction to improvised music. One of his favorite Quelbe songs, Queen Mary, has a powerful message set to syncopated rhythm. This song sets the tone for his mission as a musician - to inspire change with music.

With cultural heritage at the forefront and social justice as the message, this passionate performer has "a deep-seated knowledge of Caribbean music and culture which has settled into his jazz trombone playing" (NPR Music).

On April 22, 2014 (Earth Day), Reginald Cyntje released his third album Elements of Life featuring pianist Allyn Johnson, bassist Herman Burney, drummer Amin Gumbs, vocalist Christie Dashiell, steel panist Victor Provost and saxophonist Brian Settles. The album explores the connection between the human being and the elements that nurture us.

In 2013, Cyntje released his sophomore album simply titled Love. The Washington City Paper said Love "is thoughtful and surpassingly gorgeous." After debuting at #3 on the CMJ Jazz chart, Love made it to #10 on the CMJ Top 40 Jazz Chart. The album is a tribute to the human spirit.

As a trombonist, educator and activist, Reginald has performed with great musicians including Amiri Baraka, Dr. Billy Taylor, Illinois Jacquet, Martha Reeves and the Vandellas, Dion Parson and the 21st Century Band, Nicholas Payton, Ron Blake, Terrell Stafford and many others. After sharing the stage with his mentors for many years, Reginald finally released his highly anticipated debut album Freedom's Children: The Celebration in August of 2011.

On his recordings, you can hear the sounds of calypso, reggae, and other African influenced genres which now give his music a unique flavor.

Reginald Cyntje, "blessed with impressive facility and an immediacy of sound" now resides in the Washington DC area (The Independent Ear). Capital Bop views him as "arguably D.C.'s most agile and expressive trombone player."

The concept of his music ministry is to spread love, peace and social justice with each expression.

Reginald is a graduate of the University of the District of Columbia and is currently working on his master's degree at the University of Maryland."
~ website bio


Elements of Life Reginald Cyntje (Self-released)

The trombonist plays down his Caribbean influences

"Trombonist Reginald Cyntje, a proud Virgin Islander, has become gradually less overt in his use of Caribbean musical components. The defining flavor of his first jazz album (2011's Freedom's Children: The Celebration), they're now a subtle seasoning-one among many-in Elements of Life, his third and finest. That's no small feat of restraint when three of his seven band members are Islanders and one of them plays the steel drum." By Michael J. West - WashingtonCityPaper

Amid difficult times, Reginald Cyntje's Freedom's Children insists on optimism

"D.C. trombonist Reginald Cyntje has been active in the area's jazz community for over a decade. Throughout that time he has developed a reputation as one of the region's most creative and hardworking musicians. With the release of his debut album, Freedom's Children: The Celebration, he displays those qualities, and then some - namely, a strong sense of cultural awareness. The sidemen for the release are some of the area's best musicians, with bassist Herman Burney and steel pan player Victor Provost hailing from D.C., and multi-instrumentalist Warren Wolf and drummer Amin Gumbs joining him from the Baltimore area." ~ Luke Stewart - Capitalbop


Wind from 'Elements of Life' by Reginald Cyntje

Reginald Cyntje - Peace