Faculty Portrait

Contact Information

Name: Mike Rocha

Title: Lecturer in Music

Office Location: Capistrano 457

Email: mike.rocha@csus.edu

Education : MM, Calif. Institute of the Arts

Courses Taught : Applied Music - Trumpet (jazz/classical)


Three-time Grammy-nominated and globally acclaimed trumpeter and composer Mike Rocha started playing the trumpet at age nine. While in junior high and high school, Mike performed with both the California All-State Honor Band and All-State Jazz bands, won concerto competitions, led “The Barkin’ Dawgs” Dixieland band, toured Brazil with the Sacramento Youth Symphony as their principal trumpeter, and toured Japan with the Monterey Next-Gen band as their lead trumpeter.

Mike graduated Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Trumpet Performance from the Berklee College of Music in 2007 and subsequently landed the jazz trumpet seat on the Glenn Miller Orchestra international tour. The tour lasted all of 2008 across 48 states, Canada and Japan. After touring, Mike enjoyed a brief teaching stint at Delta College alongside director Brian Kendrick and pianist Aaron Garner.

One year later, Mike relocated to Los Angeles to pursue his Master’s in Trumpet Performance and Composition from the California Institute of the Arts, graduating in 2012. Notable mentors from whom Mike studied are: Larry Koonse, Darek Oles, John Fumo, Ed Carrol, Joe LaBarbara, and Paul Novros.

After completing his Masters degree, Mike went on to enjoy a robust recording and performance career in Los Angeles. Among the notable artists that Mike has played with are Christina Aguilera, Bob Dylan, Gwen Stefani, Panic at the Disco, Lorde, Gordon Goodwin’s Big (and Little!) Phat Band, where he still holds the jazz soloist seat, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, Nai Palm, Jeff Bernat, Postmodern Jukebox, the John Daversa Big Band, the Alan Chan Big Band, and the Vardan Ovsepian Chamber Ensemble. Mike has also performed at Coachella and the Governor's Ball in New York. While doing all of that, Mike taught trumpet and gave lectures at Occidental College, Mount San Jacinto Community College, El Camino Community College, and MiraCosta Community College, as well as serving as an acting brass coach at Harvard-Westlake High School. In addition, Mike co-led the Lappit-Rocha septet, performing his original jazz compositions all over Los Angeles and culminating with recording their debut album, “First Take.”

Mike, his wife Alexa, and his daughter Violet recently relocated to Lodi, where they currently reside. Mike teaches at the San Joaquin Delta College and can be heard performing all around the Central Valley and Bay Area of California.