However nobody in his family played a musical instrument, Erik van der Heijden (1992) started playing the trumpet at age eight. Soon he started playing at the local marchingband in Mijdrecht. After a few years he started studying with jazz trumpeter Diederik Ruisch, who advised Erik to have lessons with Angelo Verploegen at the Utrecht Conservatory. After studying for five years and having additional lessons with Rik Mol, Marc Scholten, Toon Roos, Willem van der Vliet and Ruud Breuls, he graduated in june 2015.
Erik plays with a lot of different groups, including his own jazzgroup, The Metropole Academy, Knarsetand, de Amsterdam Bigband, The Re:Freshed Orchestra, Gallowstreet Brassband, La Fundacion, Def P and the Beatbusters, Loungeband Maison Tonale and many more. In 2012 he founded Horns on Fire. Apart from that he teaches and is a bigband conductor.