While We Are Still Talking About Jazz-YOGI BERRA EXPLAINS JAZZ

Interviewer: "What do you expect is in store for the future of jazz
Yogi: "I'm thinkin' there'll be a group of guys who've never met
talkin' about it all the time.."
Interviewer: Can you explain jazz?
Yogi: "I can't, but I will. 90% of all jazz is half improvisation. The
other half is the part people play while others are playing something
they never played with anyone who played that part. So if you play the
wrong part, it's right. If you play the right part, it might be right
if you play it wrong enough. But if you play it too right, it's wrong."
Interviewer: "I don't understand."
Yogi: "Anyone who understands jazz knows that you can't understand it.
It's too complicated. That's what's so simple about it."
Interviewer: "Do you understand it?"
Yogi: "No. That's why I can explain it. If I understood it, I wouldn't
know anything about it."
Interviewer: "Are there any great jazz player alive today?"
Yogi:  "No.  All the great jazz players alive today are dead.  Except
for the ones that are still alive.  But so many of them are dead, that
the ones that are still alive are dying to be like the ones that are
dead.  Some would kill for it."
Interviewer: "What is syncopation?"
Yogi: "That's when the note that you should hear now happens either
before or after you hear it. In jazz, you don't hear notes when they
happen because that would be some other type of music.  Other types of
music can be jazz, but only if they're the same as something different
from those other kinds."
Interviewer: "Now I really don't understand."
Yogi: "I haven't taught you enough for you to not understand jazz that

Who Is My Favorite Trumpet Player?

This is a question many musicians ask when they have nothing else to talk about.

I was recently asked this question and after careful thought, I came up with a name most of you may not even recognize.

Favorite trumpet player’s names such as Maynard Ferguson, Bobby Shew, Miles Davis, Al Hirt, Adolph Herseth, Wynton Marsalis, “Doc” Severinsen, Armando Ghitalla, Robert Nagle, and equally gifted players first came to mind. But for me at this time in my life, the person who I would rate as my favorite trumpet player would be Doyle Miller.

Most of you are now wondering who this person is and how I decided to list him as my current “most favorite trumpet player” and this post was written to answer that question.

Doyle Miller is a native of Russell, Kansas and holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Education from Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas. Throughout his career, Doyle has performed with musical groups such as Les Brown and the Band of Renown; Tommy Dorsey Orchestra; Harry James Orchestra; Les Elgart Orchestra; Sammy Kaye Orchestra; Russ Morgan Orchestra and Bobby Vinton with the Glenn Miller Orchestra.
Doyle currently lives in Branson, Missouri where he has played in many theaters and shows including The All Hands On Deck! Show; Silver Dollar City – Worldfest; The Rat Pack – A Tribute to Frank, Dean & Sammy; Les Brown and The Band Of Renown; The Rat Pack Is Back! (From Las Vegas); Branson Jubilee; The Magnificent Seven and Swing, Swing, Swing. He has also worked or recorded with celebrities such as Bob Hope; Andy Williams; The Lettermen; Shirley Jones; Marie Osmond; Jimmy Osmond; Merrill Osmond; Mannheim Steamroller; Little Anthony and The Imperials; John Davidson; Jack Jones; Lee Greenwood; The Lennon Sisters; Jan Daley; Gloria Loring; Fred Travalena and the St. Louis Jazz Orchestra. Prior to moving to Branson, Doyle worked for Carnival Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean Cruise Line playing lead trumpet in their show bands touring around the world.

Now that you know what he has done in his musical career in the past and now I’ll tell you why I would consider him one of my favorite trumpet players. It is not from what he has done in the past but what he has been doing for the past four months in our current show, “The All Hands On Deck Show”.

When one of the trumpet chairs opened, I suggested that we bring in Doyle to play lead and I would play the solo chair. We have been performing five shows a week now for months and being able to play second to Doyle has been a blast.

I consider myself an above average second trumpet player and when you are able to play alongside someone who is musical, in tune and consistent as Mr. Miller, it makes your life much easier. Each day when the downbeat goes down, I know exactly what he is going to do and he knows what I am going to do. Intonation is never a problem as well as the balance between the two trumpets. Every articulation is matched because of his consistency and fine musicianship.

To give you another example of working in harmony together, today my first valve froze and I mentioned it to Doyle. Within a few seconds he has the top off the valve oil container at the same time I had my valve removed. We had that sucker oiled, reinserted and screwed down in seven measures. No that is team work.

I can’t count the number of lead players I have worked with and in most cases it was a challenge, for most tend to believe that everyone has to follow them. To some degree this is true but when a lead player lays down the correct notes in the proper style, in tune and every time, the second chair player is in heaven.

Thank you Doyle for playing in our show and for making my trips to the office each day an experience I look forward to.

On Which Paper Is It Best To Print Your Music?

Has this ever happened to you?

  • You have a quick page turn in your concert and the next two pages are stuck together.
  • Under the existing light, you suddenly realize that the notes on the reverse side of your music are showing through.
  • As you quickly turn your page, the sheet gets stuck on the stand and tears in two.
  • While erasing your previous pencil markings from your music, you gouge a hole where your notes used to be.

These are very common situations and I have finally found the solution to these as well as many other problems caused by inferior paper- Staples Color Laser & Color Copier Paper.

My trumpet ensemble, the Branson Trumpet Ensemble has a very extensive library and last year I decided that the paper our charts were printed on was not holding up through average use. Each member of the ensemble has a three ring binder for their music and after a few concerts the pages were beginning to tear out which increased my library maintenance time. I finally found a paper which would last, was easy on the eye, took erasures well and even felt more professional to work with. We are now using this paper for all of our music and have found no faults with the product.

You can find this paper in most Staples stores and it is called “Staples Color Laser & Color Copier Paper”. The numbers you will have to look for are “*96 Bright, 32lbs, letter size, 500 sheets, acid free, item #633213”. If your local Staples store does not have it on the shelf, they would be happy to order it for you.

Advantages for using this paper-

  • It feels like real paper. Every time you turn a page of conventional, light weight  copy paper, you have the feeling that this is cheap and in many cases, you realize that the music you are performing isn’t the original but is a third generation of the original: which you are using illegally.
  • Because of the thickness and weight, the pages turn easily and there are no worries that you will tear the page as you perform.
  • You will not erase through this material no matter how many times you mark your part incorrectly.
  • The brightness of the paper makes the notes stand out for easy reading under all lighting conditions.
  • This paper is more porous and consequently less reflective than normal copy paper which is easier on your eyes.
  • Because it is more porous, the ink soaks deeper into the paper for longer life because of the deeper penetration.
  • Connecting pages together is much easier because of the added weight of each page.
  • The heavier paper handles dirt, oil, water, coffee, etc. better than normal copy paper.
  • Due to the longer lasting character of the heavier paper, your page will last much longer and will never have to be recopied as we sometimes have to do with lighter paper.

Here are a few suggestions when working with this paper-

  • This paper can be used in any printer without problems.
  • If you are storing your music loose in a folder you might consider switching to a three ring binder.
  • Each page can be punched for a ringed binder for easy storage.
  • You never run the risk of your music spilling out as you rush to get on a bus.
  • In a binder, the music is protected at all times.
  • Once you get to the concert, remove all of the music you are to perform.
  • Connecting multiple pages is easy and even several pages taped together can be stored easily in the binder.

Taping and punching suggestions-

Until I purchase a printer that can print on extended paper, I have to use single, letter size sheets which in some cases requires taping sheets together. The best way I have found is to connect sheets together is to use Scotch, one inch masking tape. The one inch is too wide for most of my taping chores but after buying the one inch, I run a razor blade along the middle of the roll and alternate sides of the roll as I peel it off. Boy, am I cheap!

I have found that three short sections of tape work much better than two full length sections of tape. I butt the pages together and place about two inches of tape in the middle of the. Then I flip the music over and place two similar sections of tape on the back side, one towards the top and the second towards the bottom. Do not place the tape from the front in line with the tapes from the back for that will cause a bind when you fold the pages.

After you have taped the sheets together, place them on a punch and add the required holes for your binder. Storing even six pages of taped music in your binder is easy and once you have removed them from your binder for your performance, they will open and close just like commercial sheet music.

The Branson Trumpet Ensemble has been using this paper for two years now and everyone has been very happy with its characteristics. I hope you will try it and achieve the same results.

Christmas Arrangements- Part 3

It’s time again to stock up on your Holiday trumpet arrangements and to help speed your selection along, we have listed just a few!

This post includes only our Christmas Brass Quartets, Brass Quintets and Trumpet Choir

Brass Quartet

The 12 Days of Christmas- Brass Quartet (2 Tpts./2Tbns.)

God Bless Three Gentle Merry Men- Brass Quartet (2 Tpts./2Tbns.)

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas- Brass Quartet (2 Tpts./2Tbns.)

Away In The Manger- Brass Quartet w/ Organ

Free Trumpet Sheet Music- We Wish You A Merry Christmas for Brass Quartet (2Tpt./2Tbn.)

Brass Quartet Christmas Sheet Music Bundle

Gloucestershire Wassail- Brass Quartet (Trumpet 1-2, Trombone 1-2)

Gesu Bambino- Brass Quartet (Trumpet 1-2 / Trombone 1-2)

Mary Did You Know? Brass Quartet Trumpet 1-2 and Trombone 1-2

Free Trumpet Sheet Music- Caroling, Caroling / Brass Quartet (Tpts.1-2, Tbns. 1-2)

O Holy Night- Brass Quartet (Trumpets 1, 2 Trombones 1, 2) w/ Organ

Brass Quintet

The First Noel- Brass Quintet

Brass Quintet Christmas Sheet Music Bundle

Jingle Bells- Brass Quintet

We Three Kings Part #2- Brass Quintet

Do You Hear What I Hear? – Trumpet Quintet

Trumpet Choir

We Need A Little Christmas- Trumpet Octet (Tpts. 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8)

March from Nutcracker Suite- Trumpet Choir (tpts. 1-8)

Angels We Have Heard On High- Trumpet Octet

Mary, Did You Know?- Trumpet Sextet

Mary Did You Know- Trumpet choir (8) w/piano

Let There Be Peace On Earth- Trumpet Choir (8 Trumpets)

Carol of the Bells- Trumpet Choir

Auld Lang Syne- Sometimes refered to as “Old Hank’s Sign”- Trumpet Octet

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen- Trumpet Octet

Toyland- Trumpet Sextet

Christmas Arrangements For Sale- Part 2

It’s time again to stock up on your Holiday trumpet arrangements and to help speed your selection along, we have listed just a few!

This post includes only our Christmas Trios and Trumpet Quartets.

Trumpet Trio

White Christmas- Trumpet Trio

March of the Swingin’ Soldiers- Trumpet Duet /or Trio

Classic Christmas Trio- Trumpet Trio

Feliz Navidad- Trumpet Trio

“O” Stands For Christmas- Trumpet Trio

O Holy Night- Trumpet Trio

Christmas Favorites- Trumpet Trio

Cool Santa Gets Down- Trumpet Trio

Tennessee Christmas- Trumpet Trio

Oh Little Town Of Bethlehem- Trumpet Trio

Trumpet Trio Christmas Sheet Music Bundle

Blue Christmas- Trumpet Trio w/opt. Piano and Percussion

God Bless Ye Merry Gentlemen- Trumpet Trio

Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree- Trumpet Trio w/opt.Bass

All I Want For Christmas Are Teeth- Trumpet Trio

Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)- Trumpet Trio w/opt. Bass

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel- Trumpet Solo / Duet or Trio w/Organ

What Child Is This (Greensleeves)? Trumpet trio with optional Piano

O Holy Night- Trumpet Solo/Duet/Trio/Quartet/ w Organ

The Christmas Song- Trumpet Trio

Trumpet Quartet

Rudolph the Wonder Deer- Trumpet Quartet

Christmas Fanfare- Trumpet Quartet

Charlie Brown Christmas Dance- Trumpet Quartet

Trumpet Quartet Christmas Sheet Music Bundle

God Bless Three Gentle Merry Men- Trumpet Quartet

Christmas Time Is Here- Trumpet Quartet w/opt. Bass

Christmas Medley- Trumpet Quartet w/ opt Bass

We Need A Little Christmas- Trumpet Quartet

Santa Baby- Trumpet Quartet w/optional Bass

Feliz Navidad- Trumpet Quartet

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow- Trumpet Quartet

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas- Trumpet Quartet

Jingle Bell Rock Fantasy- Trumpet Quartet

The 12 Days of Christmas- Trumpet Quartet

Easy Christmas Medley- Trumpet Quartet

Christmas Arrangements For Sale!

It’s time again to stock up on your Holiday trumpet arrangements and to help speed your selection along, we have listed just a few!

This post includes only our Christmas Solos and Duets.

In our next post we will try to get in the trios, quartets and trumpet choir arrangements.

Yes, this has been a very busy year and we hope you can find what you are looking for.

Each link will take you to the page describing the arrangement as well as a recording so that you will know how your arrangement will sound.

Merry Christmas from Branson, Missouri and the Branson Trumpet Ensemble.


For Unto Us A Child Is Born- Solo Trumpet w/ Tracks

20 Of The Most Popular Christmas Songs For Trumpet

Trumpet Solo Tracks Christmas Sheet Music Bundle

Little Drummer Boy- Solo Track

Winter Wonderland- Solo Track

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas- Solo Track

Solo Duet Trio

Bring A Torch, Jeannette, Isabella- Trumpet Solo, Duet or Trio, w/Piano sheet music

Away In The Manger- Trumpet Solo/Duet or Trio (with Organ)


The Ultimate Christmas Duet Collection #2

Jingle Bells- Trumpet Duet

O Come All Ye Faithful- Trumpet Descants

O Little Town of Bethlehem- Trumpet Solo or Duet/w Organ

Christmas Duets for Trumpet- 5 easy duets

Christmas Duets for Trumpet – 5 advanced duets

Joy To The World- Trumpet Duet w/ Organ

“Let It Snow, Let It Snow, and so forth”- Trumpet Duet

O Christmas Tree- Trumpet Duet

Ding Dong Merrily On High- Trumpet Duet w/Solo Track

Christmas Time Is Here- Trumpet Duet /w Solo Tracks

Grownup Christmas List- Trumpet Duet /w tracks

Rudolph Gets Funky- Trumpet Duet

What Child Is This- Trumpet Duet

Trumpet Duet Christmas Sheet Music Bundle

Jingle Bells- Trumpet solo or duet with MP3 accompaniment

Silver Bells- Trumpet Duet

Dixieland Christmas- Trumpet Duet

The ( A) Definitive Collection of Bad Trumpet Jokes

joker-clip-art_434525Q: What’s the difference between a trumpet player and the rear end of a horse?
A: I don’t know either.

Q: What do you do if you see a bleeding trumpet player running around in your backyard?
A: Stop laughing, and shoot again!

Q: How do you get a trumpet player out of a tree?
A: Cut the noose.

Q: What’s the difference between a dog and a trumpet player?
A: The dog knows when to stop scratching!

Q: What do trumpet players use for birth control?
A: Their personalities.

Q: What’s the first thing a trumpet player says at work?
A: “Would you like fries with that?”

Q: Why can’t gorillas play trumpet?
A: Gorillas are too sensitive.

Q: How many trumpet players does it take to pave a driveway?
A: Seven, if you lay them out correctly.

Q: What is a gentleman?
A: Somebody who knows how to play the trumpet, but doesn’t

Q: Why did the chicken cross the road?
A: To get away from the trumpet players

Q: How do you get a trumpet to play triple forte?
A: Mark mezzo piano on the part.

Q: How do you get a trumpet player to play softly?
A: Take away his instrument.

Q: What’s the difference between a trumpet player and God?
A: God knows he’s not a trumpet player.

Q: How are trumpets like pirates?
A: They both murder on the high C’s

Q: Why does a trumpet have three valves?
A: Because trumpet players can’t count to four.

Q: What’s the difference between trumpet players and government bonds?
A: Government bonds eventually mature and earn money.

Q: How do you know when a trumpet player is at your door?
A: The doorbell shrieks!

Q: What did little Johnny’s mother tell him when he said “I want to be a trumpet player when I grow up?”
A: “But Johnny, you can’t do both.”

Q: What would a trumpet player do if he won a million dollars?
A: Continue to play gigs until the money ran out.

Q: How do you improve the aerodynamics of a trumpeter’s car?
A: Take the Domino’s Pizza sign off the roof.

Q: What do you call a lead trumpet player with half a brain?
A: Gifted.

Q: How many trumpet players does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: Five. One to change the bulb and four to contemplate how Louie Armstrong would have done it.

Q: How many second trumpet players does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: None – They don’t go up that high!

Q: Do you play the Trumpet Voluntary?
A: No, my parents made me do it.

The best recording of the Haydn Trumpet Concerto is Music Minus One.

Q: What’s the difference between a trumpet and a chain saw?
A: Vibrato, though you can minimize this difference by holding the chain saw very still.

Q: What’s the difference between a free jazz trumpeter and a terrorist?
A: The terrorist has sympathizers.

Q: What is the range of a trumpet player?
A: It depends: how strong are you, and how much do you want to hurt him?

Q: How many jazz trumpeters does it take to change a light bulb?
A: Never mind- they can fake the changes.

Q: How many trumpets does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
A: What’s a lightbulb?????

Q: What’s the difference between a jet airplane and a trumpet?
A: About three decibels.

Q: Whats the range of a solo trumpet player?
A: About 40 yards if its a “super-light” model.

Q: How do you tell a trumpet player’s knocking at your door?
A: The knock speeds up.

Q: How can you tell a trumpet player’s kids at a playground?
A: They don’t know how to swing.

Q: 4 trumpet players are in a mini van. The mini van goes off a cliff. What’s the tragedy in this?
A: You can fit 8 trumpet players in a mini van.

Q: How many trumpet players does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
A: Zero. They just complain about the darkness until a trombone player does it for them.

Q: Do you know the difference between a trumpet player and a pig?
A: You’ve never seen a pig stay around after a gig to pick up a trumpet player.

Q: Why are trombone jokes so short?
A: So trumpet players can understand them.

Q: What`s the difference between a baroque trumpeter and a dressmaker?
A: A dressmaker tucks up frills.

Q: Why are most trumpet jokes written by trombone players?
A: They seldom get jobs.

Saying Good Bye To An Old Friends


After several decades of working with this great cup mute, it may be time to retire him (her), for newer and more improved models are now available.

Your corks have been replaced at least a dozen times.

Your bottom has been epoxied at least twice and you colors have faded.

The number of scratches, dents and scuffs show a well-used history which includes some of the best (and the worst) bands around.

You have performed on concert stages performing contemporary as well as classical compositions, and if I remember correctly you actually were used to warmup in front of Aaron Copland many years ago.

The many bands you have played for would include the following- Anita Bryant, Barnes Rodeo, Billy Williams Orchestra, Bix Biederbeck Dixieland Festival, Blackstone the Magician, Bob Anderson, Bob Hope, Bob Over Orchestra, Bobby Vinton, Branson All-Star Jazz Band, Brass Transit, Bye, Bye Birdie, Carmen Cavalero, Cedar Basin Dixieland Festival, Derwood Cline Orchestra, Des Moines Big Band, Don Jacoby Orchestra, Farm Progress Show, Ford Motor Corp., Greene Jazz Festival, Holiday on Ice, Ice Capades,International Recording Industry Studio (Dallas), International Shriner’s Circus, International Trumpet Guild, International Water Follies, Jerry Murad and the Harmonicats, Jerry Presley, Jim Nabors, John Davidson, John Deere Corp., Laurence Welk Orchestra, Les Brown, Lipizzaner Horse Show, Mal Fitch Orchestra, Mary Lou Turner, Massey Ferguson Corp., Missouri Trumpet Guild, Orchestra de Salsa, Ray Nobel.Ringling Brothers/Barnum & Bailey Circus, Roy Rogers/ Dale Evens, Royal Canadian Air Force Mounted Police, Sound of Music, State Fair Band of Texas, Steve Lawrence/Eddy Gourmet, Steve Samuelson Big Band, Ted Weems, The Four Freshmen, Tommy Amador Orchestra, Warren Covington Orchestra and are currently doing you job with the “All Hands On Deck Show” in Branson.

What a dedicated friend you have been and to just chuck you for another seems cruel and heartless. But we do have to keep up with the times…. Don’t we?

On second thought, a dedicated friend needs to be justly appreciated and for all the many years and “clams” we have shared, it seems impossible for me to replace you with another. NO! YOU DESERVE TO BE TREATED MORE HONORABLY! I CAN’T DO THIS TO YOU MY OLD, TATTERED AND ABUSED COLLEGUE!

We will be together to the end and when I am at last returned to the ground, it will be my wish to play our last gig together, as true friends should.

You are salvaged once again and for that reason, I have written this memorial to you my original cup mute.

I once had a cup mute that served me well.
It rested so warmly at the end of my bell.
With every note played, as all there could tell
my bettered old mute….Dang! It fell out again!