The “Wind Wynder”- what a great idea!

Just when you thought that nothing new has been invented to make life easier for a musician, along comes a new idea to make life easier for the musician! I recently ran across this novel and brilliant idea for making pages stay on your music stand during an outside, windy concert. This unique accessory was designed and is being produced by Co- founder Mary Semerzakis-Tolokan. I’m sure that the market for clothes pins will suffer greatly as this device continues to become popular. To get a better idea as to how this works, check out the video below. Co-inventor of…

Civil War Eb Alto Trumpet w/ Allan Dean

Allan Dean is Professor of Trumpet (Adjunct) at the Yale University School of Music and is currently performing with Summit Brass, St. Louis Brass and the Yale Brass Trio. In the early music field he was a founding member of Calliope: A Renaissance Band and the New York Cornet and Sacbut Ensemble. Dean was a member of the New York Brass Quintet for 18 years and free lanced in the New York City concert and recording field for over 20 years before joining the faculty of Indiana University in l982. Upon retirement of the New York Brass Quintet in 1984,…

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The Definitive Guide to Flugel Horn Mouthpieces- Part 1

Earlier, one of our readers commented…..”Interesting article (The Definitive Guide to Trumpet Mouthpieces). You said you would address Flugelhorn mouthpieces, but where? That’s the information I seek! Where do I find that knowledge”? So, even though a little behind in schedule, here is Part 1 in our series. The best explaination I have found for our first post is from our friends at Mouthpiece Express and this is where we will begin. From Mouthpiece Express.com Guide to Flugelhorn Tapers Confused about tapers? We used to be, too! Here’s the scoop on flugelhorn mouthpiece tapers. If you are using the wrong…

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How Good Does A Trumpet Have To Be? Part 2

I was sent this response from one of our other sites which seems to confirm my thoughts on my previous post “How Good Does A Trumpet Have To Be”? Part 1 “By chance I can across comments by Algridas Matonis (Algirdas Matonis) who is a Euphonium player in River City Brass – both of them are ‘big’ in the USA and produce some ‘good stuff’. It seems like AM supports the view that it is possible and practical to produce excellent music on ‘lesser quality’ instruments as demonstrated in this video of him talking and playing a ‘student’ instrument”.

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How Good Does A Trumpet Have To Be?

If you ask most trumpet players this question the answer is usually “I need one better than the one I’m playing on now!” But is this a true evaluation of our current instrument? To fully understand what I am about to say, I will approach this question from two different perspectives; How good does the instrument have to be to satisfy its player? and…… How good does the instrument have to be to make a difference to the listener? How good does the instrument have to be to satisfy its player? Every musician wants to be able to perform with…

Starting Over…again part 6

One of the greatest joys I have experienced while writing this blog for the past 7 years is when readers write in with their own views and opinions. This is a very fine example of such a reader. His name is Felice Sobrero and after viewing my post he left a comment on his experience with the same issue I was covering which was being able to practice in a confined or volume conscious area adjacent to neighbors. Felice graciously agreed to share his more extended experiences with me on his solution to our common problem. I think you will…

What is a Flugel Horn and Do I need to own one?

The flugelhorn, also spelled fluegelhorn, flugel horn or flugelhorn has a long history in European countries but is relatively new to ours. Its popularity in the states probably dates back to the fifties through the use of such well known names in jazz as Shorty Rogers, Kenny Baker, Clark Terry, Chet Baker, Miles Davis, Freddie Hubbard, Lee Morgan, Nat Adderley and Art Farmer. The purpose of the flugel was to give the player an alternative to the edgy, powerful trumpet sound. During the Bebop period (1945-1960) the trumpet was king, but when cool jazz started to gain a following in…

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Solving your Jazz and Legit Mouthpiece Problems

On one day you are playing Brahms in an orchestra and the next you are playing Kenton in a club and the choice of sound is becoming a problem. One requires a soft and gentile timbre and the other a more edgy tone with an increased high range. One solution would be to change trumpets for each situation but at the cost of instruments today, who has that kind of cash. Another possibility would be to attempt to color your tone with your existing equipment but you will find this is only an act of desperation. This scenario was exactly…

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Are You Pushing Or Pulling Your Valves Down?

This may seem to be a strange question to be asking but the answer may determine the proper function and life span of your valves. I have recently been added to the list of unemployed musicians in the Branson, Missouri area. Our show season runs from March through December and due to the fact that we now have some time off, I thought it time to check the condition of my equipment. Due to the fact that I have been experiencing some problems with my first valve, I decided to look it over for any unusual wear or damage. Unfortunately…