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General Interest

  1. Christmas Music from The U.S. Coast Guard Band

    Here is a YouTube playlist with a few numbers from a special live concert the Coast Guard Band did in 1985. Our guest for the evening was Tony-Award-winning singer/actress Tammy Grimes. The selections include 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, White Christmas, Russian Christmas Music, and a special arrangement of God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen, written by the Band's former arranger and narrated with the Biblical story of Christmas.

    Coast Guard Band Christmas Concert Selections
  2. Cornet Soloist David Daws, Now Switching to Euphonium

    David Daws was a very successful and talented cornet soloist with the Salvation Army's International Staff Band. You can hear examples of his cornet playing here:

    Videos of Cornet Soloist David Daws

    But he has some scar tissue on his lip from a previous injury, and that is making it increasingly difficult to play the cornet to the standard he desires. So he made the decision to switch to euphonium, which will not be hampered by that ill-placed scar tissue.

  3. Finding a College Teaching Job 101

    "What do you want to do when you grow up?" is a question commonly asked of children or young teens. But it also comes up for college students and adults, although it's expressed differently. The job market varies from good news to bad news, sometimes without much notice, and competition for one's desired job can be very tough indeed. Careful planning is important; by the time you are in college you need to get serious about your future.

    Having taught brass at two state universities, ...
  4. Veterans' Day - Hooray for Hollywood (of Days Gone By)

    Keeping in mind that November 11 is Veterans' Day, it seems like a good time to mention some of our Hollywood heroes who were also heroes in real life. There aren't many instances (in my limited research) where famous actors joined the military to fight in the Vietnam War or the Gulf War(s). But in World War II (and even Korea) things were different. Here is a partial list:

    Alec Guinness (Doctor Zhivago, Star Wars)

    Operated landing craft on D-Day for the British Royal ...
  5. Find Hidden Treasures on eBay

    If you use eBay, you may sometimes notice that not all sellers are good spellers. In the past I have searched for a couple words that are not easy for everyone to spell: euphonium and severinsen (i.e. Doc Severinsen). So I try various mis-spellings to see if one is listed that way, but it is hard to guess how someone might butcher the spelling.

    Not to fear! If you like to find bargains on eBay, computer technology is coming to your rescue. There is a website that lets you type ...
  6. Watch Out for Scams Via Shorted URL's

    Pasting long URL's (web page addresses) into an email or message box can be problematic, so many people use URL shortening services, such as, to make these addresses very short. If often use, which turns the address of my previous blog post from this:

    to this:

    Much shorter and more convenient. However, ...
  7. 65th Anniversary of D-Day, June 6, 2009

    (Courtesy of the First Amendment Religion Clause blog at - used with permission)

    On June 6, 1984, President Ronald Reagan gave a speech commemorating the 40th anniversary of the D-Day invasion. He was in France, on the site of the invasion.

    President Reagan was not afraid to invoke the name of God. He was not ashamed of our past. In his speech he said:

    "It was the deep knowledge -- and pray God we have not ...
  8. Turning the Tables on Facebook

    Recently I have gotten notices from Facebook friends about a list of 25 things. The idea is to create a list of 25 things about yourself and post it. That's cute enough, although I haven't made my own list (and might not). There is a tongue-in-cheek article on MSNBC that lists 25 things about FACEBOOK. It's worth a read:

    25 random things about Facebook
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