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General Tuba-Euphonium Blog

  1. Players Endorsing Instruments

    In my conversations with brass players over several decades I have gotten the impression they believe the fact that professional players are endorsing particular brands makes their recommendations and opinions biased. In fact, that is somewhat true. But it's also true that amateur, non-endorsing players may also be biased. We all take care to choose the horn we're going to play, but naturally we have different reasons for our choice(s). It is complicated by the fact that playing a particular brand ...
  2. The Euphonium In Non-Classical Music

    (This article is not meant to discuss the use of euphonium in jazz, but that may be a topic for a future post.)


    One has to look hard to find them, but there actually are examples of a euphonium being heard or mentioned in popular music. I began to notice when I was in high school. First, I knew some of the songs from the musical "The Music Man," including the song "76 Trombones," which mentions euphoniums. And then there was a pop song called "What the World Needs Now (Is Love), ...
  3. New Model of a Great Cleaning Device: QHR Sudser

    About a year ago I reviewed an exciting new instrument cleaning device, the Quick Horn Rinse. It is the invention of Bill Ricker. In my testing it proved a quick and convenient way to clean out your horn.


    Now Mr. Ricker has improved on the original with the Quick Horn Rinse Sudser. As the name implies, this QHR model has a built-in soap dispenser to help you control the flow of soap through the bore.


    Before I write about this new model, let me say that its ...
  4. IEI 2011 Is Coming Up - Don't Miss It

    There is a great opportunity coming up in about a month: the 2011 International Euphonium Institute. If you don't already know about this event, it happens each year in Atlanta, Georgia, and is the creation of American euphonium artist Adam Frey. In Adam's materials he says, "Participants will be immersed in recitals, chamber music, concerts, focus classes, and master classes. Participants will also have private instruction during the week and choose to perform in master classes as well as being ...
  5. Silver Plating vs. Lacquer Finish

    It's a question that comes up very often: "What's the difference between a horn that is silver plated compared to one that is lacquered?" Much of the answer to this question is solidly in the realm of opinion, but here is my particular opinion.

    Overview

    First, it is important to know that most instruments in the brass family are actually made of brass. There are exceptions, but they are relatively few in number; some makers offer a bell made of sterling silver; there are ...
  6. New Sousa Arrangement for Solo Euphonium

    Most of us know John Philip Sousa as America's March King, and rightly so! But Sousa also wrote many other works. When I was in the Coast Guard Band we would occasionally perform one of his suites. There were typically enjoyable and sometimes had themes that were familiar from his marches.


    I recently discovered a reverie that Sousa wrote called Nymphalin. It has a pretty melody, and it struck me that it would work well in a recital or perhaps in a worship service. I arranged ...
  7. Goodbye to an Old Friend: Harvey Phillips (1929-2010)

    Almost everyone in the tuba-euphonium world surely knows about Harvey Phillips. He has had health battles in recent times and passed away this week. He was an inspiration to countless tuba players and other musicians, including me. Here is what Wikipedia has to say about Mr. Phillips:


    "Mr. Phillips is highly-regarded in the musician and tuba communities because his efforts have brought the tuba to a much wider audience and helped to free it from its unfortunate popular image of ...
  8. New Trigger for Sterling Virtuoso Euphonium

    As I have mentioned in the past, the owner of Sterling, Paul Riggett, is constantly looking for ways to improve his brass instruments. Being a small company with limited resources (operating in a less-enthusiastic economy than one might prefer), Paul has had to be creative to accomplish this sometimes. A company this size can't throw money at new machines and tooling every time a new idea or fad springs up. Then again, these days especially, NO company can do that.


    But the Virtuoso ...
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