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Thread: When it is time to stop playing?

  1. #11
    When I retired from Army bands 22 years ago, I thought I would stop playing altogether, like many who had gone before me. Not only did that not happen, but I began playing bass trombone 12 years ago, tuba 7 years ago, and upright bass about 3 years ago. I figure if I can't play euph any more, I might gravitate toward one of the other options. But I can't imagine not playing something.
    U.S. Army, Retired (built mid-Fifties)
    Adams E2 Euph (built 2017)
    Boosey & Co. Imperial Euph (built 1941)
    Edwards B454 Bass Trombone (built 2012)
    Boosey & Hawkes Imperial Eb tuba (built 1958)
    Kanstul 33-T lBBb tuba (built 2010)
    Shen 3/4 upright bass (who cares?)

  2. Statistics show that we start to loose lung capacity at sometime between the ages of 20 to 30 whether or not playing a brass Instrumentwould delay the rate of the decline I would like to think so, certainly webrass players are more aware of the benefits of trying to retain good lungcapacity and may regularly do some breathing exercises as well as huffing andpuffing down our horns.
    It is well known that keeping an active brain is importantas we age and learning new passages of music is a good workout for our littlegrey cells.
    Decreased muscle tone comes along with ageing so holdingthose facial muscles in place may be more of a challenge, this might explainwhy some of us old guys can be seen holding a pencil horizontal in our chops.
    In short there are many challenges to be met butit’s great to have a forum we can go to for help and advice


  3. #13
    I want to thank all of you for your very thought provoking responses. It got to me to thinking about which times and instruments I played that I was happier. As an adult I have played tenor trombone, euphonium, bass trombone, and tuba.

    Trombone was my first instrument. Due to an elbow injury long ago that stopped being an option. So if I was going to continue playing it would be valves. The only valve trombones I could find were small bore. I do not like small bore.

    I was happy with the euphonium but the music and position of playing a compensator were not in my comfort zone. I was thinking of getting a Festivo Euphonium. Then I remembered the tubas I had played - Conn 20J and Mirafone 186. Out of all the instruments I have played the Mirafone front rotary valve tuba was the most comfortable. The band I was in need a bass trombone a few years ago so I sold it and played bass trombone until it became too painful.

    I was on the web and saw that Milano Music has two used tubas in my price range - a Mirafone 184 and a Mirafone 186 bell front. Both BBb. I went down to try them. They played really well. Looks - not so much. But that is ok. I like playing in the bass range. I like older instruments which I can afford. If I had the money I would have new instruments. I bought the Mirafone 186 bell front. It has a larger bore vs the 184. I got a deal because it is bell front.

    This has gotten me playing again and I have more options playing tuba. I decided to have a break and just think about it. Time will tell if I decide to switch gain. Maybe that is how I am musically. But I am playing again. Sorry for the long winded explanation. Thank you all for the advice.
    Rodgeman
    Mirafone 186 Recording Bell BBb

  4. #14
    Thanks for catching us up! There are very few topics on the forum that affect only one person, so knowing more about your journey (so far!) is valuable.

    And playing tuba is fun!
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams E3, Denis Wick 4AL (classic)
    Instructor of Euphonium and Tuba
    Twitter: davewerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    YouTube: dwerden
    Owner of TubaEuph.com, DWerden.com

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by adrian_quince View Post
    In one of the groups I direct, I've got about a dozen players over the age of 80 of various abilities, including an 87 year old euphonium player who still manages to sound pretty good. There are some issues with hearing and memory at times, but nothing we can't adapt to as a group. (After conducting a rehearsal with this group, I need to remember to dial back my volume when talking. I've apparently learn to speak very loudly without realizing it.)......
    Adrian - Your comment about dialing back your volume got me to thinking about what we do in the local New Horizons Band, which has many older people of varying hearing abilities. The director uses a wireless mic headset which connects to a couple of speakers on stands. We started this on my recommendation 3-4 years ago (I saw this being done at a New Horizons Band Camp in Washington state), and it works wonders in people being able to hear the director, and the director not having to shout or not being heard. I highly, highly recommend this. Many of the New Horizons Bands around the country do this, and even some other type bands (community, etc. with folks that aren't real old).
    John Morgan
    The U.S. Army Band (Pershing's Own) 1971-1976
    Adams E3 Custom Series Euphonium, Wessex EP-100 Dolce Euphonium, 1956 B&H Imperial Euphonium
    Adams TB1 Tenor Trombone, Yamaha YBL-822G Bass Trombone
    Wessex TE-360 Bombino Eb Tuba
    Rapid City New Horizons & Municipal Bands (Euphonium)
    Black Hills Symphony Orchestra (Bass Trombone), Powder River Symphony, Gillette, WY (Tenor Trombone)
    Black Hills Brass Quintet (Tuba)

  6. #16
    Hey, I'm only 60 and I wear hearing aids (thanks to overzealous trumpets and drums over the years). I can't wear them while playing, though. Too much sound for the little buggers and it sounds like cats scrambling to get out of my ears.

    But directors on the podium who can't speak up? Yeah, it's a problem. The mic thing is a fabulous idea.
    U.S. Army, Retired (built mid-Fifties)
    Adams E2 Euph (built 2017)
    Boosey & Co. Imperial Euph (built 1941)
    Edwards B454 Bass Trombone (built 2012)
    Boosey & Hawkes Imperial Eb tuba (built 1958)
    Kanstul 33-T lBBb tuba (built 2010)
    Shen 3/4 upright bass (who cares?)

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    West Palm Beach, FL
    Posts
    3,139
    A section mate also takes out his aids when playing in band. A flute-player friend of mine recently got new hearing aids called 'ReSound Cala' (Costco). They connect to his iPhone via blue tooth where he can change settings. He's able to dial back for use in band. Says they're working pretty well.

    I've had my hearing checked twice in the past few years. The loss I have can't be helped with aids they tell me. I told them that my wife has to tell me everything 3 times! Her reply was that she can't help me with that.
    Rick Floyd
    Miraphone 5050 - Warburton Brandon Jones sig mpc
    YEP-641S (on long-term loan to grandson)
    Doug Elliott - 102 rim; I-cup; I-9 shank


    "Always play with a good tone, never louder than lovely, never softer than supported." - author unknown.
    Symphonic Band of the Palm Beaches
    When the Saints Go Marching In (arr. Mashima) at ACB Conference Ft. Lauderdale
    Cell phone video of : El Cumbanchero:

  8. #18
    I play with hearing aids. Mine are programable for situation and even location. I have a "tuba" program that eliminates the "screeching" (really feedback) when they are in the normal program. They are adjustable with my smart phone. Although mine are from Starky, a number of friends have gotten similar aids from Cosco. The technology for hearing aids has changed a lot in the last few years. A much broader range of hearing problems are helped now and with a very broad range of options.
    Wessex BR140
    Bunch of Eb tubas

  9. Wessex oldest customer as far as I know was a 93 year old buying a new tuba! It is difficult to put yourself in someone else's shoes, but for me playing tuba has been a continued friend throughout my life since the age of 12 and I cannot imagine ever stopping while I can still draw breath and see the music.
    www.Wessex-Tubas.com
    Customer Services & Chicago Showroom visits: Opus@Wessex-Tubas.com
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    Technical Advice and Parts: Dacapo@Wessex-Tubas.com

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  10. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathantuba View Post
    Wessex oldest customer as far as I know was a 93 year old buying a new tuba! It is difficult to put yourself in someone else's shoes, but for me playing tuba has been a continued friend throughout my life since the age of 12 and I cannot imagine ever stopping while I can still draw breath and see the music.
    Jonathan - agreed and well said!!
    John Morgan
    The U.S. Army Band (Pershing's Own) 1971-1976
    Adams E3 Custom Series Euphonium, Wessex EP-100 Dolce Euphonium, 1956 B&H Imperial Euphonium
    Adams TB1 Tenor Trombone, Yamaha YBL-822G Bass Trombone
    Wessex TE-360 Bombino Eb Tuba
    Rapid City New Horizons & Municipal Bands (Euphonium)
    Black Hills Symphony Orchestra (Bass Trombone), Powder River Symphony, Gillette, WY (Tenor Trombone)
    Black Hills Brass Quintet (Tuba)

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