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Thread: Why not play forever?

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
    Posts
    1,990
    Albuquerque is a good place for it. In the northeast in winter ... not so much.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
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    Sturgis, South Dakota
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    935
    Quote Originally Posted by davewerden View Post
    A "bug-eye" Sprite? Like the one below? Wow - and I thought I had been brave to make a trip like that in a VW Beetle!

    Attachment 6921
    By the way, is that you or some other handsome devil behind the wheel?
    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)

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
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    Sturgis, South Dakota
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghmerrill View Post
    Albuquerque is a good place for it. In the northeast in winter ... not so much.
    Indeed. During the blizzard I drove through (at night, of course), I got behind a big semi rig and stayed "glued" to his bumper for most of a couple hours. I had to pry my fingers off the steering wheel when the weather finally broke. Wife had to go to the bathroom so bad she was not even human when we finally stopped. And the heater (what heater?) sucked. One of the most memorable and forgettable journeys I have ever taken, and I have taken about every journey possible. The audition was "easy" after this.
    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)

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Sturgis, South Dakota
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    935
    This was a duplicate of the post just above. I pressed submit, and got a message telling me to wait 45 seconds, I think, between posts. Interesting, in that it had been well more than that. So I waited, and hit submit again, and presto, two identical posts, making me look somewhat less than the genius I thought I was.
    Last edited by John Morgan; 05-09-2019 at 02:27 PM.
    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)

  5. Thank you all for responding! Seems fairly unanimous. So, follow up: if your career had been with a municipal symphony that didn't boot you out after so many years, would you play forever then?
    Wessex Dolce

    "Suppose we have only dreamed, or made up, all those things -- trees and grass and sun and moon and stars and Aslan himself. Suppose we have. Then all I can say is that, in that case, the made-up things seem a good deal more important than the real ones." - Puddleglum in "The Silver Chair"

  6. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by lzajmom View Post
    Thank you all for responding! Seems fairly unanimous. So, follow up: if your career had been with a municipal symphony that didn't boot you out after so many years, would you play forever then?
    Very possibly.
    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

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Sturgis, South Dakota
    Posts
    935
    Ditto, gotta keep playing. I have no plans now to abandon the several groups I play in. I plan to play as long as I "can" play well enough to be a contributing asset rather than a detrimental nuisance.
    Last edited by John Morgan; 05-14-2019 at 09:55 AM. Reason: Additional Thoughts
    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)

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Central North Carolina
    Posts
    1,990
    In such a case, it's not that simple a decision -- even if you decide on conditions and criteria for ceasing to play. I give you two examples.

    In the early-90s I played (tuba) with a local and quite good community band. There were good players in each section who could "anchor" the section and support good performances. There was a single euphonium player who played what I believe was a Besson 4-valve compensating horn. He was great -- I mean really excellent. Even though he had a very demanding job that often took him out of town, he always knew the music and made every effort (including engineering his schedule as much as he could) to make the rehearsals. I stopped playing (for a variety of reasons) between about 1994 and 2009.

    Fast forward about 15 years and I returned to the band. The euph player was gone. He'd decided to stop playing, they said. Then at one of our concerts at a local a retirement community, there he was. Looking pretty much the same, wearing the same old leather bomber jacket, hair with a lot more white in it. I asked him why he wasn't playing any longer. "I just got to the point where I can't play at the level I could before, and at the level I want to in order to be happy with my playing. So I stopped." And he's not the only musician I know who's made a similar decision. But anyhow, I play in a different band now.

    In the same band -- second time around -- there was a trumpet player. In his 70s. Mostly since he comes to rehearsal all the time (and most others don't) he de facto assumed the "first chair" position and always played either the 1st or 2nd parts. He has no sense of pitch, can't play in tune, and can't hear that he's not playing in tune. A few years ago (when I was still playing with that band), we had a quintet that played a number of the simple pieces out of the Canadian Brass "medium difficulty" Dixieland book. It was pretty dreadful. He had a solo in "Closer Walk". After our gig, a friend of his came up to him and said (with intended irony) "You know, I don't think I've ever heard it played quite like that." I don't want to be that guy. I never played with a group that included him again (although he's not the only trumpet player for whom I have this rule).

    I don't want to be THAT guy. I'm not that guy -- yet. But there will come a time. I think I'll know when it is, but I think I've got several years left. Then maybe it's time to switch to the electric bass or maybe percussion. Play FOREVER? No, not really.
    Gary Merrill
    Wessex EEb Bass tuba (Denis Wick 3XL)
    Mack Brass Compensating Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J9 euph)
    Amati Oval Euph (DE N106, Euph J, J6 euph)
    1924 Buescher 3-valve Eb tuba, modified Kelly 25
    Schiller American Heritage 7B clone bass trombone (DE LB K/K9/112 Lexan, Brass Ark MV50R)
    1947 Olds "Standard" trombone (Olds #3)

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    West Palm Beach, FL
    Posts
    3,124
    Well said Gary. A section mate and I agreed about 20 years ago to tell each other when we should just hang it up - just in case we don’t know ourselves.
    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:

  10. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by ghmerrill View Post
    In such a case, it's not that simple a decision -- even if you decide on conditions and criteria for ceasing to play. I give you two examples . . .

    *snip*

    "I just got to the point where I can't play at the level I could before, and at the level I want to in order to be happy with my playing. So I stopped."

    *snip*
    Gary, this post really hit home. I'm approaching my mid-70s, and I have reached the point where I am having to re-evaluate my performing in public, especially in bands. I never miss practices of the two bands in which I'm currently playing (see my sig). I learn the music, and I do well in the rehearsals, but for some reason I am unable to put together a decent performance on the concert stage. I mean, seriously, what serious musician gets lost in the Chaconne of the 1st Suite in Eb? I did, just a couple months ago. This kind of thing has been going on for the past several years.

    So I am looking at dialing back on my participation. I have 95% decided to resign from the Huntsville band after our big July concert. The 120-mile round-trip commute has become uncomfortable, especially since much of the driving is in the dark (and this year, frequently in storms), but the more important reason is that I just don't see myself as playing up to the same level as the rest of the band. They deserve better than I seem to be able to deliver. I have also 95% decided to skip IET this year, but in this case the more important reason is that my wife's health has deteriorated to the point where she needs pretty much 24/7 personal monitoring, and as of now, we don't have anyone lined up to stay with her. But that's a different issue.

    The community band is local, and operates at a somewhat more relaxed level, so I have no plans to drop that any time soon, but I am seeing the same problems in those concerts -- lapses in concentration and silly errors.

    Bottom line -- I don't want to be That Guy, but that's what I see myself becoming.
    David Bjornstad

    1923 Conn New Wonder 86I, Bach 6 1/2 AL
    2018 Wessex EP100 Dolce, Denis Wick 4ABL
    2013 Jinbao JBEP-1111L, Denis Wick 4AM
    2015 Jinbao JBBR-1240, Denis Wick clone mouthpiece of unknown designation
    Cullman (AL) Community Band (Euph Section Leader)
    Brass Band of Huntsville (2nd Bari)

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