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Thread: Baritone or Euph - vague inquiry

  1. Baritone or Euph - vague inquiry

    I'm a trombone player, and I've dabbled in the valved instruments, but never really settled on anything. I've got a tuba, but I'm not sure I'm going anywhere with that. I've had a Wessex Dolce, but sold that for some reason. I've owned those marching valve trombone things, and liked them but I've got a pinched nerve, and couldn't hold it out in front of me. I think I need something that I hold closer to my body, a little more ergonomically friendly, but still useful if for nothing else than to just practice valves.

    I'm not sure I have an ideal, or a real goal in this search, but I'd like to get something probably used, something that could stand in for a bass trombone in a pinch. That would seem to mean 5 valves, which I don't think exists. Is there such a thing as an F baritone? Is that just really called a tuba?

    Also, is there any big difference between a baritone and a euphonium that might interest a trombone player?

    King 2280 or real 3+1 compensator?

  2. #2
    The 2280 is not compensating, although it does have a 3rd-valve kicker that would help on some notes. But for low Eb, for example, 1-4 is sharp and 12-4 is flat (the same is true for all non-compensating euphoniums). For much euphonium literature that can be a non-issue, but for covering a tuba or bass trombone part it could be more of a hassle. BUT the 2280 is wonderfully responsive in that low register, more so than a compensating euphonium. Of the non-comp euphoniums, the 2280 would be one of the best choices for a big sound down low.

    If you need a more dependable chromatic scale in the low register, a compensating euphonium is the answer. There is a good choice for a compensating euphonium with front valves (like the older American baritone-euphoniums I saw in most bands while growing up). This is the Wessex Festivo and it is a nice horn for a reasonable price. It would be more comfortable to hold because your right arm is at a comfortable angle and stays fairly close to your body.

    https://wessex-tubas.com/products/fe...uphonium-ep104
    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

  3. Hmmm. I had always focused on the intonation part of compensation. I forgot about the extended range aspect of it. So compensating euphs can play C and B below the staff? I wondered why I didn't see more 5 valve euphs.

    No comment on euphonium vs baritone?

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by hyperbolica View Post
    No comment on euphonium vs baritone?
    Not sure what to say! Baritone is NOT going to work well for bass trombone parts. Otherwise it depends on where you'll be playing and on the sound you want.

    Check this out. I'm talking about a solo within a band piece. It is written for a baritone horn, meaning the British baritone horn, not the hybrid American design. I play an excerpt from my recital where I do the excerpt on baritone. They I talk about playing the piece and demonstrate on euphonium.

    https://youtu.be/u4FVzOPh694



    You could also view the whole recital, where I perform (and demonstrate) on euphonium, baritone, and double-bell euphonium. The latter, on its large bell, will let you know what the American hybrid horn sounds like (double-bell euphs are regular euphoniums with a small bell and extra switching valve added):

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVT3...I3A8GOe99dCF9m
    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. Wow, thanks for that! I really do like the sound of the baritone. Much more trombony. If it doesn't play low, what's the purpose of the 4v comp baritone?

    Anyway, the recital helps me understand the baritone and the double belled instrument better. Really a great demonstration of both instruments. Thanks again for the links!

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by hyperbolica View Post
    Wow, thanks for that! I really do like the sound of the baritone. Much more trombony. If it doesn't play low, what's the purpose of the 4v comp baritone?...
    Not sure what you mean by "if it doesn't play low". A 4 valve compensating baritone plays the same notes that a 4 valve compensating euphonium plays. The 4 valves can help by providing alternate fingerings as well as providing the ability to play notes below low E natural (bass clef) down to pedal Bb. But if you are looking for an instrument to stand in for a bass trombone, the euphonium has more gravitas than a baritone, and I think would be a much better choice.
    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)

  7. #7
    My comment about playing low on the baritone had to do with you mentioning you might play bass trombone parts on it. The 4-valve baritone will be pretty stuffy down in that range and won't have the punch you might want with a bass trombone. Compensating horns have a lot of twists & turns; the smaller baritone bore makes them stuffier. A larger euphonium is a better experience for playing in that bass-trombone realm.

    Since you come from trombone, think about taking a .500 bore tenor trombone and fitting a trigger (or even a double trigger) on it. You could play all the same notes as a bass trombone, but you would have to work very hard at it and they would not sound the same.
    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

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by hyperbolica View Post
    Wow, thanks for that! I really do like the sound of the baritone. Much more trombony. !
    It's really not supposed to be "trombony" - it's supposed to be a horn-like sound. There have only been a few different models of 4-valve compensating baritone made:

    Besson 956
    York 3056
    Besson 2056
    Wessex BR-144

    Of those, I think the Wessex is the only one where the compensating loops are actually the right length and it's capable of actually playing all the way down to B. The Besson 2056 is close and can be lipped down. The 956 and 3056 the compensating loops are about half the length they should be and it just can't really do the extended range all the way down to B.

    But it really can't belt out the low register like a bass trombone or even a tenor trombone can. There's just too much resistance and the bore is too small. I find the fourth valve to be mostly useful for technique, but having some of the extended range is handy since there is so little solo repertoire for baritone, it helps you steal cello, bassoon, euphonium literature.

    Here's a solo I played a few years back which is a bassoon piece, played on a Besson 2056. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GtU9YzobqTk
    --
    Barry

  9. Ok, well, I pulled the trigger on a Festivo. It sounds like that has the best combination of things I'm looking for. Thanks for all your input.

  10. #10
    I think that's a great choice given your requirements! Enjoy!
    --
    Barry

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