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Thread: Brass Band Instruments

  1. #1

    Brass Band Instruments

    >>> EDITOR'S NOTE: I MOVED THE BARITONE DISCUSSION TO THIS NEW THREAD <<<

    Can I ask what is considered the big difference between a baritone and a Euphonium in a brass band. I know in the 6th grade i started on a baritone (school provided one when i switched from trumpet) and played the Euphonium when i was able to buy one around the 10th grade. At that time, i did not even know the difference.
    Last edited by davewerden; 07-12-2022 at 12:57 PM.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by rgorscak View Post
    Can I ask what is considered the big difference between a baritone and a Euphonium in a brass band. I know in the 6th grade i started on a baritone (school provided one when i switched from trumpet) and played the Euphonium when i was able to buy one around the 10th grade. At that time, i did not even know the difference.
    Your confusion is shared by many folks in the USA! Please see this article:

    http://www.dwerden.com/eu-articles-bareuph.cfm

    The true British baritone has a noticeable contrast in sound compared to euphonium. It is a good tenor voice, deeper than trombone but shallower than euphonium. It is used to soften & support the trombone sound and/or extend the horns ("tenor horn") on the low end.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
    Alliance Mouthpiece (DC4)
    YouTube: dwerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    Twitter: davewerden
    Instagram: davewerdeneuphonium

  3. #3
    thanks, I read the article. A brass band might want both? I never saw music separate for a baritone and euphonium that i can remember, just treble clef versus bass clef.

    [COMBINING SEVERAL QUESTIONS]

    on my Conn constellation euphonium i have both the forward-facing bell and upright. would one be more in line with a euphonium? the bore is smaller on a 24i/25i


    i meant can one configuration of the conn configurations substitute for a baritone? not sure why someone would be averse to playing one over the other (baritone vs euphonium)
    Last edited by davewerden; 07-12-2022 at 12:58 PM.

  4. #4
    In the British brass band sense, I like to describe the difference between baritone and euphonium as a function of the vowel sound from the instrument. Euphonium is an "ohhhh" sound and baritone is an "ahhh" sound. They are ideally both dark.

    Here's the source of the confusion: the original American name for euphonium is baritone. It's not to be confused with the british baritone. American-style euphoniums like your Conn were smaller and had a different bore profile than the british-style instruments typified by Besson, but they are still euphoniums. In the US we had an instrument that was equivalent to the british baritone, we called it the Bb tenorhorn, but in american bands it fell out of use and was replaced by trombones, whereas british bands added trombones in addition to their baritones.

    Originally in old british band literature the euphonium is the solo instrument (often doubling the melody an octave down from cornet) and the baritone is harmony -- offbeats, etc. Of course, the role of the baritone has grown tremendously since then and now in british brass bands it is a very versatile instrument that plays many roles.

    So:

    1. usually when you see "baritone" in american wind band music it means euphonium. There are a few pieces, usually of british origin, where parts for both instruments are provided and there was intended to be both a baritone and euphonium.
    2. british brass bands almost always have two baritone parts and at least one (but sometimes two) euphonium parts.
    3. the idea that the classic american baritones are hybrid instruments is not correct. these instruments fulfilled the euphonium role in the group, it was just a different style of euphonium owing to regional tastes -- the same way that the french used to use small bore / small bell trombones and the germans used dual bore trombones with large bells. Orchestras and bands across the world have partially homogenized and a lot of these regional differences no longer exist. There are still some exceptions, of course...
    Last edited by bbocaner; 07-12-2022 at 01:14 PM.
    --
    Barry

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by rgorscak View Post
    thanks, I read the article. A brass band might want both? I never saw music separate for a baritone and euphonium that i can remember, just treble clef versus bass clef.
    Perhaps read the article again. The American-style instruments discussed here are euphoniums, though a little smaller than the Besson-type that were around at the same time. However, they have conical bores, which is a clear distinction from British baritones. At the time I wrote the article, American euphoniums had a bore of about .560 vs. Besson's 580. But the Besson baritones of the time had a bore of .515 and had more cylindrical tubing.

    A horn like the Connstellation would not properly fill in for a brass band baritone - it's sound it too round and deep (even compared to the larger-bore baritones made today, which have a bore around .540 if I remember correctly). The bore and taper are technical identifiers, but of course the idea is to have a distinct sound. Brass bands have cornets and a flugel, and those two have a similar relationship to each other as euphoniums and baritones.

    Brass band part are NOT the same for baritone and euphonium. They are quite different. Except for bass trombone, ALL brass band music is in treble clef, transposed for the instruments.

    American publishers would sometimes label the treble clef part "Baritone Horn" and the bass clef part "Euphonium" even though they generally had identical notes to play.

    One exception is Lincolnshire Posy by Grainger. There is a treble clef part labelled "Baritone" and it is written in a way consistent with British brass band writing for baritone. The bass clef part is labelled "Euphonium" and follows British brass band writing for euphonium.

    Does that clear it up?
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
    Alliance Mouthpiece (DC4)
    YouTube: dwerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    Twitter: davewerden
    Instagram: davewerdeneuphonium

  6. #6
    Thanks

  7. #7
    There is also a separate baritone part (TC) for the Holst Suite in Eb. I can remember it from the 1960s, but somehow it seems to have disappeared between then and now. It has been shared in this forum, and I played it a few years ago in a community band performance of the Eb Suite.
    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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