Saturday, March 19, 2016
As we get in older in years, it is natural for the body to change. But the body is not the only thing that changes. We have experienced more of life and those experiences alone can cause huge changes or subtle changes that affect us, the person. Greater knowledge puts us in a very different situation than before we came into that knowledge. Experiences mold us, and what we want as a life goal governs us deeply. This video 8, "Making Music Where It Is," is primarily for older brass musicians (but certainly for the open minded younger person too) and gives valuable tips on how to handle that which inevitably will come.
There is nothing wrong with getting older, even though our culture does not really embrace it and does everything under the sun to make it that if you are 65 you should still be like you're 25. Well, that denies the incredible gift that getting older is. Therefore, youth is just not physical; it is a state of mind. Plus there are many things we can do to keep ourselves physically and mentally fit well into our senior years. I believe that making music where it is, meaning to be open to adapt and find new ways, will promote the music that needs to come out of us now. Perhaps the music we need to hear that we don't' know we need to hear. The video gets into this quite deeply.
Tuesday, March 15, 2016
How we think about anything shows up in our actions, in one form or another. If our attitude is, "This is a boring unimportant part," then it certainly will contain that frequency when it is played. Imagine if the majority of an orchestra thought that about pieces they'd played a lot…. Those pieces would result in uninspired performances, at the very least! In reality, there is no such thing as an unimportant part! Every note, and corresponding attitude of the musician, contributes to the whole of the musical atmosphere and vibrancy -- or lack of vibrancy for that rehearsal or concert.
The title of this video was inspired by my brass orchestral rep class. I love working with them because this example points out how our music-making is directly related to our feelings, thoughts and attitudes.
Sunday, March 6, 2016
Boy, has this topic been the 'buzz' around the trombone world for the past several months! For someone to say mouthpiece playing is bad for you, or not useful, shows they have a lopsided view of the subject and have not come to the realization that different people have different needs. It is that simple. If it works for you, great. If not, then don't do it or discover times where and when it might be useful for you. The dynamic (loud, soft, etc.), in which you play the mouthpiece, can make a big difference in your results. Mouthpiece placement is in interesting topic in itself, and some of that is talked about in the video. This video is meant to encourage people to find out what they need. It is not a 'one size fits all' situation. It is an option, not a question to be answered in a 'yes' or 'no' way. It is a tool for our physical trombone playing development. HAPPY DISCOVERING!