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ragtime

In February I finally got around to checking out the monthly gathering of Bitterroot’s Ragtime Society. It looked good and they encouraged me to bring my horn next time. March 5th was next time. I brought my horn. Mom and Missy also came along … my fan club … hadda make sure somebody liked the noises I made. Ragtime is not familiar territory to me. Tunes I have experience with are Dixieland, Swing, Jazz, Big Band and the like. But, Hey, these people let me play trombone! 🙂 I HOPED to play along in a quarter of the music, enjoy it all and end up with some sheet music to play with between now and the next meeting. I was […]

instrumental

In public school 4th grade, kids who “got it” with the plastic flutes the year before were offered loans of real instruments and lessons in their use. Trombone was IT. I turned down all proffered alternatives until a trombone became available. It was the only sound I was interested in making; instrument I wished to play. Many decades later, acoustic bass snuck in as a possible interest. If ever I had to play something other than trombone, I decided the upright bass would be it. Fate delivered me to a place where I have been unable to find people to play my trombone with, but a bass would be enthusiastically welcomed. I still enjoy playing my horns with my ‘band […]

rhythm

There! You can read music.

WHY MUSIC? WHY BAND?

by Tim Lautzenheiser Below is a chapter written for the Teaching Music Through Performance in Band series by Tim Lautzenheiser, published by GIA Publications. While it is directed (specifically) to the band idiom, the essence of the message is applicable for ALL music/arts areas. Author’s note: After three decades of traveling across this nation and around the world visiting music rehearsal rooms, speaking at music conventions, presenting in-service workshops to music teachers, and enjoying the chance to work with our finest public and private school students, it is clear today’s young musicians have a distinct advantage over non-music students as they enthusiastically complete their elementary, middle, and high school careers at the top of their class roster, then they […]

trombone hangers

The best advice serious professional trombone players give regarding storing your horns goes something like this: I have never seen a trombone damaged by falling from inside its case. In other words, the finest trombone stands on the market today are less safe than putting your horn away whenever you are not holding it. But, I play them a lot less if I have to open the case, put them together, then reverse the process when I’m done tootin’ around. Here is my compromise. They are there for ready access and reasonably secure. Yeah, a 9.2 earthquake would likely wreck them, but they would be the least of my worries and probably wrecked in their cases anyway. Besides, even […]

Ham Jam and String Fest

The Bitterroot Amateur Radio Club (BARC) and its members operate several radio repeaters in the Bitterroot. These enable people with walkie-talkies, mobile and home radios to accomplish two-way communication over a wide area from Darby to Missoula and beyond. While the club members have the ability and willingness to expand the repeater network, they are expensive to set up, costing significantly over $1,000 each for reliable off-grid mountain-top units that can do the job. This Ham Jam and String Fest is an attempt to attract donations that might extend the network of repeaters through Conner, up the West Fork and up to Lost Trail Pass. If successful enough, this network could reach Salmon and from there much of Idaho. […]

Celtic Woman

Good friends introduced us to Celtic Woman. The blending of traditional Celtic, classical music, quite possibly the finest performers of their art in the world, with great production and videography make truly awesome videos. The vocals are so clean, clear and pure as to defy description by simple words. Máiréad brings that same mastery to the violin with a physical energy and movement that absolutely defies the sound. I am sure the combination is impossible, but she consistently proves me wrong. Missy and I have seen three of their videos twice … completely awed by all three. The first, titled simply “Celtic Woman” is not available at their website. The second, Celtic Woman A Christmas Celebration while timely for this […]

Conner Combo

I’ve often said that my favorite musical role would be as 3rd trombone in a big band. Northwest Nazarene University (NNU) gave me that opportunity while I lived in Nampa. It was lovely, but didn’t last nearly long enough. My attempt to resurrect the Grangeville big band resulted in a nice little jazz combo where I had to play lead trombone and occasionally assist the tuba player with bass lines. Back down south I formed one and one-half combos in Kuna/Boise, again with me taking turns playing lead trombone. Now happily planted in The Bitterroot for a year and a half I spent one summer as 3rd trombone in a community band, but it was elementary band music, not […]

All About That Bass

While I have no hope of ever singing anything like this, I can still dream of playing bass at least a little. It IS, after all, my second choice for instruments that I treasure hearing and, therefore, want to play. Nevermind all that however, I LOVE THIS TUNE. I have discovered Kate Davis and will definitely be hearing more of her music. Absolutely Outstanding — Kate Davis vocals and bass, keyboards Scott Bradlee, David Tedeschi on drums. This is a great little combo with far and away the best rendition of this chart EVER recorded (IMHO). P.S. Make sure your BASS is turned up when you play this.

Star Spangled Banner – wonderful 2nd verse

My favorite rendition of The Star Spangled Banner is a recording I have from the 560th Air Force Band of the Washington Air National Guard. I think I tripped over this in a thrift store and would love to find a source for more of their work – or even some of this to share. Give a listen to this Star Spangled Banner and, if you are at all like me in this, be awed and thrilled by the second verse – it just gives me tingles. I am in an elite group of people who have a copy of Skyward, A Musical Journey The 560th Air Force Band And you lucky devils can hear my favorite song from it […]

sugar plum fairy

Every once in a while I am stunned by innovation, beauty and talent. Watch a few seconds of this… you will likely watch the full two and a half minutes … unless you are a barbarian.

the hammer’s crashing down

I just ran across a performance that I must share. This one is thanks of the Oath Keepers website. I recommend you click the link in the next paragraph and go there for it, rather than read the version I copied below. It will be a much better presentation for you. However, if for any reason, the link breaks or that site is unavailable, the text and video are available from here. Go to the Oath Keepers page linked below, click on the video to play it, then follow the lyrics below the playing video as he sings and plays his new song. This is one stirring and inspirational song, and very much keyed to the times we are entering […]