Posts for September 2009

September 30, 2009

Woodwind organizations

I recently renewed a few memberships in some of the woodwind-related professional organizations. I like to stay current with as many of these as I can, because I enjoy receiving their publications and attending their conferences whenever possible. Most offer some other benefits like score and book lending libraries, eligibility for a group instrument insurance ...

September 22, 2009

Doubling reed tip from Lawrie Bloom

Lawrie Bloom, solo bass clarinetist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, starts this video talking about his reed break-in process, but spends some time toward the end (start at about 2:45 to cut to the chase) talking about his strategy for doubling clarinet and bass clarinet in a symphonic setting. Mr. Bloom recommends using slightly softer ...

September 15, 2009

Required recordings, fall 2009

I’m requiring each of my applied students at Delta State to purchase a recording of their instrument this semester as a sort of textbook. A number of them have confessed to me that this will be the first such recording they will own. I plan to require a different recording for each instrument each semester, ...

September 8, 2009

Quick tip: learn tenor clef

If you’re going to be serious about playing the bassoon, reading tenor clef is a requirement. If you’re unfamiliar with it, click through to Mike Spark’s website for a quick primer. If you could use a little practice reading the notes, try’s C-clef trainer. Click on “Settings…,” choose “Tenor clef,” and click “OK,” then ...

September 6, 2009

Clarinet pinky fingerings

Recently I discussed the topic of clarinet “pinky” (little finger) fingerings with my woodwind methods class. With all that school band directors have on their plates, it’s not surprising that this topic doesn’t always get taught thoroughly to beginners. It can be a bit of a puzzle to a non-clarinetist, but the important concepts can ...
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