Posts in category “Career”

March 20, 2019

Does woodwind doubling prevent you from being the “best?”

My recent post about woodwind doubling has been cited lately on various social media sites to fuel discussions over whether doubling is a good or acceptable pursuit. Many of those arguing that woodwind doubling is a bad idea raise the issue that the “best” players of such-and-such instrument don’t double, and you can’t be the ...

February 7, 2019

What should be on your musician website

It’s cheap and easy to create a website. Any serious freelance musician (or aspiring musician) should have one. This should be a website about you, an individual musician. It should be separate from your ensemble’s website or your academic institution’s website. It should exist long-term, and serve as a sort of permanent address for finding ...

October 5, 2018

Clarifying woodwind doubling goals

Should you be a woodwind doubler? I think it's worth considering exactly what you mean.

August 12, 2018

Frequently-asked questions about woodwind doubling, and their unpopular answers

Q. Should I be a woodwind doubler? A. In most cases, no. If you already feel driven to do it, and have the time and resources to devote to it, then maybe. Q. What’s the trick to getting in enough practice time on all these instruments? A. Figure out what to de-prioritize in your life ...

April 18, 2018

Students and gig pay

Over a year ago I wrote about responding to free or underpaid gig “offers.” A commenter asked a fair question, which has haunted me since: I was wondering how much of this still applies when taking on gigs as a student. I’ve wrestled with this a bit and I’m not sure I have a real answer, ...

February 19, 2018

Interview: bassoonist and inventor Trent Jacobs

Last summer I finally got myself a Little-Jake setup so I could experiment with some electric bassoon playing. The inventor of the Little-Jake, Trent Jacobs, is a performer, educator, and reedmaker, and I’ve linked to his blog posts on a number of occasions. Trent was kind enough to answer a few questions about himself and ...

January 16, 2018

Some useful phrases for gig calls

Here are some phrases that have been useful to me when somebody calls about a gig. When dealing with other professionals (or working through the musicians’ union) mostly these aren’t necessary—the caller should give the needed info unprompted. But many of the gigs in my rural area are one-offs for weddings or school or business events, ...

December 4, 2017

Interview: flutist Tammy Evans Yonce

Flutist Tammy Evans Yonce is an active recitalist, writer, clinician, speaker, contributor to various conferences and professional organizations, and professor at South Dakota State University (plus: she is my former classmate). Her thoughtful blog is a favorite of mine and my regular readers will recall that I have featured her posts on a number of occasions. ...

August 3, 2017

Endorsement deals

First, let’s be clear about this: in an endorsement deal, the artist endorses the product or brand. The product or brand doesn’t endorse the artist. If an artist claims to be “endorsed by” a company, that is incorrect word usage. An endorsement deal means that an artist agrees to be publicly associated with a product ...

May 5, 2017

Interview: Jonathan Tunick, Broadway orchestrator and more

Jonathan Tunick is a show business legend: a composer/arranger/orchestrator/musical director for stage and screen; a collaborator with Stephen Sondheim, Placido Domingo, Barbra Streisand, and too many more to mention; and a winner of many awards. Needless to say, I was thrilled to hear from Mr. Tunick a few years ago, when he contributed some information ...
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