November 21, 2017

Hercules stand clip modification

I made a small modification to my Hercules instrument stands so I could clip them onto my instrument cases for easier carrying. The stands all have this same yellow sort of teddy-bear-head piece on the bottom: Remove the nut from the center of the bear’s forehead: I bought a handful of these. They are almost ...

November 9, 2017

Be suspicious of instrument bling

If you are considering buying the newest, hottest instrument, accessory, gadget, etc., it’s worth asking yourself a few questions: Is this item made out of materials that are usually used for fine jewelry or the dashboards of luxury cars? How likely is it that the most visually-attractive materials also happen to have the ideal acoustical ...

November 4, 2017

When you’re too sick for a lesson

Sometimes I have students cancel their lessons due to seemingly very minor, manageable health concerns (physical or mental). Other times students drag themselves to lessons when they are clearly miserable and contagious. The better approach is clearly somewhere in the middle, but my newest college students are usually living away from their parents and the ...

October 31, 2017

Favorite blog posts, October 2017

Hand-picked high-quality woodwind-related blog posts from around the web, October 2017 edition.

October 28, 2017

Sample woodwind methods syllabus

Shortly before the beginning of fall and spring semesters, I usually get a few emails from new university professors and adjuncts looking for advice and resources on teaching woodwind methods courses. I’m happy to hear from folks, but thought it might be helpful to make available a generic syllabus based on how I teach my ...

October 18, 2017

Connecting observations to techniques

For instrumental music teachers' feedback to be useful, it needs to connect an observation to a technique.

October 9, 2017

Getting past frustration and burnout

Every musician (and music student) goes through periods of frustration and burnout. But there's no one-size-fits-all solution.

September 30, 2017

Favorite blog posts, September 2017

Hand-picked high-quality woodwind-related blog posts from around the web, September 2017 edition.

September 19, 2017

Preventing accidents with pencil marks

Why spend practice hours trying to remember a flat here or a trill key there when I can solve the problem permanently and in a matter of seconds with a quick marking? Why risk getting momentarily distracted and missing an entrance when a few judicious cue notes can provide a helpful reminder?

September 7, 2017

Jazz recital videos, August 2017

This year I played all jazz at my Delta State University faculty recital. Program and some selected videos are below. I’m very much a part-time jazz player, so it was fun to spend the summer trying to get my chops in shape to play tunes in a variety of styles on a variety of instruments. ...
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