Favorite blog posts, April 2014

Favorite blog posts, March 2014

Recommended reading from the woodwind blogs in March:

Favorite blog posts, February 2014

Here are some of my picks for some excellent woodwind-related blog posts from last month.

Enjoy!

Favorite blog posts, January 2014

Here’s what’s worth reading from the woodwind blogs in January:

  • Woodwind doubler Steve Moffett suggests taking a break now and then.
  • Oboist Patty Mitchell reminds us that playing with a pianist means needing to know your own part and his or hers.
  • Helen Bledsoe weighs in on the debate about how register changes are made on the flute. I don’t entirely agree with her, but she makes some interesting points, as do the flutists in the videos she shares. (For more on this, see my previous post and accompanying PDF cataloging some of the, er, hot air surrounding this topic.)
  • Clarinetist Adam Berkowitz takes practicing to the next level.
  • Bassoonist Christin Schillinger shares some ideas about ongoing development as a musician, plus some metronome games.
  • Woodwind doubler Josh Johnson does a review of the Ridenour Lyrique bass clarinet. I’m sharing this one because I think it’s a well-written and thoughtful review, and because I think high-quality instruments made from alternative materials are a welcome next wave in woodwind manufacture. As a side note, I recently purchased one of these basses for my university clarinet studio and have spent some time playing it, and my experience with the instrument basically matches Josh’s.
  • Oboist Cooper Wright seeks to raise standards in his teaching studio.
  • Woodwind doubler Michael Grant concludes(?) a 12-part marathon of long posts describing his experience playing in the pit orchestra for a local musical theater production.

Just when I think I’ve got every single woodwind-related blog in my feed reader, I stumble onto a dozen more. If you’re writing good stuff and think you might have escaped my notice, let me know!

Favorite blog posts, August 2013

Read these excellent mostly-woodwind-related blog posts from the past month, and thank me later:

Favorite blog posts, June 2013

Some of the best woodwind-related stuff I’ve read this month:

Enjoy! If you or one of your favorite woodwind bloggers writes something especially awesome in July, drop me a note and I’ll give it a look for next month’s list.

A few woodwind blogs you should be reading

Photo, alcomm

If you’re a woodwind player and avid blog reader, you’re likely already following some prominent and popular bloggers like oboist Patty Mitchell (oboeinsight), flutist Jennifer Cluff, and clarinetists David Thomas (The Buzzing Reed) and Marion Harrington.

I read and enjoy all of these, but I would also like to suggest a few others that are particular favorites of mine. These are ones that I think have a somewhat smaller readership, although there’s not a good way to know that without asking nosy questions. So I could be wrong, but I’m guessing that some of these may be new to you. Check them out, and let us know in the comments what else you’re reading.

Also, read to the bottom for a couple of tips on reading blogs like you know what you’re doing.

In no particular order…

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Oboist on the Supreme Court? part II

I posted last week about Diane Wood, the federal judge and oboist who is a candidate to fill a soon-to-be vacant seat on the US Supreme Court. (Unsurprisingly, Patty Mitchell, prolific blogger and online curator of all things oboe-related, also picked up the story.)

Yesterday the LA Times ran an op-ed by Meghan Daum, herself a recovering oboe player, entitled “The Supreme Court could use an oboist.” Here are the good parts:

The oboe isn’t just an instrument; it’s a way of life. … Playing the oboe means living your life entirely at the mercy of tiny wooden double reeds that crack at inopportune moments (weirder and more awful yet, you’re supposed to make them yourself as though you were a 19th century artisan). It also means blowing so hard into them that you risk a brain aneurysm every time you try to hit a high D. It also means you’re a huge nerd.

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Recommended: Jennifer Cluff’s flute blog

If you aren’t reading Jennifer Cluff’s blog, I highly recommend surfing on over and spending a few hours: www.jennifercluff.com/blog/

Ms. Cluff’s blog gets my vote for being the most useful woodwind-related blog currently on the web, with long and in-depth posts about flute playing, including, sometimes, answers to readers’ questions. There is really excellent stuff here for beginners and very advanced flutists alike. I just finished reading her latest post, on excess movement in flute playing. Ms. Cluff’s posts are sporadic but always worthwhile, so subscribe to the RSS feed if you’re cool like that.

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