Glenn’s Trumpet Notes

News & Tips for Trumpet & Cornet Students

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“Showtune Favorites” Trumpet Show at Chateau Pacific Retirement Community in Lynnwood

Posted by glennled on April 18, 2018

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Glenn Ledbetter’s “Showtune Favorites” trumpet show , Chateau Pacific Retirement Community, Lynnwood

Trumpet shows at retirement communities are unusual. More often, the residents are treated to piano, guitar, or flute music and singers. But after I performed a one-hour show entitled “Showtune Favorites: Hit Songs from Musicals and Movies” on 29 March for an audience of about 40+ in the Fireside Lounge at Chateau Pacific in Lynnwood, Andrea Uchytil, the Life Enrichment Director, said to me, “We want you back soon!”

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Andrea Uchytil, Life Enhancement Director, Chateau Pacific Retirement Community

Before the show, she had warned me, “People come and go during these shows.” But there was very little of that. People hummed and sang along to songs from The Sound of Music, Porgy and Bess, Casablanca, South Pacific, My Fair Lady, The Music Man, Fiddler on the Roof, Hello Dolly, and more. And they chuckled or groaned at my jokes. I performed at Happy Hour (3:30 p.m.), and indeed, it was a happy time for all of us.

I used three horns, two mutes, and three mouthpieces during the show: my Super Olds cornet (1954), Getzen Eterna Severinsen trumpet (c. 1977), and Jupiter JPT-416 Pocket Trumpet (2000). IMG_4983

Meanwhile, I enjoyed learning about Chateau Pacific Retirement Community (see http://www.chateau-pacific.com/ and https://www.facebook.com/Chateau-Retirement-144233238701/ ). It is located near the intersection of State Highways 99 and 525 in north Lynnwood.

Chateau Pacific was built in 2000, and is 4 stories high. The community has the capacity of 147 apartments, including the Memory Care units which can accommodate 24 residents. The Independent and Assisted Living units are integrated throughout the whole community. Units for Respite Care are not available on a regular basis.

There are five basic floor plans. Counting the variations of those plans, there are actually 15 different layouts, as shown on the website:

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Chateau Pacific Retirement Community, Lynnwood

  • Studio, 1 Bth – from 294 to 431 sq.ft.
  • 1 Bdrm, 1 Bth – from 457 to 738 sq.ft.
  • 2 Bdrm, 1 Bth – from 821 to 834 sq.ft.
  • 2 Bdrm, 2 Bth – from 854 to 895 sq.ft.

The Photo Gallery at http://www.chateau-pacific.com/senior-living/wa/lynnwood/photo-gallery contains 20 photos, showing the rooms, common areas including indoor pool and fitness room, garden, patio, fireside lounge area, game room, and library reading room.

Photos by Brian Seguin, Gary Walderman, and Chateau Pacific. Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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Music Soirees at Home with Family From Edmonds and Anchorage

Posted by glennled on April 3, 2018

The merry month of March brought us together with our three musical grandchildren in our home. One Friday night (9th), our 12-year old granddaughter tucked her viola under every-person-should-play-the-violin-300x249[1]her chin and played for my wife and me the concert music performed by her 7th-grade orchestra at Meadowdale Middle School in Lynnwood. That prompted us to play our own instruments, too—my wife (piano) and me (trumpet).

Then two grandkids from Alaska flew down to stay with us (14th-17th) during their school’s spring break. One, a 16-year old girl, has played violin in the orchestra, and the other, a 15-year old boy, plays saxophone in the band at Dimond High School. Both take private lessons. She brought her violin, and he brought two saxophones and two bagpipes. One night when the viola player came over to visit, all four of us performed solos for her entertainment. images

To top it off, the boy came with me twice to Skyview Middle School in Bothell to play with the 5th-grade kids whom I teach there. On one of the mornings when I teach beginning brass, he sat in with his saxophone among the 23 trumpeters and four trombonists. The next morning, when the full band (about 65 members) practiced, he demonstrated for them both the sax and bagpipes, and then he sat in with his sax.

What could be better than that, folks?!

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My New Jupiter Pocket Trumpet

Posted by glennled on March 31, 2018

 

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Jupiter Pocket Trumpet JPT-416

We’ve been travelling more than ever in the past few years, and each time we return, it takes me awhile to regain my embouchure strength, stamina, power, and slotting control. For years, I would take along my mouthpiece and/or my P.E.T.E. (Personal Embouchure Training Exerciser—please see http://www.warburton-usa.com/index.php/pete).  My intent was to maintain as much embouchure fitness as I could while away, but I missed the many benefits (such as eye-to-hand coordination) of actually playing. A pocket trumpet is specifically designed to fix this problem. I’ve wanted one for a long time.

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L to R: Getzen Eterna Severinsen model 900S, made in c.1977; Jupiter Pocket Trumpet, JPT-416, made in 2000; and Super Olds Cornet, made in 1954 and given to me by my parents as I became a freshman in high school band

Then recently, an excellent trumpeter in Edmonds posted on Facebook a picture of herself playing her pocket trumpet while on a cruise. Enviously, I commented that I want to buy one for myself. Well, in late February, she contacted me and said she was going to sell it—would I be interested in buying? We set an appointment for a tryout. In short, I liked it very much and bought it on 7 March.

It’s a Jupiter model JPT-416. She inherited it when her Dad passed away in 2016. He was a trumpeter also and often sounded “Taps” at Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, Washington. She said he purchased it new in 2000, so I am now the third owner. It came with a case and a Bach 1-1/2C mouthpiece. I’m thrilled! It’s in beautiful condition and plays so well. Of course, this model has now been superseded. What is the MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) for the current model, JTR-710? Jupiter informs me that in 2017, it was $1,159.

Before this, I had played only one pocket trumpet, and it gave me fits. I had a great deal of trouble with slotting. I splattered notes all over the place. My embouchure settings from playing my Super Olds cornet and Getzen Eterna Severinsen trumpet simply did not translate to that pocket trumpet. Also, I’d always been warned that many pocket trumpets play out of tune and produce poor tonal quality. So I was concerned.

But I had no such troubles playing this Jupiter. It played easy, open and free, with a solid sound in all registers. My slotting was right on. I used a tuner to check whether the intonation was erratic—I found that it had no more variability than a good quality trumpet. Its clear lacquer finish was impeccable. So I bought it right then and there.

You can bet that on our next trip, it’s going into my suitcase (along with my practice mute)!

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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40th Trumpet Student Comes from Queen Anne Elementary in Seattle

Posted by glennled on March 28, 2018

What do you do as a parent when your child is in 5th grade, wants to play trumpet, and attends a school where there is no band program? This parent rented a horn and started teaching him some music on her own last January. But he quickly adapted so well and got so good that she soon realized that what she was teaching him using the piano at home was not teaching him the trumpet. little-einsteins-quincy[1]

So she found me on the internet through Lessons In Your Home, http://www.lessonsinyourhome.com. We began with his first lesson on 6 March, using the instruction book, Progressive Beginner Trumpet, by Peter Gelling (see  https://www.amazon.com/CP69122-Progressive-Beginner-Peter-Gelling/dp/1864691220). When I first listened to him play, I found that he already has a solid tone, strong sense of rhythm, and a range up to C on the staff—things that it takes many 5th graders in band about 6 months to develop.

My 40th trumpet student is an enthusiastic, eager boy who will turn 11 this summer and is multi-talented—he loves sports, too! His eyes are bright, and his smile is ready and wide. Some techniques come quickly and easily to him. His mom says he loves music—he whistles and sings a lot. She says he needs challenges, responds to goals, and likes structure and assignments. (That sounds like a good formula for success, doesn’t it?) But at Queen Anne Elementary in Seattle, he attends a 45-minute music class only once a week. There are a few trumpeters besides himself, but “it’s not exactly band.” It’s a music program that the school started just this year.

So, here we go! Taking private lessons involves a lot of practice, and practice requires a lot of repetition. That can get old—gotta keep it fun. Along with his excellent disposition and talent, does he also have patience and tenacity? How can I help him handle obstacles and frustration? The instruction book we’re using is well-suited for him. And my motto is printed on my business card—“Become Your BEST!” Let’s make it happen.

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Trumpeters at 2018 WMEA All-State Music Concerts in Yakima

Posted by glennled on March 23, 2018

Congratulations! Sixty-six trumpeters made WMEA All-State this year. They were spread among 8 different groups: Jazz Band (5), Wind Symphony (8), Concert Band (18), Wind Ensemble (8), Symphony Orchestra (6), Chamber Orchestra (3), Junior Baker Band (9), Junior Rainer Band (9). X-IMG_4905 (2)

All-State recognition is awarded by the Washington Music Educators Association (WMEA)—see http://www.wmea.org. On Friday-Sunday, 16-18 February, WMEA hosted six All-State Concerts in Yakima, Washington

Students apply in the fall for All-State selection and submit an audition recording which is then judged and ranked by a screening committee. Next, the All-State Group Managers assign each selected student to an appropriate ensemble, orchestra, symphony, or band. This year, Mike Mines was Group Manager for the All-State Jazz Band. Others included:

  • Mark M. Schlichting, Symphony Orchestra
  • Chase Chang, Chamber Orchestra
  • Naomi Ihlan, Wind Symphony
  • Andrew Robertson, Concert Band
  • Dan Lundberg, Wind Ensemble

Junior All-Staters come from grades 7 and 8. All-Staters come from grades 9-12. In early January, concert music is sent to those who are selected.

Did you ever wonder where all these trumpeters typically come from? Probably not. But I did. Would you think that Seattle might dominate? Or Bellevue, Tacoma, Everett, Bellingham, Vancouver, or Spokane? Here are the 2018 statistics.

The 48 high school all-staters represent 39 different schools. Ten students came from 7 cities in Eastern Washington, including three from Spokane. Thirty-eight students came from 24 cities in Western Washington.

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ACC Orchestra trumpeters, “New Life of the Land,” Dec 2017 (L to R): Rob Rankin, superb Principal; Corban Epp, Washington All-State Jazz Band (2018); Glenn Ledbetter, Texas All-State Band (1958). Photo by John Crozier.

Schools in Bellevue, Redmond, Tacoma, and Spokane produced three trumpeters each for a total of 12 (25%). Nine schools placed two trumpeters each for a total of 18 (37.5%). Seattle schools were among 18 schools which placed one trumpeter each for a total of 18 (37.5%).

The 18 junior all-staters represent 13 different schools, all located in 9 cities in Western Washington. One school produced five all-state trumpeters—Pacific Cascade Middle School in Issaquah. One of these made the Junior All-State Baker Band, and four made the Junior All-State Rainier Band. Imagine that—five stellar trumpeters in the same middle school band—holy cow, that’s amazing! Congratulations to Philip Dungey, Director, PCMS Bands, himself having a Master’s Degree in Trumpet Performance and Music Education and the Principal Trumpet in the Northwest Symphony Orchestra.

As I wrote in my blog post of 17 February 2012 (see Archives in left column), I really want one or more of my trumpet students to make All-State Band or Orchestra someday. “I want to help someone become the best he or she can be!”

Corban Epp, 4-time WA All-State trumpeter

Corban Epp, Lead Trumpet, Washington All-State Jazz Band, 2018

Among the 66 trumpeters, I have a connection with only one—Corban Epp, a senior at Glacier Peak High School, Snohomish. I had the privilege of playing twice with him and Rob Rankin, a retired Boeing Engineer who is the superb principal trumpet in the Alderwood Community Church Orchestra. We performed together in two Christmas productions, “All I Want for Christmas” (2016) and “New Life of the Land” (2017). Corban played a jazz solo in the former musical.

In Corban’s freshman year, he made All-State Concert Band. As a sophomore, he participated in the All-State Symphony Orchestra. In his junior year, he was selected for All-Northwest Band, and of course, he was chosen for the All-State Jazz Band this year. At the Jazz Band concert on 16 February, Jay Ashby conducted five pieces on the program. Corban played lead trumpet on four of them, and Alessandro Squadrito of Snohomish High School did so on the other. Corban played two solos in the program—one in the song, “El Final Del Verano [End of Summer],” by Armando Rivera, and the other in “Fill in the Blank Blues” by Rosephanye Powell, in which Corban had a solo battle with the whole trumpet section!

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

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My 39th Trumpet Student Is a North Creek High School Freshman

Posted by glennled on January 13, 2018

My 39th trumpet student is no stranger to me—I taught him a few years ago in 5th and 6th grade bands at Skyview Jr. High School (now a middle school), and twice he has 0511-1007-0317-2348_Cartoon_of_a_Guy_Playing_a_Trumpet_clipart_image[1]sounded “Echo Taps” with me, first on 2016 Memorial Day and again on 2017 Veterans Day. Now, as a freshman, he is the lead trumpeter in the Symphonic Band and Jazz Band at the new North Creek High School in Bothell. (Please see my posts of 22 July 2016 and 17 December 2017 in the Archives column to the left.)

Our first private lesson was on 8 January 2018. He plays basketball and will run track in the spring, but he has a 2-month window in January-February where he is not overwhelmed and has time for weekly trumpet lessons. His goals are to increase his range and stamina and improve his ability to read rhythms, especially in jazz. So I had him order two excellent instruction books:

  • Twenty-Seven Groups of Exercises for Cornet and Trumpet, by Earl D. Irons
  • Complete Jazz Trumpet Book, by Mel Bay

When the lessons cease, he can continue to improve on his own, and when he wants to resume lessons, I’ll be ready to help.

To enlarge the clip art, simply click on it.

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Christmas Eve Celebration at Home, 2017

Posted by glennled on December 31, 2017

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Homemade book of Christmas lyrics

Our family has an elaborate, celebratory Christmas Eve program. First, a bountiful dinner. Then, a spiritual program about the birth of Jesus Christ and his significance to us and the world. Next, a trumpet solo of a Christmas carol by me (this year, “O Come All Ye Faithful”), followed by a sing-along of more carols and songs, accompanied by my wife on the piano. After that, gift presentations and openings. Then, a reading of “Twas the Night Before Christmas,” followed by a “midnight” snack. Finally, we empty our stockings of their small “stuffer” gifts and decorate the gumdrop tree.

There is time for both solemnity and frivolity, mixed with love and gratitude. All this we did on Sunday, 24 December 2017.

Music belongs in any celebration. If you play and/or sing at any level, include it in your own celebrations of holidays and birthdays. Play your trumpet for your family. It’ll make them happy…you’ll see.

Hope you had as much joy and fun as we did!

To enlarge the photo, simply click on it.

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“Holiday Inn” at Fifth Avenue Theatre, Seattle

Posted by glennled on December 30, 2017

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“Holiday Inn,” a favorite American musical that is based upon a 1942 movie of the same name, starring Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire, ends its run at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle tomorrow. It’s been playing there since 24 November. My Seattle family members and I went to see the performance on 16 December, and loved it, as we knew we would.

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5th Avenue Theatre interior

To me, the most memorable of its 20 songs, written by Irving Berlin, are “White Christmas” (1942), “Easter Parade” (1933), “Cheek to Cheek” (1935), “Blue Skies” (1926), “You’re Easy to Dance With” (1941), and “Be Careful, It’s My Heart” (1942).

In the orchestra pit, Caryl Fantel was the conductor, and the trumpeters were Brad Allison and Paul Baron—the same two who played the musical, “Room With a View,” about which I posted a blog article on 6 June 2014 (see “Archives” in left column). They’re true pros.

For a spectacular virtual tour of the 5th Avenue Theatre, please see http://www.gotyoulooking.com/1fifthavenuetheatre/mht.html.

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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8th Annual “Wreaths Across America” Ceremony at Evergreen-Washelli in Seattle

Posted by glennled on December 29, 2017

Air Force Master Sgt. Shanda De Anda salutes the wreath on which she just placed a flag (2)

Air Force Master Sgt. Shanda De Anda salutes the USAF wreath. Photo by Alan Berner, The Seattle Times.

On Saturday, 16 December 2017, a crowd gathered at Veterans Cemetery at Evergreen-Washelli in north Seattle to participate in the Wreaths Across America (WAA) ceremony, along with 1,422 other participating locations nationwide. The ceremony is held annually on the 3rd Saturday in December.

Locally, it was the 8th annual WAA event, hosted by the Navy Wives Club of America (NWCA), Totem 277 (Seattle to Burlington), with Lorraine Zimmerman the emcee.
The guest speaker was Col. Anthony D. Babcock, USAF, Commander, 62nd Maintenance Group, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington.

At Arlington National Cemetery, more than 75,000 volunteers placed 244,700 wreaths (one for each marker there). It was the largest crowd since the tradition began in 1992. A network of hundreds of volunteer drivers trucked nearly 500 truckloads of  more than 1,565,000 remembrance wreaths to every state in the union.  Other dedicated volunteers committed countless hours to conduct this coordinated event that helps accomplish WAA’s mission to “Remember, Honor, and Teach.” Please see the WAA Official Facebook page and its website, http://www.wreathsacrossamerica.org/, as well as http://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil.

VFW Post 1040, Lynnwood, supplied the Color Guard and Honor Guard (rifle team and bugler). I sounded “Taps” on my Getzen bugle at the close of the ceremony. The Post’s website is http://www.vfw1040.org.

For an 11-photo slideshow with captions by Alan Berner, The Seattle Times, please see https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/seattle-area-fallen-veterans-honored-in-wreaths-across-america-ceremonies.

For more information on both WAA and this local event, please see my past blog posts of:

  • 30 Dec 2016
  • 5 Feb 2016
  • 28 Apr 2015
  • 9 Jan 2013
  • 16 Dec 2011

These photos are courtesy of Alan Berner, The Seattle Times. Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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Elementary (5th Grade) Band Concert at Skyview Middle School, Bothell

Posted by glennled on December 25, 2017

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5th-Grade Elementary Band at Skyview Middle School

The Beginning Band at Skyview Middle School presented its first concert on Thursday morning, 14 December, at about 8 a.m. About 100 parents, relatives and friends attended. The 68-member band is comprised of 5th graders from Crystal Springs, Canyon Creek, and Fernwood Elementary Schools in the Northshore School District. They played Christmas songs, including “Jingle Bells,” and several others, sometimes as full band and sometimes as individual sections.

Ben Fowler teaches flutes, Matt Simmons teaches woodwinds, and Jane Lin teaches percussion and also is the music teacher at Crystal Springs Elementary. The section which I teach is Brass Instruments (trumpets and trombones). It is the largest group in the band—25 trumpeters and 5 trombonists—one of the best at this stage of the school year that I’ve taught in 7 years.

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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