Glenn’s Trumpet Notes

News & Tips for Trumpet & Cornet Students

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Archive for the ‘Musical Events at Home’ Category

9th Annual Trumpet Recital in My Edmonds Home

Posted by glennled on July 9, 2018

How can you stretch out one annual recital and make it last for three weeks? Easy—you split it into two segments. That’s what I had to do this year—the first group of trumpet students came to our home in Edmonds on 26 May and the second group came three weeks later on 16 June. It’s the first time in my 9 annual home recitals that I’ve had to do it. Every other time, we’ve had a morning session and an afternoon session on the same day. This year, some of my students had some conflicting commitments that were unchangeable, so we had to adjust. “All’s well that ends well.”

Even so, we had to make one other adjustment: one student couldn’t make it—he’s 77 years old and had just had hip replacement surgery. He’s a veteran and captain of the Honor Guard of VFW Post 3063 in Ballard. He’s learning to sound bugle calls (see my blog post of 17 November 2017) and was scheduled to play “Assembly” and “Taps.” So I was his surrogate and did it for him. I played fine, and so did all the students in both the May and June sessions. Good job, everyone! “Life goes on.”

This year’s recital was indeed unusual. But every recital is unique. In the May session, one student has been taking lessons with me less than one month; another, 3 years and 9 months; and another, 2 years and three months. In the June session, one student has been taking lessons with me 7 months and the other, three months. To read about and see photos of previous recitals, simply click on the link, “Recitals,” in the footnote below this post.

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

26 May Session

 

16 June Session

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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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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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7th Annual Trumpet Recital in Edmonds, 18 June 2016

Posted by glennled on July 24, 2016

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Photo by Nancy MacDonald

Three students performed at the 7th Annual Trumpet Recital in our home in Edmonds on 18 June, and three more were unable to attend. Of the performers, two are going into 8th grade next fall, and one is going into 9th grade. One began private trumpet lessons with me in December 2013, another in September 2014, and the third in February 2016. Selections included music by Elton John, Tim Rice, John Lennon, Paul McCartney, John Williams, Pat Ballard, Francoise Couperin, and John Kander. Popular pieces were Hedwig’s Theme, Cabaret, and When I’m 64.Jessica Moore - IMG_4844

After the performances, I gave a brief clinic and demonstration of the Herald Trumpet, English Bugle, Getzen Field Trumpet, Cornet, and Trumpet, so that the parents, relatives and friends in the audience could better appreciate the history and complexity of these instruments, as well as the difficulties which students must learn to control in order to master them. Refreshments were served after the recital.

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Christmas Eve, 2015, Features Trumpet, Viola, and Piano

Posted by glennled on February 17, 2016

Christmas Day 2015My wife and I have 9 wonderful grandchildren. One in New Zealand plays the drums. One in Alaska plays the violin, and another there plays the saxophone. One in Bellingham, Washington plays the ukulele. And now, this year, one here in Edmonds is learning to play the viola. My wife plays the piano, and I play the trumpet.

We could have a family septet, but what composer ever wrote music for that combination of instruments and when/where would we ever get together? We need an arranger, and then maybe we could all assemble somewhere for Christmas someday and perform.

We’re traditionalists. Each year after our traditional Christmas Eve ham dinner, we then participate in a traditional program in the living room of our home, reading the prophecy of Isaiah about the coming of a Savior and the story of Jesus’ birth, praying, singing and playing Christmas carols and songs, and opening gifts. That’s when three of us did play this year for the family—trumpet, viola, and piano.

From “The Big Book of Christmas Songs,” I played “O Holy Night,” accompanied by my wife on piano, and soloed “Santa Baby,” showing off my new Getzen trumpet (see my post of 14 December). Our granddaughter played a few pieces on her viola—some solo and some with accompaniment—from the instruction book, “Essential Elements for Strings, Book 1” by Robert Gillespie, Pamela Tellejohn Hayes, and Michael Allen. And while my wife played the piano, all six of us sang from her own beautiful songbook, “Christmas Songs and Carols for a Season of Happiness.” The songbook contains the lyrics to 39 pieces, and she plays the music by memory!

Next year, perhaps we’ll all three play together as a trio. Perhaps someone else will then join us, and we’ll work our way up towards becoming a family septet. Or maybe the other two grandchildren will choose their own favorite instruments and take some lessons so we can become a nonet.

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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5th Annual Trumpet Recital at My Home

Posted by glennled on June 22, 2014

Sarah, Robert, Finn, Glenn Ledbetter, Erik, and Vaughan

Sarah, Robert, Finn, Glenn Ledbetter, Erik, and Vaughan

Fanfare for the Common Man by Aaron Copland was the featured piece on the program on Sunday, 8 June, when my wife and I hosted our fifth annual trumpet recital in our home in Edmonds. Coincidentally, on 25 May, I played the same powerful, dignified piece with the 13-person, brass and percussion ensemble at Alderwood Community Church in Lynnwood (see my post of 18 June 2014).

Copland wrote Fanfare for the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in 1942, shortly after America entered World War II, and it premiered on income tax day, 12 March 1943. As America built up its war effort, the Vice President of the USA called the 20th century the “Century of the Common Man.” Copland borrowed that phrase to entitle his brass ensemble piece.

Aaron Copland, 1900-1990

Aaron Copland, 1900-1990

At the recital, however, we had only the three trumpet parts—no French horns, trombones, tuba, timpany, tam-tam, or bass drum. And the three trumpeters come from different high schools—one at Bothell, one at Juanita, and one at Inglemoor. Later in the program, each played a solo piece. The Bothell High sophomore played “Aire” by Johann Sebastian Bach. The sophomore at Juanita played “Le Tambourin” by Jean Philippe Rameau. And the Inglemoor High junior played “Etude 1” by Sigmund Hering.

In between Fanfare and the older students’ solos, my fifth grader from Morningside Academy played “Ode to Joy” and “Sawmill Creek.” Next came my seventh grader from Hamilton International Middle School, playing “The Victor” by R.M. Endresen and “Riqui Ran,” a Latin-American folk song arranged by James Curnow.

Recitals give parents, relatives and friends proof that private lessons work in helping build musicianship and character.

Various photos were taken by Ping Qian, Leslie Lowell, Nancy MacDonald and Glenn Ledbetter. Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

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“Mele Kalikimaka” Honors Lost Family Matriarch on Christmas Eve at Home

Posted by glennled on January 12, 2013

Glenn Ledbetter plays "Mele Kalikimaka" on his Super Olds Cornet (1954)

Glenn Ledbetter plays “Mele Kalikimaka” on his Super Olds Cornet (1954)

Our family tradition on Christmas Eve includes singing Christmas carols after dinner and before opening gifts. My wife plays piano as we sing, and a few years ago, we added a couple of trumpet solos to the program. This year, I played “Mele Kalikimaka” because on all our minds was the recent loss of my wife’s mother, Ruth, who died peacefully on 12 October. This was our first Christmas without her.

To Ruth, Hawaii was paradise. She and her husband, Mac, first went to Waikiki to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. They always returned annually until he passed away, and then she continued to go back. In all, she vacationed there for 39 straight years! She was a bright spirit, and we miss her so much.

“Mele Kalikimaka” means “Merry Christmas,” and Robert Alex Anderson wrote the song in 1949. Bing Crosby and The Andrews Sisters recorded the song in 1950 on Decca 27228 (78 rpm)/9-27228 (45 rmp). To hear their recording, please see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJhYrC8Rq8w.

For my second trumpet solo, I played “Angels We Have Heard on High,” a traditional French carol.

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Nine Students Perform at Trumpet Recital in Edmonds

Posted by glennled on June 12, 2012

About 40 guests from the Greater Seattle area came to the home of their favorite tutor (me) in Edmonds on Saturday, 9 June, to the 3rd annual trumpet recital featuring my 9 current students. They take lessons from me in their own homes once a week. Eight attend the following schools: Lawton, Crystal Springs, and Tukwila elementary schools; Kamiakin, Kenmore and Skyview junior highs; and Eckstein Middle School. Of these, four students are moving up to Nathan Hale, Inglemoor, and Juanita high schools in the fall. There was a morning and an afternoon session, and each student played two pieces. Refreshments were served after the performances. Most of the music selections come from musicals, movies, the Beatles, and patriotic compositions.  Here is a gallery of photos. Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

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Cornet Solos at Home with the Family on Christmas Eve

Posted by glennled on December 31, 2011

Glenn Ledbetter on cornet

After a wonderful, hearty dinner on Christmas Eve, we carried on our traditional family program: readings from Isaiah and Luke about the birth of the Christ child, prayers, carols, gift opening, and snacks. Meanwhile, about four cameras were continuously flashing and whirring. For music, my wife passed out our colorful booklet of carols (which she produced herself) and played the piano while we sang. Normally, I play one or two tunes on my cornet, too, always with her accompaniment. This year, I soloed. I played “Angels We Have Heard on High” straight as written, but to “Santa Baby,” I added a little fun with some special sound effects using my Harmon (wah-wah) mute in the middle of the piece and a long, quick glissando from G to an accented High G at the end! (Smiles and applause!)

Happy New Year!  😉

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Students Show Off at Annual Trumpet Recital in My Home

Posted by glennled on June 11, 2011

On 11 June, my trumpet students brought their horns, music, parents, relatives and friends to my home for the second annual trumpet recital. Eight of my 9 players were scheduled to play their various solos, four trumpeters in the morning and four in the afternoon. Some of the tunes came from musicals and movies, including “I Whistle a Happy Tune” (from The King and I); “Do-Re-Mi” (from The Sound of Music); “Chim Chim Cher-ee” (from Mary Poppins); and “Pirates of the Caribbean” (from the movie of the same name).

Other songs were patriotic, including “Yankee Doodle,” “You’re a Grand Old Flag,” “America the Beautiful,” and “The Star Spangled Banner.” Still other pieces included “I’m Popeye the Sailor Man,” “This Land is Your Land,” “German Waltz,” “When the Saints Go Marchin’ In,” and “Happy Birthday.”

After each session, refreshments were served. I am proud of all my students for the improvements they have made and the excellent performances they gave this day. Private lessons work! We strive for excellence–“Become Your Best!” is our motto.  🙂

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