Glenn’s Trumpet Notes

News & Tips for Trumpet & Cornet Students

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Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

“A Baby Changes Everything” as Christmas Nears

Posted by glennled on December 18, 2011

Today, I got to play 2nd trumpet in the church orchestra that I like so much. At the 7:20 a.m. rehearsal before the first of three Sunday church services, the Worship Director called out the next song—“A Baby Changes Everything.” Quietly, the lead trumpeter quipped, “We don’t do baby changes,” and a French horn player added, “No more baby changes, never again!”

And then we rehearsed one of the loveliest songs ever written about the coming of the Christ child. The arrangement we played was by David T. Clydesdale and is available through Word Music (see http://www.wordmusic.com/item/080689886270). The concluding lines are “My whole life has turned around, I was lost but now I’m found. A baby changes everything, yeah, This baby changes everything.”

It was written and composed by Tim Nichols, Kim Wiseman, and Craig Wiseman. Faith Hill made it a #1 hit in 2008. To see and hear her sing it, please see:

Think about this special baby—can you name any other man who has ever had a more profound, widespread, long-lasting impact on humanity and human history?

We also played several hymns and Christmas carols. The jazz arrangement of “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” by Tom Payne was especially good (see http://www.praisecharts.com/detail/arrangement/2132).

For my four other posts about playing in this church orchestra, simply click on Church Music at the beginning of the paragraph below this post.

Posted in Church Music | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Sacred Christmas Sounds—SPU’s Concert at Benaroya Hall in Seattle

Posted by glennled on December 11, 2011

On 28 and 29 November, thousands of people started this Christmas season by attending the 12th annual concert at Benaroya Hall presented by Seattle Pacific University (SPU) called “The Sacred Sounds of Christmas.” The program divided into two parts: one, “The Promise Made” (Advent and Annunciation), and two, “The Promise Fulfilled” (Incarnation and Celebration).

The choir members processed down the aisles through the crowd to the stage, singing “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel,” which always chokes me up: “O come, Desire of nations, bind in one the hearts of all mankind; bid thou our sad divisions cease, and be thyself our King of Peace.” And on from there went the splendid concert to start the blessings of the Christmas season, 2011. ‘Tis a joy to be a believer in these past 18 years after living the previous 34 years as an agnostic. In 1994, I gave up “If it is to be, it’s up to me,” for “Thy will be done.” It’s a Good Life!

Posted in Professional Concerts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Perfect Christmas Gift: A CD of Christmas Music Featuring the Trumpet

Posted by glennled on December 9, 2010

So you like the trumpet and you like Christmas, right? Then put ’em together and either (1) give a CD to someone for Christmas or (2) add a CD to your own Christmas-gift wish list so that someone can give it you. Not just a CD of beautiful Christmas music—make it a CD that features great trumpeters playing great Christmas music!

Through the internet, I’ve conducted an informal poll, asking other trumpeters from around the world to name their favorite Christmas CDs featuring the trumpet. Here are the results (not in priority or genre order):

  • Canadian Brass, “A Very Merry Christmas CD” (2010)
  • Canadian Brass, “Christmas Tradition” (2007)
  • Canadian Brass, “A Christmas Experiment” (2007)
  • Canadian Brass, “Noel” (1994)
  • Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass, “Christmas Album” (2005)

    Herb Alpert's "Christmas Album" cover

  • Tine Thing Helseth, “My Heart is Ever Present” (2009)
  • Rick Braun, “Christmas Present” (1994)
  • Chris Botti, “December” (2006)
  • Doc Severinsen, “Christmas with Friends” (1991)
  • Doc Severinsen, “Merry Christmas from Doc Severinsen” (2000)
  • Phil Driscoll, “Heaven and Nature Swing” (2000)
  • Boston Brass, “The Stan Kenton Christmas Carols” (2005)
  • Wynton Marsalis, “Christmas Jazz Jam” (2009)
  • Playboy’s “Latin Jazz Christmas: A Not So Silent Night,” featuring Arturo Sandoval (2001)
  • Al Hirt, “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” (2000)
  • Harry Connick, Jr., “When My Heart Finds Christmas,” featuring Roger Ingram (1993)
  • Philadelphia Brass, “Festival of Carols in Brass” (1991)
  • Philadelphia Brass, “Christmas in the Grand Tradition” (2010)
  • The Airmen of Note, “Cool Yule” (2009)
  • The Airmen of Note, “A Holiday Note from Home” (2005)
  • Tom Kubix Big Band, “A Jazz Musicians Christmas” (2002)
  • James Morrison, “Christmas” (2000)

If you have a favorite not listed here, please click on “Leave a Comment” below this post, give me the artist and title, and I’ll add it to the above list.

If you want to learn more about these favorites and even listen to excerpts from some of them, simply copy the bulleted item, paste it into a search engine box, and hit “search.” You’ll find lots of results that link you to websites featuring that item in some way.

And I wish you and yours a Very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, with God’s many blessings!

Posted in Selected Trumpet Music | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Newest Student from Lynnwood Attends School in Texas!

Posted by glennled on November 27, 2010

Have you heard of the Marine Military Academy? Neither had I when I got an email from a parent in Lynnwood inquiring about private lessons for her son, a trumpeter, coming home from Texas for vacation during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. At first, I wondered, does “marine” refer to the navy, merchant marine, oceanography, biology, or what? No, none of the above—it’s the U.S. Marine Corps, of course! We arranged four one-hour lessons while he’s home in November, and I now have my 13th student.

The Marine Military Academy (MMA) is in Harlingen in south Texas, only about 11 miles from the Rio Grande River and the border with Mexico.  Forty-five years ago in 1965, it was established as a private college preparatory school for boys, grades 8-12 (see www.mma-tx.org). It is the only Marine prep school in the USA, and the typical enrollment is about 350-400.

My student is 17 and a senior. As a cadet at MMA, he plays in the school band. Three bugle calls get used regularly in the daily/weekly routine of school life: “Attention,” “Adjutant’s Call,” and “Taps.” For Pass in Review, the band plays the stirring march by John Philip Sousa known as “Semper Fi”—that’s short for Semper Fidelis (Latin, meaning “Always faithful”, the motto of the Marine Corps). And they play the moving “Marine Corps Hymn” (Halls of Montezuma), too, among many other pieces of music. For next year, he’s now considering three universities in Washington, Illinois, and Texas, and the Naval Academy in Maryland.

His dream is to play trumpet in The United States Marine Band, known as “The President’s Own” (see www.marineband.usmc.mil/). God bless the Marines and all our military and all our veterans, way back to the Revolutionary War, 1776-1783.

Trumpeters in “The President’s Own” Marine Band

Freedom is not free. It’s a universal, human desire, and its costs, for every generation on this precious globe, are high. In these Thanksgiving holidays, I pray he lives his dream, God willing.

Posted in New Students - Intro Posts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

6th-Grade Soloist Prepares to “Nail It” at Christmas Choir Concerts!

Posted by glennled on November 15, 2010

When you’re chosen to accompany the choir at a Christmas concert, you’ve gotta practice your trumpet and be ready—especially when you’re a 6th grader and the music is written in the key of A (with three sharps) and the ending note is High A above the staff! And that’s how it came to be that I now have my 12th trumpet student. Besides being in band, he’s also a member of the choir at Canyon Creek Elementary School in Bothell. The choir will perform at the 600-seat Northshore Performing Arts Center (NPAC) in Bothell and the Seattle Center on 14 and 15 December, respectively.

At age 12, he’s a talented, enthusiastic, confident, responsible boy with a warm smile and pleasant, happy attitude. His trumpet tone is strong and solid, and he has an excellent sense of rhythm. For the concerts, he simply needs more practice of the right exercises to strengthen his embouchure and extend his range further into the upper register. Since he’s a quick learner, I think he’ll do very well when he plays at the Christmas concerts next month. We have about five more weeks of lessons to prepare…and that’s just enough time to “nail it!”

Posted in New Students - Intro Posts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

May Concert Features Christmas Music

Posted by glennled on May 12, 2010

Last night I went to hear one of my trumpet students play in the spring music concert at his elementary school. In his introduction, the principal alluded to the 1st place finish by Garfield High School’s jazz band in the Essentially Ellington jazz competition in New York City on Monday. It was their second victory in two years and their fourth (a record) in the 15-year history of this nationwide competition. He endorsed music education and wished his elementary students success in their music endeavors.

Six groups performed: Beginning Strings, Advanced Orchestra, Beginning Brass, Beginning Winds, Beginning Clarinets, and Advanced Band. He’s in Beginning Brass, along with four other trumpeters and one trombonist. The band director commented that they were going to play some Christmas music. It was a typically cool night on an overcast day in Seattle, but Christmas in May?! Yes, we heard the brass ensemble play “Good King Wenceslas” and “Jolly Old St. Nicholas,” as well as “Crusaders March” and “Frere Jacques,” in the school cafeteria with the stage. My student and another played lead trumpet, and I could clearly distinguish his strong, confident tone and clean articulation. Way to go!

Posted in School Concerts | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Christmas Eve Concert–Cornet and Piano Duet

Posted by glennled on December 30, 2009

"O Holy Night"

The Christmas Eve tradition in our family, hosted in our home, goes like this. All family members who are in town come over for dinner. (We have two grown sons, a daughter and three grandkids in southern California, Las Vegas, and New Zealand.) This year we were 10 locals (including four grandchildren) around our dining room table. After dinner, we sing Christmas carols. My wife is a piano instructor. While she plays, everyone sings the lyrics from the songbook she created a few years ago, especially for this annual occasion. Once, one of our local grandsons played the clarinet for us. This year it was my turn to solo at the family concert. I played “O Holy Night,” accompanied by my wife. Our daughter videoed our duet. I encouraged all my students to play something for their families during their own holiday festivities.

After Bible readings from Luke and Isaiah about Jesus Christ, the Messiah, and prayer, we do what the kids have been patiently waiting for: open presents! Finally, there is an evening snack, and they all go home, stomachs full, arms and hands laden with prize gifts, faces beaming, and eyes sparkling. Santa Claus is coming tonight!

My cornet is a “Super Olds” model with the nickel-silver rimmed bell, made by F.E. Olds & Son in Los Angeles. Miles Davis, Freddie Hubbard, Lee Morgan, Louis Prima, and Raphael Mendez are among those who played various Olds instruments. Olds started making trombones in about 1910, and later added other brass instruments, introducing the Super Olds line in 1932. My cornet ranked in the mid-range of the various Olds models of its time. Today, the equivalent horn probably costs about $1,700. Mine cost my parents $250, and I was so proud! Why did I choose a cornet? Simple: our high school band director specified that we all play cornets, not trumpets. He preferred the cornet’s more mellow tone and wanted a cornet section, not a trumpet section, in his band.

My Super Olds has been around. I played it all through high school and college. It took me to All-State Band in Texas and on music scholarship to Abilene Christian College and the University of Washington. It went to the Rose Bowl when we marched in the Rose Bowl Parade and gave a half-time performance during the football game: UW Huskies beat U of Minnesota Gophers, 17-7. Now I play it in the Husky Alumni Band.

I’ve played my Super Olds in concert, jazz, dance, and pep bands, in orchestras for operas and musicals, and in a U.S. Navy bugle corps. It’s traveled from Texas to Washington to Rhode Island. And now I’ve played it in a duet with my lovely wife in our own warm living room for our own special family. Yes, my horn looks a little worn, but it plays as well as ever. I like that.

Posted in Musical Events at Home | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

 
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