Glenn’s Trumpet Notes

News & Tips for Trumpet & Cornet Students

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Posts Tagged ‘horn’

41st 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 41st 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.

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

30th Trumpet Student Entering 6th Grade at Seaview Elementary School, Edmonds

Posted by glennled on August 20, 2016

Sunny summertime is just the perfect time for practicing trumpet, right? There’s nothingimagesF6I5OUG0 a new 6th grader at Seaview Elementary School in Edmonds would rather do than practice trumpet throughout the summer, right? Gotta take private lessons and get prepared for second year band, right? Well, maybe so. His Grandpa thinks so. But then again, maybe not. So, after one lesson on 11 July, my 30th trumpet student decided to put his horn back in its case and take the summer off. “Different strokes for different folks.” Maybe later…

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

29th Trumpet Student is Law Professor from University of San Diego

Posted by glennled on August 5, 2016

You’re a 67-year old law professor at the University of San Diego (USD) with a 56-year old imagesG5V7PQYStrumpet sitting in your closet. Your parents bought it new for you when you were in about 5th grade in St. Louis. You played it until the 9th grade. After graduating from Yale, you earned a J.D. degree from the University of Texas School of Law, taught a law course in Miami, took a job teaching law at Southern Illinois University (SIU) in Carbondale, IL, got married, and had a family. It’s there at SIU that you held tenure. Later, your son played your trumpet for a few years before he specialized in piano and sports and gave the trumpet back to you. And there it sat in the house while you taught law for 34 years. Then, in 2011, USD offered both you and your wife positions on the law school faculty. You’re now in your 40th year of teaching up to 7 different law courses. You’ve been a Visiting Professor at a dozen university law schools, including Seattle University in the summer of 2012. At USD, you are now the J. Lawrence Irving Distinguished Senior Teaching Fellow and Professor-in-Residence. (Please see http://www.sandiego.edu/law/faculty/profiles/bio.php?ID=638). And you took your trumpet with you to San Diego and kept it there until you brought it with you to Seattle in July this year.

Mark Lee, Law Prof, USD

Prof. Mark Lee, School of Law, University of San Diego

In all those years, you had periodic yearnings to play trumpet again. When you both decided to rent a house and vacation for a few weeks this summer in Seattle—where your son, wife and baby daughter live—she suggested that while you’re here, you do something you’ve always wanted to do but never did. You chose to bring along your trumpet and re-learn how to play it. So you found me on the internet, and we had our first private lesson at a studio in the Ted Brown Music store in the University District on 7 July.

I’ve asked Prof. Mark R. Lee why he chose trumpet when he was a kid. He says he’s always loved the trumpet’s pure, crystal-clear notes. They sometimes give him chilblains, he says, a cold feeling running up and down his spine, as if he’d been exposed for hours to cold but non-freezing weather. For him, the “Triumphal March” in Verdi’s opera, Aida, can produce that feeling.

He says he’s now taking lessons and practicing his trumpet simply for his own pleasure Marching Band Clip Artand enjoyment. He is a competitive person and generally likes to perform at the highest level he is capable of, but as for trumpet, he has no ambition or plans to play in an orchestra or band. If he did, he would prefer to play classical music, but he also loves marches and musicals. He’d love to play The Music Man, and to his surprise, he’s come to enjoy opera.

His trumpet is a Penn stencil horn. In other words, it’s a medium-to-high-quality horn made by an undisclosed trumpet manufacturer and engraved “Penn” on the bell. He says his parents paid $300 for it—quite an expense for them at that time, about 1959. He let me play it, and I was surprised at how free and open it is—little resistance and a solid tone with smooth valve action.

My 29th trumpet student and his wife return to San Diego in early August. Any time they come back to Seattle for a few weeks to see that granddaughter, I hope we will go for another round of lessons. Learning is fun, right, Professor?

Prof. Lee’s Penn stencil trumpet is shown below. Please click on a photo to enlarge it.

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

My Youngest “Echo Taps” Partner on Memorial Day

Posted by glennled on July 22, 2016

 

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“Echo Taps” partners, Memorial Day, 2016. Photo by Gary Walderman.

He’s only a seventh grader, going into eighth this fall, but he plays the trumpet with confidence and accuracy. So I asked him to play “Echo Taps” with me at the Memorial Day ceremony on 30 May at Veterans Park in Lynnwood. Other students of mine have played the “echo” part with me there, but they were all older and in high school. Also, those other students had all taken private trumpet lessons with me. This trumpeter, however, was my student when he was in the beginning bands at Skyview Jr. High School in Bothell. He’s doing well in the 7th grade band and jazz band at SJHS now.

Echo Taps, BGL, 5-30-16

“Echo Taps,” Glenn Ledbetter, VFW Post 1040 Bugler. Photo by Janelle Squires.

The weather this year was the best ever in my five years as VFW Post 1040 Bugler. On Memorial Day, I get to sound three bugle calls: “Assembly” (to open the ceremony), “Echo Taps” (to conclude the ceremony), and “To the Color” (when the flag is hoisted from half- to full-mast at noon). Attendance at this half-hour ceremony and the one on Veterans Day (11 November) is growing.

My Getzen bugle has two tuning slides. I use the G slide for “Tattoo,” “Taps,” and “Funeral March,” and the Bb slide for all other bugle calls. Love that horn!

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

Posted in Ceremonies & Celebrations | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

“To the Color,” Pacific Little League Day, Lynnwood

Posted by glennled on July 19, 2016

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Photo by Carol Sheldon

Pacific Little League Day, 23 April, gave me the opportunity to show off my Getzen Field Trumpet again when I sounded the bugle call, “To the Color,” as Boy Scout Troop 49 presented the colors before a large crowd of parents, relatives and friends at Lynndale Park in Lynnwood.

I love that horn! I should let the trumpet students to whom I give private lessons play it. Bet they’d be amazed.

This is my fifth year in a row sounding this bugle call immediately before the singing of the National Anthem. For more in-depth articles and photos of Pacific Little League (www.pacificlittleleague.com) and this special ceremony, please see my blog posts of:

  • 22 May 2012
  • 26 May 2013
  • 7 June 2014
  • 4 May 2015

Please click on any photo to enlarge it.

 

Posted in Ceremonies & Celebrations, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Come to the Trumpet Arts Festival at SPU on Sunday, 3 March

Posted by glennled on February 4, 2013

Picture1 - MS PublisherTrumpeters! Want to become your best? Want a quick study on playing the trumpet? Feel like you’re stuck on something and just not getting any better at it, no matter what? Want to hear how advanced, professional trumpeters do things and what they’ve learned through their years of experience? Want to ask them a question about something?

Here’s your chance on Sunday, 3 March—attend the Trumpet Arts Festival being held at Seattle Pacific University (SPU) in Queen Anne. Please see http://trumpetarts.com/NW_Trumpet_Arts_Festival/Welcome.html.

The following trumpeters are featured this year: Peter Bond, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, NYC; Anthony Di Lorenzo, soloist; Chad McCullough, jazz soloist; Judson Scott, University of Puget Sound; and Brian Chin, SPU. To learn more about them, please see http://trumpetarts.com/NW_Trumpet_Arts_Festival/Artists.html.

It’s a full program:

  • At 2 p.m., the Masterclass: “Practicing Fundamentals”
  • At 3:30 p.m., the Masterclass: “Practicing Improvisation”
  • At 4:30 p.m., Student Concert open to the public
  • At 7:00 p.m., Artists’ Concert open to the public
  • At 9:00 p.m., After-hours Jazz Jam at Thai Fusion, 15 Nickerson St

If you like, you can bring your horn and piano music and play for the Artists. They will give you written comments on your performance. This is supportive, professional, expert feedback, not a contest. Bring your own pianist/accompanist, or rehearse for a half hour and perform with the pianist furnished by the Festival.  An extra $40 fee covers the cost. For details, please see http://trumpetarts.com/NW_Trumpet_Arts_Festival/Students.html.

The location is the E.E. Bach Theater, SPU,  3307 Third Avenue West, Seattle. The cost is $25 tuition for the day and $10 for the evening concert only. Come learn more about yourself and your horn and hear some great music!

Posted in Festivals & Competitions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

And the Trumpet Shall Sound in the Church Orchestra

Posted by glennled on December 25, 2010

This past Sunday was different from any other in my long life. I’ve played in marching bands, drum and bugle corps, concert bands, orchestras, ensembles, operas, and musicals. As a teen, I led congregational singing, but until 19 December 2010, I had never played trumpet in a church orchestra.

Archangel Gabriel Wall Relief, Church of San Michele, Florence, Italy, 1359 A.D.

My wife and I have heard and joined in congregational singing with this orchestra at a local community church several times this year. It is the best of its kind that I’ve ever heard in the Greater Seattle Area. The compositions and arrangements are sophisticated and even challenging at times.

One Sunday in the church bulletin, there was an offer to consider new members in the orchestra. I auditioned and was accepted as a substitute trumpeter. There are three regular trumpeters and several subs like me. The lead trumpeter has been there well over 20 years and plays at least a dozen instruments. Another regular also has been there more than 20, and the other more than 15.   

The day I played, there were about 18 musicians in the orchestra; sometimes there are as many as 25-30. The choir numbered about 50. On this occasion, we were not playing “And the Trumpet Shall Sound” from Handel’s Messiah. Instead, this was the music:

  • “Festival of Carols” (a medley of four)
  • “Angels We Have Heard on High”
  • “The First Noel,”
  • “Come, Emmanuel,”
  • “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day.”

Bass Performance Hall, Ft. Worth, TX, by Tony Gutierriz/AP, 14 June 2002

I had not known that “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” was written as a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow after he had lost two wives and one of his sons had been severely wounded in the Civil War. He wrote the words on 25 December 1864. About four months later, the Civil War ended and peaced reigned over the land once more. Later, the poem was modified and became a carol. Its last two stanzas read as follows:

“And in despair I bowed my head;
‘There is no peace on earth,’ I said;
‘For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!’

“Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
‘God is not dead; nor doth he sleep!
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,
With peace on earth, good-will to men!'”

Can you worship with a horn? Until last Sunday I was not sure—maybe concentrating on playing the music correctly would displace worship. No, to my pleasant surprise, it did not. It was a moving experience. You can worship with your horn just as surely as you do with your voice in song. And it’s especially poignant when you’re accompanying an excellent church choir like this one.  Volunteer and try it someday—you’ll like it.

Posted in Church Music | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Hello, World!

Posted by glennled on February 16, 2009

Hi! Welcome to Glenn’s blog about gaining control over your trumpet or cornet…making it do the things you want it to do, making it sound the way you want it to sound, making it play as it is meant to be played. We already know the horn can do it, so we only have to train the player. Be a player! Become your best! Let’s mix in some good work with some fun music. Let’s get together and get started.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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