Friday, August 18, 2017

HIGHLAND BAGPIPES - Choosing a Highland Bagpipe

The Highland bagpipe, a shortened term for the Great Highland bagpipe, is probably the most popular form of bagpipe today. Also known as Scottish bagpipes, Highland bagpipes are woodwind instruments that originated from Scotland and Ireland. They are known to be the best bagpipes in the world, and are commonly being used in marching bands, musical performances, and symphonic orchestras.

Highland Bagpipe - Photo: Wikimedia


Parts
Highland bagpipes are double-reed instruments that are typically made up of a bag, a chanter, a blowpipe, two tenor drones, and one bass drone. The chanter has a scale in Mixolydian mode with a flattened 7th or leading tone. It has a range of one whole tone lower than the tonic to one octave above it. Meanwhile, the pipe bag has to be inflated with air.

Kinds
Highland bagpipes come in two sets: Highland bagpipe practice sets and Highland bagpipe full sets.
The Highland bagpipe practice set is perfect for beginners and young players who want to master the art of bag piping. It is the cheapest kind of bagpipe set and is very easy to use.

A practice chanter allows for easy playing. It also does not have drones, allowing the player to practice proper breath control and maintain optimal bag pressure. Most practice sets also come with stealth features so other people will not be disturbed by its sound.

Meanwhile, Highland bagpipe full sets consist of a pipe bag, a chanter, a blowpipe, one bass drone, and two tenor drones. The chanter plays in the Mixolydian scale ranging from the key of low G to the key of high A. It is commonly used by pipe bands in military and civilian performances.

Buying tips
When looking to buy Highland bagpipes, look for one that has a sturdy reed for better-quality, more stable, and trouble-free sound production.

Also, determine your level of knowledge in bag piping. Buy practice sets if you are a beginner.




How Much Can A SAXOPHONE Cost

Adolphe Sax (1814-1894), inventor of the saxophone
Adolphe Sax (1814-1894),
inventor of the saxophone
(Photo credit: 
Wikipedia)
A brass instrument with the characteristics that are similar to woodwind instruments. It shares a number of similarities with the clarinet. A Belgian born instrument maker, Adolphe Sax, invented the saxophone in 1846. There are four different types of available in the world today, alto, tenor, soprano and baritone. All of these have different characteristics that make them unique. The price range of new sax can vary widely, based on:

• Manufacturer: The price range depends highly on the brand or manufacturer. There are a number of famous brands known for manufacturing high quality instruments. Yamaha and Selmer are top saxophone brands. These may be expensive but they are the standards against which all other brands are measured. Yamaha, regardless of the type, range between $1300 and $4000. Selmer sax, on the other hand, are slightly more expensive. Their price ranges between $2000 and $7500. Yanagisawa and Keilwerth are also known brands. You can buy their saxophones at reasonable prices.

• Type of saxophone: the four different types of saxophones have varying prices. An alto may be purchased for as low as $200 but the quality would not be very good. An expensive alto sax ranges from $4000 to $8000. An inexpensive tenor can be bought for $300, whereas the expensive ones cost about $6000. Soprano saxophones also range between $300 and $6000. Baritones are the most expensive type. Their price may be as low as $1000 or as high as $12000.

• Material: the prices of saxophones are also dependent on the material that is used in their manufacturing. Although, saxophones are brass instruments, they can be made of a number of materials. Various manufacturers have tried using diverse materials in the manufacturing of saxophones. The most common saxophones are made of brass and their price ranges between $200 and $7000. Other saxophones made of materials like stainless steel, bronze and polycarbonate can be purchased within the same price range as well. Saxophones that have silver or gold plating have a much higher price range.

If you do not want to buy a new saxophone due to monetary limitations, you can always look for good deals for used saxophones. Although, there is no guarantee that used saxophones will be worth your money, you can always buy cautiously and get the best option available. Moreover, you can find various websites that have new saxophones for sale at reasonable prices. It is recommended for beginners and students to try their hand on a less expensive saxophone. Professionals, however, should always buy high quality branded saxophones. The price of the saxophone can also vary if accessories like saxophone case and neck strap are bought along with the instrument.






Thursday, August 17, 2017

Classic ROCK Performers Who Have Had A Lasting Influence On Music

Classic rock is a fundamental part of American history. Many of today's leading bands can trace their styles back to the influence of certain musicians. While every song made available to the world has had an impact on the music industry, there are certain performers who will eternally stand at the forefront of music.

From folk rock to psychedelic rock, there have been many groundbreaking sounds and voices. Here are the top ten most influential classic rock bands in history.

Elvis Presley

Elvis Presley
Photo  by cliff1066™ 
While Elvis is not traditionally viewed in the classic rock genre, it is impossible to ignore his influence on the world of Rock-n-Roll. As the first to expose mainstream America to something other than traditional family music, he faced a tremendous amount of opposition from the mainstream.

Despite the extreme racism exhibited during the 1950's, Elvis never hesitated to give appropriate credit to his inspirations. Mainly African-American performers influenced Elvis' sound and style. Southern radio disc jockeys originally refused to play Elvis' singles, because they sounded "too Negro" for white stations to air.

It was not just Elvis' sound, but also his performance, that drew controversy. The movement of his hips in a suggestive manner sparked an entire decade of debate.

Despite the firestorm of criticism that surrounded Elvis' reign, his continuing popularity has ensured that Elvis' crown as the King of Rock and Roll would remain valid for decades, even decades after his death.

The Beatles

As the best selling musical act of all-time, it is hard to deny the influence of the Beatles, not only on the musical culture of America but also on every aspect of human life. The Beatles included John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Ringo Star, and George Harrison.

Their innovative style defined the music of the 1960's -- twice. They began their career in England, and when they came to America, they were already a huge success in the United States. In their early years, they had defined pop music for a new generation.



As the hippy days of the late 1960's began to take hold of America's young people, the Beatles redefined their music again, with another new style of music lauded by the masses. Their very loud stance on drug use and war made them a controversial group, but their popularity never wavered. Although the Beatles retained the loyalty and admiration of their late 1960's audiences until the group broke up, the touring days of the Beatles ended in 1966 when John Lennon proclaimed, "The Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ."

Bob Dylan

Dylan has one of the most easily recognizable voices in the world. Raspy and full of passion, Bob Dylan's sound is distinctive. His songs are amazing and defined a generation obsessed with the themes of social unrest, an anti-war stance, and encouragement for the civil rights movement.

A traditional folk singer, Dylan's works transcended all genres and appealed to countless young Americans. His sincere lyrics spoke to many and made it possible to empathize with his many causes.

Jimi Hendrix

Jimi Hendrix
Photo  by franela :) 
As the undisputed master of the electric guitar, Jimi Hendrix is a classic rock foundation. The self-taught guitar player refused to be limited by many of the conventional views of guitar players.

Prior to Jimi Hendrix's development as a guitar player, the electric guitar was considered to merely be a louder version of the acoustic guitar. Hendrix embraced the uniqueness of the electric guitar and showed his appreciation for it to the rest of the world.

Pink Floyd

Easily considered the greatest band of all time, Pink Floyd's unique style and showmanship defined psychedelic rock. Their concept albums were thematic masterpieces that appealed to countless audiences. The Dark Side Of The Moon, Animals, and The Wall each still stand out today as great Rock masterpieces.

The Who

Also known for their thematic records, The Who pioneered the idea of rock opera. Most famous for their collaborative efforts with every major musical figure of their time, Tommy The Rock Opera ensured the longevity of the band into the future.

Their success and fame were not limited to their unique approach to concept albums. Their musical skills are still highly regarded in both mainstream circles and in the entertainment industry. Their music is currently being used as the theme song for at least three of the most popular show on TV on the air today.

The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones have easily maintained their position as one of the longest lasting bands in recording history. Like most popular rock bands of the age, they were an England-based band that was more than happy to take on America.



Their grungy unkempt image became so popular; many artists are still attempting to master it. Their unique sound and high quality lyrics have kept them at the top of the charts for almost 40 years.

Cream

Cream, featuring guitarist Eric Clapton, was one of the most technically advanced music groups of their time. Their instrumental techniques became legendary and paved the way for other bands to focus on developing their instrument techniques, in addition to their lyrics.

The Doors

The Doors have always been one of the most controversial bands that had ever existed. Jim Morrison's wild behavior set the tone for the countless musical bad boys that would follow in his footsteps.

The poetic lyrics of The Doors, as well as their outrageous behavior, made them a crowd favorite.

Led Zeppelin

Led Zeppelin Early Days
Photo  by DerekVelasquez 
The road to heavy metal was paved by Led Zeppelin. Their first album was pivotal in its inclusion of distorted amplification techniques. Over the years, their experimentation included mixing acoustic and electric sounds, with the addition of synthesized melodies. The success of Led Zeppelin helped establish a strong base for the development of metal music.

Few people of their generation or the current generation realize that like Elvis, Led Zeppelin took most of their inspiration from African-American performers. As a lifelong fan of Led Zeppelin, it is was oddly fascinating to listen to some of the not-so-famous African-American rhythm-and-blues performers of the 1930's, and to be able to hear the Led Zeppelin songs we have loved for years in a whole new way.

Final Thoughts

Clearly, these ten bands had a significant impact on the evolution of Rock-n-Roll music through the generations, but it is more difficult to put them into an ordered list of important groups. Let's just agree that most of us love all ten bands on this list.




Wednesday, August 16, 2017

JAZZ MUSIC: A Quick Lesson on Its Roots

Ask anyone, even Jazz experts or Jazz musicians and they will have very different definitions to describe the music, or they will tell you that defining Jazz is impossible. It is, of course, easy to identify when you hear it despite the diversity of the genre. It is a home grown, the United States born music with its birthplace credited to New Orleans and it is highly associated with the South.

Original Dixieland Jazz Band. Scanned by Infro...
Original Dixieland Jazz Band. Scanned by Infrogmation from original 1918 promotional postcard while the band was playing at Reisenweber's Cafe in New York City. Shown are (left to right) Tony Sbarbaro (aka Tony Spargo) on drums; Edwin "Daddy" Edwards on trombone; D. James "Nick" LaRocca on cornet; Larry Shields on clarinet, and Henry Ragas on piano.
(Photo credit: 
Wikipedia)
To understand how diverse the genre of Jazz music can be one has only to view some of its sub categories: Bebop, Ragtime, Dixieland, Cool Jazz, Hard Bop, Modal Jazz, Free Jazz, Latin Jazz, Post Bop, Soul Jazz, Swing Jazz, Jazz Fusion, Jazz Funk, Smooth Jazz, Acid Jazz, and Punk Jazz, and many others. The word "Jazz" is as hard to define as the music itself. 

The origin of the word has been heavily researched and the American Dialect Society named it the "Word of the Twentieth Century" because of the difficulty in finding the origin and original use of the word and the amount of research that has gone into understanding the word. Despite the music being played many years before the use of the word "jazz" to describe it, the use became common in Chicago around 1915. The first use of the word found is actually in a baseball article from 1913 and it was not associated with anything having to do with music, instead it was a form of slang mostly heard on the West Coast, yet it soon became a well-known term for the unique and individualistic music to become well known as Jazz music.

There are many that claim to have first used it to describe the music genre. Wherever the origin, it is one of the most recognized terms to describe a music genre despite there being few that can define it fully. The music just defines itself without words having the ability to fully do it justice.

"Individual and unique" are very good words to describe Jazz. The Jazz artist is often considered to be interpreting the music when they play. It is usually enjoyed live more than recorded due to the ability of the musician to individually interpret and play the music differently throughout performances. This is a unique property of Jazz music.

What has been commonly known as the "Jazz Age" is the time period of the 20's to early 30's that included the rise of speakeasies" where an older generation regarded the new music played in these clubs as immoral. It was so degraded by many that were threatened by the new wave of music, that they even blamed Jazz as having caused a heart attack of one music composer. The music persevered past its critics and soon there were standout Jazz musicians that were making a name for themselves that would keep them as historical figures. Louis Armstrong, Bessie Smith, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday, and Duke Ellington became well known and respected musicians and helped bring more fans to Jazz music.

Jazz has been described as "moving, passionate, and strongF320 music influencing the senses of the body and soul". For those that discover a love for their particular brand of Jazz, it becomes a sought after music for times of relaxation, rejuvenation, and celebration. For those that have yet to fully discover all that Jazz Music has to offer, visiting a live Jazz concert, or a Jazz festival can be a very enlightening and enjoyable experience. Due to the popularity of Jazz and its American roots, there are many opportunities for someone to experience the music live in clubs, concerts, and events across the United States.

One of the most popular Jazz Festivals on the east coast of the United States is the DC Jazz Festival, or lovingly nicknamed the "DC Jazz Fest". It unofficially kicks off the Summer season for those that are familiar with the event. It takes place this year from June 1 through June 13 and will include over 100 performances at over 45 venues across the city. It is the largest music festival in the Nation's Capital. The festival offers a wide variety of Jazz music types and top musicians from all over the globe. There is not a better place to get a real lesson in Jazz Music.



CAISO is proud to be a part of the music performance lineup for the 7th Annual DC Jazz Festival and will be performing on June 4 from 3 to 4 PM at Gallery O on H, 1354 H Street Northeast, Washington, DC. For more information on the DC Jazz Festival visit their Web site: http://www.dcjazzfest.org
For more great information about CAISO SteelBand's Blog visit: http://www.CaisoSteelBand.com



I'll Have an Espresso With That HARPSICHORD


English: Young Johann Sebastian Bach. 1715. Te...
Young Johann Sebastian Bach. 1715.
(Photo credit: 
Wikipedia)
The Leipzig years as related by Anna Magdalena, Johann Sebastian Bach's second wife.

Our family continues to grow quickly! In fact, since we moved to Leipzig ten years ago, I have had a baby every year. So, yes, our home is getting more and more crowded with our growing family. In addition, many friends and extended family members often stop by for a visit and sometimes even stay for weeks at a time to work with Johann Sebastian and to make music together. One of our older sons, Carl Phillip describes our home as a "dovecote" and I tend to agree. There is always something going on but it is, in general, a harmonious and pleasant home. Why I even have several linnets (beautiful little songbirds with red breasts and foreheads) in our home. They make such a sweet accompaniment to the music of our home. The older children are such a help with all the babies and Johann works hard to provide enough for all of us.

Sadly, though, Johann Sebastian and the rector of St. Thomas School, one of my husband's many bosses, is a difficult man and their relationship is acrimonious at best. Therefore, to avoid conflict, Sebastian has started spending more and more time at Zimmerman's Coffee House, which is just down the street from our home.

Zimmermannsches Caffeehaus Leipzig, where the ...
Zimmermannsches Caffeehaus Leipzig,
where the Collegium Musicum performed
(Photo credit: 
Wikipedia)
At Zimmerman's, a wonderful group of musicians called the Collegium Musicum, regularly perform there. I think my husband will soon take over the direction of the group. He has already started composing wonderful music for them. He is so happy when he is working with this talented group of musicians.

Johann Sebastian and I had a wonderful New Year's celebration this year. We were invited to Cothen to play and sing for the New Year's Day festivities at the Court. It was good to be away from Leipzig for a few days and have the opportunity to see our old friends and make music together. In addition, our dear friend, Prince Leopold, paid us both very well. It brought back so many memories of our grand times in Cothen.

Back in Leipzig, however, my dear Johann Sebastian works very hard but is very often unappreciated. Unfortunately, my husband also has a rather short temper at times, which makes his work situation difficult. Then with the loss of five of the eight children we have had since moving to Leipzig, he is often weary and sad. The older children and I do what we can to help.

Finally, a new rector has been called and Sebastian really likes and respects this man! Matthias Gesner is our hero and he has come along just at the right time. He is the person who is going to step in and make everything right again.

Herr Gesner became rector of the St. Thomas School and did five important things: declared a truce between my husband and the council; made sure Johann Sebastian received the pay he was due; refurbished the school; relieved my husband of his teaching duties; and made music important again at St. Thomas. Gesner got things on track in Leipzig for us. What a wonderful difference this man has made in our lives.

    By Dr. Jeannine Jordan

    This vignette is one of a dozen anecdotes in the organ and media event, Bach, and Sons, performed by Dr. Jeannine Jordan, concert organist.

    Dr. Jeannine Jordan has a doctorate degree in organ performance with an emphasis in Baroque repertoire. She studied with renown Swiss organist, Guy Bovet, has performed throughout the world, and presents the organ music of Bach in a creative program, "Bach and Sons," utilizing visual media and narration. She has also recorded organ music of Johann Sebastian Bach and his sons on historic 17th and 18th century organs in the Bach region of Saxony, Germany. https://promotionmusic.org/Listening_Media.html
    Visit Bach and Sons to schedule a free consultation with Dr. Jordan to discover how you can bring Bach to your community. https://promotionmusic.org/Bach___Sons_PNQ5.html

    Article Source: EzineArticles


Tuesday, August 15, 2017

HARPSICHORD - Music-Instruments of the World

Harpsichord



Monday, August 14, 2017

How To Play LEAD GUITAR

Many newbies are fascinated by the way lead guitarists are blazing through a solo and keep wondering how they can do that. They just can't understand how these people figure out which notes can would sound right before playing them. The following article is aimed to show some perspective on how to learn lead guitar and begin to make up your own guitar solos.

The Blues Scale

What many beginner guitarists who want to learn lead guitar do not know that improvising doesn't mean just playing random notes and hoping they will sound great together. Before you can learn lead guitar, you should know that professional guitar players usually draw their solos from a scale, which they are using as a template for improvisation. The blues scale, despite the name, is actually a scale used very often in all guitar solo styles.

Bruce Kulick - IMG_1973
Bruce Kulick - Photo by JamesDPhotography 
How to Use It?

Try practicing this scale forwards and backward, while using alternate picking and make sure you play each note evenly and cleanly. After you got this right, try to play each note two times before you get to the next one. Make up different ways to play the blues scale to challenge your playing skills.
Play the blues scale so that the root begins with the letter name of the scale you are trying to play. For example, if you want to play a C blues scale, you've got to find the note C on the fretboard and start the scale on that note.

Improvising

Once you've become familiar with the blues scale, you might want to take up some theory lessons and learn more about the different positions of pentatonic and blues scales. However, you can get to play a lot of great stuff just by using the single position explained above, so start practicing on making up your own solos before you memorize tons of scale positions.

Once you've managed to learn lead guitar basics, you can start improvising. The concept is fairly simple: all you have to do is string together some licks from the blues scale that sound good together. However, when you try to do it, you'll realize it's actually more difficult than it sounds. You might want to get some soloing lessons for beginner guitarists that want to learn lead guitar. Accesrock.com provides some good lessons.

After you did some practicing, you should visit the Home for all Guitar Lovers website that shows several guitar licks. You can try to memorize some of these and use them in your own solos. Don't get frustrated if you play rather badly at first; if you like what you're doing, it will get better over time.