Saturday, January 20, 2018

The Melodic Sounds of the TRUMPET

Trumpet player Maynard Ferguson
Trumpet player Maynard Ferguson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The trumpet is an instrument that is a member of the brass family, though it has also been referred to as a wind or an aerophone instrument, and has the highest register among all the brass instruments. The trumpet is made out of brass tubing that is narrowest at the mouthpiece and widest at the end.

This particular instrument, like other brass instruments, is played by blowing into the mouthpiece through closed lips to create a vibration. The instrument as three keys or piston valves that work to alter the sound produced, often creating a lower pitch. Each valve will lower the sound the trumpet makes as it is pressed down by the musician. There are also different kinds of trumpets that are tuned to different notes. The most common trumpet played is known as the B-flat trumpet. Other types of trumpets that are played but are not as common are the C, D, E, F, G, and A.

Surprisingly enough, the trumpet has been around for a very long time, even if the earlier trumpets did not look like the trumpets people are more familiar with today. The earliest proof of the existence of trumpets goes back as far as 1500 BC, though it is believed that trumpets could have easily existed before this as well.

Another interesting note about the trumpet is that it was not originally used for music. Instead, it was used for signaling purposes for religious ceremonies or military use. It really was not until medieval times that the trumpet started to be used more as a musical instrument instead of being limited to previous purposes. In fact, it was even seen as a special talent, which those who played would keep to themselves because it was regarded as a guarded craft. It was after this time that the trumpet really started to change, as improvements and adaptations were made to have the trumpet keep up with its demands. Even with these improvements, the addition of the valves on the trumpet did not occur until the early to mid-1800s.


It appears that few young people will take up the instrument instead of popular instruments like the guitar and the piano. A common misconception is that it is really simple to play, but the truth is that it can be a little complex. One has to have good control of the air that they blow into the trumpet in order to get the right sound. Some will take an interest in the trumpet because they appreciate its bold and bright sound. It is common in marching bands, in the military and is also common in schools.

It is a relatively inexpensive instrument to play in comparison to others, so school bands will sometimes be able to teach students who want to learn it. Its drawback for many people is that it does not have a wide range of sounds and many who want to learn how to play an instrument are looking for something that can create a variety of different sounds.


    Victor Epand is an expert consultant for used CDs, autographed CDs, and used musical instruments. 
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Friday, January 19, 2018

BASS GUITAR Tabs And Their Place In The Circle Of Life


Tapping on a bass guitar
Tapping on a bass guitar (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Bass guitar tab is an extremely popular way of writing bass guitar music. If you are interested in becoming a bass guitarist you need to get familiar with bass guitar music by playing the bass lines of some of your favorite songs before you let your inner bass player off the chain. Utilizing this handy tool you can learn how to be the bass player in a band quickly without getting too much into boring theory.

The bass player's job is simply to keep time. Nothing could be easier. Until you try to do it. So what is actually involved? The bass guitar player keeps time by playing a 'bassline' which is usually a rhythmic' sequence of notes. The bass player brings together the rhythmic playing of the drummer with the melodies and chords played by the lead guitarist. Do you need to be a talented musician to do this? Yes, you do. The bass guitar player is the guy who switches off his brain and becomes one with the flow of the music. He then switches his brain back on and become the designated driver for the rest of the band.

A novice bass guitarist may not immediately be able to follow (or lead) the rest of the band right from the start. You might need some material to work with while you ease into the job. Bass guitar tab gives the guitar player written directions on what to play to give the bass line to a song. Tablature is a written representation of the strings of the guitar using numbers to show the frets. If you want to learn the bass guitar quickly tab will help you.  It is easy to pick up and to remember, and it enables you to learn the riffs and phrases you need to give structure to your band's music.

A bass guitar tab is a picture of the fretboard which can be drawn using Notepad on your computer or, if you like, by hand. The frets are numbered on lines representing the guitar strings. If you have a four string bass, the upper string is the G string, next to the D string, the A string, and the E string. The numbers below the lines are the frets where the notes are played. If there is zero below the line it means the open string is played. A chord is represented in bass guitar tabs by two numbers, one above the other. Most bass guitar tabs contain a legend which explains any unfamiliar terms.



With the history of rock music going back for generations, tabs are available for any song you can think of. The internet is by far the best source for bass guitar tabs. Just do a Google search and you will have more material than you will ever need. All you have to do is learn and practice. Learn and practice your favorite songs first. Bass guitar is not a musical instrument you can approach without passion. Bass guitar riffs can be learned from tab books but should be played from the heart.




Thursday, January 18, 2018

Everything You Need to Know About Violin From A-Z - YEHUDI MENUHIN

Yehudi Menuhin à l'âge de 12 ans - Photo: Wikimedia
Wow! we have almost reached the end of the series violin from A-Z. Today we are on Y for Yehudi Menuhin. Yehudi Menuhin is regarded as the greatest violin virtuoso ever to have lived.

He was born in New York to Russian Jewish parents but later became a citizen of Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Yehudi began receiving violin lessons at the age of three and displayed an extraordinary talent for someone so young. His first solo performance was at the age of seven with the San Francisco Symphony at Carnegie Hall. As a child and teenager, his fame was phenomenal Albert Einstein is said to have exclaimed at the end of one of his concerts "Now I know there is a God."

During world war two Yehudi performed for performing for the allied soldiers he also performed for the inmates of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp upon its liberation. During this time he experienced physical and artistic difficulties caused by overwork as well as unfocused practice. He overcame these difficulties using meditation and yoga.

He has married twice first to Nola Nicholas an Australian he had two children with her. They divorced in 1947 after which he married the British Ballerina and actress Diana Gould together they had two sons and another child which died shortly after birth. Menuhin continued to perform well into old age and died in Berlin Germany from complications of bronchitis.

The name Yehudi means Jew in Hebrew. His name comes from an incident when his parents were looking for a new apartment; the landlady told them that she would never rent to Jews. His mother was so angry that she vowed that her new baby would have a name that proclaimed his race to all the world.

    Eric B. Hill is a professional violin player and teacher with over 20 years experience.

    Article Source: EzineArticles



Wednesday, January 17, 2018

From Ancient Horns To BRASS ENSEMBLES

Soprano Cornet
Soprano Cornet (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Whether you are watching a parade, listening to an orchestra, or attending a jazz ensemble nothing can capture your attention more than when the brass instruments play. They are bold, rich, exciting, and majestic. They have a certain unique regal tone that commands people to sit up and take notice.

Interestingly though, just because they are called brass instruments does not mean that they are just made of brass. Other materials that have been used in their construction include wood, cane, horn, tusk, clay, and even crystal. In addition, most saxophones and flutes and many clarinets are made of brass but are categorized as woodwind instruments, not brass instruments.

Brass instruments have descended from ancient horns. Their first use was in military, royal, or hunting contexts. Curt Sachs reported that even around 1250BC the si-im was played which is depicted as a short and thick horn played with a large frame drum. There was evidence found that around 1400BC straight trumpets were played by soldiers. A trumpet-shaped music instrument was even found in Tutankhamen's tomb. It was not until the late 1600's that brass instruments acquired a new role as an art instrument. During this time, physical alterations were made to them to allow for improved ease of fingering and made blowing less effortful. These improvements enhanced their artistic role and they became a regular member of the orchestra.

By the 1830's the first brass bands came into existence, most notably in England, Wales, and the United States. The first one in the U.S. was established by Allen Dodworth in 1834 as the Brass Band of New York. Beginning in 1860, mechanical changes were made which gave every instrument a complete scale of notes throughout the range. With these enhancements, brass instruments took on an even stronger, clearer, crisper sound. By 1900 there was an explosion in their popularity. Almost every park built a bandstand gazebo and some brass bands attracted 10-20,000 people. Their popularity declined after World War II but increased again in 1960.

Today, brass bands, or brass ensembles as they are more commonly called, continue to include brass instruments such as French horns, trumpets, euphoniums, tubas, trombones, etc. These groups play classical, Broadway, show tunes, marches, and pop/rock music. Some ensembles are not such brass instrument purists and include other instruments such as woodwind instruments, percussion instruments, bass, guitars, or keyboards. With additional instruments, a wider array of musical mixes can be played, such as Dixieland, jazz, rock, blues, or funk. An advantage of being in a brass ensemble is that the players have the freedom to take on roles usually reserved for other instruments. When in a brass ensemble each player has a responsibility to work as a team so not one person or music instrument dominates the sound. The focus of the group is cohesiveness with one mutual goal and a flexibility to accept other's ideas.


Brass instruments have had a long history since ancient times. They have acquired popularity through their ability to produce a rich, bold, exciting sound and their prevalence in so many musical genres. When we hear brass instruments we tend to pay attention and listen. 

    By Dianna Joseph
    Dianna Joseph is the owner of DJ Music Store. She is a saxophonist, novice pianist, and novice guitarist. In addition, she is an occupational therapist who works with a host of disabilities utilizing sensory integration and neurodevelopmental therapy in combination with music and a variety of other techniques to assist these persons in achieving the highest level of function and quality of life possible.
    Article Source: EzineArticles


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

LOUIS ARMSTRONG: Transformation From Reform School to Infamous Trumpets

Head and shoulders portrait of jazz musician L...
Head and shoulders portrait of jazz musician Louis Armstrong. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Trumpets have been in existence since primitive times, but they did not really gain the recognition they deserved until the infiltration of jazz into the music world. When Buddy Bolden altered his own music style in the 1890's, it had the first inklings of what jazz music would become with its hearty spirit and spontaneity. He eventually leads the first genuine New Orleans jazz band. Continuing to invent jazz music was Freddie Keppard and Joe "King" Oliver playing the cornet as the lead instrument.

Then along came Louis Armstrong from a poor section of New Orleans where the heroes of the neighborhood were gamblers and pimps. His first musical instrument, within the family of trumpets, was a long, tin horn that he would blast while working on a coal delivery wagon to let clients know the wagon was coming. At age 10 Louis Armstrong had earned enough money to buy a battered cornet in a pawnshop. By age 11 he had left school, left his job, and organized a street corner quartet. Unfortunately, while on the street he committed some minor crimes and was sent to reform school at the age of 12. While in reform school Louis Armstrong joined the band and developed his talent. He became the leader of the band which changed his reputation. By the age of 13, he was back on the street and found small jobs to keep himself out of trouble.

As a teenager, Louis Armstrong worked with professional musicians and joined Fate Marable's band playing on a riverboat in Mississippi. By his early twenties, he could outplay any trumpets at cutting contests where soloists improvised until one was clearly outperforming the others. With the addition of 23-year-old Lois Armstrong to the Fletcher Henderson band in New York, the band began to really swing with their new featured soloist. A year later he formed his own group in Chicago called the Hot Five. He organized the band and music around the solos which became one of the key characteristics of modern jazz.


Louis Armstrong became known as the father of modern jazz trumpets and the first modern jazz soloist. He greatly extended the range of trumpets as he could hit high notes that none of his peers could reach. His main contribution to jazz was his sense of rhythm which had a natural beat that made anyone listening want to get up and dance. Louis Armstrong taught the world how to really swing. He also taught jazz musicians how to extend the melodic line with improvisations on trumpets. Louis Armstrong used trumpets to belt out loud, sharp cutting sounds that commanded his listeners to pay attention. He had made trumpets the leading instruments with cornets virtually disappearing from the jazz scene.

Trumpets were not the only driving force in Louis Armstrong's career. Not only did he extend the range of trumpets, but he also showcased the extension of his own range of talents. He had a unique compositional and vocal ability, he was comedic, he had charisma, and he had charm. All of these talents wrapped up together made for a famously popular musician and showman.

    By Dianna Joseph
    Dianna Joseph is the owner of DJ Music Store. She is a saxophonist, novice pianist, and novice guitarist. In addition, she is an occupational therapist who works with a host of disabilities utilizing sensory integration and neurodevelopmental therapy in combination with music and a variety of other techniques to assist these persons in achieving the highest level of function and quality of life possible.
    Article Source: EzineArticles