Montuno Salsa Band at LAAFF September 2, 2012

For anyone around Asheville, NC this weekend looking for some live music, come on out to the Lexington Avenue Arts & Fun Festival this Sunday, September 2, 2012, to listen and dance to Montuno play some salsa. We’re performing at the Electric Stage on Lexington Avenue from 1:30-2:30 (weather permitting).

There’s a bunch of other groups playing a wide range of music throughout the day. Check the full schedule at this link.

If you come on out, be sure to come up and say hello to me. I’ll be one of the two trombonists playing with Montuno.

National Standards for Music Education

The National Association for Music Education (NAfME) has worked to come up with national standards for music education. This list is intended to help music educators develop curriculum for their students and they include the following 9 standards:

  1. Singing, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.
  2. Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.
  3. Improvising melodies, variations, and accompaniments.
  4. Composing and arranging music within specified guidelines.
  5. Reading and notating music.
  6. Listening to, analyzing, and describing music.
  7. Evaluating music and music performances.
  8. Understanding relationships between music, the other arts, and disciplines outside the arts.
  9. Understanding music in relation to history and culture.

For those of us involved in music education or studying to become music teachers these standards may already reflect what we teach and our teaching goals. However, depending on the school and circumstances some of these standards are obviously easier to work into the curriculum than others. For example, if you’re not already familiar with improvisation or composition meeting standard 3 may be quite a challenge. Rehearsing for concerts and contests may not leave much time for music teachers to work on standards 8 and 9. That said, these are attainable goals for most situations I’m familiar with and while not a perfect list, do help music teachers think about what we’re already doing and how we can improve the quality of our teaching.

“MuzikMadders” has written music to the National Standards for Music Education and posted it on YouTube. Thanks to Dr. Michael Shallock at Western Carolina University for finding this clever video.

Using music to memorize information is a great mnemonic trick. Making up lyrics to music you need to identify on drop the needle exams that music students often get is a similar way of helping you learn the titles of pieces and their composers.

Being an Effective Music Student

Happy new academic year! In honor of the fall semester starting up for me today, here is David Zerkel’s list of 10 things for being a more effective music student.

  1. Take your classes seriously.
  2. Listen to as much music as you can.
  3.  Learn and know your scales and arpeggios.
  4. Schedule your practice time as though it were a class.
  5. Go to concerts.
  6. Embrace what technology has to offer us in developing as musicians.
  7. Be curious.
  8. Play with your peers.
  9. Be serious about your pursuit of excellence.
  10.  Know that every great musician in the world still considers himself or herself a student of music.

Read up on what Zerkel says about each item on the Horngasmic blog’s repost of his list. Then go check out what James Boldin adds to this list on his Horn World blog.

Asheville Jazz Orchestra Live at the White Horse August 17, 2012

The Asheville Jazz Orchestra is back for another show at the White Horse Black Mountain this Friday, August 17, 2012. The first of two sets starts at 8 PM. As always, we’ll be playing a mix of big band charts including some chestnuts from the Swing Era, some charts I and other band members have written, and everything in between. There should be a little bit for everyone, so if you’re in western North Carolina this weekend looking for live music come on out.

While I’ve got your attention, for those of you who live in or regularly visit western North Carolina, the Mountain Xpress is holding their annual “Best of WNC” contest and the AJO needs your vote for best jazz band. All you have to do is go to this web site, take a minute to register (free), and fill out their survey. Vote for your favorite bands of all types (please vote for the Land of the Sky Symphonic Band in the “other ” category too!), your favorite restaurants, and anything else you see.


Brad Goode’s Skeleton Mouthpiece Warm-Up and Guess the Embouchure Type

I’ve had this YouTube video bookmarked for a while and been meaning to post it. Trumpet player Brad Goode demonstrates a warm up he uses with a “skeleton mouthpiece” (sometimes called an embouchure visualizer).

One thing that I’d like to echo that Brad says in his video is that the “visualizer” is not really very good for looking at the embouchure. The lack of normal resistance sometimes will make the lips form in a slightly different position than they will when playing, which is why I prefer to use a transparent mouthpiece for embouchure diagnosis. The skeleton mouthpiece has some interesting potential for practice, though. Check out how Brad uses it and while we’re at it, let’s play “Guess the Embouchure Type.” My guess after the break.

Continue reading Brad Goode’s Skeleton Mouthpiece Warm-Up and Guess the Embouchure Type

Shattering a Wine Glass with a Trumpet

Since I recently posted some YouTube videos on the acoustics of the trumpet I thought I’d also share another video by trumpet player and physics teacher Nick Drozdoff shattering a wine glass with his trumpet.

Pretty cool. Not too high a pitch that I couldn’t also try that on my trombone.

As an aside, I took trumpet lessons from Nick back in *mumble* when I was in high school. He’s a terrific teacher and trumpet player.

Wilktone Podcast – Episode 19

Show Notes

Introduction – Show segments

Music History Spotlight – Dexter Gordon

Drop the Needle – Submit your answer to me through my contact form.

Music Theory/Composition – The Authentic (V-I) cadence

Practice Tips – Doodle tonguing
See Conrad Herwig Introduction to Doodle Tonguing:

Download more Wilktone Podcasts on my podcast feed or by subscribing through iTunes. For more information on these and other music related topics visit