Low Brass Posts

Conn-Selmer Artist Select trombones now at Paige’s Music

On September 23, 2019 Paige’s Music participated in the Conn-Selmer Artist Select program. This program allows professionals to hand select and play test each instrument from the factory to ensure that only the finest instruments are available to customers. K. Blake Schlabach and Tucker Woerner carefully play tested dozens of instruments, and we are happy to say that our top five selections are now available at Paige’s Music.

Local Craftsmen – World Class Instruments

On Monday, September 23, 2019 I was fortunate to visit the Conn-Selmer plant in Elkhart, IN. The point of this visit was to tour the facility, and to personally select professional instruments for the inventory at Paige’s Music. With the help of K. Blake Schlabach, we picked out a collection of Bach Stradivarius 42BOs as well as a King 3B and Bach Stradivarius 12. Through Conn-Selmer’s “Artist Select” program we are able to hand pick each instrument after play testing and inspection to ensure that only the very finest instruments are available to our customers.

In a world with more and more automation it is easy to forget that many of our goods rely on highly skilled craftsmen to complete very precise tasks. Touring the facility and meeting the craftsmen gave real insight into what it takes to make a professional level instrument. Below you will see pictures of some of the steps it takes to create a bell for a brass instrument.

Improving at Improvising

As jazz band auditions and rehearsals are starting for middle schools and high school students across the state I get a lot of questions about how to improvise on trombone. Becoming a successful improviser takes time, practice, and creativity. Here are some tips that will get you in the right direction to improve at improvising.

The Legacy of Carl Fontana

July 18, 2019 would have marked Carl Fontana’s 91stbirthday. Fontana remains one the most influential, prolific, and recorded trombonists of all time. His legacy lives through his countless recordings with greats such as Woody Herman, Stan Kenton, Lionel Hampton, Benny Goodman, Paul Anka, Tony Bennett, and Sammy Davis Jr. Please listen to a few selections below and read more a more detailed biography below.

2019 International Trombone Festival Review

Each year the International Trombone Association(ITA) hosts the International Trombone Festival (ITF). Held in the summer, this week long festival offers youth workshops, professional development, concerts, masterclasses, and show space for dozens of the world’s top manufacturers of instruments and accessories. This year’s ITF was held on the campus of Ball State Universityin Muncie, IN. One of the ITF’s main objectives is to unite musicians from all parts of the world, but another goal is to showcase the amazing musicians on a more local scale.

Have You Heard with Jim Pugh

In the summer of 2012 I attended the Skidmore Jazz Institute in New York where I had the privilege of working with some of my biggest musical heroes. In addition to coaching and classes with greats like Pat LaBarbera and Todd Coolman I was also able to study privately with Curtis Fuller and Jim Pugh.

The Legendary Bill Watrous

This Saturday would have been the 80thbirthday of legendary trombonist Bill Watrous. As we approach our first June without him let’s celebrate his fantastic career by revisiting some of his most prolific recordings. For younger players who might not yet be acquainted with Bill Watrous read Scott Yanow’s biography on Watrous below.

Ball State University Trombone Day II

On April 6th, 2018 Ball State University hosted Trombone Day II. This event was a full day of rehearsals, masterclasses, lectures, and performances that showcased all of the fine resources the school has to offer. Chris Van Hof, Assistant Professor of Music Performance (Trombone), led the event, and trombone legend, Jim Pugh, was the featured artist of the day.