Tag Archives: music

new antique music by somebody else…

once again, i would like to offer my utmost gratitude to my wife, who made it possible for me to own the awesome music notation software called Sibelius. it has made processes like this take so much less time than doing the same thing “by hand”… and it’s not something that i have to imagine, as i have actually done projects like this “by hand” in the past, and it was so tedious and drawn-out over, literally, months, that i no longer do such projects… conversely, this project in it’s entirety, took 5 weeks to go from “a gleam in my eye” to having finished parts and a recording… and 4 weeks and 5 days of that were waiting for the score to arrive from the publisher. 😎

so, there’s this march in honor of Joyce’s 71st New York Regiment written in 1881 by Thornton Barnes Boyer, which we’ve been trying to play with the Ballard Sedentary Sousa Band for several years now, and getting nowhere… primarily because of the fact that there are several different “arrangements” of it scattered across the 35-odd musicians in the band, which have several differences which, while not major, definitely mean that playing it as an ensemble is a lot more difficult. and that’s not to mention that it is in the key of E♭ minor (six flats, for those of you who may not know), which, for a community band with players of all abilities, is asking a bit too much…

but that may or may not be the issue, as i discovered at a recent BSSB rehearsal that, in fact, there are two different “arrangements” of Joyce’s 71st NY Regiment March just in the trombone section, and that they are enough different that playing the two of them and expecting it to sound even reasonably coherent was impossible, as one of them had the “Trio” in an entirely different key all together.

a little bit of research revealed the fact that there are several different “arrangements”, which include adding harmony and ornamentation to the trio, changing the key of the trio to the relative major, and changing the location of the “Da Capo”, all of which were made long after the original composer, TB Boyer, had passed on, and nobody could decide which of the many different arrangements was “best”. one thing that they all agreed on, however, was that the original piece had been published by J.W.Pepper.

a tiny light bulb appeared over my head, as i realised that i actually own a 100-year-old musical instrument with the J.W.Pepper logo stamped on it, and i actually know where J.W.Pepper has a branch location in tukwilla…

so, i went to J.W.Pepper and asked if they still carried the original version of Joyce’s 71st NY Regiment March, not arranged by anyone, and, bob’s-yer-uncle, they have it. not only that, but they have a version of it that has been transcribed for modern instruments, which is really an issue when you realise that what constitutes a concert band has changed pretty dramatically in the past 120 years: no saxhorns, no helicons, no ophecleids, quinticlaves or clavitubes, no serpents, consistent woodwinds, a tuning note that is several cents higher than it was, etc., etc., etc…

however, they sold the publishing rights to some other company, which only prints copies on demand, so i had to wait until they printed a copy… just for meeeeee… 😊

i got it the other day, and entered it into the aforementioned, AWESOME MUSIC NOTATION SOFTWARE (which took all of 5 hours, stretched out over a couple of days) and transposed it down a half-step, into D minor, which only has one flat!

my impression is that it will be much easier to muddle our way through, now that we’ve all got the same arrangement, and it’s in a key that doesn’t twist our brains while we’re trying to learn it… 👍

and, because of the fact that the software also outputs in sound formats, i have been able to hear what it’s going to sound like (more or less) to make sure that all the parts are correct BEFORE i print them and hand them out to people!

Joyce’s 71st New York Regiment March

i suppose this is the only time i’m going to have to update this in a while…

so the moisture festival starts this week. i’ve got a sancapators rehearsal on wednesday, and then i play with the sancapators on thursday. then i’ve got a fremont philharmonic rehearsal on saturday. then starting a week from wednesday i play, with snake suspenderz, one show each wednesday, thursday and friday, three shows saturday, two shows sunday and one show monday. then i’ve probably got a fremont phil rehearsal on saturday, april 4th, and on wednesday the 8th i start all over again, with the phil, one show each on wednesday, thursday and friday, three shows saturday, and two shows sunday. my recollection is that last year i got sick on one of the days that i played with the sancapators, and spent the rest of the festival recovering. i’m going to try to avoid that this year, if at all possible.

moe broke a tooth few weeks ago, while she was on her way to las vegas, and then she broke another tooth about a week later, which she had pulled about a week ago, which resulted in dry socket, a very painful condition that i would have preferred she NOT have to suffer. she went to the dentist today to get her crown made, for the original tooth she broke, and she’s got another appointment to have some other work done in a couple of weeks. it makes me really glad that i’ve got indestructable teeth (seriously, ever since i was a kid the dentists i have gone to have shooed me out of their office as quickly as possible so that they can get actual, paying customers in their chairs, and some have been rather obvious and rude about it), but i wish she didn’t have to go through all this, because i know how painful it can be. 😐

i splurged and bought a USB turntable that actually works (compared to the sony turntable that i had, which appeared to work, but didn’t, in some extremely significant ways that weren’t actually evident until almost the end of the project), and re-started on the process of rendering all of the remaining vinyl in the house (which is a surprisingly small amount at this point) into a digital format that can be played on “today’s” devices. i’m rendering the vinyl albums into .flac format, for burning onto CDs, .ogg format for playing on my desktop, and .mp3 format for playing on my phone and tablet… of course i’m also thinking of how this whole project can be monetized once i’m finished with my own projects, because i can’t be the only person with a hoard of obsolete but desirable music… πŸ‘Ώ

some jehovah’s witlesses just came by our house. it’s the first active evangelisation attempt we’ve had on the house in a very long time. the last time i was taken off guard and actually took their line of drivel for a minute before i ejected them from the property, but this time i was alerted (thanks to zorah, who barks at anything that moves, so i had to be a little aware, as well), and i met the guy on the front porch and told him that i wasn’t interested in his drivel before he even had the chance to say anything. i went back in the house and, while i watched, four more people in a car drove up, so i went down to the driveway and said, very clearly and slowly, “Tina Chopp is God! Praise her OR DIE!!”… i suppose now they’re going to call the police on me, but it was worth it. πŸ‘Ώ

by the way, this post is at least partially because my sister posted that she and her husband are “not very exciting people”… the reason you’re not very exciting people is because you don’t try hard enough… πŸ˜›

rehearsal season is here

monday i’ve got a fremont phil rehearsal. tuesday i have a sousa band rehearsal. wednesday i have a fighting instruments of karma rehearsal. thursday i have a snake suspenderz gig. sunday, a week from today, i have a fremont phil gig. wednesday week, i have a fighting instruments of karma rehearsal… then the moisture festival starts…

oy… 😐

J.W. Pepper

Tenor Hornin a post called fezorocity and antique brass…, from 100911, i wrote of obtaining an antique tenor horn, around 100 years old, stamped with the J.W. Pepper logo. i actually did some research online and found pictures of similar horns from around the same era.

i immediately featured the horn in an educational post entitled “THE "RIGHT WAY" TO REMOVE A STUCK BRASS MOUTHPIECE“, in which i used it as an example of a stuck mouthpiece and the correct way to remove it.

120502 tuba triothen, on 120502, i posted a composite photo of me playing three different tubas, one of which was that same horn with the J.W. Pepper logo. at the time i was under the impression that it was more or less a “mid-west” and/or east coast company.

little did i know… 😎

140331 salamandir at the moisture festivalit turns out that there’s a branch of J.W. Pepper in tukwilla, just down the street from ikea. i went in there today and immediately felt like i’d been there all my life… they had racks of catalogued sheet music all over the place, a rack of batons for sale on the desk, and a friendly dog who greeted me at the door.

i ordered a copy of the piano score for Le Tombeau de Couperin by Ravel, which should be here next week, and i’m going to take the horn with me. 😎

music

i found the web site put up by Dave Gannett, who is my unwitting mentor in all things tuba. dave is the tuba player for Uncle Yoke’s Black Dawgs, a dixieland band from kissimmee florida, the artist behind Tubas From Hell, and one AWESOME tuba player. my first experience seeing him live was at the Friday Harbour Traditional Jazz Festival in 1991, where he played The Flight of The Bumblebee — at the correct speed — on his sousaphone. when he finished the piece, he had it rigged up so that he blew smoke and flames out of his bell on the last note…

i knew i had found a mentor at that moment… πŸ˜‰

also, two more tracks for The Church of The Pleistocene, thanks to my recent re-acquaintance with Dr. J. Vernon McGee of Thru The Bible Radio Network. i listened to Dr. J. during my ill-fated time as a taxi driver, just before the birth of my son. the main reason i listened to him was because, at the time, taxi cabs only came with AM radios, and the music on AM radio was AWFUL… Dr. J. Vernon McGee wasn’t an awful lot better, but at least i got familiar enough with his distinctive ‘twang’ to make music out of it thirty years later…

How Firm A Foundation (A Tribute to Dr. J. Vernon McGee)
We Don’t Like Things Like This