14. August 2009 · Comments Off on Read On YouTube · Categories: Oboe, Videos

You’re pretty good. You have a good technique and a nice tone, but your playing lacks maturity, as far as expression and actual musicality go.

This was written to a middle school oboist who looks to be about eleven or twelve in the video (it was put up in 2007… I think I posted it then). I’d kind of like to respond, “Your comment lacks intelligence.”

I’m sorry, but these YouTube comments just crack me up. I think anyone who posts should have to at least put something up themselves to let us know just what they can do.

Then in 2008, you can hear this young oboist play more:

And, finally, this year, a bit taller too …

14. August 2009 · Comments Off on Going Off To School? · Categories: Ramble, UCSC

Some readers may be preparing for their first experience at college. If you are an oboist (or any musician, really … but I’m oboe centric as you all know!) I would suggest that you attempt to contact the instructor if you plan on private lessons. Some schools allow anyone to take lessons (rare), some allow music majors and minors to take lessons, and for some you must audition. So if you think you are going to be taking lessons, but haven’t investigated this, now would be a good time to inquire.

In addition, I suggest you check into orchestra and/or wind ensemble auditions. Some students aren’t quite in “college mode” yet and think they can sign up, just like they did in high school, for a band. In most instances you must audition first! At UCSC I know our orchestra auditions are held a few days before classes begin (the wind auditions are on Tuesday, September 22). You have to go to the music building and sign up for these auditions. Some schools have repertoire for the auditions. Some don’t. So as you can see, you have to do a little investigating to find out what is required of you.

I always feel a bit sorry for students who, in the first week, come in to my room to see if they can have lessons; usually by then I’ve set up my schedule and have signed up those I’m able to teach.

Note to UCSC students: If you take private lessons you must also be in a major performing ensemble.

So this is a little heads up for those of you who are new to this college experience. You’re on your own now! Mom and dad won’t be assisting you (and they shouldn’t … I am always dismayed when parents try to set up things for their college-aged children). If you are planning on UCSC, send me a note, introduce yourself, and we can set up a meeting time on September 22 for an audition.

14. August 2009 · Comments Off on TQOD · Categories: TQOD

you should have seen how many times i broke my oboe & clarinet reeds when I was in marching band, trip and the reed was gone

(ARGH! You never march with an oboe. Ever.)

14. August 2009 · Comments Off on BQOD · Categories: BQOD

And then there is the sound of inlet waves on a stifling hot summer afternoon in August as they slap against the pilings and the sides of the fishing boats in a small marina that begs for a pitcher of ice cold lager.

However, music is the subject of this rant and so I shall return to topic and observe that I can think of no seventeenth classical music for ensemble that would call out for the enjoyment of the quaffing of a beer to complete the moment.