The Concert Singers performing Effinger’s Pastorales with Ryan Zwahlen, oboe. Jenni Brandon, director.

I’ve played two of these, but never all. I played one (Basket) when I was in high school, so that was sometime between 1970 and 74. I played that same one and then another (No Mark) when my daughter was in high school (she graduated in ’03). I loved knowing that I played it first when I was her age as she sang! I find these well written for oboe, and very lovely.

I see that Ryan Zwahlen has posted three of the four (Noon is absent), so I’m posting them below.

I always thought the last four notes of this one were to represent playing taps. I don’t know for sure, but considering the words I thought perhaps I was correct. Here are the words, from th Thomas Hornsby Ferril poem:

No Mark

Corn grew where the corn was spilled
In the wreck where Casey Jones was killed,
Scrub-oak grows and sassafrass
Around the shady stone you pass
To show where Stonewall Jackson fell
That Saturday at Chancellorsville,
And soapweed bayonets are steeled
Across the Custer battlefield ;
But where you die the sky is black
A little while with cracking flak,
Then ocean crosses very still
Above your skull that held our will.

O swing away, white gull, white gull,
Evening star, be beautiful.


Know me then.
The children out of the shade have brought me a basket
Very small and woven of dry grass
Smelling as sweet in December as the day I smelled it first.
Only one other ever was this to me,
Sweet birch from a far river,
You would not know, you did not smell the birch,
You would not know, you did not smell the grass,
You, you did not know me then.
Know me then.
The children out of the shade have brought me a basket.


There was a dark and awful wood
Where increments of death accrued
To ev’ry leaf and antlered head
Until it withered and was dead,
And lonely there I wandered and wandered and wandered.
But once a myth-white moon shone there
And you were kneeling by a flow’r,
And it was practical and wise
For me to kneel and you to rise,
And me to rise and turn to go,
And you to turn and whisper no,
And seven wondrous stags that I could not believe
Walked slowly by.

12. July 2010 · Comments Off on Lowell Trio Announcement · Categories: Concert Announcements

This just in from Janet Archibald!

Hi Everyone,
We are pleased to announce the Lowell Trio’s summer 2010 concert at Armando’s, Sunday August 15, 3pm- hope you can make it!

Lowell Trio
Janet Popesco Archibald, oboe & English Horn
Emil Miland, cello
Margaret Wong Fondbertasse, piano

An eclectic program featuring two beautiful 19th century Romantic era trios by the little known composers Robert Kahn and Marie Grandval, along with some lively works by South American composers ,some old favorites by Schumann, and more!

707 Marina Vista Ave
Martinez CA $10.00 cover charge

12. July 2010 · Comments Off on Heyo Ma Ma Ma · Categories: Pop Music, Videos

English horn in a pop band? On Saturday Night Live? Who knew? (I’d heard the song before and still wasn’t really clued in to the English horn part. Silly me!)

12. July 2010 · Comments Off on Read Online · Categories: Read Online

I found this at a site that enjoys pointing out the jerks on Craigslist. I could not find this on Craiglist though. Hmm. It just made me laugh … true or not ….

let’s jam – $18
i am a professional oboe player and i am willing to play with you and jam. normally i charge $1000 for a playing engagement but i can play with you for $18/hr. you have to be pretty good beause i don’t slow down my playing. it wouldn’t be fair to the music to keep this racehorse from running if you know what i mean. so $18/hr and that probably won’t last but email anyway and we’ll see

12. July 2010 · Comments Off on You’re Not As Stupid As I Thought You Were · Categories: Links

No, I really don’t think that about any of my readers … but that’s what came to mind when I read an article about the “Cello in a box”. I thought it because of this quote:

“People are usually pleased at the tone quality,” Nussbaum says, “because they expect it to sound horrible, and they find it doesn’t sound horrible, so that’s good.”

So it doesn’t sound horrible and that’s the good news. But does it sound anywhere close to good? Hmmm. From what I’m reading, probably not.

I can’t imagine dealing with something that sounds bad … even while I realize one can practice scales and arpeggios and all, I think the sound would cause me to not play as well. It certainly wouldn’t encourage me to practice. Kind of like having only rotten reeds.

Oh. Wait. That’s the norm for me! Hmmm.

12. July 2010 · Comments Off on Please Read · Categories: Other People's Words

Now, after 500 performances, our producers have told us and our union that in order to cut costs they will chop our string section in half, releasing five musicians and “replacing” them with a synthesizer piped in from another room. I don’t think Lenny would have approved.