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Author Topic: So I walked into the band room....  (Read 3021 times)

Offline Lisa

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So I walked into the band room....
« on: January 31, 2017, 07:49:58 PM »
Yeah, so I sent an email to the director of our community band, expressing interest in playing during the summer.  There's an outdoor bandshell in the park.  I figured, maybe by summer, I might be able to play along in the third row, softly.  I said I hadn't played in band in 32 years, and I played bass and contra bass clarinet, but i just got a soprano Bb last week.  He sent me back an email, saying that they're practicing tonight, for the upcoming winter concert, and said if I could make it, to stop by the university band room so I could meet with him, and fill out a contact form.   
It all sounded so innocent. 
I usually don't work so late on Tuesdays, but had picked up some hours, and ended up getting there for the last half hour, and afterwards, came up to introduce myself.  I explained again that I played Soprano clarinet 3rd through 8th grade, then switched to bass and contra bass in high school, but haven't played in 32 years, other than native american flutes and recorders the past few years.  He excused himself, saying he was going for the paperwork, and returned a few minutes later while his wife artfully distracted me, so I didn't notice him returning.  I filled out the form with my contact information, then put on my reading glasses to read the bit at the bottom I couldn't quite make out, and noticed there were some serial numbers, and "Selmer Bass Clarinet"
He handed me a music folder, and a large case that seemed to materialize from nowhere.
"I'm sure it will all come back to you quickly.  Very quickly, I hope, since the concert is in two and half weeks, on February nineteenth.  I really need a bass player, we don't have any lower woodwinds at all expect for a basson.  We need you."
It's kind of like the movie, Field of Dreams,  "If you built it, they will come." 
Except for me, it's like, "If you show up to sign up a contact form for city band, you'll leave with a bass clarinet and a folder of music that looks like Flight of the Bumblebee."
I'm so excited and nervous, i don't think i'm going to sleep tonight.  I have to go get a reed tomorrow during my lunch break, but i'm not done with work until 9 pm, so it's going to be a long day, waiting to go home and play the bass for the first time in 32 years!
Lisa
   
Lisa  Upper Michigan

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Offline Airflyte

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2017, 08:04:32 PM »
Awesome! Let's see, 19 days x 2 hrs. of practice per day plus a half hour of long tones should get you right back in the game  :)

I so want to join a band but still feel quite comfortable in the woodshed  :-\
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Offline Windsong

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2017, 08:51:20 PM »
Good on you, Lisa.
About 8 months ago, I ran into a similar situation, but allowed myself an easy out.
You, however, inserted yourself into a situation where it sounds like commitments have been made, and a bandleader's skill in vocalizing true necessity, coupled with your mildly tepid desire, curiousity and conscientiousness have found you in a unique position to prove your mettle.
Bravo, and so it begins, yet again.  I am happy for you, and suspect you'll be great.  Consider that this new chapter may open doors that you will greatly benefit from, and find true sustenance from.
Listening to music is wonderful, but making music for and with others is divine.
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Offline Tinker73

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2017, 04:21:03 AM »
Lisa,  that's great and good for you!  I hope you will keep us posted on how things progress.  Next time you need to remember those band director people are sneaky and usually get their way!

Steve
All posts intended for members and visitors to The Clarinet Pages Forum.

Offline DaveLeBlanc

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2017, 10:36:21 AM »
The reason I stopped playing bass and went to contra alto is because I was so out of practice that any music was too difficult!  I settled with pieces that had nothing shorter than a half note :)
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Offline andybeals

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2017, 04:17:17 PM »
Great story, Lisa!  It will come back faster than you think.  You might be holding yourself back to quarter, half, and whole notes for the concert, but everyone will appreciate your contribution.
The Clarinet Pages is where we answer the question: "Am I not a Clarinet and a Woodwind?"

Offline Windsong

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Great Bass video
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2017, 06:23:53 PM »
The below bass clarinet video is really fantastic.  Perhaps many of you have already seen it, but it's one you'll likely not grow tired of easily.  It's narration after The Flight Of The Bumblebee is mildly crass, but nothing a Disney movie does not serve up in abundance.  This guy is a brilliant player, and he makes some very useful recommendations for alternate fingering.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-Y0I-LQQik
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Offline Lisa

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2017, 05:06:09 AM »
He does make really great videos.  I've been subscribed to his channel for a while now.  I'm glad you thought about posting a link, I didn't think to do it.
Lisa
Lisa  Upper Michigan

Everything will B(b)-Fine, at The Clarinet Pages

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Offline Airflyte

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Re: Great Bass video
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2017, 01:13:33 PM »
The below bass clarinet video is really fantastic.  Perhaps many of you have already seen it, but it's one you'll likely not grow tired of easily.  It's narration after The Flight Of The Bumblebee is mildly crass, but nothing a Disney movie does not serve up in abundance.  This guy is a brilliant player, and he makes some very useful recommendations for alternate fingering.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-Y0I-LQQik

*Mind Blown* Thanks for posting that!

Here's an alto (saxophone) player - I don't want to derail the thread - but it's on the same incredible level of playing.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1XQp2I-14M
I think with players like this, it's all about the music making the instrument only a speaker to get it out!
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Offline Windsong

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2017, 04:26:27 AM »
Seriously--that man is not human.  If you lift his shirt, you will find a complex micro-processor hiding under an access panel.
Nope--not possible.
 :o

It's like Yngwie Malmsteen's exploits as argueably the quickest, most technical player in the world on guitar.
It's impressive, like being able to juggle 16 live chainsaws would be, but to my ear that will only ever be a chaotic technical exercise.  In his case, it is more of a magic act.
Am I in awe of his extraordinary talent?  Absolutely.  Do I want to drive over my saxophones and take them to the metal recycling yard because I will NEVER be able to come one tenth as close to what we've just seen, in terms of speed?  Not at all. 
Thanks for sharing that.  It was, in a word, phenominal--truly.
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Offline Windsong

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2017, 04:28:47 AM »
He does make really great videos.  I've been subscribed to his channel for a while now.  I'm glad you thought about posting a link, I didn't think to do it.
Lisa

Yeah--he's amusing, and makes some very good suggestions, accompanied by how and where to use such fingerings.
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Offline Silversorcerer

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #11 on: April 02, 2017, 11:29:35 AM »
This is the most excellent story I have heard from a "returning to the band-room" player. Awesome!
- Silversorcerer (David Powell) exclusively for Phil's original “The Clarinet Pages" forum

Offline super20dan

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #12 on: December 25, 2021, 05:15:20 AM »
great story lisa-i had a sim experience returning to playing after 10 years. i showed up with my alto clarinet! got some funnt looks and jokes but bit has made an welcome addition to the band. when there is no music i play bass.

Offline LarryS

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #13 on: December 25, 2021, 11:07:23 AM »
Good luck Lisa!
You don't stop playing when you get old, you get old when you stop playing.
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Offline windydankoff

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Re: So I walked into the band room....
« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2021, 08:47:00 AM »
We haven't heard from our dear Lisa in a few years. We miss you Lisa!
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