De' fliengde Vuogtlänn'r

Observations, rants, etc. from a guy who really gets around.


Blowing His Own Horn

I've always found pride to be one of the more annoying character flaws. For everything a person is proud of, there are at least as many things to be humble about.

Cardinal Gibbons High School graduated its first class in June of 1966. I started there as a freshman that year. At that point, they didn't even have a school band yet. One day, they had a meeting for anyone interesting in starting a school band.

Since my Dad had been a professional musician, and had even taught me to read music, I thought it would be worth exploring. So I went to the meeting.

The guy they brought in to head up the effort was a classically trained musician who owned his own music store. And he was proud of it. Unfortunately, instead of simply presenting his bona fides and telling us how he planned to approach the whole matter, he had to make some unflattering comments about a popular musician of the day who had developed his own unique style. This is where it got annoying.

While he was talking, I thought to myself "Which of these two is touring all over, playing to sell-out crowds, and which one runs a rinky-dink little music store outside Baltimore?" I decided to forgo the "opportunity" of learning music with this guy.

As a footnote, the next year they hired a regular music teacher who turned out to be excellent. And I joined the band. At first, I played french horn, but then moved on to trombone and baritone horn. On my own, I also learned trumpet. Had a great three years in the band. Lots of work, but lots of fun. The only real sad part was that my Dad passed away before things really got going. He might have made it to one recital, but I can't really remember. It's been too many years.

Oh... and the guy the music shop owner was making disparaging remarks about? Meh, no one special. Just some guy from Los Angeles named Herb Alpert.


At 07:27, Blogger T. F. Stern said...

Sounds like a Lonely Bull to me too.

I had a metal shop instructor, short for "pre-parole" instructor; anyway, his biggest beaf with me, other than I didn't belong in a class full of the correctional institution bound, was that I didn't use a flat file the way he wanted. "Only one direction, lift and return to start postion" as he explained that drawing the file back across the metal would wear it out prematurely.

I continue to draw the file back because it acts to polish the metal and gives me a better surface from which I can read very faint marks while impressioning a key. If I wear a file out I can afford a new one every six or seven years.

At 07:09, Blogger Lucy Stern said...

I played trombone in band too. I always liked Herb Alpert's style.

At 08:22, Blogger Jahn said...

Oddly enough, it was his trombonist (Bob Edmonton) who got me interested in the instrument. They wrote some great parts for him in their arrangements of songs like "South Of The Border", "What Now, My Love?", and "Love Potion #9". Good stuff.


Post a Comment

<< Home