VOL 6, NO 3, FALL, 2004

VOL 6, NO3, FALL, 2004

© 2004 Copyright of David E. Smith Publications
All Rights Reserved. Made in U.S.A.

Table of Contents
The Publishers' Space
The String Space
The Lone Arranger
You Might Be A Music Geek
The Brass Space
The Woodwind Space
Mistaken Identity
The Percussion Space


Educators and church musicians often think quite differently about how they construct their compositions. Preparation time for a church offertory, a contest, or a concert or for that matter, pedagogical situations, will vary greatly and that can make a real difference in how a piece is constructed and its duration.

by David E. Smith

Why Be A Publisher?
Ministry or Business?
Art or Passion? Part I

In the beginning, I was a fledgling trumpet player in the seventh grade and needed to have music to play in church. For all practical purposes there was none. Then Lillenas came out with some solo collections in the mid-fifties that were really not much more than a melody line and the piano part taken from the hymnal-but it was something!

Little was published, forty years ago or more, so I did what most performers or writers do-I started making my own arrangements. I find yet today that the majority of writers write to fulfill their own performance needs or the needs of those close to them.

Next, one begins to seek distribution of some kind--usually through a publisher.

Many writers have a specific person or group in mind which gives them a “purpose” for revving up their arranging/compositional skills.

Some writers take commissions and/or write purely for the art of composition and then if others can use their work all the better.

Styles, levels and genres come out of one's training. The intended use of the product always reflects all of the above.


When I began publishing there was a great deal of discussion about “cross-over” styles. I determined early on that Jesus' name would unabashedly be proclaimed regardless of sales. DESPUB is a sacred music publisher and purposes to produce music that will honor God through (1) content and (2) title. If this basic philosophy results in greater cost-so be it. At times I have become disappointed but not discouraged-and there's a great difference between the two.

Early engraving was done by hand, along with acetate rub-ons. Later a MusicWriter was used (manual music typewriter) and now computer programs and printers meet the need-more about this in later issues.

Another early decision was made to produce music for all instruments even though I'm a trumpet player.

I left teaching and began publishing with 25 items-mostly solos. The reason was that if a school or church had one or 50 in their unit a solo would always be needed. Other publishers produced solo collections or perhaps brass ensemble music. Some new publishers at that time were producing sacred band arrangements like Singspiration, and Strombeck Music Publications. Later, David Moody Publications came along. (The latter two are now part of the DESPUB Catalog.)

Sacred instrumental music is a very open but unfortunately a very narrow market. Several owners of print music dealerships have stated that it is an untouched market that needs to be found by dealers. Let's all hope that it grows, and grows, and grows!

(Future issues will deal with the “nuts and bolts” operation of publishing)

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I was invited to present a clinic on tone production at the International Trumpet Guild (ITG) conference at the University of Denver, June 15-19, 2004. It was an outstanding conference highlighting many outstanding performers and clinicians as well as a host of publishers and equipment manufacturers. What most accounts of such a conference leave out is the spiritual dimension of the event. It's this aspect that I wish to reflect on in this column.

by Phil Norris, Guest Editor

Spiritual Reflections on the 2004 ITG Conference-July 2004


There were a number of believers already known to me that I met there: Robert Nagel (one of the founders of ITG!), a former Kings Brass member, a former student of mine, a friend from Australia who is a leader of ITG in that country, and a Christian trumpet artist. Others I learned about through casual conversation at meals or between sessions. I discovered through conversation one believer who many years ago had attended the Christian college where I now work. Another's faith I learned about as we talked concerning his life and work.

Our exchanges were respectful and cordial though from very different worldviews. He had seen “The Passion of the Christ” and I wanted to hear his reaction to the film as a bridge for spiritual conversation. I hope to share more with him via e-mail about Jesus Christ who in his faith is revered. His understanding of Christ is limited and I want him to understand what being a Christian truly means.

In having the platform of a clinic I wanted to leave a witness without abusing that platform. At the same time, I regularly hear new-agers press the yoga emphasis of breathing. Why should I hesitate to include something from my perspective as a follower of Jesus Christ? First it was incumbent upon me to have the most excellent presentation in content and delivery. After all, who will listen to the Gospel if there is inadequate personal or professional integrity.

Sometimes we can leave a witness when we're unaware that we're doing so. I arrived at the recital hall where I was to present the clinic about a half-hour early to be sure everything was in order. I had to warm up, and as I sometimes do, I played a hymn tune. At that time I happened to think of the hymn, “My Faith Looks Up to Thee.” I don't know why...it just happened to come to mind. I don't believe I had ever played that hymn in a warm-up before. I didn't notice that two people were out-of-sight in the balcony. When I finished playing the hymn, the bystanders let me know they were present and that they recognized the tune but not the title. I was then able to tell them what the text was.

The main point of my clinic is the reality that as wind players we do not hear ourselves the way others do and that this perceptual difficulty is important in what kind of tone we decide to produce.

I included in the discussion the verse in I Corinthians 13 (“now we see through a glass darkly”), as an illustration of the principle. The concept I presented, though simple, is quite profound in its effect on tone production in the same way other simple principles of life, like love or faith, operate.

In the course of working with performers who played for me and for the audience, I was cognizant of being an encourager, as we're exhorted to be in Scripture. As a further seed plant, at the end of my clinic, I invited the audience to vocally accompany me as I played “Amazing Grace.” Though most unbelievers would have trouble explaining the Gospel, most everyone knows the first verse to that song. So as a capstone to my session, making the most beautiful tone I could, combined with the words, I can't help but think that the Spirit of God would not use that experience in the life of some unbeliever in the room that morning. At least I trust that was the case.

Later following the session, a Christian audience member caught me and said, “You're a believer, aren't you! I could just tell by how you presented everything that you were a Christian.” He added, “I went to most all the clinics here and yours was the only one that really works and that I can use.” It was most encouraging to hear that indeed I had presented a clear witness such that God's truth was honored in the content as well as the delivery. I believe this is a normal goal for all of us believers.

This then serves as a reminder that we are all given places of influence and opportunity to represent, be ambassadors for, Christ wherever God had placed us, whether that involves giving a direct Gospel presentation or simply living out His example. It's like the saying, “Preach Christ always and if necessary use words.”


To God be the glory!

Phil Norris is an Associate Professor of Music at Northwestern College, St. Paul, Minnesota 55113, where he teaches and actively performs on trumpet. He earned the DMA at the University of Minnesota. Norris is past president of the Christian Instrumentalists/Directors Association and continues to compile and edit the CIDA Sacred List of Instrumental Music.

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by Jay-Martin Pinner

The Nature of Music and Our Pedagogical Paradigms-Musings and Ponderings, Part 1

Years ago, while listening with a friend to a rehearsal, my friend, a learned and gifted colleague, jumped up and said, “You can't have that interval in a ninth chord!” Surprised, I gently reminded my colleague that as the arranger of the piece in question I could indeed have that interval because that is what I heard in my head.

As I pondered my colleague's frustration over what he heard that did not fit into his catalog of music theory, I realized we often forget that the rules of music theory are shaped by the music being analyzed. In other words, the music comes first. The analysis comes later. Musicians study 18th Century Counterpoint in order to know what made Bach's music some of the greatest music ever written. Beethoven, Brahms and Bartok also studied 18th Century Counterpoint. Their study propelled them forward to compose music for succeeding generations of musicians to dissect, analyze and codify.

As Christian musicians we reject the “evolution of music” so readily embraced by many of our secular counterparts. To assert that the music of Copland or Adams is deeper, more complex and therefore more advanced than the music of Bach or Handel is philosophically dishonest. One need spend only a short time studying Biber's Mystery Sonatas for Solo Violin, Bach's Solo Sonatas and Partitas for Violin, or Mozart's Violin Concerti to see clearly that because today's music is newer does not mean that it has evolved into something better than music written two or three centuries ago. This in no way denigrates the worthy music composed in recent years. It does mean that today's music is not better than the music of past masters. It is different, and as music recently written it should be evaluated by and meet the same standards of excellence with which we measure the excellence of music past.

The practical application for those of us who teach, perform and conduct is that we should not be too quick to dismiss the efforts of our students as they develop their God-given talents in our classrooms, studios and groups. Yes, our students need to learn the 18th Century rules for writing a fugue in the style of Bach. Yes, our students need to know that Copland wrote using colors from a pan-diatonic palette, and using parallel fifths that appear to be in blatant disregard for the rules Bach followed for his compositions. This knowledge is foundational.

When a student broaches a stimulating question in one of our classes however, do we dismiss the question or answer in a condescending tone of voice? When a student comes to a lesson with a slightly different interpretation for a piece than the interpretation we learned, do we discount the possible validity of their work and insist that the piece be learned with the “right” interpretation? In our bands and orchestras do we give consideration to articulation and bowing ideas offered by students and colleagues, or do we demand dictatorially that the group consider only our view of the piece?

The nature of music, like the nature of our Creator, transcends any textbooks or theories. Music is one of God's many unfathomable gifts. Those of us privileged to perform and teach music need to remind ourselves that we are merely temporary custodians of a bit of knowledge about this art and craft. As we instruct our students we should allow them the freedom to stretch their creative wings and soar. We should promise them that we will not let them fly outside the accepted norms of sound pedagogy (you cannot play your violin upside down) but we will show them that within those paradigms they have great freedom to explore, to discover and to grow.

Perhaps, if we learn to approach music with that attitude, when we hear something new, instead of jumping up and insisting that the sounds we just heard cannot exist we will sit in wonder and say, “That's beautiful! Why didn't I think of writing that?”

Jay-Martin Pinner is Head of the String Department at Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina. He coordinates the University's Precollege Orchestra Program, and teaches courses in String Pedagogy and String Literature.

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by Dana F. Everson

Tips for Terrific Trios

Writing for a trio? Here are some quick suggestions:

Throw out the four-part writing rules. Let me explain…Don't be overly concerned with Parallel Perfect Fifths between the top and the bottom parts.

Sometimes think of a trio as a “Thickened Melody Line.” That is not to say that you should ignore using counterpoint, but rather, make use of the opportunities when writing for three “like” instruments (i.e. 3 clarinets, 3 trombones, etc.). There is a wonderful cohesiveness in a three-part homophonic texture…Now let me quickly add point number 3…

Sometimes think of a trio as a “Three Part Conversation.” Probably most intermediate or inexperienced writers tend to avoid counterpoint. You don't have to be a Bach clone to learn some basic principles (I hope to address the subject of contrapuntal devices in a future article). But somewhere in your arrangement it would probably be appropriate to have some polyphonic texture. This can add a lot of variety.

Sometimes use unisons.

Remember that instruments can rest as well as play.

Silence is a good contrast to a solo, duet or trio. If you are including an accompaniment, let the instruments form a solid unison or octave line while the accompaniment takes care of chords or even a bit of countermelody.

Sometimes use duets. Thirds and sixths are the staple for duets.

Sometimes the instruments can play by themselves, giving the accompaniment a rest and a color contrast for a phrase or two.

Sometimes use goes beyond triads. Once, while talking with the arrangers/musicians for a well-known children's radio program, I commented: “You can't do a whole lot harmonically with just three parts, can't you?” One of the people who did a lot of their arranging answered my question: “No, but you can do a lot of implied harmony, and that can be very creative and challenging.” I thanked him for the encouragement.

Move between open and close structure as the range of your instruments will allow. For example, a trumpet trio has a total range of about two octaves. Look for those places where the melody (on first part) goes high enough to place the second and third parts in an open structure.

This will take experimentation and analyzing other's writings. With “unlike” instrumental ranges and colors, for example a trio of flute, clarinet, and horn, you will likely use open structure more often and close structure will have to be carefully planned.

Try contrasting the parts with articulations. If the first violin is performing l-o-n-g bowings, perhaps the second and third can be pizzicato.

With piano accompaniment, I often will use the piano as if it were the fourth or fifth member of the group. A woodwind trio of flute, oboe, and clarinet could become a “quartet” by having the pianist play a simple “bassoon” line…no other chords or counterlines. Sometimes I have used the right hand of the piano as a “piccolo” part high above a brass trio, and the left hand as the “tuba” part.

Have fun and constantly explore the interplay between the percussive piano and the potentially sustaining instruments.

Now get out that pen (or MIDI keyboard) and try some terrific trios!

Dana Everson holds the BME and Master's in Saxophone Performance degrees from Michigan State University, and a Master of Sacred Music from Pensacola Christian College. He has over 100 published works.

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by Phil Norris


Essential Points About Tonguing

THE foundational concept of tonguing is this: THE NOTES ARE CREATED BY AIR, NOT THE TONGUE. The tongue merely provides diction and speed to note production. The normal position is where the player would say 'TOO or TOH.''

Some players or teachers will suggest using the syllable “DOO or DOH” but this syllable does not function when blowing air. The tongue may feel like a “D: consonant, but it's actually a “T.” Try blowing a steady air stream through your pursed lips while saying “DOO/DOH”. You can't do it can you?! Only “TOO or TOH” works when blowing air and articulating.

Initial tonguing should be done LEGATO (a light “T”), maintaining AIRFLOW through the notes tongued from beginning to end of each breath. This can best be taught by blowing into the hand (while forming the embouchure) and tonguing to feel the steady flow of air while tonguing is done (cp. The flow of air when tonguing to the flow of a steadily blown stream of wine).

Approach tonguing as LAUNCHING NOTES, NOT cutting off notes. When we articulate, we want to dispense a certain burst of air with a certain quantity (volume) and a certain duration (staccato to legato). The tongue should be like a launch pad for balls of air! Again, the consonant “T” is best, because when tonguing air into the hand the only consonant that works is the “T”.

“Twa-Twa” is the sound produced by “grabbing” the note and then immediately swelling it to full tone. It sounds like singing the sound “twa”. This is to be avoided at all costs!!!

The best solution is to maintain full and fluid airflow throughout the line or phrase. But calling it to the player's attention is important.

TONGUING BETWEEN THE TEETH The most common tonguing concern is tonguing between the teeth. When this is done, particularly on upper brass, a “pop” sound precedes the note tongued. The tongue should generally touch behind the teeth where the player would say “TOO/TOH”. The exception is when players are in the lower register of the instrument when very accented or when detached notes are required.

In horn playing, tonguing between the teeth IS the normal way to get a crisp staccato in most all registers. The “pop” sound is not heard because of the nature of the instrument. On low brass, tonguing between the teeth is not as much a problem since the “pop” sound is not produced due to the very open mouth position, and it may be necessary for clear diction at times.

RELEASES-BASIC TYPES 1. Breath-for tapering ends of phrases or long notes before rests; simply stop blowing or inhale while maintaining pitch.

2. Glottal-for creating staccato at slow or in-between speeds; simply suspend the blowing between notes without taking a breath; end notes in vowels NOT consonants (e.g. too too, NOT toot-toot); keep the air between the lungs and tongue sustained.

3. Tongue-for faster releases between rapidly occurring notes; a pure tongue release at too slow a speed produces a “too-eet” sound. In legato tonguing, the tongue “flicks” the roof of the mouth so rapidly that no break occurs between notes. For very fast tonguing, use the legato strong and allow the SPEED OF THE TONGUE TO PRODUCE THE STACCATO EFFECT. At a certain speed of tongue motion, a natural staccato will occur given a normal weight of tongue contact on the roof of the mouth. To experience this, begin tonguing slowly in legato style and gradually increase the speed of the tongue while NOT CHANGING the weight of the tongue stroke. At a certain time (speed) you will hear a separation begin to occur. The lighter the tongue touch, the faster the speed will be before the separation occurs. The normal tendency is to tongue too tightly or too short on faster notes; this results in reducing the quantity of air for each note which produces a clipped or pinched sound. A legato approach on faster notes will give adequate fuel (and thus, in -creased tone for each note, and the tongue speed will provide the staccato effect. This works well in mul-tiple tonguing as well.

Phil Norris is an Associate Professor of Music at Northwestern College, St. Paul, Minnesota 55113, where he teaches and actively performs on trumpet. He earned the DMA at the University of Minnesota. Norris is past president of the Christian Instrumentalists/Directors Association and continues to compile and edit the CIDA Sacred List of Instrumental Music.


by Harlow E. Hopkins



3. Unbalanced

A reed that is unbalanced may be corrected by means of two methods. A. If the overall quality of the reed is hard, scrape the heavier side of the reed until it corresponds with the lighter side.

B. If the overall quality of the red is soft, place the weak side of the reed against the 320A emory paper (so that the reed is perpendicular to the emory paper) and lightly sand the weak side until it matches the heavier side.

Imbalance may be obvious by holding the reed up to a light. If one side shows more density of cane or a greater number of fibers than the other side, this is the strong side. If you cannot tell which is the strong side by either looking at the reed or flexing the cane, another method is to twist the mouthpiece in the mouth so that one side of the reed is firmly against the lower lip. Blow into the instrument and repeat the process for the other side. If the reed responds better with one side pressed hard against the lower lip, the side pressed against the lip is too strong and must be balanced to the weaker side. Also, try shifting the reed very slightly to one side of the mouthpiece. If it works better off-center, mark the reed accordingly and always play it in that position.

When balancing a reed, try to avoid working in the area of the heart. Often, imbalance may be caused by one or two thick vascular bundles on one side, or a hard spot near the tip. If this is the case, a very slight amount of work is necessary. If the entire side is out of balance, a great deal of work and testing may be in order. Some reeds are so out of balance that attempting correction is not worth the effort.

4. Too responsive.

Shrillness can sometimes be eliminated by narrowing the reed on both sides at the tip. A vamp that is too short may cause a sound to be too “bright”, in which case it is best to discard the reed. If too much wood has been removed at the edges, the reed may be clipped and re-proportioned with the rush. A tip that is too thin may cause a bright sound, in which case it should be clipped.

5. Squeaks

Squeaks are the result of minute areas of imbalance. There are three areas to look for in order to correct this condition:

A.. A hard spot on the tip of the reed. Scrape the spot until it is reduced to an even resistance with the rest of the tip.

B. Too much wood on the left side-about .5 inch down from the tip and 3/16ths of an inch from the edge of the reed. By scraping this spot with the rush the whistle may be corrected. Bonade says that this point of squeaking is caused by the supporting of the clarinet with the right thumb, causing an uneven distribution of the reed over the lower lip.

C. Check to make sure that the table of the reed is flat. If not, sand with the 320A emory paper.

Other causes of squeaks and whistles may be inferior cane, a split in the tip, or a tip that is too thin. Often, a squeak will disappear from a new reed as it becomes broken in, adhering to the facing of the mouthpiece.


1. Do not discard reeds that are too hard in the summer. Climate changes will cause a clarinetist to use softer reeds in the summer, harder reeds in the winter.

2. Always work with a wet reed when adjusting, except when clipping the tip.

3. Fit reeds to the Bb clarinet. A reed fitted to the A clarinet will usually sound too bright on the Bb instrument.

4. Devise a marking system to indicate the general category of the reed. I use the following markings:
            S: too soft
            H: too hard
            X: good
            E: “edgy” sound
            U: unbalanced

5. Always keep a good reed on hand to keep the embouchure stable when trying a new reed.

6. Too porous cane: soak the reed in heavy cream or buttermilk overnight, rinsing with tap water.

7. Old reeds: soak an old reed in hydrogen peroxide until the solution stops bubbling. This will temporarily revive dead reeds. After a reed has been played 1 or 2 weeks, sand the table to remove the indentation caused by the ligature pressure over the window area.

8. Paper containers for reeds are worse than useless. Reeds should be kept absolutely flat in order to keep warpage to a minimum. There are many good devices on the market…

9. The reed should be wiped with the palm of the hand after each playing session to remove extra moisture. (The fibers in a handkerchief or chamois may cause alterations in a reed.)

10. Plastic reeds and plastic-can blended reeds do not as yet have the quality necessary for a good clarinet tone. However, many educators feel that there is a place for the plastic reed in the marching band. The advantages of a plastic reed are:

         A. It does not need wetting

         B. It will practically never wear out.

Harlow E. Hopkins is Professor of Music Emeritus at Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, Illinois, where he continues as Adjunct Professor of Clarinet

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He did the right thing, stopping at the crosswalk, even though he could have beaten the red light by accelerating through the intersection.

The tailgating woman hit the roof, and the horn, screaming in frustration as she missed her chance to get through the intersection with him.

As she was still in mid-rant, she heard a tap on her window and looked up into the face of a very serious police officer.

The officer ordered her to exit her car with her hands up. He took her to the police station where she was searched, fingerprinted, photographed, and placed in a cell.

After a couple of hours, a policeman approached the cell and opened the door. She was escorted back to the booking desk where the arresting officer was waiting with her personal effects.

He said, "I'm very sorry for this mistake. You see, I pulled up behind your car while you were blowing your horn, flipping the guy off in front of you, and cussing a blue streak at him. I noticed the 'Choose Life' license plate holder, the 'What Would Jesus Do' bumper sticker, the 'Follow Me to Sunday School' bumper sticker, and the chrome-plated Christian fish emblem on the trunk. Naturally, I assumed you had stolen the car."


by Billy Madison

Keyboard Percussion Basics 101

The keyboard percussion instruments (also called mallet instruments) are a vital part of today's bands and orchestras. The most common are the bells, vibraphone, xylophone, marimba, and chimes. Each may come in different sizes and various ranges and will require an array of mallets to produce the many desired tones and effects. However, the basics for each of these keyboard percussion instruments are pretty much the same with the notable exception of the chimes. This article will not deal with the chimes.

The thumb and the curve of the index finger's top knuckle should hold the mallets in place and the other fingers should curve around the sticks or mallets in a relaxed manner. Be relaxed and don't squeeze. The mallets should be resting in the palm of the hand, which should be facing downward. Play with the back of the hand facing upward. Both hands are done exactly the same way.

Stand approximately six inches from the instrument and in the middle of the keys. With the wrist, raise a mallet approximately 6 to 8 inches then strike the instrument and allow the mallet to rebound back to the up or ready position for the next stroke. All bars should be struck in the center with the exception of the accidental bars, which may be struck near the end, but only if the passage being played is too technical and fast to allow for the bar to be struck in the center. Never strike the bar over the connecting cord, as the tone quality will be greatly reduced.

Rolls are used to sustain the tone on mallet instruments and should always be played using alternating single strokes. The speed of the roll should be determined by the pitch. The higher the pitch, the faster the roll, since the smaller bars have a shorter decay. The lower the pitch, the slower the roll, since the larger bars have a longer decay. Remember the purpose of rolls is to simply sustain the tone.

Two notes played at the same time are called “double stops.” It is very important that both pitches sound at exactly the same instant or the passage will sound sloppy. Avoid the “flam” effect. When rolling “double stops” simply alternate between the two pitches. Time should be spent practicing “double stops” at various intervals so the hands and eyes will coordinate to play the correct pitches.

Always practice reading keyboard percussion music and playing without looking at the bars. It's OK to look at the keys while practicing scales, thirds, arpeggios, etc. so you will develop a “feel” for where each bar is. That way when it comes to reading the music you will be able to find the notes without having to look at them directly. Always incorporate your peripheral vision while playing keyboard percussion instruments.

There are, of course, many other things to be learned about playing keyboard percussion instruments, but this should help get started. Always concentrate on fundamentals and work on the things mentioned in this article to develop a good foundation and then you can concentrate on more advanced concepts.

Billy Madison has taught instrumental music in the Arkansas Public Schools for 18 years. He holds both the B;ME in Instrumental Music and the MM in Music Theory & Composition from Arkansas State University. He studied composition with Jared Spears and Tom O'Conner. Madison has played percussion with the Northeast Arkansas Symphony since 1978.

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The proper grip requires you to pick up the mallets with the heads pointing forward, using your index fingers and thumbs while keeping them one third of the distance from the end.
MISTAKEN IDENTITY An honest man was being tailgated by a stressed-out woman on a busy boulevard. Suddenly, the light turned yellow, just in front of him.
   A mimeographed copy of “On Clarinet Playing” was obtained at a convention several years ago. It was the work of the late Gino Cioffi, former principal clarinet of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. The following is a continuation, and conclusion, of his article which began in the Spring, 2004, issue of Lines and Spaces.

In this case, on ALL brasses, the tongue, indeed, must come between the teeth in order to get a crisp articulation.

The beginning of the note should be as full and clear as the middle and end of the note.

So only one syllable, “T”, does the job. We simply use different firmnesses of “T” to produce different note lengths or weights of articulation.
(The following is a reprint of an article which first appeared in Lines and Spaces, in August, 2000.)


  • Your pickup line is: "What's your favorite augmented 6th chord?"


  • You look at a piece by J.S. Bach and say, You know, I think he could have gotten a much better effect this way


  • You dream in four parts.


  • You feel the need to end Tchaikovsky's Pathetique Symphony with a Picardy Third.


  • You like to deceive friends and loved ones with deceptive cadences.


  • You can hear an enharmonic modulation coming a mile away.


  • You have trained your dog to jump through a flaming circle of fifths.


  • You abbreviate your shopping list--using figured bass.


  • You understood more than half the statements on this list.


Be careful not to overdo any one device.

When a student broaches a stimulating question in one of our classes however, do we dismiss the question or answer in a condescending tone of voice?

The practical application for those of us who teach, perform and conduct is that we should not be too quick to dismiss the efforts of our students as they develop their God-given talents in our classrooms, studios and groups.

One person I struck up a new friendship with was a Muslim man from California. We had a chance to reflect on the world scene from our different perspectives as Muslim and Christian.

Preach Christ Always
And As A Last Resort
Use Words.
St. Francis of Assisi


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