The Summerglen Files

Music, Creativity, and Everyday Life at Summerglen Music in Raleigh, NC

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No Time To Practice? Car Trip Tips

November 20th, 2008 · No Comments

This is the second post in our series about fitting practice into your schedule during the busy holiday season. Today, we tackle a very common holiday dilemma–how to practice when you’re driving to visit far-off relatives! If your family’s car is packed to the roof to visit your Aunt Bertha, and your trombone won’t fit, [...]

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Tags: Practice Tips

No Time To Practice? Do What You Can!

November 19th, 2008 · 1 Comment

It’s getting to be that time of year when things get crazy-busy for the holidays. Between shopping for gifts, trekking across the country visiting relatives, and playing holiday concerts, it can be difficult to find time to practice and become a better musician. This week on the Summerglen blog, we’ll share some tips to help [...]

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Tags: Practice Tips · Trombones

The Benefits of Buzzing

November 14th, 2008 · No Comments

During the last week, I’ve seen phenomenal results from brass students’ spending time buzzing on the mouthpiece–results so great, I must encourage you fine readers to take some time today to buzz! When I was a younger trombonist, few of my teachers were strong advocates of buzzing. I got the impression that buzzing was just [...]

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Tags: music education · Practice Tips

When You Need to Practice But Don’t Want To

October 20th, 2008 · No Comments

Today I worked with a student who absolutely detests scales. You can tell they’re the low point of his day, and that often, he’ll avoid practicing them altogether. I know the feeling, because I have that same dread when it comes to improvisation. Once I get started, I can improvise for hours. But getting started, [...]

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Tags: music education · Practice Tips

Puppies and ‘Bones

September 13th, 2008 · No Comments

Today I performed at the Brass at Bond festival, a free afternoon of brass music at a local park. I didn’t play my best by any stretch of the imagination. It was 90-some degrees out, and reeeally humid–so humid that it was tough to get a seal between the mouthpiece and my face! And when [...]

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Tags: Practice Tips · staying healthy

Back in Brass – Returning to Playing After Being Sick

September 6th, 2008 · No Comments

Ugh, this week has been somewhat frustrating, because it’s been a “get back into it” week trombone-wise. Two Tuesdays ago, I was hit with an awful case of food poisoning, and I didn’t have the energy to practice until this past Monday. Looking on the bright side, I did get a week off from “work”…but [...]

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Tags: Practice Tips · staying healthy

The Importance of Having a Good Teacher

August 6th, 2008 · 1 Comment

As I’ve worked through my new technical routine, I’ve done a lot of tailoring to make each exercise fit where I am and where I’m going as a trombonist. It feels like I was given a pair of pants that was far too long, so I hemmed up the legs so they wouldn’t drag the [...]

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Tags: music education · Practice Tips

Goals with Minds of Their Own

August 4th, 2008 · No Comments

I just completed the first half of my trombone practice project, and I’m definitely on a different path than I originally set out to follow. As I’ve worked on goals in the past, I’ve learned that sometimes plans go their own way, and that often that way is exactly right! Earlier in the month, when [...]

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Tags: creativity · Practice Tips · Trombones

Enjoying the Journey

July 25th, 2008 · 2 Comments

I wasn’t able to get to sleep for a while last night, so I sat around reading blogs and thinking. (OK, and playing the jewel game for quite a while.) Here are two neat blog posts I found: Living the Moment from The Idea Dude, and Failing Well from Megan Cutter, a fellow Inside 919 [...]

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Tags: blogs · Practice Tips

Back to the Valley

July 15th, 2008 · No Comments

It’s been a busy couple of months here at Summerglen, with preparing for the WBON presentation, setting up trombone choirs, arranging pieces for the salsa band, and planning creative workshops and drum circles. And when I have several creative projects going on, I fall into a familiar pattern. I plug away at each project, little [...]

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Tags: creativity · Practice Tips · Trombones