Friday, May 10, 2013
Verne Q. Powell Flutes, established in 1927, is the leading maker of precious metal flutes in the world. Our brass divisions, Sonaré Pro Brass and E.K. Blessing, manufacture trumpets, trombones, and flugelhorns in Elkhart, Indiana. Sonaré Pro Brass and Blessing instruments are endorsed by artists such as Lew Soloff, John Wallace, and Dominick Farinacci. We have collaborated on instrument design with such renowned names as Cliff Blackburn, Steve Shires, and Fred Powell.
We are looking for a sales oriented musician who enjoys traveling, meeting new people and developing personal relationships. Our Brass Instrument Specialist is the primary sales person for Sonaré Pro Brass and E.K. Blessing brass instruments in the USA and abroad. A successful candidate is a positive person with lots of energy and drive to produce results.
For a detailed job description contact Powell Flutes at (978)461-6111, press 0 and speak with the operator.
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
In our last post, Ken Saul of Ultra-Pure Oils shared tips on oiling brass instruments. This week, he shares more suggestions for keeping your horn clean, oiled, and happy...
Tip #2: Grease your tuning slides once a week. Tuning slide lubes or greases will break down with oil and moisture. If you don’t have grease on the slide, it can form a green “rust” and start to corrode or wear the slide. And if you move the slide without being greased, you are rubbing a soft metal (brass) directly on a metal sleeve, which can eventually cause wear and leakage. If the slides get leaky, the instrument will not play too well, and the tuning slide can even slip during a performance, making you play out of tune. Use Ultra-Pure Regular Tuning Slide Lube or our Tuning Slide & Cork Grease for the main tuning slide and slides that need to stay in place. Use Ultra-Pure Light Tuning Slide Lube for the slides that need to move quickly for slight tuning adjustments, like the 1st and 3rd slides on trumpets and cornets. If the tuning slide is badly worn and leaking, you can use Ultra-Pure Heavy Tuning Slide Lube to seal the leak and make it stick in place.
Tip #3: Use Ultra-Pure Heavy Tuning Slide Lube to prevent your mute from falling out! Just put a tiny amount of this heavy lube onto the mute corks. This lube is so sticky, that it is practically glue. It will really keep the mute in tight and will also quiet the squeak that can happen when you twist the mute into the bell.
The bottom line: Keep your horn clean and oiled, and you will be able to enjoy it for many years to come.
-Ken Saul, Ultra-Pure Oils
More tips on instrument care are on the Ultra-Pure Oils website, www.ultrapureoils.com
Thursday, March 14, 2013
By Ken Saul, Ultra-Pure Oils
You know the feeling --- you are trying to play your best and suddenly your valve or slide sticks. It is almost as bad as the feeling you get when you are playing with a mute and it falls out of your bell and crashes onto the floor! Well, read on and I can tell you how to solve both of these problems.
Tip #1: Oil your valves and lube your slides even if they seem to be working fine. The space between the valve and its casing is truly microscopic. All it takes is a bit of grime or dirt to make the valve hesitate or stick. By oiling every day or two, you will help to remove any buildup before it becomes a problem. At Ultra-Pure Oils, we recommend that you remove your valve from the casing and use plenty of valve oil to coat the valve and to remove any grime. The best time to do this is just before you put your horn away for the day, so the valves are stored in oil, not in saliva. If your valve is sticking all the time, no matter how clean it is, then take your horn to a brass technician for repair.
Trombone slides are also built to very tight tolerances and need daily lubricating. Wipe off the inner slide and swab the outer slide with your cleaning rod and a clean cloth. Then apply a few drops of Ultra-Pure Trombone Slide Lube to the stockings. If the slide is dented or out of parallel, take it to your brass technician for repair.
Friday, March 1, 2013
A consummate fixture on the New York jazz scene, Lew Soloff's career is filled with a rich history of renowned sessions and world-class collaborations. Born in Brooklyn in 1944, Soloff was raised in Lakewood, New Jersey where he began playing trumpet when he was 10. By 1966, he was performing with Maynard Ferguson and that year also joined the Gil Evans Group. But it was in the popular groundbreaking group, Blood, Sweat & Tears, that Soloff's trumpet solos became an indelible part of American culture. He was an integral part of the band from 1968 to 1973, racking up 9 Gold records worldwide, a Grammy for "Record of The Year" (1969) and creating those searing horn lines in "Spinning Wheel."
Following his time with Blood, Sweat and Tears, Soloff demonstrated his distinguished abilities in the studio with George Benson, Benny Carter, Paquito D'Rivera, Miles Davis/Quincy Jones (Live At Montreux), Mercer Ellington, Lionel Hampton, Herbie Mann, Carmen McRae and Wayne Shorter. Film soundtracks that have Soloff in the mix include; The Big Lebowski, Lethal Weapon 3, Billy Bathgate, Brighton Beach Memoirs, Carlito's Way, The Color of Money, Coming To America, The Mambo Kings, Meet Joe Black, National Lampoons Vacation, Tender Mercies, The Untouchables and Maid In Manhattan.
Soloff's current schedule of engagements provides a varied platform for his music. He is a regular in Carla Bley's 4X4 group and her big band, and remains a founding member of The Manhattan Jazz Quintet. Soloff also records and tours with The Absolute Ensemble, a 19-piece chamber music group that interprets everything from Stravinsky and Bach to Zappa and Hendrix.
A respected educator as well, he continues to appear as guest soloist at universities around the country, has been on the faculty of the Manhattan School of Music for nearly 20 years, and is an adjunct faculty member at Juilliard and New School.
"At my first big band gig with the Sonaré, a friend with ears I trust the most said that when I play that shiny horn (Sonaré 800L), you can't listen to anything else!"
Sonare 801L (it's a new Sonare 801 made in Elkhart, Indiana)
Thursday, February 21, 2013
The new TBN-852 trombone was designed in collaboration with Jim Becker. It features a lightweight bell, interchangeable leadpipes, and a standard rotary valve. As with all Sonaré Pro Brass instruments, it is cryogenically treated and is manufactured in Elkhart, Indiana. Additional specs are below:
Finish – Lacquer, Silver Plate
Leadpipe – 2 sizes, interchangeable
Open Wrap - Yes
Bell – 8.5” inch
Bell Material – Rose Brass
Slide Bore - .547”
F Attachment - Yes
F Section Bore Size - .555”
Outer Hand Slide Tubing – Rose Brass
Mouthpiece – 5G
Valves - Standard
Case - Traditional
Friday, February 15, 2013
This past week, we had the pleasure of working with Iain Muirhead here at the Sonaré Pro Brass. Iain has been a long-time supporter of the Sonaré instruments and is the co-founder of the Wallace Collection. Together with his business partner, John Wallace, they began the Wallace Collection, which produces mutes for all brass instruments. You can read more about the company on their website at http://www.wallacebrass.co.uk/.
Iain Muirhead is the Former Principal Trumpet with the Scottish Opera and Scottish National Orchestra. After trying Sonaré Pro Brass trumpets, he shared the following:
“Due to the patented adjustable valve guide, all notes respond equally; notes slot in easily and with terrific centre all the way down through the valve combinations. The Sonare trumpet plays like the trumpet you have always wanted, build quality is exceptional. The Sonare trumpet is a joy to play, and a joy to listen to.”
*Note: Microlok Valve Guides - U.S. patent #7,667,117
John Wallace is the Principal of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music & Drama. His thoughts on the Sonaré Pro Brass trumpets are below:
“I was amazed by the Sonaré trumpet. Just when I thought a trumpet was a trumpet was a trumpet, along came Powell with a new balance of all the qualities I look for in an instrument - a fresh tool with which to navigate the mysteries of the musical imagination.
For the Sonaré Pro Brass instruments, we have collaborated with renowned performers and instrument designers to build horns suited to the demands of today’s pro players. Our meeting with Iain certainly falls into this collaborative category. We are pleased that he was able to visit our shop in Elkhart, and we look forward to seeing him again. In the photos below, we see Iain with Brendan Crise, Brass Product Manager for Sonaré Pro Brass.