But do you care?
    I don’t.

    The trombone has already been with us for about 600 years and I just don’t see it going away any time soon either. It’s just too good of an instrument.

    Some people have serious problems with it, it’s true.

“The trombone is a sinful and uncouth instrument, and too evil for a righteous person to play.”
Late 1880's, By James Henry Fillmore, the father of Henry Fillmore, American composer of Marches    

    And it attracts a lot of jokes, particularly regarding that slide going in and out (adults, would you please grow up!) as well as regarding some of the glissandos, smears and blats it can make.


In the wrong hands, a trombone can be

a very dangerous weapon


    Yes, it can be very funny at times, but I live with a trombone player and I can tell you that it’s not a joke to play one. I, myself, have never even once considered it due to the extreme level of stamina it takes. I’m just not ever going to go there. And keeping up that lip muscle… gotta play almost every single day.

    …not to mention that every single note you play, you learn to tune at the same time, unlike like a piano or a fretted instrument like a guitar where that’s all set up for you ahead of time!

    I doubt that good trombone players will ever be a dime a dozen. It takes a very special kind of person.

    Okay, so we shouldn’t go on without at least one or two jokes…
“Never look at the trombones, it only encourages them."
Richard Wagner, German Composer, 1813-1883

Q. What's the difference between a bass trombone and a chain saw?
A.  It's much easier to improvise on a chainsaw.


    To me there’s nothing like finding yourself engulfed by the huge, warm, golden tone of a trombone playing a slow ballad. I can lose myself in its glow.

    And when it comes to the Blues… it can draw tears. Or let it loose on jazz, you can’t stop yourself from dancing. Love it, love it, love it!

    Like so many things that aren’t all that popular… healthy, home cooking, long walks in the woods, relationships that stand the test of time… trombones have humor, dignity, style and class. They stand out.


    Let me give you French composer Hector Berlioz’s opinion of the instrument:

    “In my opinion, the trombone is the true head of that family of wind instruments which I have named the epic one. It possesses nobility and grandeur to the highest degree; it has all the serious and powerful tones of sublime musical poetry, from religious calm and imposing accents, to savage, orgiastic outbursts.  Directed by the will of a master, the trombones can chant like a choir of priests, threaten, utter gloomy sighs, a mournful lament or a bright hymn of glory. They can break forth into awe-inspiring cries, and awaken the dead, or doom the living with their fearful voices.”    

    And let me just leave you with three trombone pieces (Saturn, Kesa Na Mie and Mystic Quest), by contemporary composer Kris Bowerman, to enjoy. All three are on this page:

Kris Bowerman

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