Tag Archives: videos

ModernTuba Video of the Week! 032111

I don’t know why this exists, but cutting edge topical humor and the beauteous tones of tuba combine here to remind us there are YouTube videos other than Rebecca Black’s “Friday” video. Having said that, I humbly submit the following as the ModernTuba Video of the Week! (May the universe have mercy on your poor soul.)

Bonus points given for the Price Is Right effect at the very end.

ModernTuba Video of the Week! (Irish Edition) 03.17.2011

For those of you who missed the memo, St. Patrick’s Day is the 17th of March every year, not last Saturday and Sunday as you might’ve thought given by how many people pranced around in green, attended parades, and drank green things at local pubs. I don’t think the world is ready for a week-long celebration of all things Irish when that celebration seems focused on giving folks the excuse to get smashed on beer and act obnoxious in the streets.

Having said that, I’d like to honor my Irish roots (of which I am approximately one-quarter) by submitting the following video as the ModernTuba Video of the Week! The sound on this one is a bit low, so you’ll have to turn your volume up, I’m afraid.

I hope you enjoyed listening to Ben Roundtree playing Hornpipe for Tuba and Strings as much as I did, especially since the audience seemed entirely uninterested. Then again, I was almost two minutes into the video before I noticed they were all signing to one another.

 

As an added bonus, here’s Das Miraphone Tuba Quartett beautifully performing Londonderry Air, including a bit o’ “Danny Boy” for good measure. Happy St. Patrick’s Day!


One Tuba in a Sea of Guitars: DSE California 2011

Just returned last week from attending the Durango Songwriter’s Expo in Santa Ynez Valley, California (just N of Santa Barbara). At this expo, 150-200 songwriters gather together to mingle with each other, network with industry professionals and get direct feedback on material, write more songs, jam endlessly into the wee hours, and perform in front of the group if chosen for a showcase slot.

The DSE is held twice annually, once in California during February and again outside of Denver in October. This was the fourth in a row that Melissa Axel and I have attended, and it was the best one yet.

What exactly does a tuba player do at a songwriter’s expo? Well, play tuba, of course!

Apart from playing the kick-off party open mic the night before the expo began, Melissa was also chosen for a showcase performance during the opening night festivities. We played her song “The Worth Of Things,” which went over quite well—happy to have had the opportunity! It’s always an interesting experience for me when I play into a mic, but the sound in the room was great. (For lack of a piano, she was relegated to playing on a weighted keyboard. If only they’d move the lobby piano into the hall and onto the stage!)

The second night, singer-songwriter Andy Ard asked fellow musician Tage Plantell and me to sit in for his showcase performance, and the three of us had a hoot playing Andy’s “Here Comes Another Good Time” to the audience. He’s also asked me to play on this song when he records it later this year.

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After the showcases there’s an open mic which we’d wander in and out of. In addition, there were plenty of impromptu jams in the resort lobby, as well as packed song circles in crowded hotel rooms. The advantage to being the only tuba player at an expo overrun by guitarist singer/songwriters is that they are usually more than happy to have a tubist sit in and play with them. (Special props to Ron Gozzo who brought out his sax!)

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Ultimately, the driving force of the expo is the listening session: basically, twenty or so songwriters sit in a room, each plays a demo or finished recording of a song for a couple of industry professionals, and everyone takes note of their feedback and suggestions (pictured below). Pros come in all shapes and sizes, but many of them are music supervisors, label execs, successful hit songwriters, publishers, and management. This time, we were sharing nearly completed recordings from Melissa Axel’s debut album, and it was exciting to see a lot of these folks really impressed with the songs. There are also panel discussions on various music industry topics, and we attended the ones on Film & TV Placement (pictured below) and DIY.

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Overall, we had a great time seeing old friends and making new ones. Can’t wait for the next one this October!

 

ModernTuba Video of the Week! 030611

Back by popular demand (and over a week's worth of travel), it's time for the ModernTuba Video of the Week!

This week we feature a clip from The Price Is Right during which host Drew Carey proudly declares, "If you want to start the party up with some models … play some tuba music!"

I hereby submit the following as the ModernTuba video of the week!