Daniel Louis Duncan, Trumpet

Daniel Louis Duncan, Trumpet

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

December 4th & 5th Christmas Choral Concert

I will be performing most of the B Minor Mass (Cantata 191) and Christmas Oratorio (plus much more!)with Orchestra and large chorus at the Old North Church in Marblehead, MA. Both evening performances sell out quickly, so get your tickets right away! Come up and say "hi" if you can make it!

Dec 4th at 8pm
Dec 5th at 7:30pm


Sunday, October 31, 2010

Listening to great playing is the first step to motivating and enhancing your practice

I have added a video bar to this blog for all my students to hear examples of what variety of things the trumpet can do! Please listen, enjoy, immitate, and learn.

The video bar changes every 4 or 5 minutes to a different artist. Almost all clips are of trumpet players performing different types and styles of music. There is also a set of clips on Gerald Schwartz who is now a conductor, but used to be one of the finest trumpet players alive back in the 60's and 70's. There are so many opportunities to make music and have fun. Take a big leap and enjoy the ride!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

New Teaching Position at All Newton Music School

After much consideration I have resigned my position as adjunct faculty at St. George's School in Newport, RI.

I am delighted to announce my new position as trumpet instructor at the All Newton Music School in Newton, MA. This position will allow me the opportunity to start building a trumpet ensemble in addition to private lessons. The school facilities are really terrific with many grand pianos and a staff accompanist who is available to perform and rehearse with students for recitals. I'm looking forward to building a trumpet studio at the All Newton Music School.

If you live in Newton, surrounding areas, or are willing to travel to Newton, which is centrally located in the greater Boston area, off of exit 16 on the Mass Pike, please join me for intense, fun, trumpet enjoyment!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Cleaning your instrument IS a big deal!

It's rare to find musicians making headline news except for the top 40 headliners. Many parents may be taken by surprise by the fact that brass instruments, if not cleaned properly, can cause your child to get colds and in extreme cases, worse issues. (Click on the heading of this post to go directly to the article).

While this case, in the article linked to below, is rare, it is important to maintain proper cleanliness of ones brass instrument.

Many of my students hear me repeat over and over again how they should clean their horns about once a month. How many actually do, quite frankly, is low. I can see it in their lessons when I glance at their slides growing with green goo.

There is a fear of the unknown and quite frankly it's a boring job. So, what I am offering to any of my students and their parents is a service for cleaning (and I mean cleaning well) their childs instrument. This is a time consuming event and will cost a mere $60 per horn. This is not a chemical cleaning, which should be done about once a year or every other year. I use mild bacteria soap and swab each slide, valve casing, leadpipe, and mouthpiece. Ideally, this should be done once a month, or once every other month at a minimum.

I will restate that this is not a hard job to do and I would advocate having your son or daughter do this, but I know kids! So, this is for all of you parents that know your kids as well and just need that piece of mind that their instrument is getting cleaned.

This cleaning is on the inside and is not noticeable on the outside, except for the disappearance of any green material noticeable on the outer slides. What it will do is make sure your child is breathing in as clean as possible air that will not add to health issues such as colds, flu, and the such. I'm not saying your child will not get sick. If I could do that I could retire a wealthy man!

A chemical cleaning usually runs about $135 for a trumpet. It would not be safe or adviseable to chemically clean a horn more than once a year. What I do is clean the instrument for you for $60 per trumpet. $100 for French Horns. Turn around time is usually one week, from lesson to next lesson or sooner if you are willing to drive to me to pick the instument up. Some locations I drive close to more than once a week and we could arrange a mutually agreeable location for an earlier turnaround time.

This offer is to my students only. I am VERY experienced in cleaning instruments and repairing them as well. I am not doing a repair service, but if I feel the instrument needs more than I can do with my own tools I will recommend the repair shop I trust the most, Osmun Music in Acton.

Lessons start next week!! I look forward to seeing you all again and having a happy, HEALTHY, coming school year!


Monday, August 23, 2010

Accepting students of all ages in the greater Boston area.

I teach the concepts of process orientation, keeping the mind off of product focus which is reactionary. Keeping the mind focused on the process of sound production with specific steps allows the mind to stay in the present tense and out of the judgement process.

My studio is avaiable for all levels, but also welcomes students who are preparing for competitions and auditions (college entrance, district and state level competitions, etc...) for short term lessons and coaching. I am also available for brass quintet/ensemble coaching and conducting.

I look forward to assisting you with your musical advancement.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I hope all my students will read the following post!

This is a fantastic top ten lists for all students of music!

"Suggestions on being an effective student of music" by David Zerkel. Here are my notes from a chat to the brass students at UGA on Day 1. A top ten list of sorts... I hope they listened!

1. Take your classes seriously. Theory, Ear-training and Music History provide you with the tools to understand the language of music and your mastery of these subjects WILL help you play your instrument better. If you have had a math course beyond algebra, music theory should present no problems, as it is structured in a very systematic way. Ear-training will help you learn what you need to hear, whether you are playing your instrument or standing in front of a band. Music History will equip you with the tools to approach your interpretations from informed perspective and will give you the insight needed to play with style.

2. Listen to as much music as you can! Naxos online music library is a great resource, as is our incredibly complete music library. A hard, but not impossible, goal is to spend the same amount of hours listening that you spend practicing. Listening to music and familiarizing yourself with a broad spectrum of music is where your REAL musical education will take place.

3. Learn and know your scales and arpeggios, as they are the building blocks of western music. Realizing that virtually everything that you play is constructed with scales and arpeggios will make mastering your instrument exponentially easier.

4. Schedule your practice time as though it were a class and make yourself a tough attendance policy. Success in music, like anything else in life, is dependent upon disciplined and persistent effort. Hard work will trump talent any day of the week. The world is filled with incredibly talented people who never reached their potential because they were lazy. It is the observation of the brass faculty that the overall work ethic of the students in the school of music is quite lax compared to other places that we have been. Each of you has the power to reverse this condition that affects the culture of music here at UGA. It is really cool to not suck… daily practice will help you to appreciate your potential and your ability to improve.

5. Go to concerts! There is no substitution for listening to live music—every performance you hear provides you with the opportunity to learn something about your own performances. Whether you will teach or perform, you will spend the rest of your life evaluating performances and diagnosing the strengths and weaknesses of what you hear. You will develop this skill much more quickly if you are going to concerts.

6. Embrace what technology has to offer us in developing as musicians. Rhythm and Pitch are the two empirical truths in music--- either they are right or they are wrong. Don’t look as your metronome and tuner as though they are nagging you that you are not good enough—learn to make chamber music with your Dr. Beat and to look at your tuner as the teller of truth. If you really want to use technology to improve your performance skills, purchase a digital recorder such as a Zoom 2 (or use Quicktime on your computer) to record your practice. This will help you to become your own teacher. The greatest period of growth that I have ever had as a developing musician happened when I was recording and evaluating my practice on a daily basis.

7. Be curious! Strive to know the repertoire for your instrument. Practice something everyday that is NOT part of your lesson assignment for the week. Read ahead in an etude book or check out some music from the library. This will help your sight-reading skills immeasurably. Strive to be a comprehensive musician, not just a jock on your horn!

8. Play with your peers! Form a chamber music group or play duets with a peer as much as you can. Chamber music empowers each of us to make musical decisions without the input of a director, which is a critical skill. Playing chamber music will also help grow your ears in a dramatic way.

9. Be serious about your pursuit of excellence. Set the bar high and work hard to be the best that you can be. Music is an extraordinarily competitive field—remember that there is always someone somewhere that is working harder than you are and someday you will meet them at the audition or the interview. You owe it to yourself to be the best musician that you can be. You will only be a great band director if you are first a great musician.

10. Know that every great musician in the world still considers himself or herself a student of music. Wynton Marsalis is a music student. Joe Alessi is a music student, as is Gail Williams, Steven Mead and Oystein Baadsvik . Make lifelong improvement and lifelong learning your goal. I am not as good as I think I am and neither are you. The older I get, the more I realize that I have only begun to scratch the surface of what there is to know. Use this blessing of an opportunity that you have as a full-time music student to your advantage. Your hard work will pay off in the end!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Sign up early and get your spot reserved!

School will be started within the next two to three weeks!! Slots are starting to fill in the early parts of the day in Billerica on Mondays; Shrewsbury will be done by assignment thru the school; Acton is done through the center (contact Marian for times); St. George's students can contact me as soon as they can to set up times.

If you want to start lessons in my home studio, contact me soon as times are very flexible right now. I set up lessons mostly on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Lots of possiblities for times working around your schedule. The travel to Revere can be very easy now since the big dig. I have students come from as far away, locally, as Methuen and Chelmsford.

Band Programs are cutting back or just completely disappearing! Lessons can not only aid in getting your playing soaring, but help over worked time constrainted band directors in making their jobs a bit easier and keep the programs strong and vital.

I have several students who are not even in School Band Programs who are doing quite well. Their are ensembles out there if you are creative and willing to take your kids to the rehearsals and concerts. If you are interested in giving you kids an artistic experience that can enhance their development, drop me a line to talk about possibilities.

I focus mostly on more developed players than absolute beginners. I take a very limited number of absolute beginners. Your child will have to have a free evaluation from me to decide if I will take them on trumpet.

Let the games begin!!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Review of the New Bach C Trumpets and Eb

Just had a chance to try the new line of Bach Artisan C trumpets as well as the "Philly" and "Chicago" C trumpets. For me, the "Philly" C was great. I loved the response, flexibility, intonation, and sound of all the C's I tried. The "Chicago" model was quite good as well, but was a bit more zippy for me. Both instruments were close in feel and response. I preferred the "Philly" model. Very nice horn!

I was quite surprised to find I didn't like the Artisan Model. It was a good horn with nice color, but I felt the flexibility was a bit stiff, and the sound was good, but different enough for me to prefer the "Philly" sound. I felt there were some standard intonation issues that didn't work so well for me. Unfortunately, I didn't get to try a silver plated one as someone bought it before the day began. Jury is still out for me on this. But, I can't imagine the flexibility issues (for me) will change on the silver one.

The big surprise for me, was the new Artisan AE190S Eb trumpet. I LOVED this horn! It's set up like a short model instrument (I have a very old Schilke E2), but has a bigger bell and is only an Eb. (Personally I never use a D trumpet). I really loved the sound and intonation! You didn't feel like you were playing an Eb at all. VERY comfortable, much more presence in the sound and the flexibility was very good.

There are plans to release an Eb/D tuneable model in the future. These I want to try as well.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Try Out Summer Lessons!!

Summer is a great time to take a lesson or two to decide if I'm the right fit for you or your son or daughter.

No long term commitment required during the summer. It's always a daunting task to find the right teacher that will not only be a good teacher, but one that connects well with the student. I have great success in this area and have parent and student recommendations I can pass on to you.

Summer is a slower time for me, so my schedule is much more flexible.

Contact me as soon as you can! What are you waiting for?

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Continued Porgy & Bess Tour

The Porgy & Bess Opera Tour continues....
I will be performing 8 shows from June 8th thru the 13th in Hartford, Connecticut at the Bushnell Theatre. Come see this great performance if you are in the area.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Growing Studio

My home studio is growing as more students and parents are willing to travel great distances to take lessons with me. Summer is the perfect time to get into my schedule, try out my teaching techniques, and get a spot secured for the fall.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Porgy & Bess Website

Porgy & Bess website is finally up and running. Boston dates have been changed from June to October.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Video commercial for Porgy & Bess

Here is the commercial we shot at one of the rehearsals in New York.
You can hear my mute solo's on "It Ain't Necessarily So" with Reggie Whitehead aka "Sportin' Life"

Porgy & Bess Tour Video

Video commercial for Porgy & Bess

Here is the commercial we shot at one of the rehearsals in New York.
The Orchestra and cast are really fantastic! I hope to see everyone who can come to one of our performances

Thursday, February 4, 2010

New Principal Trumpet for Porgy and Bess 75 Anniversary Tour

I will be going on Tour for the next 7 weeks all over the US as Principal Trumpet in Gershwin's "Porgy and Bess" 75th Anniversary Tour!

I am very excited and hope anyone in the area can come out to see the show and say "hi". We will be in VanWert, Columbus, Portsmouth, and Cincinatti, OHIO; Overland Park, KANSAS; Forth Worth, San Antonio, and Galveston, TEXAS; Lafayette, LOUISIANA; Oxford, MISSISSIPPI; Jacksonville, Daytona Beach, Miami, Sarasota, Lakeland, and Melbourne, FLORIDA; Columbus, GEORGIA; Asheville, Greensboro, NORTH CAROLINA; Lexington, VIRGINIA; New Brunswick, NEW JERSEY; Greenvale, LI, NEW YORK; Worcester, MASSACHUSETTS; Philadelphia, PENNSYLVANIA; Burlington, VERMONT; Portland, MAINE.

Wooo HOOO!!

District Congratulations

All of my students who auditioned for districts did extremely well this year. Those that did not make it came VERY close. I am very proud of you all!

Late congratulations go to Mark Soo who made Senior District and had a wonderful time at the event.

Congratulations go to Michael Soo who as a Freshman missed getting into Senior Districts by one point. Michael made first chair in Junior Districts! Michael has only been playing for 2 years, so this is quite a feat!

Congratulations to Christopher Souza who made Districts as a 7th grader. You rock, Chris!!

Congratulations to everyone for working so hard and getting up in front of a judge with confidence!