October 2010

Mike Lawson • Archives • October 13, 2010

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CodaBow’s JOULE Designs for Violin, Viola & Cello

The CodaBow’s JOULE features a trademark Graphite Diamond Weave architecture that extends precisely from button to tip. This technology is said to contribute to the balance between strength and flexibility. The JOULE’s Acoustic Core, comprised of a medley of advanced fibers, imbues a natural sensitivity and organic characteristic.

The frog design is said to increase effective hair length while preserving thumb position and dynamic balance, which encourages more sound from the lower range while heightening string control.


GibraltarQuick Release Drum Key

Gibraltar’s new Quick Release Drum Key includes a knurled grip for quick and easy head changes and adjustments. The Quick Release Drum Key hooks onto any lanyard or carabineer clip.


NS Design’s NS WAV Series Electric Violin

NS Design’s WAV5 is the five-string version of the NS WAV series electric violin. The WAV5 features a carved maple body and adjustable shoulder rest molds to fit the contours of the shoulder for optimum grip and comfort. Fitted with the optional Balanced Shoulder Rest, the WAV5 rides almost weightlessly on a counterweighted arm, freeing the musician’s upper body and providing support for high-impact playing.

By raising or lowering the adjustable rock maple bridge, players can set the strings to the height they desire high action like a classical violin or lower fiddle-style action for quick response. The WAV5 is built around NS Design’s patented Polar pickup system, and the passive pickup system does not require a battery.


Rico’s Reserve Bass Clarinet Reed

Rico’s Reserve Classic Bass Clarinet reed was designed in conjunction with clarinetist J. Lawrie Bloom, bass clarinetist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Reserve Bass Clarinet reeds feature a special 3.0+ strength that is unique to bass clarinet reeds. Each Reserve reed is precisely cut on Rico’s reed manufacturing machines. The Reserve Classic Bass Clarinet reeds are made from lower-internode cane to yield the highest-density cane available.


Epilog Laser EXT

Epilog Laser’s equipment provides a fast way to add initials, text, or even images to musical instruments and accessories. Epilog’s Legend EXT is the company’s large-scale laser engraver that offers easy to use features that provide a fast way to add initials, text, or even images to musical instruments and accessories. Due to the large work area and cutting capabilities of the EXT, users can create designs that add style to large or uniquely shaped items such as guitars.



The OcToBrass is a concert level ocarina that can be used with a trumpet, trombone, bass trombone, horn, or tuba mouthpiece. The OcToBrass is designed to help the brass musician develop and strengthen their embouchure. The OcToBrass Kit comes with a lightweight polycarbonate mouthpiece, leather pouch, and instructions.


Valentino Directors Fix Kits

Valentino’s Directors Series Fix Kits offers quick and easy service of instruments from piccolo to tuba and features an illustrated instruction manual. The top section of the case contains an assortment of tools necessary for maintenance of woodwinds and brasswinds. The lower section houses the Directors woodwind and brasswind supply assortments. Individual replacement assortments of supply items are available for each instrument.


Vandoren V12 Sax Line Expands

Vandoren’s V12 tenor sax is the latest in a new line of reeds from Vandoren. Previously only available as a clarinet reed, the V12 cut is said to produce a deeper, richer sound with more body to the attack and color to the tone. The Vandoren V12 tenor saxophone reeds are currently available and can be ordered from any authorized Vandoren dealer.


Drum Aerobics from Hal Leonard

Hal Leonard’s Drum Aerobics book/two-CD pack by Andy Ziker is a 52-week, one-exercise-per-day workout program for developing, improving, and maintaining drum technique. Drum Aerobics is designed to help increase speed, coordination, dexterity, accuracy, and lick vocabulary. The two accompanying CDs contain all 365 workout licks, plus play-along grooves in styles including rock, blues, jazz, heavy metal, reggae, funk, calypso, bossa nova, march, mambo, and New Orleans second line.

Free video content to supplement Drum Aerobics will soon be available using the Closer Look feature on Hal Leonard’s Web site. Ziker and Dan Tomlinson, long-time touring drummer for Lyle Lovett and Acoustic Alchemy, will add drums to the 25 (drumless) play-along tracks that comprise CD two. Viewing these clips will give book purchasers a point of reference, seeing and hearing how two professional drummers approach playing along with the tracks.

Free downloadable charts for all 25 play-along tunes in Drum Aerobics will also be available in the coming months. These charts will detail chords, melody, and important hits and fills. Educators, including school band directors and private instructors, will find the charts (along with the video clips) instrumental in teaching chart reading. Other instrumentalists can also use the charts to play along with the drummer in a live setting.


Yamaha Disklavier Piano App

Yamaha has announced that its entire line of reproducing instruments is now compatible with the company’s updated Disklavier app (version 1.1.1), available for download in the Apple iTunes store.

The free app, introduced last June for Mark IV model Disklavier pianos, enables wireless WiFi remote control of the instrument using an Apple iPod Touch, iPhone, or iPad. At the touch of a button on any of these devices, the user can control many Disklavier performance functions, including selection and playback of sources, albums, individual songs, volume, basic record, balance, transpose, and part cancel.

In addition, the app can be used to control playback of DisklavierRadio, an unlimited, subscription-based service that lets users listen to hundreds of fully orchestrated songs on demand over the Internet, which are then performed “live” on the Disklavier.


Carl Fischer’s 18 Christmas Favorites

Carl Fischer’s new 18 Intermediate Christmas Favorites collection contains 18 popular holiday songs in a variety of different styles, from classical, to jazz, to rock, and Latin. Each play-along track on the included CD uses background instruments. The CD also contains printable PDF files of piano accompaniments for all songs, so that they may be performed in concert. Features favorites include “The First Noel,” “Joy to the World,” “O Little Town of Bethlehem,” “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” and more. Veteran arrangers Carl Strommen and Larry Clark have teamed up to create this offering for instrumentalists of all ages looking to play some holiday music.


Levy’s Drum Hardware Gig Bag

Levy’s new polyester drum hardware roller-bag features 1/2″ foam padding, polyester lining, reinforced hard plastic base, padded handles on top and ends, detachable 2″ adjustable rubber-padded shoulder strap, and two extra-large zippered accessory pouches. Inside dimensions are 44″ X 15″ X 13″.


Theodore Presser’s Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani

Orchestral Excerpts for Timpani contains authentic parts for 57 of the most-requested audition excerpts for timpani. The 78-track audio CD includes these excerpts played by major orchestras, plus 21 play-along practice tracks. This collection also features comments and performance suggestions by Randy Max, timpanist of the Rotterdam Philharmonic, who also offers detailed tuning plans, advice for practicing timpani and ear training, and historical information.


Vic Firth Stick Caddy

Vic Firth’s stick caddy remains locked in place on the cymbal stands. The caddy features a rubber insert at the bottom of the metal tube that protects the stick tips when being thrown into the tube and prevents any noise when the sticks hit the bottom of the metal tube. The screw clamp design locks the stick caddy firmly in place and fits all standard hi-hat stands, cymbal stands, and can be securely fastened on a Tom leg as well. Lock washers firmly hold the stick caddy at the perfect angle for the drummers’ preferred location. Both adjustments are quickly made with wing nuts. The stick caddy will hold three pairs of 5A. Other model capacity will depend on the specific stick diameter.


E. K. Blessing: Made in the USA

Powell Flutes has announced plans to introduce the only saxophone “Made in the USA” during the grand opening reception of its E. K. Blessing division in Elkhart, Indiana. The design of Powell’s Sonaré saxophone is the brain child of Mike Smith, jazz sax player from Chicago. Smith plays with the Frank Sinatra Jr. band, and for many years handled artist relations for Keilwerth brand saxophones.

In addition to Mike Smith, the development team includes John Weir and Chris French, known as perhaps two of the most experienced developers of woodwind products in the world. Weir, based in Toronto, previously worked for various Elkhart instrument makers and now produces his own Taplin-Weir clarinets. French is a professional clarinet and saxophone player who has also been involved with woodwind instrument design for several Elkhart instrument makers.

The initial, limited production run will be aimed at professional saxophone players. The acoustical design is based on an American model, and will include unique improvements on this design.


Kaces’ Razor Express Series Bag

Kaces’ Razor Express Series messenger bag features a spacious main compartment measuring 12.75″ x 11.25″ x 3″. The bag can carry laptop computers, small mixers, digital recorders, and wireless mic systems. Sporting a 3-D “razor slash” look that is sewn into a ballistic polyester exterior, this bag is designed to be an all-purpose small gear transporter.

The outside features a contoured poly hand grip and an adjustable shoulder strap featuring a specially designed shoulder grip pad to reduce slippage. A double-stitched cover flap is secured with Velcro that opens to a spacious interior.

On the inside, a large zippered mesh compartment is sewn into the cover flap to hold cables, patch cords, AC adapters, and other accessories. A third zippered pocket is located on the inside front for even smaller accessories like cord adapters, USB cables, strings, and business cards and also features an elastic strip to hold small flashlights, markers, and pencils for easy access.


Connolly Offering Bazzini Student Stringed Instruments

Connolly Music Company has been named the U.S. distributor of Antonio Bazzini, a new line of step-up violin and cello outfits especially designed for adult amateur and progressing student musicians.

Bazzini instruments are designed in Italy and manufactured in China under German supervision to exacting specifications. Every instrument is set up in Germany using quality parts and strings, tested under the strictest quality control standards, and play-tested before leaving the workshop.

Three different levels of instruments Studio, Concerto, and Maestro provide a pathway for students to progress; from an entry level step-up model to the aspiring professional’s musical companion. All Bazzini instruments are fully set up and come with a bow and a case or a bag.


MakeMusic’s Finale PrintMusic

MakeMusic, Inc. has released Finale PrintMusic. This updated version of the music notation software includes new features and provides compatibility with current operating systems and files created with Finale 2011, MakeMusic’s flagship software package.

PrintMusic makes the ability to create publisher-quality sheet music affordable. Songwriters, teachers, band and choir directors, church musicians, students, and other musicians can arrange pieces of up to 24 staves and extract individual parts from the score. Notes can be entered with a computer keyboard, a MIDI keyboard, with the exclusive MicNotator, or by scanning existing music. PrintMusic includes Drum Groove and Band-in-a-Box Auto-Harmonizing. Music plays back using hundreds of built-in sounds or additional external sound libraries (sold separately), and can be shared with others using the free downloadable Finale Reader and by creating MP3 files for use on iPods and beyond.


Cymbag Cymbal Protectors

Cymbag cymbal protectors are easy-to-use sleeves that help keep cymbals clean and shiny by protecting them from fingerprints and dirt during set-up, pack-up, storage, and travel. Patent pending and made from an advanced microfiber material that’s snug, secure, and super-soft yet rugged and durable. Cymbags slip on and off any cymbal while it’s still on the stand and perfectly into any hard or soft case. Available in a full range of popular sizes from 6 to 26″, Cymbags fit all types of cymbals and can be used for schools, stages, studios, stadiums, or any drumming situation.


Alfred Music’s Scott Joplin: Complete Piano Works

Alfred Music Publishing has released Scott Joplin: Complete Piano Works, featuring the complete works of Scott Joplin for piano, in their original editions.

Scott Joplin: Complete Piano Works is a comprehensive sheet music collection assembling the complete works for piano composed by Joplin, the undisputed “King of Ragtime Writers.” This songbook contains classic rags, marches, waltzes, and cakewalks presented in their original editions.

Produced in cooperation with the New York Public Library, this 376-page collection includes an introduction by Vera Brodsky Lawrence and a historical essay by noted ragtime scholar Rudi Blesh. In addition, the songbook features lay-flat binding designed to stay open on a piano music rack. The retail price is $29.99.


RB Continental Alto Sax Case

Reunion Blues is expanding their RB Continental line with the introduction of a new alto saxophone case that combines contemporary design with instrument protection. On the outside, a one inch thick shock-absorbing Flexoskeleton exterior is lined with reinforced impact panels, and a knurled abrasion grid cradles the bottom to help resist scuffing. A large zippered “quick-stash” accessory pocket is provided, along with an adjustable shoulder strap.

A Ballistic Quadraweave exterior features high-strength corded edges and all seams are double-stitched with high tensile thread and reinforced at tested stress points. This new case also includes a Zero-G palm-contoured handle with weight distributing foam core to help reduce hand fatigue when the instrument is carried for a long period of time.

The inside features a bell area suspension system and a rubberized protector pad crafted with a plush, quilted double helix velvet lining. Like all Reunion Blues products, this new RB Continental also sax case comes with a limited lifetime warranty and retails for $179.95.


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