Wow – We’re nearly at the end of Term 3 already!!

Can you believe we’re already into September and it’s nearly the end of Term 3? Where is the time going? I thought, therefore, that I should write about school related “stuff” this week!

Spending your budget

Sample Form with method book & supplies requested by teacher

Firstly, I know that a lot of school budgets need to be spent at this time of year and if you don’t use it all, you will lose it and possibly even get less next year. We can’t have that!! I’ve been very busy providing school quotes and fulfilling orders over the last few weeks so will be more than happy to help you spend what budget you have left. Just let me know what you need and I’ll organise everything for you. Send me a message here.

Instrumental Student Book Packs

For those instrumental teachers who are gearing up for their recruitment in term 4, this one is for you. We are able to make up book pack forms for each instrument, outlining exactly what you would like each student to bring to their first lesson. There are a few ways you can do this and we are totally flexible in making this work the best way for you. We include exactly what you’d like for each instrument and customise anything else you need. You hand the forms to the students and they can either return them to you or they send them directly to us. We process all the payments, put the packs together and bring them to school in plenty of time for the first lesson. If you’d rather just order everything in bulk, we can obviously do that as well.

Here’s a sample form to give you an idea of what we can do. Please contact us if you’d like any more information or simply send us the list of what you need. We’ll sort the rest!!

ABODA Qld Concert Band Reading Day

Reading Day Pics
(Points if you can spot me!)

You may have already heard about the Aboda Qld Reading Day held at the Sunshine Coast last Saturday but I’m going to mention it anyway!! What a great afternoon! Coolum SHS were great hosts and it was fantastic to see their concert band students join the teachers in reading through about 30 charts. I don’t know how they went, but my chops were pretty had-it by the end! It was a real mix of repertoire from Grade 0.5 up to 3 showcased by a variety of conductors and included many Australian compositions as well. If you would like some suggestions of repertoire for your ensembles, just let me know. I’ve got recommendations from some of Qld’s leading band directors that I know you’ll love!

It was also lovely to catch up with some “old” friends afterwards for a quiet drink and take in the great view from the local surf club. Thanks to ABODA for the pizza too. A highlight of the social activities has to be seeing two whales playing off shore. Very cool!

I hope all our music teacher friends and customers survive through the craziness of Term 3 & have a restful break so can be ready for whatever Term 4 brings. Remember, Other Music is here to help with anything to lighten your load. Coffee, a chat as well the usual in providing quotes and fulfilling orders. Whatever you need!

All the best,
Sarah

Vandoren Clarinet Reeds – why so many?!

Have you ever become confused about the different options of reeds available?  There’s so many to choose from and what makes them different?  And that’s only within one brand!!  I’m here to give you some basic information that might help next time you’re purchasing reeds.

I’ll just stick with the Vandoren B Flat clarinet reeds in this blog.  You’ll have to wait for another time to get the lowdown on the saxophone options.  And then there’s matching reeds to mouthpieces.  I don’t want to overload you with too much information so that will be for another day too!

A topographical diagram of each cut. All points on the same level curve have the same thickness. The more pointed the arch, the thicker the spine and heart, and conversely, the thinner the side bevels.
Juno B Flat Clari Reed 10Box  2
Juno by Vandoren

Juno reeds are specially made for student performance from select cane grown on the Mediterranean coast. When we turn that cane into reeds, we give them a special cut that’s extra responsive for students, so you can improve faster.  This is the reed we’d suggest for a beginner clarinettist.

Traditional Reeds (in case you’re interested, this is what I play)

The traditional series reeds are the most widely played reeds in the professional world and they suit all styles of music.  Most people start with these and then progress to something different if they want a change. They have excellent response in all registers, allowing a pianissimo attack in even the highest nots. They are extremely flexible, allowing the legato or staccato execution of large intervals. The also give body and clarity to the overall sound. Available from strengths 1 to 5.

V12 Reeds

Bb clarinet V12 reeds are manufactured from cane tubes with the same diameter as cane used for alto saxophone reeds. As a result, they have a thicker heel and are cut on a longer palette with a slightly thicker tip than the Traditional. The longer palette means that more of the reed is vibrating, resulting in a deeper, richer sound. The thicker tip gives body to the attack and also increases the longevity of the reed.  The introduction of the 3 1⁄2+ strength allows a smaller and more specific gradation, resulting in reeds that are more consistent within the same strength.  Available from strengths 2.5 to 5+.

56 rue Lepic Reeds (Bonus points if you know where this name came from!!)

“56 rue Lepic” reeds offer a rich and focused sound.  Designed from thicker cane with a heel taper very similar to German-style reeds, the 56 rue Lepic emits a rich, centred, and extremely pure sound while providing maximum stability and quick response in all registers. Strength gradations are smaller and more specific, resulting in reeds that are very consistent.  Available from strengths  2.5 to 5.

V21 Reeds (the newest in the range)

The Bb clarinet V21 reed combines the shape of a 56 rue Lepic reed with a V12 profile. This unique combination makes all registers of the clarinet more accessible with warmth and a depth of sound.  It will allow you to play with amazing presence and immediate response. V21 is the perfect reed for performances that require the ability to handle large interval leaps efficiently with an even and rich tone.  Available from strengths  2.5 to 5.

Vandoren Clarinet Reed Mix Pack
Clarinet Mix Pack

What to do now!

Do you want to try something different but don’t want to get a whole box?  The mix packs are a great way to try different options. Each pack comes with a V12, 56 rue Lepic and 2 V21 reeds.  Perfect to test each to see what you think and they’re great value!    Please click on these links for each pack: Strength 3.0   Strength 3.5  Strength 3.5+

We’ve also got special sale pricing on all box quantities of Juno and Vandoren reeds so check them out.

Feel free to contact me if you need any assistance with choosing reeds.  I’ve been buying reeds for the last 40 years – scary!!

Cheers,
Sarah

Music, Music & Other Music!

Now that things have settled down after conferences and my birthday celebrations, it’s back to the regular jobs of fulfilling orders, adding product data to the website, promoting Other Music and showing how we’re Not Like the Others!

Did you receive my first email newsletter last week?  The plan is to send a product related newsletter once a month highlighting some great specials, new releases, community music making and anything else quirky I think you would be interested in.  Lizard Spit has to be my new favourite brand name!! Did you miss out on reading it?  Just send me a message if you’d like me to email it through.  Is there anything you’d like to see promoted?  I’m all for giving you what you want, so let me know!

Music Making

I included information about Birralee Recycled and wanted to remind you that Monday 12 Aug is the last day to register to take part this year.  I’ll be singing again this time round so why not join me?  It’s so much fun and it’s only for a couple of months so not a huge commitment. Click here for more details and registration.

Qld Wind & Brass: Diamonds & Pearls

I’m also starting to get busy with other music (see what I did there? LOL!) rehearsals and performances.  It’s all about music in all different genres and ensembles which makes it so much fun.  Here’s a taste of what’s coming up for me this month:

Lush: The Best of Music Theatre

Keep an eye out on Facebook and Instagram for sneaky pics of rehearsals and what I’m playing etc. I’d love to see some familiar faces at these gigs so why not come along. 

Instrumental Teachers

For those instrumental teachers who are back into the swing of things this term and having to start thinking about recruitment for next year, I’m here to help.  I’m able to make up book pack forms for your new instrumental students so you know they’ll have everything they need ready for their first lesson.  All I need is a list of your specific requirements for each instrument and I can do the rest for you.  It’s scary to think we’re already planning for 2020 isn’t it?!!  In future blogs I’ll let you know other ways that Other Music can assist you in that crazy time of year. 

I’ll also have some exciting news about new brands joining the Other Music family very soon. I can’t wait to tell you!!

Until next time!

Cheers,
Sarah

PS:  I’d love your help in spreading the news about Other Music, so would really appreciate you sharing this blog, the website and/or Facebook Page to your musical friends.  Thanks so much

Thank you!

With Andrew’s Grandson Jaxson.
Can you see the similarity?!!

Did you miss my blog last week?  Did you even notice there wasn’t one last Sunday night?!!  I had aimed to write something each week for you, but it had been so insanely crazy, I didn’t get to it.  Let me explain why.

It will only happen once, so had to make the most of it!  I turned 50 and such a milestone felt like it needed a special celebration.  Not only did I continue the ongoing work for Other Music, adding more products to the website, general maintenance and the set up of a special teacher section (details to come), I had my entire extended family all in the one place for a week to help celebrate.  We only get together like this every couple of years, so it was very special and I wanted to make the most of it.

There were so many highlights but I’ll just go through a few for you.

We had a fantastic meal at Pilpel’s (https://www.facebook.com/PilpelRestaurant/) for my actual birthday and I don’t think I’ve ever eaten so much.  The Middle Eastern Experience didn’t disappoint and the home-made Turkish Delight was to die for! 

Who doesn’t love seeing a movie on the opening day?  Seeing the new Lion King movie with the family was great and I just loved it.  The music is incredible, the animation amazing and seeing it in English was novel! (I’d only seen the original Lion King movie in French!)

Go Karting Safety Briefing

For a totally different change of pace, we all went go-karting which I hadn’t done for about 15 years.  The adrenalin rush was intense and you wouldn’t believe that 2 x 10 minute races could go so quickly.   Here’s pic from behind with our classy hairnets and balaclavas to wear underneath the helmets.  Safety first!

My birthday party involved live band karaoke, along side way too much food and drink.  Seeing so many of my friends and family get up to have a sing was fantastic, especially the young kids.  I don’t think I would have done it at that age.   I only just started getting up in the last year or so!  So many highlights from the night but if I have to narrow it down to 2, it’s these:

Yasodalicious Mandalas Cheesecakes
  • Your Song! – Andrew surprised me by singing a beautiful version of Elton John’s Your Song to me (while playing drums), with Lachy on bass and Brad on piano.  He knows how much I love the song and it’s hard to believe it’s also 50 years old.  Some songs just stand the test of time so well and it was an incredibly special moment that I will remember for the rest of my life.   I didn’t think he would ever be able to top giving me Tyber for my birthday 4 years ago, but he has!  I cried on the night and am even getting teary now remembering it! I’m a bit of a softy really.
  • Cheesecake!  The most incredible hand painted mandala cheesecakes from Yasodalicious Mandalas.  They looked too good to eat but that didn’t stop us in the end and they tasted amazing.  Check out https://www.facebook.com/Yasodaliciousmandalas/

On a personal note, so many of my friends and family travelled a long way to help me celebrate and have supported me in the setting up of Other Music.  I won’t name you all individually but you know who you are.  A huge THANK YOU!!

That’s enough about my birthday week!  It’s back to reality now and next time I’ll share some exciting news about special privileges for teachers, more product information and whatever other adventures come my way this week.

What A Week!

Mary River, Maryborough

I was really looking forward to the Maryborough Music Conference this year and it certainly didn’t disappoint.  As I suspected, it was totally different being a delegate compared to having a trade display.  Driving to Maryborough in a car instead of a van or truck loaded with gear was very pleasant.  I also didn’t have to go the day before and spend hours setting up.  Two wins straight up!

I won’t bore you with all the details of my week, but I’d like to let you know some of the highlights.  I’ve been asked what my favourite session was and I’m struggling to pin only one down.  Dr Anita Collins (check out www.biggerbetterbrains.com.au) as the opening keynote speaker was amazing and her work on how music affects the brain was extremely interesting.  I always knew musicians’ brains were different but to see how much – WOW!  Great for music advocacy in our schools and the wider community in general. 

Maryborough Music Conference Wind Ensemble 2019

Playing in a 120-piece concert band was pretty special too.  Working with different conductors is always great fun and to have the composer working on his own music with us is certainly a treat.  I’m told we had a great sound at our performance on Friday night and it’s amazing what you can achieve in only 4 hours of rehearsal. 

My “Other” (did you like what I did there?) great highlight for the week was the incredible response from teachers I reconnected with, many who I haven’t seen since the conference two years ago.  To feel the positivity about Other Music and my being involved in music retail again was quite humbling.  Now let the real work begin!  Remember, I’m here for quotes, advice, orders and anything else to assist you and your programme.

Sarah Whiting & Cherie Treloar

Being able to see a variety of sessions was something I’d hoped to be able to do and I wasn’t disappointed.  Tips for teaching beginning woodwinds, choosing repertoire, choral workshops, learning about Pro Tools & live recording, strategies for teaching music in secondary schools…  and the list goes on……  There really was something for everyone.

Here’s a few things I’ve learnt this week too (tongue in cheek!)

  • Don’t talk/yell over the band at the Conference Dinner for 4 hours and expect to be able to talk properly the next day.
  • Don’t leave the spare lollies you’re giving away in your hotel room at night when you’ve got the munchies.
  • Don’t fill your fancy new conference water bottle (with spray function!) and put it in the bottom of your bag.
  • Don’t leave visiting the trade displays until the last day.  I’d seen most during the week but left a couple until Saturday morning and they’d already left.

I’d like to offer a huge congratulations to all the organisers of the conference, in particular Tracey Young & Mike Tyler.  There were so many other people involved (too many to mention) and without all of you, it wouldn’t have been the same.  Thank you.

Back to reality this week.  Adding more products to the site, working on a special something just for teachers and catching up on paperwork….

Here’s to a great Term 3!

Cheers,
Sarah

Maryborough Music Conference 2019

I can’t believe the Maryborough Music Conference is on again already, but this year is going to be a bit different. I have been to every one since it first started in the early 2000s, but always with a trade display and a group of people. It’s been great fun and I have many fond memories of the networking, music making, food and drink!

This year, I will be going for the first time as a delegate. This will be a very different experience, and one I’m really looking forward to.  I’ll get to see so many of the amazing sessions that I normally only got to read about.  Although I haven’t taught for a number of years, I’m still really interested in the latest pedagogical developments in music education and it also helps me appreciate the incredible job and important role that music teachers play in schools and the wider community in general.  I’ll also be able to take part in one of the ensembles in the Gala Concert, instead of just watching. Best of all, I’ll still be able to catch up with many of my “old” music teacher friends!

This different direction for my conference enrollment hasn’t come without its difficult decisions though!!

Firstly, what ensemble to join?  I love singing in choirs as well as playing in concert bands so had to decide.  What tipped me towards the band – my lack of confidence in memorising the lyrics for the choir pieces in only 3 days!  First decision made.

Secondly, what to wear?  It might seem like a simple thing but at every previous conference I’ve worn an Ellaways Music uniform.  Now I actually have to think a little harder!!

Finally, decisions I don’t have to make.  How much time do I need to set up the display? How do I want it to look?  That was always tough so happy to give that a miss this time.

Keep an eye out on Facebook and Instagram this week as I’ll post some highlights from the conference.  Make sure you also subscribe to the Other Music newsletter to keep up to date with the latest happens and events.

Cheers,
Sarah

Welcome to Other Music

I’m so excited to be writing this first blog and announcing the launch of Other Music. After over 25 years working for someone else in music education retail, it was time to use all that knowledge and experience and do it for myself. Hence, Other Music! It’s been a while in the making and many hours of data input and sitting at the computer. I’ll be happy to not look at another spreadsheet for a while! It’s so worth it though.

Andrew, Sarah & Tyber

To my family and friends who helped keep me sane during this set up time, a huge thank you! I couldn’t have done it without you. Particular mention goes to Andrew Hazzard, my amazing partner, and Tyber, our crazy cattle dog who have both been there every step of the way, making sure I eat, sleep and go for walks like a good human. It was too easy to get stuck behind the computer all day and night getting everything ready. I had to though!!

Enough about me, I’d love you to check out the site and let me know what you think. Your feedback is invaluable and you’re welcome to contact me with any questions, suggestions or orders!

Have a fabulous day and keep an eye out for another blog with more exciting news soon.

Cheers,
Sarah Whiting.