Making a life out of trumpet playing?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by samdaman, Jun 16, 2006.

  1. kerouack

    kerouack New Friend

    Nov 17, 2003
    Manny your answer was simply GREAT, there are a lot of good players/ bad teachers, some of them dont like teaching, they just need money, another ones dont want to share what they know (may be not much confidence?), i dont agree with that, but thats fine IF THEY WOULD NOT TEACH!! if you teach you should do it well (this is for all people teaching), if not, dont teach. There much bad teachers in the world, we dont need another one.
  2. mike ansberry

    mike ansberry Forte User

    Dec 30, 2003
    Clarksville, Tennessee, U
    Okay, maybe I'm just a little different (do I hear laughter over my shoulder?), but I had no intention of EVER teaching when I got out of college. I thought that I'd make it as a player. After a couple of years of struggling, reality set in. I realized that I may be a good player, but not great, and that was what it was gonna take to make a living playing. I took a job teaching high school band. I discovered that I truely love teaching, and I am very good at it. Maybe I'm an exception to the rule. Teaching was a fall-back position for me that turned in to a career that I love.
  3. robertwhite

    robertwhite Mezzo Piano User

    Nov 11, 2003
    Conversely, my Bachelor's is in Music Education. I was pretty gung-ho to be a band director all during my undergrad. It was only after student teaching that I decided it wasn't for me.

    The fact is, I love to teach. I didn't love being a band director, and I didn't love working in a school. I decided to pursue the degree track for college teaching and managed to kind of get my playing chops together in the process. It took some time, but I'm glad I did it.
  4. dbacon

    dbacon Mezzo Piano User

    Oct 24, 2003
    Scottsdale, AZ.
    I AM a band director, coming up on 30 years! After some time on the road I was convinced I loved playing but didn't want to make my living at it and I LOVED teaching band!! Man I still do!!!!! And I get to play gigs with some fine players, boy it does not get any better than this!!!!!!!

    Just a bit more practice time, however........... :roll:
  5. tpter1

    tpter1 Forte User

    Jan 12, 2005
    Northern New York
    There's an intersting trend here that I see in many college music majors just up the road from me: that band directorship seems to be "the" teaching thing. While it IS great, it is not all that teaching has to offer, jmust as being in a symphony is not all that performing has to offer. There are classroom teachers (to me, the backbone of ANY music department is a good classroom staff), choral, strings, private instruction. I would wager that more people on this board give private instruction than don't. They are teachers, too. (Heck...NickD is a science teacher...and plays his tail off!)

    If you are going to be a musician, at some point in your life you are more than likely going to teach. ALL performance majors, for that reason alone, in my eyes anyway, should be required to take some pedagogy and education classes.
  6. NickD

    NickD Forte User


    The biggest problem that I have had working a day gig as a high school physics teacher is the unfortunate fact that some folks consider me a lesser musician simply because I do! I was let go from one music camp gig becasue of this. A local free-lancer told me he wasn't using my name as a sub anymore because I didn't need the work! That couldn't be further from the truth. I am a school-teacher AND a free-lance trumpeter. Neither gig will make me a wealthy man. I need every gig I can get to hold up my half of the mortgage.

    I guess I bristle at the notion that those of us who have day gigs are somehow less competent than those who don't. The guys in the CSO are brilliant, and I would have to do some serious shedding to be able to walk in and sit on their chairs. However, I defy them to walk in and play the gigs I have to play without doing the same!

    Now, thse incidents are long past (over 11 years now). I still work as much as any free-lancers I know and I'm grateful for the opportunites and blessings that my double life accords. This was something I had to handle, in my own head, at least.


  7. tpter1

    tpter1 Forte User

    Jan 12, 2005
    Northern New York
    Nick- I hope you did not take what I said the wrong way. I meant that to show that there is more to teaching than being a band director; you can still be a top player and a teacher (that's why I noted you); that teachers teach because they can. That there are other ways to play, other ways to be an educator, than either be a high school band director or perform in a symphony orchestra. There are many, many options, and those are but 2 of them. What I said I said out of great respect.
  8. NickD

    NickD Forte User


    Glenn! NO SWEAT! I most certainly didn't take it the wrong way. You are totally cool! YOU didn't dump from the lists just because I started teaching high school after the jingle scene and industrials went to heck in Chicago! I was just trying to point out an unfortunate side effect.

    What got my goat when the two incidents I mentioned occured was the fact that while I was a full time MUSIC CONTRACTOR (translate that into wedding band leader), my playing had deteriorated to dangeriosly low levels. I was on the mend BIG TIME after I started teaching and my playing had noticably improved. I was dumped merely because I had a day gig and these folks honestly felt I was no longer to be taken seriously as a professional trumpeter. I was hurt at the time. While I still find it a bit amazing, I am quite cool with it these days. Now, I just play. If someone doesn't like my playing, well, that's their perogative, regardless of why they may not like it, even if that inlcudes some vibe about my day gig.

    No sweat Glen! I fgure more grist for the mill for our young readers trying to find their way! Heck, I'm STILL trying to find mine! That's part of the fun! :-)


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