What’s out there ?!

A comprehensive guide to the brass and woodwind market.

The brass and woodwind market is vast and plentiful; yet navigating its plethora of products can sometimes pose a tricky task. To help you on your way, MI Pro provides a comprehensive guide to the sector…

Odyssey’s new Symphonique range was unveiled earlier in 2013, with the Alan Morrison signature cornet (RRP £899) the first model in the exclusive line. Silver-plated with a Denis Wick Heritage 4 mouthpiece, the cornet is aimed at the highest end of the market.

Meanwhile, since being redesigned by master craftsman Peter Pollard, the Odyssey Premiere and Debut series have been at the forefront of the brasswind scene. The Debut range (RRP from £169) provides students with a selection of ideal first instruments, while the Premiere range (RRP from £199) is suited to students, more advanced learners, and professionals. Instruments available across the two lines include trumpets, trombones, clarinets (and bass clarinets), cornets, saxophones, flutes, tenor and baritone horns, a tuba, and more, and each comes with its own carry case and a selection of accessories to keep the instrument in the best possible shape. Odyssey’s wide range of brass and woodwind accessories are also available to buy individually, and will help players prolong the lifespan of their instruments by years.

D’Addario has added a fourth model to its Reserve mouthpiece range with a new, more open facing. The MCR-X10E is pitched at A= 442Hz making it perfect for European students and professionals, as well as symphonic players worldwide.

Inspired by vintage mouthpieces from the 1920s, the Reserve harnesses modern technology to recreate the craftsmanship of the time. Milled – not moulded – from hard rubber, Reserve is engineered to offer unprecedented levels of consistency from mouthpiece to mouthpiece. Each one has been developed to offer ease of response and articulation, without sacrificing core in the sound.

Elsewhere, since acquiring Rico in 2004 D’Addario has invested over 12 million dollars in new technology and expertise, which has enabled the firm to make the most consistent reeds possible. The Rico Reserve and Reserve Classic reeds are becoming a staple for several leading orchestral clarinet players in the UK.

One of the newest brands in EMD’s extensive catalogue, the Levante range consists of professional brass and woodwind instruments for advanced musicians, including trumpets, trombones, clarinets, saxophones, flutes and more. All instruments are controlled and optimised by the latest ‘BIAS’ computer technology and are professionally set-up by EMD’s team of experts prior to shipping, so that every instrument you receive will be in optimal condition and ready to play straight out of the case. The pictured Bb trumpet, the LV-TR4205 (RRP £265) is one of the most affordable models in the range and incorporates stainless still pistons; 1st slide saddle and adjustable 3rd slide ring; and comes in a clear lacquer finish. This model is also available in a silver-plated finish at a

The Vandoren Universal Saxophone Harness (RRP £151.35) is built to make your saxophone feel completely weightless. It is designed to move with your body and help make playing easier, with soft handmade straps that designed not to hurt your neck or restrict breathing. Furthermore, the range gas been made with the co-operation of musicians and physiotherapists to ensure maximum comfort when playing.

Also from Vandoren are the JUNO Bb reed ranges for beginners, which are available in in Bb Clarinet, Alto and Tenor sax on three reed header cards with strengths ranging from 1½, 2, 2½ and 3. These are also available for Bb Clarinet and Alto sax in boxes of ten.

Elsewhere, there’s the handmade Yanagisawa A901 Alto Saxophone (RRP” £2,450). The A901 is the entry model in the Alto professional range and is created from lacquered brass. With saxophones also available in bronze and solid silver, the firm offers options for classical and jazz artists.

Meanwhile, the Antigua 3000 Series saxophones are manufactured in Taiwan to an extremely high standard of craftsmanship, yet remain competitively priced. The Alto, Tenor and Soprano models come in shaped cases with shoulder straps and the Baritone with an ABS wheeled case for easy transportation. All Antigua saxophones come with a 4C student mouthpiece and will provide an ideal transition up from your first student saxophone.

Finally, is the Neotech PAD-IT Saxophone strap (from RRP £18.95). Neotech has been creating high quality, American made straps for a range of musical instruments since 1986, which are used by students and professionals alike. The ‘Pad it Strap’ is designed with 2½” neck pad made of antimicrobial and moisture reducing memory foam, and comes with a choice of swivel, loop or plastic coated metal hook to connect to your saxophone.

The new, redesigned SILENT Brass mute from Yamaha utilises advanced technology to provide players with everything they need from a practice mute, whether practicing at home or warming up before a big performance. The new model has been developed by re-examining the way that sound is created within the mute in order to improve the sound heard by players. By harnessing Brass Resonance Modelling technology, Yamaha has also been able to improve the overall feel of playing, whilst also enhancing response, intonation and sound reduction.

Furthermore, the mute has been redesigned to make it as portable and balanced as possible its new shape aims to offer better balance for the player, with the weight distributed in such a way as to provide a more authentic feel. It can also be stored in the bell of the instrument when packed away in the case.

Meanwhile, SILENT Brass offers users the option to practice silently on their ow or with a full orchestra, simply by connecting the Personal Studio to their mp3 player or smartphone to play along with a recording.
Yamaha’s SILENT Brass is available for trumpet, trombone, flugel horn and French horn.

Designed to offer with enhanced instrument safety and security in mind, the Hercules DS630BB alto/tenor saxophone stand, along with its stable-mate the Hercules DS730B ‘Performer’ alto/tenor saxophone stand, represent the culmination of much research, creative thinking and hard work. When the horn is placed on the stand, the AGS arms move forwards to hold the instrument securely in place on the stand. Furthermore, both the DS630BB and the DS730B can be used one-handed, with the AGS arm closing or releasing around the bell of the saxophone in one smooth movement.

The P. Mauriat PMT-700 is a well-balanced, professional Bb trumpet aimed at professional jazz and commercial musicians. Available in a variety of lacquer, matt and silver finishes the PMT-700 Bb Trumpet Outfit also comes complete with the option of a one-piece reversed lead pipe. The PMT-700 Bb Trumpet Outfit is available from RRP £1,690.

Meanwhile, the Rosetti Series 5 brass and woodwind range is comprised of a selection of high quality instruments that are ideal for students. Desinged to represent the best possible value, the Series 5 Alto Sax features an underslung crook and is as a available in lacquered finish as a complete outfit for RRP £489.
The Series 5 Cornet features a rosebrass leadpipe and is also available as an outfit in lacquer finish for RRP £249.

Elsewhere, the Series 5 Bb Trumpet features a rosebrass leadpipe and is available as an outfit in a choice of lacquer, silver, rosebrass, black, red or blue finishes from RRP £199.

After the success of the Saxholder, Korg has now introduced the Saxholder II. The harness transfers the entire sax weight evenly to both shoulders, meaning there is no stress on the neck. It has also been designed with ease of use in mind, meaning it can be put on by one hand in seconds. It can also be stored in most saxophone bells to save space and can played either sitting or standing without slipping when in position. Produced using Kevlar, an aircraft and space travel material along with space light aluminium, it can be set quickly and easily; swing both shoulder handles up, pull out the telescopic slide, rotate the abdominal rest, and it’s ready to use.

Meanwhile, the firm’s Ultra Oil valve oil is designed to provide a fast, light, and smooth feel for players. It is non-toxic, synthetic, odourless, and very long lasting. The brand range encompasses slide greases, trombone slide sprays, microfibre cleaning cloths and cleaning kits, to name but a few. Ideal for repairers, there are large 8fl oz bottles, which can be decanted into the usual size valve oil bottles. New to the range is the Ultra Oil French Horn Light Bearing Oil 20ml and Linkage, Lever and Key Oil 20ml/.

Last but not least is the new Nuova brass and woodwind range, which is aimed at embodying the design and production expertise of one of the world’s leading instrument manufacturers, whilst remaining accessible to the young, aspiring musician with a budget in mind. Quality and playability are key, so everything is undertaken to ensure these instruments feel as expressive as a more costly model. The range is currently available in Alto Sax in Eb, Flute in C, Bb Clarinet, Bb Trumpet and Bb Trombone, and comes complete with lightweight zip case and accessories.

Beaumont Music has launched a new range of cases and accessories. Cases are available from RRP £24.99; clarinet/sax slings from £12.99; and cleaning cloths from £3.99. There are many designs available, from zebra and tiger print to polka dot, with many more colours and designs to be made available soon, along with outer carry cases, combo cases and instrument stands.
The Beaumont Piper II student flute is available at £299.99, while the Beaumont Alina solid head flute is available at an RRP of £539.99.

Of course there’s only one make that ticks every box for me………that is Odyssey !!


About pollardtrumpets

With 46 years working in the music industry worldwide, his knowledge and experience stocks a comprehensive music store, the one stop shop for instrument advice, repairs, new and second-hand sales. Peter's apprenticeships with some of the world's leading craftsmen in Britain, the United States and Canada, have given him a thorough working knowledge of acoustical engineering and instrumental design creating a unique understanding of the instrumental needs of wind musicians. No longer will instrumental connoisseurs have to go to London when choosing and maintaining an instrument, when all their needs can be met in Manchester. A true Artisan, Peter has been fine tuning brass and woodwind instruments for musicians of the leading ensembles and institutions for many years, the Hallé, BBC Philharmonic, Royal Northern College of Music and Leeds College of Music and passing on his expertise in instrumental academy seminars in Scandinavia and Europe. A UK Brass specialist, Peter's skills have led to a growing demand for his custom range of brass design and parts, trumpets, flugels, cornets, bespoke lead pipes, bells, cork parts and mouthpieces. An exponent of 5 Star spa treatments for trumpets, a Pollard MOT involves deep freeze Cryogenic resonance restoration, ultrasonic cleaning, valve alignment and the application of his own patented valve oil 'Superfly' with a unique cleaning agent to ensure agile acrobatics when playing. 'Superfly' has now been licensed for distribution in the United States and Europe. Peter is the figure driving the sponsorship masterclasses and live music at Band on the Wall attracting stars such as Bobby Shew, Snake Davis, Ian Bousfield, Jigs Wigwam and Peter King, the Comedy Store, Liverpool's the Cavern Club and the Hallé, breath of fresh air for the region's live-music industry
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