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Brian Kay


Holiday Gift Ideas for Brass Players

NOTE 12/018/06 - This page is overdue for an update, but most is still accurate and/or usefull.

Many of these are items you might normally purchase as an aid to your childs musical development, however they also make great gifts. Feel free to give me a call, or email if you would like to clarify what might make a nice gift for your child. This list is just a starting point: there are many other great musical gifts, you might think of!

Prices listed are "street prices" from a discount mail order supplier (Woodwind and Brasswind) Prices are accurate as of summer 2000, but are subject to change. Item numbers where listed are from Woodwind and Brasswind. See my list of Instrument and Sheet Music Stores for contact info. Prices at mail order catalogues are generally lower. On the other hand, it is good to support local music stores as well.

Recordings: Every brass student should have at least one, and preferably many recordings featuring their instrument. Click here for a list of recommended recordings.

Sheet Music: Click here for my list of fun supplementary material



Schilke Tuning Slide Grease (B3-SHSG) $2.50 This important, and often overlooked accessory helps keep the tuning slides moving over the years.

Woodwind and Brasswind Myco Fiber Cleaning Cloth (B3-RDG8040) $6.95 Will not scratch any surface.

Metronomes: Everyone should have this valuable practice tool.
Seiko SQ-44 (B3-SISQ44) $26.95 or
Qwik Time Metronome (B3-EVQT3) $15.95 or

Manhasset music stand (B3-MN23) $22.99 Exellent stand - much more pleasant to practice with than the folding stands--very solid and stable without being overly heavy.

Tuner: Korg CA-30 One of the least expensive tuners is also one of the best. This small device senses what note is being played and tells you on a meter if you are sharp, flat, or in-tune. A very helpful practice aid. A fun device, and recommended for all.

Yamaha Silent Brass System (specify trumpet, trombone, or tuba) This hi-tech device contains a mute that silences the instrument on the outside, with a pickup that feeds to headphones and a "personal studio" allowing the player to experience a full sound with reverb. An excellent device for occasional use, but should not be used for all practice sessions. Highly recommended for anyone who is limited in practice due to sound volume considerations.

Portable Recorders ($200-$400) with a quality mic and headphones are a great investment for a serious music student who might like to make audition recordings, or document their concerts. These recorders offer very good fidelity at a relatively low cost. Sound files can be copied to the computer for editing, or producing CDs or MP3s. Recording yourself is the ultimate practice tool, as it allows a player to hear themselves and decide how they might like to sound better. This is a must for any player that truly wants to be their best. I recommend calling Oade Brothers Audio (912-228-0093) for ordering and more advice. They are a small, helpful store that specializes in quality portable recording gear for the hobbyist and professional.


Professional Quality Instruments

(new: $1200-$1600 +) Stepping up to a professional quality instrument is highly recommended for late Middle School, or High School students with a strong interest in music. These instruments are generally capable of producing a finer sound and allowing a student to achieve more of their potential. When well cared for, they hold much more of their value than the so called "intermediate instruments" which often look like a professional instrument, but sound like a student instrument. Please contact me if you are interested in exploring this option for your child.

Just for Trombonists:

UMI Trombone Stand (B3-MN482) $57.95 This is the stand I use to hold the trombone when not in use in our lessons. Very stable. For some reason, kids think these are cool. Some feel it helps them to practice to have the trombone out of the case and on the stand, ready for use.

Slide-O-Mix trombone slide lubricant (B3-DEGSK400) $11.75 In my opinion, the world's best slide lubricant.

Slide-O-Mix Rapid Comfort. A one step "quick recharge" for those using regular Slide-O-Mix.

1 Oz. Water Spray Bottle (B3-CG337A) $2.75 A little water sprayed on the slide is excellent for improving slide speed and smoothness.