Harmony Central Forums
No announcement yet.

Greetings from the horn section


  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Greetings from the horn section

    Hey hey. I've been lurking for a while and finally decided to register, so this is a bit of an introduction and a "how's it going?"

    There seem to be a lot of singers/guitarists/bassists/drummers/keys on here, but not many horns (although a few bands seem to have horn sections) so I thought that input from a horn player might be cool/useful for some of the threads.

    If anyone's thinking of adding horns, or has questions about playing in a horn section, then I'd be happy to impart my wealth of knowledge(!) Otherwise, I'll see you all on the forum.

  • #2

    Amazing username, welcome to the community. 

    JAM Guitar Lessons. The Long Johns.


    • #3

      As a former horn player myself, any advice on picking it back up. It's been nearly 20 years and my lip is non-existant. I remember all my scales and and alot of pieces in my head. Any advice on how to build my lip back. Long tones. I picked it up a year ago out of the blue and belted the motif in Haydn Trumpet Concerto in E Major. I couldn't whistle for a week. LOL


      Otherwise welcome to the forum. Always good to hear from any players. 



      so over this signature BS!!!


      • WynnD
        WynnD commented
        Editing a comment
        I feel quite privileged to be considered part of the horn section. About 3/4th of the time, I'm playing keyboards. The other horn players are real killers and I'm working to raise my game. (Playing catchup.) I've got to pick a song to write some horn parts in. Just want to do that, but both of the other players do this well already.

    • #4

      Hot chick brought her flute to writer's night last week so she could jam w/ us (insert band camp joke here)....

      It didn't occur to me that "A" was a horrible key for her until later on.(yes I know flute is not a "horn")


      Horn players mean I'm soloing less and (generally) getting paid more .....


      No but, seriosuly ... you guys are under represented here so welcome.


      ....lots of pedals and related stuff spring '17



      • #5

        So.....how come it seems like you guys are always the last to arrive, but the first to leave a gig (and get paid)?

        (I kid.)



        Did I say that out loud ?!?


        • #6

          Welcome Hornstar!  Gawd knows I loves a good horn section.  A good horn section certainly elevates a band's show in a big way.  A few well written horn lines can transform even the most tired tunes from the SomeKindOfBrownEyedHardMustangToHandle genre into real show pieces for a band. 

          We recently made the decision that regardless of pay - we're going to include our horn section at all of our gigs.   The $7.50 per $100 of gross revenue that adding the horns has on each slice of the pie (8 pcs vs 5 pcs) is so minimal in the big scheme of things - that I'll happily give it up in order to be performing with an act that really turns heads with the BIG sound that a quality horn section brings to the stage. 

          The difference in sound is significant enough that it's having an obvious impact on our draw - which is resulting in better pay at the bar gigs we play - and is certainly landing us more (as well as better paying) private jobs.   We're cautiously optimistic that the decision to always showcase ourselves with the horns will end up paying off in the long run - even if there are a few low paying nights in the mix as well!

          The SpaceNorman


          Keyboards and Tone Generators: Yamaha CP300, Kronos 88, Roland AX Synth, Motif ES Rack
          Keyboard Rack: Samson SM10 Line Mixer, Motu MIDIExpressXT MIDI Interface, Shure PSM200 IEM system, M-Audio Wireless MIDI, Live Wires IEM ear buds, iPad wOnSong.
          Stage Amplification: Stereo via 2 Yamaha DSR112s


          • wheresgrant3
            wheresgrant3 commented
            Editing a comment

            SpaceNorman wrote:

              A good horn section certainly elevates a band's show in a big way.  A few well written horn lines can transform even the most tired tunes from the SomeKindOfBrownEyedHardMustangToHandle genre into real show pieces for a band. 

            Agreed 100%

        • #7

          Welcome HornStar... Although I play Guitar, I have played in quite a few horn bands.

          Loved the added sound, hated tuning down to play in E flat to accomodate the Saxophones...



          • #8

            Thanks for the warm welcome!

            wheresgrant3: First bit of advice would be don't belt anything! Haha! Slow and steady, my friend... Chromatic long tones from G in the staff down to F# below for the first week or so. Clarke's Technical Studies 1&2 after that, but only as high as you can comfortably go without using pressure. Rest as much as you play, and play no more than 10 mins max at a time for the first few weeks (build up to 20 min settings). "Build up, don't break down". If you're serious about getting back into it, get a teacher. Other than that, put the Haydn aside for a few years... ;-)


            Jmarcus2: Because we can. ;-) Seriously though, I always help with the PA at least; if I'm on mic, it's for me as much as anyone else, so the least I can do is help shift it! Usually try and help the drummer too.


            SpaceNorman: Couldn't agree more! The visual of the horn section can be almost as important (almost...!) as the sound.


            CliffordN: If a sax player asks you to tune down, tell him/her to piss off!


            SeniorBlues: Sadly, that's true. Few bands can afford to pay horn players as full time members. Few bands can afford to pay ANYONE as full time members.


            WynnD: Enjoy it! Being a section player is great.




            • flemtone
              flemtone commented
              Editing a comment

              Welcome aboard!

              A few questions, if I may:

              1) What horn(s) do you play?

              2) What's your favorite horn section set-up (what instruments combined)

              3) What's your favorite performing horn section and/or arranger (current or past)?

              4) Is "Stand By Your Man" really a favorite of the horn section?

              5) If there is a dead possum and a dead trombone player in the middle of the road, can we assume the possum had a better chance of being on his way to a gig?  (j/k)


              Inquiring minds want to know.