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Performance and Pedagogy Blog

A blog about the performance and pedagogy of music.

Filtering by Tag: US Army Band

The Brass Junkies: Harry Watters of the US Army Band

Andrew Hitz

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Trombonist and probable alien Harry Watters sat down with me and Lance and hilarity ensues.

Harry has had an amazing career, including a four year stint with the Dukes of Dixieland before detours to Las Vegas and his current position in Pershing's Own Army Band. Harry has played with just about everybody on the planet and give us some tips on learning improvisation.

He may or may not also have been present at a casino during a takeover by the Feds.

Harry's Latest Recording: The Great American Songbook featuring the Salt River Brass

You can help offset the costs of producing the show by making a small donation at Your support is greatly appreciated!

Produced by Austin Boyer of FredBrass

The Brass Junkies: Kevin Gebo - Episode 4

Andrew Hitz

My dear friend Kevin Gebo joined us for the latest episode of The Brass Junkies to discuss the many different aspects of his career.

Kevin is a trumpet player with the US Army Ceremonial Band in Arlington, VA.  He is also a soloist, chamber musician, and entrepreneur.  In this episode, he discusses his latest solo album, being a part of the first volume of the Brass Recording Project, and his collaborations with Paul Reiser (yes, THAT Paul Reiser.)


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You can help offset the costs of producing the show by making a small donation at Your support is greatly appreciated!

Produced by Austin Boyer and Buddy Deshler of FredBrass

Andrew Hitz & Lance LaDuke: Monday YouTube Fix

Andrew Hitz

Here is the presentation that I did with my Pedal Note Media partner, Lance LaDuke, at the 2015 Army Tuba-Euphonium Workshop at Fort Myer in Arlington, VA.  A big thank you to all of those from the Army Band who were not only involved with hosting the workshop but also with archiving all of the sessions for everyone to enjoy after the fact.

Our session was titled "Low Brass 101: It's Just Business" and discussed things that you can do today to help take your career to the next level.  As we stated at the beginning of the presentation, it really has nothing to do with low brass specific stuff.  We discussed things like networking, marketing, targeting specific customers, and many other business concepts.

We hope you enjoy!

US Army All-Brass Big Band - A Stan Kenton Christmas: Monday YouTube Fix

Andrew Hitz

Okay this is awesome.  One of the best big bands in the world, minus their saxophones and with some mellophones thrown in for good measure, playing some of the finest charts ever written.  Here is the Stan Kenton Christmas carols arranged by Hoagy Carmichael.

A note on the instrument in the front row: they are mellophones.  The leader pretty much sums them up perfectly when he said, "The mellophone is an instrument of mostly indefinite pitch."


Jens Lindemann and The United States Army Band, Pershing's Own: Monday YouTube Fix

Andrew Hitz

I'll never forget meeting Jens Lindemann.  Boston Brass had a few hour layover at LAX the summer of 2001 and Jens and his wife, Jennifer Snow, came to meet us at the LAX Marriott for a quick meal.  All seven of us basically laughed uncontrollably for two hours before we got back on the plane.  Instant friendships were born. Jens had recently retired from the Canadian Brass and taken as the trumpet professor at UCLA, a position he still holds today.  We traded road war stories and vowed to work together as soon as possible.  As chance would have it, both of our trumpet players' wives gave birth to kids within the next two years and Jens filled in each time.

I have also been fortunate to work with him on some other occasions as well, the most notable being in Mexico.  He called me and asked if I wanted to play in a brass sextet with him, Jim Thompson, Fred Mills, Marty Hackleman and Julio Briseno in Texcoco, just east of Mexico City.  I thought he was playing a joke on me! It was one of the highlights of my career.

© 2006 Andrew Hitz

As you can tell by this clip, Jens is one of the best players in the world.  I have also learned an invaluable amount from him about being a showman.  He is a master as you can see from the beginning of this clip.  Jens is a true inspiration as an entrepreneur and artist.  He is a beast on the trumpet and sounds amazing along with The US Army Band, Pershing's Own from the National Trumpet Competition in 2012.


Ryan Anthony with The US Army Band "Pershing's Own": Monday YouTube Fix

Andrew Hitz

What can you say about Ryan Anthony when he has a trumpet in his hands? When I close my eyes and imagine the perfect trumpet sound, I am basically hearing Ryan's playing.  His tone is the same on long notes as it on fast flourishes.  It is the same in the low register as it is in the high register.  It is the same when he plays ff as when he plays pp.  He is a tone machine. Every single aspiring trumpet player needs to listen to as much Ryan Anthony as they can get their hands on.  Whether it's his solo playing (like this clip) or his orchestral playing, his command of the instrument is unmatched.  Oh yeah, he's also one of the greatest brass quintet players to ever live which is probably worth mentioning.

On top of that, Ryan is one of the most genuine, humble and courageous people you will ever meet.  This live performance of the Kent Kennan "Sonata for Trumpet" is just a stunning performance by both him and The US Army Band.  Great stuff!