New to the whole School Band Experience?

I can sympathize with parents who feel frightened by the words, “I want to play an instrument…” I have a 9 year old who plays the trumpet and without his Daddy and Papa I would be up the creek without a paddle, which means my darling child would be screaming from the shore for his mama to come back! So, what is band anyway?

I love to check in with my good friend Wikipedia. “A school band is a group of student musicians who rehearse and perform instrumental music together. A concert band is usually under the direction of one or more conductors (band directors). A school band consists of wind instruments and percussion instruments, although upper level bands may also have string basses or bass guitar.” Well, that sounds pretty straight forward. I’m guessing an instrument would be very important for my child at this point.

{Kelly’s sidenote: In case y’all haven’t figured this out yet, I work for The Master Musician. I will be giving them a shout out here and again because they basically will have everything we are looking for when it comes to music….and if for some reason they don’t, I’m in cahoots with the owners and their cute repair tech Marc, so we will find a solution to any questions that come up.}

Ok, so back to instruments….there are a few things you will want to consider before your child picks an instrument to play:

1. Ask your Band Director- sometimes the bands limit how many of each instrument can be played. This makes sense since a band of trumpets and 1 flute would sound kinda loud!

2. Check the size- make sure little Jimmy can hold that gigantic Tuba! Head over to the Master Musician and let your child get the feel of a few instruments before he or she settles on one that they are unable to even carry out the door.

3. Sound- while your “sampling” some instruments, make sure you pick a sound that agrees with everyone in the family. If you are particularly against the sound of a schreeching cat as your child learns to play the violin, go with something less “schreechy”, for lack of a better word.

4. It costs what??- Cost is definitely a factor these days. The first thing you need to know is whether or not your school provides an instrument for your student. If they do, there is usually a fee you must pay for the year to use it. If you were left high and dry…uhhh, I mean they were out of “free” instruments, the next thing to think about is “To rent, or not to rent?” That is the question…

Rent- pay a deposit and a monthly fee and return the instrument whenever you are done with it. (The rental fee is based upon the value of the instrument. For example, a $300 instrument could only be about $25 per month, where a $1000 instrument could be $50 per month….just simplified examples, don’t quote me.)

Rent to own- same as rent, except that you keep the instrument forever and it is completely yours (preferably within 2 1/2 to 3 years, unless paid off sooner) once the purchase price is paid for.

Buy it NOW!- Purchase the instrument in full from The Master Musician and get 20% off automatically!

Yikes! So much information….I need a break. Check back soon where we can figure out what to do with our youngens and their shiny new instruments. =) FYI…for more info on buying or renting instruments check out http://www.mastermusician.net/t-rentals.aspx! See ya soon!

The Master Musician

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