Al's Equipment Page



Al at NTC in Fairfax, VA. Note Mr. Herseth is peaking in just over Al's left shoulder.


Al with Allen Vizzutti, working on an interview for the ITG Journal!


Al talks with Mr. Herseth, Dr. Richard Cox, and Ms. Tina Erickson during the opening concert at NTC.


Al with Patrick Hession, lead trumpet in the Maynard Ferguson Band. The MF Band was playing at the Jazz Kitchen in Indianapolis on May 9, 2005 when this photo was taken.

The Equipment I Use

I am an active musician and pedagogue, with more than 25 students in the Central Indiana area and many professional playing opportunities. The equipment I employ is a carefully selected collection of the designs that I have found work best for me. While trying the equipment I use may do you no good, I am listing it because I am frequently asked questions regarding the equipment I utilize, and wanted to develop a reference location for those interests. Please feel free to drop an E-mail to doctrpt@gmail.com and inquire further regarding any equipment listed here.


Bb Trumpets

I have several great Bb trumpets, that I use in different circumstances, and for different performing venues and genres of music.


I play a Bach Stradivarius®, L bore, 72 Bell, Malone MB 2 leadpipe with an M/K Drawing tuning crook, Bach heavy valve caps, and Curry action rods. The instrument is silver plated. This horn works well in a variety of settings: it sizzles on lead, it is small and intimate in a combo, it sings in an orchesta. This trumpet works best with a Monette STC-1 weight B1-5M trumpet mouthpiece. I've tried the Prana, and some other sizes, but this one just "works" with the horn.

I own a wonderful Schilke B3 model in silver. It is an outstanding trumpet, full sound, yet a brilliance and zing to the sound that works well for lead in a big band, or the pops concert with all the high playing that some of those entire! I use a Monette B1-5M XLT weight trumpet mouthpiece on this horn for every day, and a Monette B1-5LDDD for some pops, and a Schilke 18A27a for lead in a jazz band and rock and roll.

Another of my Bb trumpet is a Monette 149XL Bb trumpet, in gold. The tone and projection, in addition to the ease of playing, make this trumpet outstanding. If you do not own one of these trumpets or have never tried them, you are indeed missing out on something very, very special. This trumpet works best with a Monette STC-2 weight B1-5D Prana trumpet mouthpiece.

I also own a Bach Stradivarius®, ML bore, 37 Bell, Standard leadpipe with a rounded Bach tuning crook, Bach heavy valve caps, Turquoise valve buttons and Amado® Water Keys. The instrument is gold plated. It was the first Bach Strad I ever owned, and was given to me by my parents. It is a fine instrument that for 21+ years was the Bb for 90% of my playing, and has only recently been retired in favor of the Monette 149XL. It's an old friend, and like an old friend, every time I pick up the horn, I know where I am and love the time I spend with it.

I also own another Bb instrument which is a combination of an ML Bach valve cluster matched to an old Monette bell and Monette leadpipe with a rounded Blackburn tuning crook, Bach heavy valve caps and Amado® Water Keys. The instrument is in raw brass. It is a great trumpet for dark and rich yet bold trumpet playing, and is easily capable of playing at the extremes of dynamics with a huge sound. Begun as an experiment, this horn a valued part of my collection.


Another trumpet in my collection of interesting trumpets is a Bach Mercury®, ML bore, Standard bell and leadpipe, as pictured above. The serial number on this horn dates its manufacturing date as some time in 1939. It is interesting to look at Bach trumpets from 60 years ago and see where the evolution has taken place. It is a very interesting horn, especially considering the Quick Change to A mechanism that the tuning slide and valve slides have as standard equipment. Of all the dual key A/Bb instruments I have played, this instrument has the best tone and tuning characteristics in A, which is rare for any "dual" key instrument.

I also own two Conn Vocabell Bb trumpets, the model 40B and the model 48B. The 40B is the smaller, longer of the two trumpets, while the 48B is the short, larger of the two. The 40B was made in 1934, and the 48B made in 1944. Both horns play superbly. The designs of the horns, with the art deco influence and wonderful trim package, not to mention the incredible engraving on the 48B, made these horns hard to resist. The 40B is in lacquer, and has been well maintained. The 48B came from an estate sale, and the owner had put the horn away for a number of years, so it was in need of cleaning and some restoration. It is at the shop getting these repairs done, and when it returns, I will post pictures of them both.

I also own a Jupiter 416L Pocket trumpet, and it plays really nicely. It was on eBay, but the fellow had it mislabeled. I tried to tell him, but he was happy to sell it for the low price where the bidding stopped. It has a cute little case that really is easy to travel with, and protects the horn quite nicely! I am glad I bought it, and it is a valued and fun addition to my collection.

I also own a Jupiter Slide trumpet, and it plays really nicely. I bought it off the Trumpet Herald web site. Haven't had much time to mess with it, more when I do.




Bb Rotary Trumpets

I also own a Yamaha Bb rotary trumpet, model 935 in silver. It is a nice horn with a great tone and warm sound. It has a pitch adjustment trigger on the third valve slide, and seems to be very nice. Intonation and tone are superb. I find a Monette B-2FL cup mouthpiece in the STC-1 weight makes this package complete and exciting.




C Trumpets

I play a Bach Stradivarius®, L bore, 229 Bell, Malone MC2 leadpipe and tuning crook, Bach heavy valve caps, Curry action rods, and turquoise valve buttons. The instrument is silver plated. This horn has a pre-strike valve cluster with a post-strike rest of the horn. It plays very well. This trumpet works best with a Monette STC-1 weight C1-5M Resonance trumpet mouthpiece.

I also own a Monette 61X C "Classic" trumpet, but a little different from the ones made a few years ago. It is brush gold plated, and has the new, larger Raja bell design, special STC-1 leadpipe design and new valve cluster that makes this horn much more than just an "up to date 61X". David built this horn as a prototype to the "classic" reissue series for the 15th anniversary of the Monette Corp. One of the finest C trumpets I've ever played.



C Rotary Trumpets

I also own a I play a Bach Stradivarius® Rotary C trumpet in lacquer. This horn has rotary valves and a 255 bell. It plays very well. It is a very special horn with a great tone and warm sound. It has a pitch adjustment trigger on the third valve slide, but the intonation and tone are superb, so the trigger is not often used. I find a Breslmair G2 cup with a Monette B1-1 rim or Bach 1C rim (depending upon tonal color desired) makes this rotary trumpet really special.



Eb/D Trumpet

I own a wonderful Schilke E3L, the tuning bell model. It is the standard E3L in every respect, or at least as standard as a tuning bell trumpet with slides and bells for each key can be! This instrument possess a wonderful clarion voice for exquisite solo work when in Eb, yet a full, rich sound in D that works great for orchestral compositions as diverse as Handel's Messiah or Ravel's Piano Concerto in G. This is a superb instrument, and everyone should own a horn such as this at least once in their lifetime! I use a Monette E1-5M or Monette E-2 Eb trumpet mouthpiece on this horn, and the horn works wonderfully.

I also own a wonderful Schilke E3L-4, the tuning bell model. It is the standard E3L-4 in every respect, or at least as standard as a tuning bell trumpet with four valvesand a tuning bell can be! This instrument possess a wonderful clarion voice for exquisite solo work when in Eb that works great for orchestral compositions that require sustained high register usage . This is a superb instrument, and everyone should own a horn such as this at least once in their lifetime! I use a Monette E1-5D or Monette E-2 Eb trumpet mouthpiece on this horn, and the horn works wonderfully.


G Trumpet

I own a wonderful Schilke G1L-4, the tuning bell model with four valves that extends the range downward so that works like the Bach Cantata No. 51 and other similar works can be played without resorting to a second instrument, or straining to force pitches high and low. This instrument possess an exquisite sopranino voice, yet a full, rich sound that works great for orchestral compositions and is able to project over the tutti string and wind ensembles when required. This is a superb instrument, and everyone should own a horn such as this at least once in their lifetime! I use a Monette AP2 STC-1 weight piccolo trumpet mouthpiece on this horn, although lately I've been toying with a Reeves 43C or 43.5Ms with this horn, and so far all three choices work wonderfully.


A/Bb Piccolo Trumpet


I play a Kanstul CC920 with separate leadpipes for the Bb and A sides of the instrument. It is an outstanding piccolo trumpet, and having played and owned several fine makes, the Kanstul is the best available piccolo trumpet for players who can afford to own and use only one instrument for solo and orchestral work. I use a Monette AP4S (cornet shank) mouthpiece with this horn. The horn also works wonderfully with a Bach 3C cornet shank mouthpiece with a 117 backbore, and lately I've been experimenting with a Bach 7E with a cornet shank on this trumpet as well.



I also own a wonderful Mahillon Piccolo trumpet in A, amazingly one in the style that I have been looking for more than 15 years. My teacher at DePauw, Mr. Robert Grocock, was a strong advocate of the Mahillon piccolo, and I remember his as particularly wonderful. A friend in the Boston area sold me this one pictured above, and the first time I played it, I realized how much I appreciated the wonderful old instruments like this one. I am very exited to have this trumpet in my collection, and it will NEVER leave. I have been using a Kanstul CG3 (with a shortend piccolo trumpet shank) mouthpiece on it, and it works great on this instrument. I recently purchased Mr. Grocock's Mahillon, and it is a wonderful instrument as well. I also was able to obtain a four-valved version that belonged to Keith Clark, the bugler who played Taps at JFK's funeral. It is an equally exciting and unique instrument!

Cornets

I employ a very nice Getzen Eterna Bb Cornet in silver, large bore model. It is a great instrument, and I like it very much. I am now playing the Monette Cornet 1-5FL mouthpiece on this horn. It has the B1-5 rim with a deep flumpet cup for that rich, cornet sound. I have been finding more and more to play on an outstanding addition to my instrument collection.

I also own a wonderful Schilke A2C C Cornet in silver, a horn I just purchased used, but in like new condition. It works well for many different uses, and I am just beginning to find the advantages and benefits possible with this instrument. L'Histoire never has gone as well on any C trumpet. La Mer floats (so to speak), and other things are still being found to use the horn. I use a Monette Cornet 1-5FL STC-1 weight mouthpiece on this horn, and it works wonderfully.


Flugelhorn


My flugelhorn is the newly designed Conn Vintage One flugelhorn in silver, with a rose brass bell and cool wood handled third valve trigger mechanism. I have been using either a gold plated CKB 3FL or a custom cut Monette B1-5FL mouthpiece on this horn, and it seems to be the perfect mouthpiece for this truly outstanding flugelhorn.

I also own an ACB Double's Flugelhorn, which was a nice surprise and a great instrument for the money. Mine plays as well as any of my Yamaha 631/635/731 flugels I have owned, if not better. Worth a look if you only have so much to spend on a flugelhorn.


Trumpet Mouthpieces

The mouthpieces I use most of my horns are made by the master mouthpiece makers at Monette. I use a Monette B1-5 and a C1-5 rim set with different cup depths, depending upon horn, use, and application. These are outstanding mouthpieces of exceptional quality. Mouthpieces for other instruments are listed with that respective instrument, however, the Monette theme is prominent. For lead trumpet work, I use a Monette B1-5LDDD or a Schilke 18A27a for most of my lead work. Want a tone that won't quit and edge to spare? Try one of these! However, I am not married to a brand, but what works with instruments that I own. I find that I work best by finding the mouthpiece that works best with the trumpet, and then using it on the trumpet in question.


Horns

My favorite horn is a screw-bell Conn 8D in silver. I have been using a gold plated Yamaha 33D4 horn mouthpiece, and it seems to be the perfect mouthpiece for this classic horn. Rememnber the great sound of the Conn 8D from the old recordings? This horn is all that and more! What a great Conn 8D should be!

My single horn is a single Bb horn, a Yamaha 322. It has a great tone, and seems to work better with my Yamaha 33C4 horn mouthpiece. Bob Frost cut the bell for threads, and this instrument is now a screw belled horn. A Protek screw detachable bell case now makes the horn easier to carry and safer to transport. I like this horn very, very much.



Alto Trumpet


I own a Getzen Model 389 Alto Trumpet. It is finished in silver, and proves useful for many different jobs. It is a fine instrument, and I like the big tone I can get on it. I play it with a Monette STC-3 weight FL1-5X flumpet mouthpiece.


Bass Trumpet

I own a very nice Getzen Model 94 Bass Trumpet. The serial number on my horn is so old that Getzen doesn't have records back that far, but we were able to locate the model number through old ads that existed in the archives from the time period. As the horn appears in ads from about 1958 on, the best they can tell me is the horn was made some time between 1958 and 1964! It is finished in lacquer, and proves useful for lots of different music. It is a fine instrument, and I like the big tone I can get on it. I play it with a Schilke 40B Bass trumpet mouhpiece, or sometimes an old Mirafone 7D (10) Bass trumpet mouthpiece in silver. I need to find a good case for the horn, though as the Getzen case that came with it is shot!



Cases


I own and use a Torpedo Coyote 2.5 case. I love to use this case when I need two or three horns, and still need a case that meets all carry-on requirements for airlines in terms of size and shape. With the backpack straps, this case is fabulous for trekking through the airport, or taking to orchestra rehearsal, or to take a couple horns and mutes to a recording session. With the wheel and pull, it makes it easier to carry when it is full of trumpets, mouthpieces, and mutes. All kinds of instruments fit in the case as well, which is important when one considers the Monette horns, rotary horns, and regular weight or piccolo horns as well. With the added mute bag and music bag, the case can handle anything needed in style and class. I have had other cases that have received blows far less significant than my Coyote 2.5 and resulted in damage to the trumpet. With the Coyote 2.5, the horns are safe and secure inside. Trumpets of all lengths and sizes fit beautifully. You owe it to yourself to protect your valuable investment in musical instruments with a Torpedo!



I am the Calendar Editor for the International Trumpet Guild.


If you're a trumpeter and not a member, why not? There are too many benefits in membership not to join. Click on the link above to take you to the ITG site, where you can join today!


Links for Music Notation and Musical Software


Bach Musicological Font, perfect for inserting musical examples into text.
Finale Music, the maker of my FAVORITE notation application. Also take a look at FINALE Note Pad, a free application that is worth the time to download if you don't already own FINALE.

LINKS
 

Lilly Music Services Link Page
Lilly Music Services (Notation) Home Page
Musical Equipment Page
Al and Vicki Lilly Home Page


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