Did We Miss Something? tm (DB)6*. Were The BeaTles Holding Paul McCartney Back?

“The Kiss of Venus”, as performed by Dominic Fike and written by Paul McCartney, from McCARTNEY III IMAGINED

What would the Beatles sound like today? With two gone, and the others aged, is it even a valid question? Since the great songwriting and great singing were two of the bulwarks of the iconic band, perhaps the talented Dominic Fike could provide the fresher voice to Paul McCartney’s recent composition-“The Kiss of Venus”.

If this is performance is any indication, the Beatles great singing and songwriting aspect of the formula still works! The singing and songwriting are superb, the bass suitably groovy and the guitar quite strong. Perhaps the one main difference here is the absence of Ringo’s typical loose-in-a-good-way approach.

Emma Stone stars in McCartney’s compelling “Who Cares”, which draws upon his immense interest in design, art and helping to ease human suffering.

In an age where people WATCH music as much as they LISTEN to it, is McCartney still be able to be forward-thinking in terms of fashion or visual arts? McCartney’s “Who Cares?”, featuring Emma Stone is visually striking and poses a variety of situations where internal mental challenges become visualized and worked out.

This seems affirmative to the question, “Could a Beatle possibly contend with the visually-oriented artists of the music of today?” Paul McCartney was ever on the threshold of the avant-guard and quick to make visual statements of fashion and design beyond the associations of the visual artists prominent in his life such as best-friend and art student John Lennon, wife and photographer Linda McCartney and daughter and fashion designer Mary McCartney.

It seems that the future received a Beatle that was still musically needed! After all, it was Paul’s impetus that had guided the Sgt. Pepper album concept and it was he who almost singlehandedly initiated The Magical Mystical Tour-(An Experimental Beatles Film Tour/Album). (Was this the ancestor of Reality TV?) Not to mention the incredible design of his numerous solo projects and efforts on behalf of the group, Wings.

Who Cares? by McCartney

But what about the increasingly “song & dance” aspect of much contemporary popular music, increasingly dependent on choreography? Nowadays, EVERYONE has to move. If Elvis didn’t get the point across, successive waves of artists from Prince to Bruno Mars have.

Enter McCartney again, who creates his own dance routine and choreographers developed techniques and technology to mimic what he had improvised in his official video “My Ever Present Past”.

McCartney’s video of My Ever Present Past

Or possiblyNote the ever-present ringing ‘G’ repeated throughout and the many reminders of one romance he had with famous actress and redhead, Jane Asher as but two persistent reminders of his indefatigable past. Zeus may refer to Linda, and the story of her life produced by Zeus films. (Perhaps the two initial busts of Zeus indicate Mr. McCartney’s two great loves/friendships with her and John Lennon, that may have partially attempted to fill the void after the death of his mother, Mary. In this video, the second Paul may be finally seeing himself through his own eyes, instead of through the eyes of John, Linda, Jane or even his role as a Beatle.)

Are the urns representative of crematory urns for John and George?

Using the technique pioneered by impressionist Claude Monet of examining the same subject from different angles, some exhibited photographs-(a possible references to first wife Linda) feature depictions of A hand (as in “I Want To hold Your Hand) and guitars, The ever-present clock ticks away the present into even more past, incomplete torsos may have another reference, and there is very interesting re-arrangement of statuary. Again, the intrinsic thread of the visual artist surfaces in this abstract video which takes place in a gallery, and combines elements of multiple McCartneys seeming to reflect a dream-like state of self-examination. At the end, Paul McCartney’s pose is reminiscent of the sculpture commonly known as The Thinker by August Rodin. (Is this an invitation to ponder, through art?)

Did McCartney Save the Super Bowl Halftime Shows? Knowing that Little Richard befriended the Beatles and especially loved Paul, you can hear the echo of the man they call the “Architect” of Rock ‘n’ Roll” re-emerge at various time throughout the entire history of McCartney’s career. One of my favorites: While it was Michael Jackson who re-invented the Super Bowl Halftime Show in 1993, and Prince who Perfected it in 2007, Prince could not have done so without a little help from God in the form of the natural special effects of lightning and rain AND Paul McCartney who may have saved the very existence of Super Bowl Halftime Shows in 2005! Who else but McCartney could guarantee a grand-slam, professional, half-time solo performance after the Timberlake/Janet Jackson controversy? Does anyone else echos of Little Richard in the doo, doo, doo doo of Baby You Can Drive my Car?



McCartney’s ten-year-old collaboration with Microsoft, Appreciate, combines his fully-human approach to art, while being forward-thinking at the same time.

0:12 the date is 31 August 3116, as a Robot/AI has enters the Museum of Man. The implication seems to be that mankind is no longer extant. (How could this be? How could it have happened? Did Robots attack? Or did mankind simply discard and ignore everything human?)

0:33 The first exhibit we see in the museum is a table where a mother and her two children seem to be praying to God. Is the Robot/AI seeking his creator in the Museum of Man, just as those humans depicted are pictured are seeking their Creator in prayer? Please note: There is no man.

0:38 reveals a puppet-master who seems to be dressed from the late 1800’s; 0:43 featured bisections of the brain of man, this “dual-core processor” to which the Robot/Ai can presumably relate and may even admire.

0:56 features senior citizens playing cards. Is there a conception of time, games or even growing old amongst Robot/AI? Do AI suffer from not having to measure their days… Aspects of the panorama exhibits in the video seem to echo other great visual art works such as the painting Nighthawks, by Edward Hooper.

0:58 depicts the pleasures of working together, as a boss dictates to his secretary who uses a typing machines. Again the machines which led to the computer are present, perhaps shown here alongside a job or two the AI have replaced, and more pleasures they cannot seem to enjoy-in this case scotch and soda. The relationship and fascination of mankind with machines and devices that led to the Robot/AI is a theme throughout: typewriters, musical instruments, cameras, etc.

1:19 As the Robot/AI from the future approaches the McCartney exhibit, the bass guitar speaks to it first! Machine to machine. Then McCartney becomes animated, and sets down his old mechanical friend for a moment to meet a new one.

One imagines the transition of mankind losing their humanity that McCartney, now a grandfather and even possibly great-grandfather may have for seen as a possibility. In addition the end-of-man he can imagine as a possible conclusion.. “Lift up your head in the middle of a crisis” McCartney seems to sing to both the Robot/AI and to the display of three young boys playing video games on a couch. Could one have had their avatar die during a video game like ‘Call of Duty’? And now have to re-enter reality as he waits for his friends to die in the virtual world? “You don’t have to give it all away”. sings McCartney- Is he referring to their humanity? “When you’re left for dead in the middle of a crisis; you must appreciate.”

2:10 The Robot/AI and McCartney clasp hands, and McCartney attempts to pull the Robot/AI into the past, but as the Robot/AI brings McCartney into this person-less dystopia as he sings, “There’s something there, but you’re fighting to invite it. Beware of pushing it away”. Later, McCartney intones, “be certain you don’t fight it; you must appreciate.” If the future seems to promise a trans-human immortality, McCartney’s art and music say no thanks! Better a short time with the joys and pleasures of humanity, than to be locked in a shell which cannot die or feel.

As the ‘bridge’ (or second melody is sung), the amount of ‘white-noise’ or ‘machine-noise’ elevates, as if the machines themselves are contributing as well. McCartney remarked that he turned the amp up as much as possible, and very lightly touched the guitar. He said something to the effect that it almost gave the impression of the guitar playing itself! This, and all the small choices of this genius and his associates, make the work remarkable.

McCartney seems to be teaching the Robot/Ai to dance throughout, and the bridge sees the humans in the exhibit spring to life in dance as well. Cards are abandoned by the seniors, work by the boss and secretary, and even a photoshoot is interrupted. Cameras are another device on the road to the Robot/AI; do AI appreciate a beautiful photo or model? A boy makes a soccer ball dance between his feet as the puppet dances for its master. Closer examination shows the elderly card players aided by oxygen, walkers and canes-devices and machines.

“Lift up your head, and remember what your life is; don’t have to give it all way”, McCartney intones as you realize almost everyone with a smart phone needs the advicelift up your head!

3:56 The second-to-last exhibit is revealed, as people relax and eat at a diner. Can Robot/AI enjoy taste and smell? Companionship? Or is it just another pleasure lacking? Were all of these lost human activities crowded out by technology?

In the last exhibit, two men prize fight. Do Robot/AI struggle? Fight? Experience victory? Defeat? Consequence? As the two guitar solos end the song, McCartney’s Aston Martin DB6 appears, another allusion to human attachment to our machines. The young boys on the couch playing video games get into a pillow fight as they abandon the virtual for the real. Perhaps, they finally appreciate!

BEATLES GENIUS LOCI THREE: Great Instrumental Musicianship All The Right Heroes. While tastes may change, I sometimes wonder what would happen if, at the snap of a finger, each Beatle turned into the artist that influenced them most. In my mind, it goes something like this: John Lennon becomes Buddy Holly or Chuck Berry, George Harrison-Carl Perkins & Paul becomes Little Richard-wooo! (Now you know where he got it!). Ringo, of course; stays Ringo.

Little Richard

If each Beatle turned into their SECOND musical hero at a second snap of the fingers, McCartney’s would be instrumental and not vocal. As bass player developing into one of the most influential bass clef instrumentalists of the 20th Century, McCartney has citedJames Jamerson as his bass-playing inspiration.

James Jameson with Stevie Wonder on I Was Made to Love Her.

Jameson was the iconic bass player from Motown who rewrote the book on the bass line as a countermelody instrument, surpassing all previous recorded bass clef players. Consider that many of your favorite Motown hits, from the Diana Ross & The Supremes to Smokey Robison & The Miracles, have Jamerson’s bass playing in common. Take into account that, while the European-oriented musician may prize expressive phrasing above the harmonies and melodies emphasized in much of their music, the AMERICAN musician often prizes FEEL-the rhythmic equivalent to melodic phrasing, as the highest order of musical sophistication.

In this, Jamerson reigns supreme, while adding unbelievably fresh rhythmic variety and complexity within an overarching balance of a song. Please note how Jamerson also masters what sometimes escapes otherwise sensitive musicians, the rhythmic release and attention to detail for the RIGHT hand side of each note, not just the left! A mere few miraculous James Jamerson bass-line gems would include: “I Was Made to Lover Her” with Stevie Wonder; “Bernadette” with The Four Tops; “What’s Going On?” with Marvin Gaye; “Someone Who Needs Me” with Stevie Wonder.

McCartney’s Bass Isolated from the Beatle’s Something.

McCartney becomes a near-equal to Jamerson in crafting incredibly artistic and popular bass-lines. As one of the headliners who had incredible influence over writing and the recording process, McCartney used his advantage to allow the bass to become a signature sound for the Beatles, and was said to have often recorded his bass direct and/or last to increase the presence of the instrument on the recorded ‘takes’. Perhaps, McCartney’s bass-lines also become so melodic, because he begins to conceive of them as more vocal, and approached them through singing with his voice or the bass-which had become his second voice and performance expertise.

You Never Give Me Your Money, as recorded by The Beatles.

An obvious Paul McCartney base-line masterpiece was for the Harrison composition “Something” from the Abbey Road album This incredible example of linear harmony nearly stands on its own as a musical composition. At times, it is reminiscent of the incredibly melodic, yet accompanimental bass-lines such as those found in the “Air on a ‘G’ String” by J. S. Bach or other classical composers.

In “You Never Give Me your Money”, there seem to be two recorded McCartney bass lines, and the beginning features a bass solo which adds interest while staying out of the way. Eventually, a second, more traditionally supportive bass-line is added above the beautiful “Lead-bass” solo that adds beautifully improvised ideas and variety without distracting from the pats above. In some respects, it is reminiscent of the solo-like piano accompaniments that noted jazz pianist for Benny Goodman, Teddy Wilson, used to craft for Billie Holiday on many of her great recordings.

Something, as recorded by the Beatles, written by George Harrison.

In terms of the most imitated and complimented instrumentalists from amongst the Beatles, it is definitely Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney. While admitting to less competition on bass as compared to drum set, one could imagine scenarios where McCartney eventually outpaces Starr as the most influential instrumentalist of the four Beatles.

Paper Back Writer was also a number one hit, and would have been relevant to almost everyone of the day who had access to a radio. While everyone has a different point, for me the first Beatles composition that was embraced by the mandorla of both popularity and artistic significance, in terms of bass-lines, was Paper Back Writer. It, and the somewhat less popular Rain seem to best grasp the idea of syncopation and slightly swung sixteenth notes (sixteenth notes often divide the beat into four equal units. And your Bird Can Sing is in a similar vein of intention. All from the ground-breaking album REVOLVER.

In Ragtime and Funk, the feel varied from a feel of a division of 4 to almost a swung unequal division of 6 divisions per beat (2/6 1/6 2/6 1/6). Paper Back Writer also has that loose-in-a-good-way feel and singing approach where it is right on the beat, but seems to surf through the notes rather than carrying the weight of the responsibility for each beat in a box-truck

Paperback Writer, as recorded by the Beatles on their album REVOLVER.

Both of these men are of central primacy to the third Loci of Genius for the Beatles-GROOVE! While the fabulous vocals of Lennon and McCartney got the group into the door, and their songwriting made the Beatles recipients of the honor of the most successful songwriters of the 20th century, each successive remix turns up the groove laid down by McCartney and Starr in recognition of an equal genius of instrumental excellence.


Like Tchaikovsky and Ellington and other artists before them, The Beatles managed the delicate balance between simplicity and complexity. Encouraged by their producer George Martin, and left with gaps of content due to the non-traditional lead guitar role invented by Harrison, typical Beatles recordings seem to add something new to each restatement of an idea. A second voice, a new instrument, a changed groove. Track to track, the contrast of timbral palettes is often refreshing, not to mention grooves and harmonic approaches.

As a result, the recordings of Beatles rarely even approach the border of too-simple or redundant, BUT when ever one sees the horizon of such a border ahead, almost miraculously, Starr or McCartney will add a slightly different twist to their parts, often taking turns-as if through intense listening, highly honed chamber music skills, ESP or a combination of all three! Starr and McCartney are the third genius loci of the Beatles, and this third loci is as important as any of the other aspects of the tremendous success of the Beatles.

c. 2024 David William Brubeck All Rights Reserved


Find your own favorite Beatles Bass Lines! A great number of people love: Come Together, Think For Yourself, Day Tripper, Hey Bulldog, Dear Prudence, I Want You/She’s So Heavy!

Most session/regular bass players would try to enhance the songs with their bass playing. Jamerson, McCartney and Carol Kaye (of “The Wrecking Crew”-famed LA studio session band), were among the best. Because McCartney was a composer in general (and often THE composer of the music he recorded), he often used the bass as an element which would support the other musical aspects present in the recording or composition. The primary focus here, has been on the seven years of McCartney bass-lines from the Beatles recordings, omitting their three to four year formative period. We hope to examine the recorded bass-lines on the albums of Paul & Linda McCartney, Solo Paul McCartney I-III and Paul McCartney & Wings in the prequel to this installment.

SPOILER: The Robot/AI in the music video Appreciate is a puppet. (And a darn good one!)

Editor’s note: This article was getting so long, that the editorial decision was made to break it into two parts, perhaps to be joined at some future point. Part of the credit goes to the ever industrious and multi-faceted Paul McCartney. One of the less-often mentioned attributes of genius is INDUSTRY, and that genius is often inauthentic, unless frequently applied.




Please let us know if your opinion of our fair use of materials differs from yours.

THE END NOT Paul on Bass…

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“Sliver of Moon” for Solo Guitar by David William Brubeck

Juan Calderon, a beautiful composer, was kind enough to record one of my 12 “Chili Dogs” for solo guitar. Like my “Stereograms”, for solo bass trombone, each “Chili Dog” is very different from the others.

I have included a few others. “Van” is dedicated to Beethoven-of course! Listening to his piano sonatas, was the inspiration for these-believe it or not!

I hope that you enjoy these..

c. 1996-2024 David William Brubeck. All Rights Reserved

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Trombone Books I Recommend….No. 1

Tommy Dorsey, James Pankow, Trombone Shorty, J. J. Johnson, Arthur Pryor and Clay Smith?

I cannot recall the author of the study, but seem to recall the conclusion well. After examining master musicians who had achieved success in their field (if not outright virtuosity), the question arose: HOW did they do it?

Specifically. did they master tone first, to the exclusion of all else? Focus only on time and intonation at the root, only to grow into excellent tone, expression and listening later?

HOW, exactly?

What did they focus on? Or, more precisely stated: What did they leave out, if only for a time?

The answers were everything and nothing. Their teachers did not leave ANYTHING out. They focused on EVERYTHING! Perhaps not all at once, but yes, everything.

This could explain a great deal.

One of two components I typically find underdeveloped in students is MUSICALITY. (The other? Time, time, time, time, time, time & time!). Echoing the great Arnold Jacobs’ summation of the musicians of my generation-“They lack artistry”, I have to concede that musicality, or its absence, is often the elephant in the room regarding the development of younger musicians.

Emotion or expression IS music, in the sense it attracts many of the most musical people to music. Expression and the communication of emotion is amostng what music does best. This is akin to the fruited plant of the garden or the flowered tree of the forrest-with the enticing scent that draws in the expressive soul. How often we are drawn to the subtle, snared by the communicative and enchanted by the expressive? The most musical are lured to and nourished by these arches of phrase and crests of dynamics that illuminate and inspire the otherwise pitilessly mathematical notes. Musicality then, increases the appetite for more music.

As a result of this line of thinking, one may arrive at this question: Why am I studying articulation in an exercise, when I could be doing so in a more musical duet? One will satisfy the yearnings of my musical soul; the other may not! And so, dear reader, you have found me out: I prefer the etude to the exercise; the solo to the scale, and the melody to the pattern.

Not only does the duet offer great melodies when alone, but the applied interaction of playing with someone else to whom you are accountable for pitch and time etc, is enthralling! And how many things are better than playing music with a friend? Like duets, solos capture this collaborative spirit, and were originally conceived and written with the intention of performance with the integrated accompaniment!

Both solos with piano and duos should often be read from the score, to more fully understand the entire scope of music-making, and as a gateway to score-reading. Yes, duets and solos. How many an operatic accompanist has parlayed their piano-playing into becoming a world class maestro like George Solti? Legion!

This leads me to Clay Smith- a man who made his living playing trombone solos, and wrote more than a few. I have particularly enjoyed many Barnhouse publications in the past. They have produced high quality editions and were quite pleasant in their communications. Long ago, Barnhouse graciously gave me permission to publish one solo by Clay Smith on my Website. As we finally do so, we thank them, once again!

Like many, I believe these to be an essential collection of solos that help bridge the gap between etudes or exercises and more elaborate and traditional solo repertoire. Best wishes with these highly imaginative solos or, some might say, duos with piano! Play as many as you can, as expressively as you are able, and frequently with piano alongside.

This is my first selection for “Trombone Books I Recommend!” Enjoy…

Notorious! Pan is the goat-legged demigod of ancient Greco-Roman lore. Amorous? He is seemingly often in pursuit of a fair maiden or nymph. Disastrous. As he chased an unwilling nymph-Syrinx; she changed her self into river-reeds, lest he catch her. Sonorous: despondent at the escape pf his newfound “love”, Pan severs the selfsame river-reeds to fashion his iconic flute. Ruinous: poor Syrinx is now his mournful pipe and always at his lips.

(Odorous-Goat breath!)

Claude Debussy and Andreas Blau pause to reflect on the tragedy in terms most rhapsodious.

The mournful tones of this masterpiece by Debussy seem to cry out in sympathy for the losses of Syrinx.

Syrinx may yet serve as a metaphor for each individual instrumentalist who sacrifices their lives to embody music. If spending six hours or more per day alone in a practice room is an approximation of turning one-self into reeds or, our very instrument, then many of us have paid the price of Syrinx.

As we aspire to become “Storytellers of sound”, ad proscribed by Arnold Jacobs, do we not become the living embodiment or the voice of our instruments as we spin our scales of ro?

c. 2024 David William Brubeck. All Rights Reserved


Pan image courtesy of Merriam-Webster.com


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The Album That Never Was… The Best Musicians I Have Performed With No. 4. The Incredible Barry Gibb, In Tribute to Sinatra

We had one rehearsal, and I went out for lunch with my string player friends before the concert. From their perspective, this was the most amazingly precise big band they had ever heard, much less performed alongside! They were quite amazed and rather impressed that we sounded like a seasoned road band after one rehearsal..

From the perspective of someone familiar with the Miami music scene, the Big Band roster read like an All-Star, Fantasy Line-up from across the many amazing decades of the University of Miami Concert Jazz Band-(The CJB)!

An American orchestra is a big band, often comprised of 3 to 5 each of trumpets, trombones and saxophones plus a rhythm section of piano, bass, drums and often guitar. In a Pops Orchestra, European strings such as Violins, Violas, ‘Celli and Basses are added to sweeten the sound, broaden the emotional palette and increase the potential listenership and sales. In a European-style orchestras, the strings often do the heavy-lifting and play most of the notes, in a Pops Orchestra it is the Big Band that drives the sound which is deepened and colored by the strings.

Barry Gibb is one of the greatest songwriters of all time. Implicit in his tribute to Sinatra was not only Sinatra’s great singing, but his great songs, great arrangements and great side musicians as well. Few other living musicians could pull off all four of these with confidence like Barry Gibb. Fewer singers still still could add to this the great sense of extended phrasing for which Frank Sinatra was so famous along with his uplifting swing and amazing rhythmic feel! At the passing of this most legendary Jazz Baritone of the 20th Century, Frank Sinatra, DOZENS of famous singers recognized their debt to him and sought to honor him in song. One after another, there seemed to be more failures than successes, underscoring the greatness of what Sinatra had spent a lifetime to achieve, perfect and popularize.

23 January 1999 at The Fontainebleu Hotel, Miami Beach, Florida

Barry Gibb Sings Sinatra, Part I

Barry Gibb produced this incredible, live, one-take concert and sought to sound like himself singing Sinatra songs, rather than to sound like Sinatra. A true original, Gibb incorporated great charts and sidemen, but seemed to perceive that the true essence of Sinatra was not only his voice, but what he did with it! By imitating the phrasing Sinatra derived from Tommy Dorsey as well as Sinatra’s unique rhythmic style, Barry Gibb made the most credible and original contemporaneous Sinatra tribute I have heard. And without previous forays into Jazz, despite his great crossover successes in Pop, Rock, Folk and Country Music.

Sinatra chose great songs and had the BEST arrangers. Barry Gibb’s tribute to him achieved nothing less! By starting out with masterpieces from the American Song Book and using superb arrangements and excellent treatments of them, the evening was a memorable delight! “Welcome to my dream come true”, commented Gibb, “I’ve wanted to do this my whole life!”

1) “I Get A Kick Out of You”, I-0:04 to 2:08

2)”Come fly With Me”, I-2:16 to 5:00

3) “Without A Song” I-6:05 to 8:14

4) “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” I-8:24 to 11:23

5) “It Was A Very Good Year” /”Young At Heart” I-11:53 to 18:42

1:226) “I’ve Got You Under My Skin” I-19:00 to 21:22

7) “Nancy With the Laughing Face” I-23:04 to 25:26

8) “That’s Life” I-25:32 to 28:40

9) “Don’t You Worry About Me” I-30:26 to 32:27

10) “That’s Why the Lady Is A Tramp” I- 32:32 to END, PARTIAL

Barry Gibb Sings Sinatra, Part II

11) “Witchcraft”. II-0:00 to 2:22

12) “I Did It My Way”. II-2:32 to 7:20

My Way, Playoff 7:24 to 8:44

13) “New York, New York!” II-8:59 to 12:10

NY NY, Playoff 12:13 to 12:56

14) “Mack The Knife”. II-14:07 to 18:32

Mack, Playoff 18:34 to END 19:26

One can feel the importance of family and friendship in the rich tapestry of Gibb’s life which is evident for this fundraiser performance for the Kidney Foundation. Countless acts of kindness and generosity throughout South Florida and beyond are hallmarks of these adopted Miamians. Humbly presented with true love and appreciation, this concert seems to genuinely reflect Barry Gibb’s life-long love for Francis Albert Sinatra and his music.

Personnel, best available estimations-SUBJECT TO CHANGE! In Progress…

Trumpets: 1st (Jeff Kievit); 2nd Chris LaBarbera; 3rd (Billy Spencer) 4th (Steve Smith).

Trombones: 1st-Dana Teboe; 2nd-Dante Luciani; 3rd (Tom Norwood); Bass-David Brubeck

Saxophones/Woodwinds 1st Alto/Oboe (Neal Bonsanti); 2nd Alto/Clarinet Gary Lindsay; 1st Tenor Eddie Calle; 2nd Tenor-(Gary Keller) ; Bari-Mike Brignola

Rhythm Section: Piano-Ben Sillvers ; Bass-Matt Bonelli; Drums-Steve Rucker; Guitar-Alan Kendall


Violas Dana Patterson, Debbie Spring, Larisse Buckton

‘Celli: Cornelia Bode,



c. 2024 David William Brubeck All Rights reserved

I wonder if AI could go in and grab each missing part from this video recording, they could be enhanced, and this album could finally live. If anyone can get it done, it is Mr. Gibb. I’d purchase one!




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Did We Miss Something? No. 3. Renaissance Duets THESE REWRITE EARLY BRASS DUO HISTORY

Imagine being handed a folder with more than 20 pages of duo music for trumpet and trombone; like an incomplete map to a treasure! The only date? 1595. The only instrumentation? Trumpet in treble clef ‘C’ and trombone in bass clef.

The probable location is Venice, and possibly St. Mark’s, but truly yet to be fully determined.

What could have been the purpose of this music? Were they training duets to prepare the players for the more typical quartets of the Gabrielis and Schutz? Could St. Mark’s, or another Basilica possibly have used just two brass to accompany religious services? This seems likely in the Orthodox Christian Basilica of St. Mark’s in Venice, but less likely in the rest of Italy which was dominated by Rome instead of Venice’s patron-Constantinople.

The keys seem to focus around ‘C’ Major or ‘F’ Major, but the presence of accidentals and available notes in the upper part would certainly seem to indicate the use of cornetto-more typical for St. Mark’s and Venice.

The presence of rests throughout at first seemed to suggest a missing part. Could it have been a vocal part or perhaps organ? One can almost hear the missing parts reverberate n the typical Venetian-Brass style.

The range of the trombone would certainly have to be restricted, due to elemental technique and trombone workmanship, at least one would think. No jumping around like, well, the arrangements by Brubeck-Neal or Stereograms. Right?

Recording 270, “Charlie’s Venetian Duets”

With a bit of an air of the musical equivalent of an expedition by Howard Carter or at least Indiana Jones, we set out to sight-read and record (in one or two takes each), these magnificent duos! Duo Brass, featuring Morgen Low and David Brubeck, met for a two-hour stint. Recordings were made direct to iPhone. (Recommended listening on over-the ear headphones!)

We probably made it through about 85% of the impressive stack of mixed brass duo music from the Renaissance. One composition was complicated, another missing a page, yet another a bit unwieldy with multiple pages-an entire MASS for brass duo for goodness sake!

This would be possible at St. Mark’s, where Catholic Monteverdi and Protestant Heinrich Schutz served side-by-side as Co-Music Directors for a time. Although the Catholic Church had a seat placed right in front of the pulpit, this Basilica was traditionally led by someone from the founding 80 families of Venice-Orthodox Christians. (At least until Napoleon, when it became Catholic at his demand in 1807-1809.)

St Mark’s itself, is clearly in the Constantinople (also called Eastern Roman Empire, New Roman or Byzantine), style replete with architectural layout and mosaics. The Basilica San Marco is mentioned as a construction specifically of the Orthodox Christian Church in 1025 AD.

While a Catholic Antonio Vivaldi got his start at St. Mark’s alongside his father-a violinist, other accounts of the time note a Jesuit priest was thrown out of the church for advocating more control from Rome during his guest sermon! (Venice may have the distinction of being the only city to have been excommunicated three times!)

This places the ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN Basilica at the CENTER of instrumental ensemble music history.

The accomplishments were numerous:

The first notated use of specified dynamics

The first notated use of specific instrumentation or orchestration-THIS ARGUES THAT THE ORCHESTRA WAS INVENTED AT St. Mark’s Basilica-certainly the symphony orchestra. (The orchestra has been called by some the greatest invention of mankind.)

The first recorded use of “Surround-Sound” or Antiphony.

Among the first recorded use of homophonic and homo-rhythmic elements.

Among the first regular use of mixed meters and their mastery.


Monteverdi, Albinoni, Marcello… Many of the most notable opera composers were trained in or came from Venice, not Florence. The original treatise “Opera” was published in Venice.

Venice was the home of Catholic priest Antonio Vivaldi for all of his life except the final year spent in Vienna. He composed more than 400 concertos, was a violin virtuoso and a champion for the orchestra-training generations of girls and young women to play professionally through the very important orphanage system of Venice. Not to mention Dragonetti!

Recording 265 Charlie’s Venetian Duets

At first, our tempos might have been a bit slow. We determined that the pieces were clearly for performance and not study. One could easily imagine these for a shorter service in a city like Venice- especially in a Basilica like St. Marks’s constantly beset by tourists attracted to Venice for its unique beauty, the incredible music and the nearly constant carnivals.

Basilica San Marco

There were accents and slurs present in the duos, and they included a wide variety of interesting rhythms and irregular shaped phrases that seemed to meander from time to time. The use of mixed meters was not uncommon, and the prevalent use of syncopation was noted.

Upon performance, the rests were a welcome relief and seemed quite musical! Nothing was deemed missing. Finally, the range of the trombone part reflected that both the Renaissance technique of the players as well as the craftsmanship of the slide must have been superior.

Recording 255, “Charlie’s Venetian Duets”

With the recent advent of mixed brass duo books by Alessi/Sachs and Brubeck/Neal, the mixed brass duo has seen a resurgence, but historically seemed to have been of scant significance and without any significant literature. NOT ANYMORE!

Please let us know if you think we are wrong….

Otherwise, every indication points to the conclusion that this collection, of which these are but a few, will rewrite the history of the brass duo, and provide a solid historic basis for the derivation of literature.

Thank you, Dr. Campbell, for this valuable treasure, and thank you, Morgen Low, for your superb sight-reading, “chops-of-steel” and delightful attitude. One could not hope for a better colleague!

FUN FACT! The Pipe organ WITH AIR was from ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN Constantinople, NOT ROME-Roman organs used water. The pipe organ was introduced to the rest of Europe around 750 AD!

Constantinople also invented the fork, the flame-thrower, the steam engine, and so much more. It was a 1,100 year Orthodox Christian Empire from 330 AD until 1453 AD.

c. 2024 David William Brubeck All Rights Reserved.




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Brass Duos: Trumpet and Bass Trombone

ONE “Air on a ‘G’ String”, Excerpt, performed and arranged by the Brubeck-Neal Duo

TWO “Two Part Invention No. 4” by J. S. Bach

THREE “Goldberg Variations” by J. S. Bach arranged by Brubeck-Neal Duo

TWO: “Goldberg Variations”, Marc Reese and David Brubeck-Audio file Only:

      1. bach-goldberg-with-marc-reesenew

FOUR “Lucy” by John Lennon & Paul McCartney. performed by the Brubeck-Neal Duo, arranged by Brubeck

FIVE “Flow My Tears” by John Dowland performed by the Shefcik-Brubeck Duo, and arranged by Brubeck-Neal.

SIX “Fur Elise” by Ludvig von Beethoven, performed by Shefcik-Brubeck and arranged by Brubeck-Neal

SEVEN “Sea Journey” by Chick Core, performed by the Brubeck-Neal Duo, arranged by Brubeck


EIGHT “Air on a ‘G’ String” Complete, J. S. Bach, arranged and performed by the Brubeck-Neal Duo

NINE: “Two Part Invention No. 4” Faster Tempo, by J. S. Bach

At first, it seemed to be brass quartets, from Speer and later Venice. Then valves and Ewald and quintets. But what about a duo? Yes, just TWO brass! This is what I would have been looking to listen to when I was a boy…Album II Brass Duos!


Check out Legendary Jazz Group, Miami’s Own Duo Brubeck:

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Featuring Lindsay Blair In Miami’s Own-DUO BRUBECK

Featuring Lindsay Blair in Miami’s Own, DUO BRUBECK

Miami’s Own, Duo Brubeck, began in about 1991, with Tom Lippincott on guitar and David Brubeck on bass trombone. As the group became more successful, Tom was not always available, and a second set of repertoire and line up of Duo Brubeck emerged with Mitch Farber on guitar and David Brubeck on Bass Trombone.

A breakthrough came when a concert was scheduled downtown Miami, alternating both versions of the duo was scheduled. By listening to each other play the complicated arrangements without having to focus on playing them, both guitarists were able to more fully grasp the concept of the group beyond the virtuosity of the parts.

The success of the group reached an important crest when Duo Brubeck was invited to perform at the 2017 International Trombone Festival near Los Angeles, California. One catch; both Tom and Mitch were busy the week of the festival.

There were doubts that any guitarist could reach the level of Lippincott or Farber in an idiom that they helped to create-jazz guitar and bass trombone duos! Even another guitarist they could, the time frame was impossible! The jazz duo had grown and accumulated techniques and literature for years if not decades: to plug someone in now for a feature length concert seemed unlikely if not impossible given such short notice.

Except for Lindsey Blair.

Lindsay accpeted the challenge, and was even willing and available to fly out to Los Angeles. Some arrangements needed to be written down for the first time and new pieces were adapted. In record time, DUO BRUBECK 3.0, featuring Lindsay Blair, became a thing of beauty and originality on its own.

“Strawberry Fields, Forever”

“Old Devil Moon”

“Use Me Up”

“Yes, jesus Loves Me”

“Go Tell Aunt Rhody”

“Blue Bossa”


“Strawberry Fields”

c. 2024 David William Brubeck. All Rights Reserved.

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Brass Chamber Music: Brass Quartet & Brass Octet (with Percussion Makes 9!). ALBUM IV

Dear Friends, I have been creating Ad hoc “albums” of collected videos and recordings in which my bass trombone and I have taken part. Jazz duos with Mitch, Jazz Duos with Lindsey, Brass Duos, Concertos, a Christmas Trombone Sextet Album with Dr. Campbell’s Trombones, a Ray Charles DVD, and now this-Brass for four and eight! As a young bass trombonists, this is the type of music I would have been searching for…

Brass Miami Live in Concert (“La Rejouissance” from Music for the Royal Fireworks, by George Frederic Handel.

GRATITUDES! As a freshman at Illinois State University I was blessed to have Rick Lehman as my brass quintet coach and to be allowed to play in the brass quintet where other members were graduate students or seniors! (He even let me play my bass trombone!). Rick was one of the best friends I ever had, and when one of the trumpet graduate students graduated-he joined the group even though he was a faculty member!

“Adagio” by Benedetto Marcello, Brass Miami Octet Live! (Also recorded in rehearsal with Gittelson/Brubeck and trOmBOnE tm Duo Winds)

I was fortunate indeed to know ISU Trombone Professor John Rehm and Charlie Stokes, who formed a student/faculty trombone quartet. Fellow trombone student Bill Aurand and I were blessed to play alongside them and share in their incredible musical knowledge and musicianship. The provided an intimate education in the music of Heinrich Schutz and other Renaissance and period brass music in particular. My favorite recollection was a performance they scheduled for us at the church in Springfield, Illinois where Abraham Lincoln had attended.

“La Morisque” from Five Renaissance Dances by Tylman Susato, Brass Miami Octet-Live

In the summer, I was privileged to play in a brass quintet, bass trombone on tuba part, at Birch Creek Academy. Our coaches were the incredible Chicago Chamber Brass with Steve Gamble on trombone. I have yet to hear a better brass quintet live and am so grateful that my high school trombone teacher and mentor, Dr. Thomas Streeter provided this to me. I have so many blessings to be thankful for!.

It was at Birch Creek that I decided chamber music was my favorite medium of expression for classical music (Duo Brubeck later made it my favorite for jazz). At Northwestern….sadly, no chamber music! Except possibly for the orchestral excerpt class- to which Frank Crisafulli from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, made the most profoundly musical and humorous contributions. (We were all in shock and awe! (TRULY Unexpectedly HILARIOUS and PROFOUND!). Rex Martin, Vincent Chicowicz, and others were unbelievable.

“Dance” from Three Dansyere by Tylman Susato, Brass Miami Octet-Live

“Hornpipe” from Water Music by George Frederic Handel, Brass Miami Octet-Live!

At UM, I remember starting the UM Trombone Choir with my students and Dr. Campbell coming in and making it official by adding his. Apart from a great brass choir with trumpet master Gil Johnson, and a the wonderful UM Tuba Ensemble, where I played euphonium, WE MADE OUR OWN chamber music! I could not have been more fortunate to have attended at the same time as two other fine trombonists and we played trombone trios for about two hours literally every day, M-F, for two years (!): Domingo Pagliuca, Steve Saunders..

The climax of my college chamber music experience had to be playing the world premieres of two pieces written for me by Dr. Campbell, one solo with String Quartet and another within the context of a trombone quartet-but that sounds like another album! It is still an incredible honor when a composer dedicates a piece to me, and none mores than those by my teacher, Dr. Campbell, and friend and colleague, Thom Sleeper.

As a professional I have been most blessed by performing brass at Coral Ridge, and with the brass quartet/octet of John Georgini, The Coronation Brass in addition to my collaborations with Brian Neal and my own groups.

Fun fact-I was THIS stupid: Rolf Smedvig called and asked me to play a concert with the Empire Brass in Naples as a jazz soloist and I said no…… (WHAT was I thinking??)

“Pavane: La Bataille” by Tylman Susato, Brass Miami Octet-Live

Quartet Selections:

“Roman Carnival Quartet”, by Hector Berlioz, arranger unknown, Brass Miami Quartet

La chio panga quartet. in progress…….coming soon

“I. Alegro” from Quartet for Brass No. 5 by Wilhelm Ramsoe, Brass Miami Quartet

Thanks for listening! AND helping me to COUNT MY BLESSINGS!

c. 2024 David William Brubeck. All Rights Reserved.

Album IV Brass Quartets and Octets for brass.

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Concertos for Bass Trombone and Orchestra or Wind Ensemble! Sleeper, Sleeper, Raum & de Meij

As a classical chamber musician, I was largely unprepared to enter the world of concertos-rare enough for a bass trombonists in the first place! I was blessed to have exceptionally sensitive conductors who were open to suggestions and communicated well with me. I was also blessed to perform with fellow musicians, many former or current students, who might accept a turn of phrase or concept from me.

Six Arias for Bass Trombone and Orchestra, by Thomas Sleeper, as performed by soloist David Brubeck and the FAUSO under the direction of Dr.Laura Joella. AUDIO:

I was the lucky one!

Others have reported experiences of just showing up and reading through the concerto in rehearsal with few opportunities for the types of interactions that chamber music often affords. With 50-100 people waiting, there is simply very little time to invite discussion on nuance or phrasing.

Bass Trombone Concerto No. 2, by Thomas Sleeper, world premiere by soloist David Brubeck and the FAUSO under the direction of Dr. Laura Joella. AUDIO:

My suggestion? Rehearse with a fine pianist and a piano reduction. Get all the exploration worked through on your own and later with the pianist, finding the give and take of phrases, crests of dynamics, welling of emotions and strata of musical importance. Then pray for a sensitive conductor!

Bass Trombone Concerto, by Elizabeth Raum, as performed by soloist David Brubeck and the Miami Symphonic Band under the direction of Robert Longfield. USA premiere & world premiere of concerto with wind ensemble accompaniment. AUDIO:

As you can hear, my prayers were answered. WHAT A TREMENDOUS privilege to be the soloist to whom a concerto was dedicated by my beautiful friend and long time colleague, Tom Sleeper, alongside the FAUSO and conductor Dr. Laura Joella. We love you, Thomas, and think of you often. Thanks for all of your beautiful humanity-and some of it was audible!

“Canticles” by Johann de Meij for Bass Trombone and wind Ensemble as performed by soloist David Brubeck with the MDC Wind Ensemble under the direction of Brian Neal. VIDEO:

Bass voices are fragile, and problematic for the concerto, but skilled composers allow the mellow sounds to soar and find niches of resonance for the bass voice to inhabit with alacrities both great and small.

Soloist plus orchestra! The concerto was the FIRST significant form of ensemble instrumental concert music, and strikes a perfect blend between recognizing of the outstanding contributions of the individual AND the society.

It is still somewhat difficult to find bass trombone concertos, especially live! This is what I would have been looking to listen to when I was a boy…Album III Concertos!


Ipuwer Papyrus (IP), LEIDEN 344. Was the writer Ipuwer an Egyptian, circa 1440 BC, who described the plagues of Exodus and their aftermath from the Ancient Egyptian Perspective?


  1. Ipuwer Papyrus , IP-“There is blood everywhere…Lo the river is blood.”/mirrored in Exodus 7:20-21
  2. IP-“One thirsts for water.”/also recorded in Exodus 7:24
  3. IP-“Lo, trees are felled, branches stripped.”/reflects Exodus 9:24
  4. IP-“Lo, grain is lacking on all sides.”/ like Exodus 9:31
  5. IP-“Birds find neither fruits nor herbs.”/similar to Exodus 10:15
  6. IP-“Groaning is throughout the land, mingled with laments.”/ sounds like Exodus 12:30
  7. IP-“Lo, many dead are buried in the river, the stream is the grave, the tomb became a stream, and he who puts his brother in the ground is everywhere.”/ is reflected in Numbers 33:4
  8. IP-“All is ruin!”/ seems related to Exodus 10:7
  9. IP-“The land is without light.”/ Could this be Exodus 10:22-23.
  10. IP-“Gold and Lapis lazuli, silver and malachite, carnelian and bronze…are fastened on the neck of female slaves.”/seem to correlate with Exodus 12:35-36
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Excuse me? Nanobots? Permanently Altered DNA?

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Was The Highwire Right Because They Were Guessing, Bill? Or Was It SCIENCE? (The Old-Fashioned Kind…)

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