Concluding for now the summer series of video podcasts are the topics of testing horns and mouthpieces and developing a new line of mouthpieces with guest Derek Wright.
One thing many horn players are looking for and genuinely need is a better mouthpiece. Derek received his DMA as my student at Arizona State, but has been working these past few years for Houghton horns. One thing he had the opportunity to do at Houghton Horns is be instrumental in the development of their new line of mouthpieces, which personally I feel are a great product. In particular the one piece stainless steel models are revolutionary at the price point. As described in their website,
The entire line was designed by Mark Houghton and Derek Wright, and manufactured by Dave Houser. All are made of surgical-grade stainless steel, and come in 3 different models which are available in a variety of configurations. The intent was to create a line of mouthpieces that addressed the needs of real-world players by combining proven design concepts with the latest in technology and materials. Ultimately, the emphasis was on balance, focusing on the versatility and functionality that most modern players require. Between the three models, any horn player–high or low, orchestral or commercial, solo or section–should be capable of finding a Houghton mouthpiece that provides a sense of comfort and identity.
In the first video we also speak about mouthpieces generally, in particular getting to the topics of different inner diameters and stainless steel. The second video is on a closely related topic, that of trying mouthpieces and horns. The conversation includes a number of insights on mistakes people often make when upgrading or looking to upgrade their equipment, valuable tips for horn players of all levels!
And I should mention that for the Houghton H3 mouthpiece I was instrumental in encouraging the design, as explained in this article. Thanks again to Derek Wright for joining us and sharing his perspectives on these two important topics, and for even more video podcasts check here on YouTube.