Being a trombone player was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. The trombone is the only instrument in a typical orchestra that can be exactly on every note throughout the scale; however, it is also the most difficult to get in tune as it uses a slide instead of keys. This makes the trombone very versatile. It is a popular instrument from orchestras to jazz bands. It has the greatest sound effect options of any classical instrument as it slides its notes creating falling, rising, and comical sounds that make an audience laugh when combined with great imagery.
I started my love affair with the trombone back in fifth grade. My brother and uncle both were trombone players, and I had access to the hand-me-down instruments. They were warn and dented, but they served me very nicely. The first time I tried to play the instrument, I could barely make a note. The mouthpiece has a strange need to be familiarized to the player’s mouth. It takes a lot of practice to even get a low tone from a trombone, but after your first note, you usually are able to pick up the rest rather quickly.
Another nice quality I found about trombones is they are very tough. This means they last a very long time. Used trombones can be as little as twenty five dollars which is normally less then the cost of renting an instrument for a year.
I remember the time I was invited to play in a jazz band for the first time. I was not very good, but I was able to swing through the notes and make it sound sweet to the ear. The trombone has a swinging sound that even guitar players respect. And in my opinion guitar players are very hard to impress.
The problem with the trombone however is the exact thing that makes it special, the lack of keys. The slide makes things difficult as your ear must always be searching for the exact tune of every note, since a human’s arm is not as accurate as a machine. Some people are not even able to play them do to this, But others have to learn where to stick their slide for each position.
The trombone is a great choice to learn on. While it is difficult to master, it is good to pick up, as its low tones do not annoy as much as higher pitched instruments.