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MusicWagon last won the day on November 15 2019

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  1. MusicWagon

    Blue Juice?

    It is always a good idea to clean valves and casings before switching to ANY oil. Blue Juice is NOT synthetic, by the way, but does have a kerosene content that helps flush and keep valves cleaner. The Al Cass formula remained unchanged since its debut. The reason why it is getting harder to find is that Al Cass' widow and son had another blow-out of sorts, and the company closed permanently in 2018. The only Al Cass oil available now is that which is in reserve stock. In the fall of 2018, SuperSlick announced its new "Fast Oil" with packaging nearly identical to the Al Cass Fast Oil. It is believed that SuperSlick purchased the rights to the formula, and is now making the oil under their own label. Blue Juice is an excellent oil if it jives with your horn. Today's newer horns have tighter tolerance between piston and chamber, so one need be more judicious in oil choice, such as lighter viscosity. There is also the consideration of metal types: nickel-silver, stainless steel, Monel, newer alloys. Older horns tend to do well with traditional oil brands like Al Cass. With continued changes in the environment, evaporation rates have increased rapidly, so it is important to keep your valves oiled at all times unless the horn has been prepared for longterm storage.
  2. XO Brass has grown to now be separate a separate band from Jupiter, but still under the umbrella of the KHS family of instrument brands. XO was actually founded by a renowned Japanese instrument maker, and XOs continue to be made in TAIWAN, not China. Newer XO instruments are no longer stamped with the Jupiter name because they have indeed advanced. One of the reasons is that KHS is extremely receptive and welcoming of artist contributions in the overall design. Check the XO site, and you will notice that the U.S. roster of artists alone has grown immensely. In fact, American artists and employees (KHS America, Mt. Juliet, TN) are greatly valued. As for Jupiter, the quality of student and intermediate instruments had gone from mediocre (pre-1990s) to exceptional today. From price point and reliability, they are a staple among band instrument rentals and band room inventory. The XO professional trumpets come with an amazing array of options, and are worth trying. The professional piccolo trumpet is a standout, and a serious competitor against traditional brands.
  3. Established in 1906, E.K. Blessing began as a family business and quickly recognized what was essential to the music community: a sense of support, security, and shared values. The E.K. Blessing Company honored relationships by listening to their customers and adjusted to the changing times of the 20th century. Blessing believed that a musical experience could change a life and a musical education could bring purpose to a life. This belief was demonstrated by providing quality musical instruments that were affordable and accessible. As a family business, Blessing helped create products that offered people a connection to others and the feeling that they belonged to something unique and special. Today, St Louis Music owns and operates E.K. Blessing Brass & Woodwinds. The core principles of the E.K. Blessing family business are still at work 112 years later. Blessing is a trusted and reliable brand name that offers a solid foundation for growth. Why Blessing? Blessing has the generational experience to understand the transformative change music can make in a person. We are here to encourage and guide that journey.
  4. The Origins of XO The XO brand began with the vision of Koichi Haido, Chief Instrument Technician at the Global Corporation in Japan. After many experiments and countless prototypes, the first XO trumpet was introduced to the market in 1995. With vast experience in instrument making and prowess as a trumpet player, Haido continues to explore innovative approaches to meet perfection. He pushes the limits to reach the goal of providing a comfortable and enjoyable playing experience for every performer. Koichi hopes XO can empower musicians to deliver excellence in tone and performance for diverse musical genres, allowing players to easily achieve their own personal sound. Building upon the success and popularity of the original offering, XO works to continually expand its lineup with the development of exquisite and innovative instruments to support the artistic expression of every musician. Along for Your Musical Journey… Every musician’s journey is their own, and unique to them. However, they all have one objective in common: to share the wonders of music with audiences through a perfect performance. Combining contemporary precision with traditional craftsmanship results in ideal instruments for professional players. Through close consultation with both musicians and technicians, we work towards building a more intimate connection between artist and instrument. The unrivalled playability of every XO instrument ensures delivery of precise intonation and sumptuous sonority: the perfect conduit for the master performer's musical and artistic voice. A Lifelong Companion While good craftsmanship depends on the use of the right tool, we understand that the relationship between the musician and their instrument is far more personal. The instrument becomes an extension of ones musical voice and must both empower and complement the skills of the player. The RIGHT instrument becomes a valued companion throughout a lifetime of practice and performance: a conduit for artistic vision.
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