Posted by Christopher on September 01, 1999 at 15:26:56:
In Reply to: Survey for 6/4 CC players posted by anon on September 01, 1999 at 14:03:51:
OK, OK, I'm not actually a player of the 6/4 tuba, but this is a nice question, and I have some (rambling and largely incoherent) thoughts on it.
When I was at Oberlin in the early 90's, I played the schools big 4/4 Alexander in every large ensemble. Beautiful sound. Then I kind of dropped out of the scene when this whole 6/4 trend really caught on. I recently had the chance to play a couple 6/4 horns (the Neptune at the NYC Brasswind, and a huge Holton at Dillon), and was mightily impressed, especially with the Neptune, which had the closest sound to that old Alex that I had yet heard, but with better response and intonation.
But I would never own one, especially as my only horn (being a humble 9-to-5er, I can only afford one). Those horns are spectacular for orchestras, when you are going mostly for long, loud, room-filling notes. Since I freelance and play mostly jazz, I need a versatile horn with a good response and a fabulous sound. So I stick to my wonderful Rudolf Meinl 43.
By all means, if you have access to a great big tuba with a nice sound, use it whenever it is appropriate. But $9000 is an awful lot to spend on a specialty horn, unless you are already in a big orchestra.