Blog Archives

Contrabassoon – “Solo Peg”

When I had my Mollenhauer contra, I made an elongated peg out of aluminum so I could play recitals and small ensembles standing up. For my new Fox 920 contra, I fabricated one out of wood which looks way nicer. The material is oak for extra strength, and the metal rod is stainless steel for […]

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Bassoon “Low A” Extension

The important thing about this extension is that it does not effect the intonation of your instrument. Using a cardboard or plastic tube to lengthen the bassoon is a nice and cheap way to do it, but other notes (surprisingly some of the ones in the staff) tend to go flat. This extension is not […]

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New Instrument in my Collection: a 110 year old Mandolin Zither

I have just finished restoring a “Mandolin Zither”! It dates from 1900 but despite its age and the interesting history behind the instrument, its not worth very much. Even so, the curious reader or woodworker might enjoy the story below: This type of instrument was actually invented by Friederich Menzenhauer a German who patented it […]

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The Google Bassoon Quartet!

One of the neat things about working in a big company is the varied interests you’ll find amongst the people who work there. But where else but at Google could I find not one, but THREE  excellent bassoon players? After discovering each other, we’ve been playing together and working up a repertoire. We’ve performed a […]

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NPR Cello Project

For more than 10 years, All Things Considered (ATC) used several recordings I produced as musical “bumpers” during the show. The short story is that Richard Aaron, then cello professor at the Cleveland Institute of Music found out that I worked at the local NPR station (WCPN). Richard came up to me one day and […]

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A glimpse at the workshop

The workshop (also sometimes referred to as the “man cave”) is where I do my electronics work. He’s a shot of the parts wall. You’ll see the bins which have all of the replacement parts and pieces sorted and ready to be put to use. Also above there are some of my measurement devices. You […]

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Passive Amplification System for Outdoor Performance Space

I recently had the opportunity to use my acoustical and musical knowledge to design an acoustical enhancement system into an outdoor stage area. Situation: Acoustic instruments weren’t enough to fill the outdoor space when an audience was present. A large “shell” behind the space is not possible due to local zoning and financial limitations. Also […]

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Me, quoted in Radio World

Rich Rarey from Radio World (ex NPR)  included some quotes from me in his recent Streaming Guide eBook. Thanks Rich! Here’s an excerpt: We asked SHOUTcast Director of Busisness Development Jonathan Westerling which services broadcast stations are asking for. Westerling said because SHOUTcast’s corporate family now includes the TargetSpot digital audio advertising network, monetization products […]

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What is a “snowshadow”

Traveling through Bryce Canyon National Park in December, we witnessed a neat combination of temperature, snow and sunshine. A brief snow shower coated the pavement, but since the air was so dry, any snow in the sun almost instantly evaporated. The result makes it look like it only snowed in the shadow of the car:

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Thinnest runway in america?

This is me lying across the runway at Ft. Bragg, California airport (82CL). Thankfully there’s plenty of grass on either side of this runway for the planes to land on, but the total width of the asphalt must be only about 12 feet wide! That would make it the thinnest runway in the US that […]

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