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Band Parent Info

Are you a new Band Parent? We’re here to help!

So your child comes home from school and says “Mom, Dad, guess what? I’m going to be in the band!” This may be the start of a lifelong journey and love of music for your child, but right now you’re probably thinking “Oh no, what are we getting ourselves into…”

It’s OK – because here at Hallman’s Music, we completely understand what you’re going through. We work closely with many of the band programs in the Huntsville area, and understand what they expect and how school music programs work. Hopefully, our decades of experience assisting students and families just like yours will make your first steps into the world of school music just a bit easier.

First Step – Choosing an Instrument

First things first – your child needs to decide what instrument he or she is going to play. Sometimes this is very easy, as the student may have already chosen at school and committed to a specific instrument. However, if you haven’t yet made a final decision about which instrument to play, here are some factors to consider:

  • Size of the instrument – smaller players may not be able to properly physically handle some larger instruments like saxophones or tubas, so a smaller instrument like a flute, clarinet, or trumpet may be a better place to start.
  • Cost – consider both the up-front cost to get started as well as the long-term expense of any supplies or accessories needed throughout the school year (like reeds for saxes and clarinets).
  • Sound – some students may be drawn to the bold, brassy sounds of a trumpet or trombone, while others may prefer the more melodious sounds of a flute or clarinet.
  • Needs of the Band – some schools or teachers may limit how many students can play a particular instrument. They do this to keep the entire ensemble balanced, since it doesn’t make sense for a group to have 30 saxophone players but only one trombone. If you can, have a conversation with the teacher to find out what instruments are needed, and which ones are overcrowded.
  • What friends are playing – for some students, this can override almost all other factors.

Remember, the most important thing is that your child ENJOY the instrument he or she chooses, so talk it over and try to come to a decision that everyone will be happy with for the rest of the school year.

Next Step – Getting the Instrument

So you’ve discussed it as a family and decided what to play. Now it’s time to actually GET an instrument! Here are some of the ways you might make that happen, along with some pros and cons to consider:
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We obviously hope that you’ll consider acquiring your instrument from us here at Hallman’s Music. If you do purchase a used instrument elsewhere, or are able to borrow something from a friend or family member, please feel free to bring the instrument in to Hallman’s so that our repair department can evaluate it for you. Repair estimates are always free!

Future Steps – Private Lessons, Upgrading the Instrument, and Beyond

As your child progresses and begins to learn to play, you may want to consider private lessons. School band is a terrific way to get started, but with dozens of other students in the class chances are your own child won’t get much individual attention from the teacher. A private music teacher can focus on your child’s individual needs, reinforcing her strengths and correcting his weaknesses. Hallman’s Music has a great on-site lesson studio, with professional teachers that know how to help students excel!

A well-built student instrument that’s properly maintained will last for many, many years. However, starter instruments are somewhat like bicycles with training wheels – a great way to learn, but sooner or later a player may outgrow its capabilities and need a more advanced instrument. Here at Hallman’s Music, we offer a large selection of upgrade instruments and accessories, so when your child is no longer a beginner and is ready to move up, we are here to help you take the next step.

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