Castle March


I was asked to write in a style called Orchestral Hip-Hop. It’s a somewhat well-known musical style yet a bit of a misnomer.

Hip Hop these days is a very eclectic style that isn’t limited to rapping, vinyl scratching, and odd beats from non-traditional materials. Beyond the roots of original Hip-Hop artists like Jazzy Jay and Grand Wizzard Theodore, Hip-Hop in the context of this piece is pretty much anything with a strong groove. Orchestral instruments such as strings, brass and choir provide a dramatic flavor that has made it popular for film and TV backdrops.

A backdrop is exactly what this is. Music like this lies under the action and dialog in order to provide the emotional context to the action. And every once in a while, I can sneak in some alto trombone. (Don’t tell anyone.)


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Being familiar with the great alto trombone playing of Michael Lake, I can attest that his words of wisdom don’t come from a theoretician, but from a remarkably  accomplished artist. I highly recommend this great book!!”

– Cristian Ganicenco, Principal Trombone, Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra

I really like this interesting and well-disposed book. So many good thoughts, facts and tips on alto trombone. Good guidance for the searching alto souls out there. A must-have for the shelves.

– Håkan Björkman, Principal Trombone at Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra

I highly recommend Alto Trombone Savvy for players around the world wanting advice on handling the alto trombone at the highest level. Classical and jazz players both share the same challenges, and it’s great to have this book in either bass or alto clef to help answer some of those challenges.

– Carsten Svanberg, International Trombone Soloist and Professor of Trombone at the University of Music and Arts Graz

For anyone interested in learning to play the alto trombone, whether for classical or jazz, this book is a must. Clearly written, with excellent exercises and links to audio examples, Michael Lake has provided the trombone world with a wonderful new resource.

– Ralph Sauer, Former Principal Trombone, Los Angeles Philharmonic

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