By now, you’ve heard enough of my music to know that I’m fascinated by the integration of nature and music. Yes, nature is music and music is nature, but one of my musical passions is juxtaposing less obvious relationships between them.

This piece also gave me the chance to try a new compositional technique I’ve learned from, believe it or not, an Electronic Dance Music star called Deadmau5 (“Deadmouse”).

Without considering notes or sitting at the piano where muscle memory can easily guide hands into familiar territory, I’ve crafted some of this exclusively using the “piano roll” editor on my DAW. It brought about surprisingly fresh results that took me to some unexpected places. Composing without notes.

It also gave me the opportunity to play and record my beloved Steinway grand which is a force of nature!

Most of the trombone playing on this piece was improvised, and it gave me the opportunity to focus in a purely melodic fashion away from licks and cliches. As I continue to develop my trombone skills and write books on my experiences and observations, I realize more each day how important it is for players to be present in their playing so that making melody is the driving focus of their improvisation. A force of nature.


Preview / Buy Book

“Michael Lake’s Trombone Improvisation Savvy is as comprehensive as it is insightful and practical. I can’t wait to delve into it further and look forward to sharing it with my students. I highly recommend this book for all levels of trombonists and improvisers alike.”

Steve Davis, Trombonist/Composer/Educator

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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