Transcriptions of Harold McNair Jazz Flute Solos

John Devitt wrote “Hello all, for those of you interested in studying jazz flute improvisation I’ve uploaded two MIDI files of transcribed solos of the late great jazz flautist Harold McNair to my website. If you don’t have a sequencer or notation program which can print out the solo part you can download the accompanying PDF files and print them out. The files are strictly for private study and may not be used for commercial purposes. On my homepage just scroll down to the MIDI files area. Hope you enjoy,and, of course, feedback is welcome.


John Devitt

Long Tone Exercises for Young Students . . .

harry63 writes “I teach flute lessons in my community and I am having the hardest time getting my younger students (grades 7-9) to practice their long tones. Their finger technique is excellent, but their tone leaves a lot to be desired. When I ask them I get the “but it’s so BORING” response. I have tried explaining the importance, but they don’t think it is necessary. Are there any suggestions on ways to implement long practicing without giving them boring exercises?”

Jazz Scales and Improv

Amber writes “I have ‘composed’ the jazz scales. My friend taught me the B flat jazz scale and I used the intervals of that scale to create the other 11. I am not sure how accurate they are and it would be wise to learn them correctly. What is the best book on jazz scales,3rds,arpeggios ect. as well as improv for flute? Thankyou! :)”

Haynes Company Press Release

Wow, I received this submission from the actual Haynes company.Alan Weiss, Director of Sales & Marketing, writes

“Dr. Gerardo Discepolo, President
Di Zhao, Director of Manufacturing
Alan Weiss, Director of Sales & Marketing
February 25, 2004

Representatives of the William S. Haynes Company of Boston, Massachusetts officially announce the sale of the world’s oldest manufacturer of artist quality handmade flutes. Haynes, established in 1888, is now a subsidiary of Eastman Strings, Inc. based in Clarksburg, Maryland. Founder and owner of Eastman Strings, Qian Ni, brings to Haynes many years of experience as a concert flutist, business owner, and musical instrument innovator. Mr. Ni is committed to keeping the friendly family atmosphere which Haynes has nurtured for the past century. Haynes remains the only major flute manufacturer still making flutes in the city boundaries of Boston, and will proudly maintain its historic downtown Boston location.”

“Heading the new management team as President is Dr. Gerardo Discepolo. He is a renowned flutist and businessman, and comes to Boston from the Conn-Selmer Division of Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc., where he was the Manager of the Flute Division. Dr. Discepolo says, “The William S. Haynes Company makes extremely fine artist instruments which have been known for generations for their beauty of tone. I look forward to developing our contemporary flutes steeped in the rich Haynes tradition.”Director of Manufacturing is Di Zhao. Mr. Zhao is a flutist and craftsman with much experience and vision in making and designing fine quality flutes, most recently with Verne Q. Powell Flutes.

Rounding out the new management team as Director of Sales & Marketing is acclaimed flutist Alan Weiss. An experienced performer and former administrator and professor of flute at Boston University, Mr. Weiss will be readily available to assist flutists and dealers. According to Mr. Weiss, “It is a wonderful privilege to represent the finest flute company in existence. I have been a Haynes artist for many years and have always admired their creations.”The William S. Haynes Company is also pleased to announce the initiation of an annual flute competition open to all flutists age 30 and younger. The John C. Fuggetta Scholarship competition was founded in memory of the flute maker and former owner of Haynes. Three winners will be selected each year by a prestigious panel of adjudicators. First prize will be a gold flute, and second and third prizes will be silver flutes, all to be awarded at a ceremony in Boston.

The William S. Haynes Company is centrally located in the heart of downtown Boston in the Bay Village district. For more information regarding Haynes products, the John C. Fuggetta Scholarship, or a complimentary factory tour, please contact Alan Weiss at (617) 482-7456.”

125 Easy Classical Studies for Flute in BinaB format

Ian Ross Drummond writes “The following files may be found at the BIABFSG site in the files section.

125 Easy Classical Studies for Flute (Part 1 & 2)

The files within this Zip are a collection of Band in a Box files worked from a study book in my possession called “125 Easy classical studies for Flute”.(Universal Edition UE 16042) The files are worked around classical flute studies by:-

  • Francois Devienne
  • Louis Drouet
  • Anton Bernard Furstenau
  • Giuseppe Gariboldi
  • Antoine Hugot
  • Johann George Wunderlich
  • Ernesto Kohler
  • Charles Nicholson
  • Wilhelm Popp
  • Heinrich Soussmann
  • Johann George Tromlitz

These are a fine collection of studies for the beginner flautist, written by master flautists. They are short and melodic and will hopefully prove to be fun to play along with. I have made no attempt to render these files in a “classical” style since the purpose is to provide a purely enjoyable way for young players to work through the text. If young players work through these files with their own computers,or in a group teaching/learning situation,then I will be well satisfied. As is usual with my files I want to make the point that the original text should be bought!! BB will not notate the melody correctly but should sound reasonably correct (trills are problematic) and I have made no attempt to correct the actual notation. (The music will go out of print if nobody buys it so BUY THE STUDY BOOK!) I can make no claim to harmonic mastery but I hope that these “work-horse” arrangements will render practice more enjoyable for our younger flautists. (The melody is only stated once with all the files and then continues with accompaniment alone)

Ian Ross Drummond (”

Any recommendations for Jazz Flute CD’s?

Kanga asked “I recently picked up my flute again after many years to introduce my kids to music theory. I have in the past only played classical pieces and was interested in Jazz. Thank you for such a great site! I have been getting my lips and fingers working together again with your exercises and patterns. Do you have any recommendations for a few good Jazz Flute CD’s that I can listen to?”

Yeah, there are a lot. I’d start with finding stuff from Jim Walker and Freeflight. Then, you could look into Nestor Torres, Robert Dick, Hubert Laws and others.

History Of Pitch On Flute

While surfing tonight, I came across this site which has some very interesting information about how pitch centers have changed throughout the years. I notice now that most flutes are A=442, and I just bought an old Haynes that is most likely A=440. I think my Yamaha flute is A=442.It’s an interesting website, and perhaps someone knows some other good ones.

Using a Different Headjoint

I’ve noticed that a lot of guys who are not “flutists”, ie: they play flute but it’s not their main instrument, use different headjoints to get better sounds. For example, I believe both Guido Fazio and Larry DeLaCruz are using Yamaha student model flutes (plated body, closed hole) with Sankyo headjoints. I haven’t ventured into this area yet, as I’m still using my Yamaha 581 with the CY (I think) headjoint. Though, anyone have any opinions on different headjoints?, all things jazz and flute!