News & Views Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Category: Store News

Announcing SCHOOL CHORAL WEEK 2016! 09 February, 2016

Featuring talented clinicians from major publishers, Stanton’s summer choral clinics are a fantastic way to jump-start your school year! We always look forward to visiting with our regular customers, matching up faces with names of new attendees, and meeting teachers new to Stanton’s from across the country.

Mark your calendar for these dates:

Elementary General Music Clinic
Wednesday August 3, 2016
Clinician: Cristi Cary Miller
JoyOfSinging_30th_TINY THE JOY OF SINGING – 30th Anniversary Celebration!

for Young & Developing Choir
Thursday August 4, 2016
Clinicians: John Jacobson, Mac Huff, Cristi Cary Miller & Roger Emerson

for Middle & High School Choir
Friday August 5, 2016
Clinicians: John Jacobson, Mac Huff, Cristi Cary Miller & Roger Emerson

Stanton’s Super Session
Saturday August 6, 2016
Clinicians: Andy Beck, Greg Gilpin & Jen Sper

Not sure which session is best for you? Here are some helpful recommendations:

I teach elementary classroom music! (any grades K-6)
Stanton’s Elementary General Music Clinic is perfect for you! We’ll feature new resources, song collections, activities, and musicals especially designed and selected for classroom music teachers.

I teach elementary school choir! (grades 3-5)
You’ll find great options at both the Elementary General Music Clinic AND the Joy of Singing – Young & Developing Choir sessions (see above and below for more details).

I teach middle school choir! (any grades 5-8)
The Joy of Singing – Young & Developing Choir is a great option. This day will feature new music for the beginning choral singing level (unison or 2-part treble voices), in both octavos and song collections. You’ll also get movement ideas (including videos and choreography notes from John Jacobson), and three spotlight sessions on specific areas. We’ll even look at some musicals too!

If your middle school choir uses 3-part mixed/SAB or developing SATB literature, you may also want to consider the Joy of Singing – Middle & High School Choir and the Stanton’s Super Session (see below).

I teach high school choir! (grades 9-12)
Join us at the Joy of Singing – Middle & High School Choir session OR the Stanton’s Super Session!

At both sessions, we’ll present new choral music in all voicings (SATB/SAB/3-part mixed/2-part/women’s/men’s).

At Joy of Singing, we’ll present new music from Hal Leonard. You’ll also get movement ideas (including videos and choreography notes from John Jacobson), and three spotlight sessions on specific areas. Joy of Singing is usually about 50% concert/festival literature and 50% pop.

At Super Session, we’ll present new music from many publishers including Alfred, Shawnee Press, Heritage Music Press, Choristers Guild, BriLee and Carl Fischer. Super Session is usually about 75% concert/festival literature and 25% pop.

I teach middle school AND high school choir! (any grades 5-12)
Consider the Joy of Singing – Young & Developing Choir, the Joy of Singing – Middle & High School Choir AND the Stanton’s Super Session. Any (or all three!) days will provide you with lots of new repertoire and teaching ideas!

Also in August 2016:

Sacred Choral Reading Session
Saturday August 13, 2016
Clinician: Mark Hayes
(no pre-registration for this session)
Excellence in Choral Literature
Saturday August 27, 2016
Clinician: James Gallagher

Registration will open on April 1st. For more detailed information regarding any of these clinics, contact the choral department at 1-800-426-8742, extension 1. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Meet the Stanton’s Team – Michael S. 03 February, 2016

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

Michael SliclenMichael S. has been processing your orders and wrapping and shipping your music packages for years! He’s also an active musician in the Columbus regional area, playing bass guitar with his band, EYE.

1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Receiving

2. What do you consider your specialties here? – I’m an expert package wrapper!

3. How long have you been working at Stanton’s? – 17 years

4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Receiving and processing our orders from the publishers

5. What is your hometown? – Ridgewood Township in Queens, New York

6. Where did you go to college? – Columbus State Community College

7. What is your major instrument? – Bass guitar and upright bass

8. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – Various regional venues with EYE

9. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Practice (editor’s note – EVERY musician’s answer should be “practice”!), and D&D

10. What days are you available at Stanton’s? – Monday-Friday

11. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – D-Rider by Hawkwind

12. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – Restorers by EYE

13. If you had a chance to perform with three musicians, living or dead, who would it be? – Dick Dale, Christian Vander, Herbie Hancock

14. What is your most memorable musical moment? – Accidentally bludgeoning my headstock into the face of some naked guy who was on acid. (Showbiz, right?)

15. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – Flute

16. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – I was once a prop in a drag king show.

17. What musical sound or noise do you love? – Mellotrons!

18. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – Vocal pitch correct, and techno beats

19. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight, which would you choose and why? – Some days both, some days neither

20. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – N/A – I believe in reincarnation.

21. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – Sci-fi writer

22. What professional would you not like to do? – Work in a gas station

23. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – 5

24. Who was your first crush (if not a celebrity, some explanation)? – Jessica Lange in “King Kong”

25. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – Tricorn hats

26. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – Eh, ambivalent

27. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – ALL OF THEM

28. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – 3

29. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – Win the lottery, and then give myself the perfect job

30. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – I think I’d starve!


Meet the Stanton’s Team – Phyllis S. 11 January, 2016

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

Phyllis SnedekerPhyllis S. is Stanton’s longest-serving employee – she’s been here almost 50 years! She’s also one of just a few of our current staff who worked side-by-side with our company founder, John Stanton. An accomplished performer and woodwind studio teacher, Phyllis is a valuable member of our Keyboard and Popular Music department, and is always happy to help our customers! (Phyllis answered a shortened list of questions from our questionnaire – she comes in at 17 answers!) :)

1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – I work in the Keyboard and Popular Music department.

2. What do you consider your specialties here? – I have no “specialty” in this department, just many years of knowledge!

3. How long have you been working at Stanton’s? – I started working at Stanton’s in January of 1968 when the store was located near the Ohio Theater on State Street. I have seen Stanton’s grow, change locations, and go through many improvements in the years I have worked here.

4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – I enjoy working at Stanton’s whether it is helping a customer or just putting stock away. I try to do whatever needs to be done!

5. What is your hometown? – I was born in Sturgis, Michigan.

6. Where did you go to college? – I graduated from the University of Michigan School of Music with a degree in Music Education, and was a member of the University Symphonic Band directed by the renowned teacher and conductor, Dr. William D. Revelli.

7. What is your major instrument? – Alto saxophone, although I am proficient on all of the woodwinds.

8. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – I no longer perform or teach due to severe arthritis in my hands. I did perform with many musical groups in Columbus, Indiana, and Michigan and also taught woodwinds privately in those places. My husband, Paul, and I received the Community Music Educator Award from the Columbus Symphony Orchestra in 2007.

9. What do you like to do in your spare time? – In my spare time, I like to read, watch sports, and spend time with my family and friends. I also like to travel – I have been to Russia, Cuba (during the Batista era), Europe twice, and I most recently had a wonderful trip to Alaska.

10. What days are you available at Stanton’s? – I now work just two days a week.

11. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – I like to listen to all kinds of Classical music.

12. What is your most memorable musical moment? – The University of Michigan hosted the American Bandmasters Convention while I was in college, and I had the privilege of playing under many notable composers and conductors including Percy Grainger, Robert Russell Bennet, and Henry Fillmore.

13. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – The most unusual performance I was a part of happened during a concert while in college. We were playing Wagner’s “Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral” and the big climax near the end has a big cymbal crash, and the person who was playing the part struck the cymbals with such an upward force that the cymbal flew out of his hand and crashed to the floor. Needless to say, the conductor was very unhappy!

14. What musical sound or noise do you love? – A beautiful woodwind soloist.

15. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – If I had not chosen music as a profession, I would have been a third grade teacher. I did teach third grade for a couple years during a shortage of teachers and I enjoyed it.

15. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – If I had a choice to change the popular music of today, I would prefer the music of the 30s through the 70s.

16. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – When I was younger I liked riding in roller coasters!

17. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – If I would win the lottery I would share it with my family, charities and travel. I have worked long enough!


Church Reading Session – THIS SATURDAY! 04 January, 2016

Lullington_Church_with_spring_flowers_-_geograph.org.uk_-_1103346Attend Stanton’s Sacred Choral Reading Session this Saturday, January 9th 2016, and you’ll be fully prepared for the remainder of your church choir season. We will be featuring the best new choral publications for Lent, Easter and beyond, as chosen by Stanton’s sacred choral staff. This January’s clinic will be held at Livingston United Methodist Church, just a few blocks from our store in downtown Columbus!

SACRED CHORAL READING SESSION

Saturday January 9th, 2016

9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Attending this clinic is a fantastic way for you to choose new church anthems for your choir by hearing the music read live. This January’s clinicians will be Stanton’s own Judy Henry and president emeritus Jim Strouse. Please feel free to contact Stanton’s at 1-800-42-MUSIC and speak with a choral staff member for the details of the event. We look forward to seeing you at 8:30 on January 9th for registration, coffee and doughnuts followed by a wonderful morning of singing!

Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Happy New Year! 01 January, 2016

Happy New Year from all of us at Stanton’s Sheet Music! We’re closed today, but we’ll be back tomorrow to help you prepare for the new year!


Merry Christmas! 25 December, 2015

Stanton’s Sheet Music is closed today so we can enjoy the holiday with our families – we hope you’re doing the same! We’ll be open tomorrow, and look forward to helping you prepare for the new year!

 


Sacred Clinic in ONE MONTH 11 December, 2015

Lullington_Church_with_spring_flowers_-_geograph.org.uk_-_1103346With Christmas around the corner it seems strange to think that it’s almost time to purchase music for Lent and Easter! Plan to attend Stanton’s Sacred Choral Clinic on Saturday, January 9th 2016, and you’ll be fully prepared for the next “holiday season.”

SACRED CHORAL READING SESSION

Saturday January 9th, 2016

9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

We will be featuring the best new choral publications for Lent, Easter and beyond, as chosen by Stanton’s sacred choral staff. This January’s clinic will be held at Livingston United Methodist Church, just a few blocks from our store in downtown Columbus!

Attending this clinic is a fantastic way for you to choose new church anthems for your choir by hearing the music read live. This January’s clinicians will be Stanton’s own Judy Henry and president emeritus Jim Strouse. Please feel free to contact Stanton’s at 1-800-42-MUSIC and speak with a choral staff member for the details of the event. We look forward to seeing you at 8:30 on January 9th for registration, coffee and doughnuts followed by a wonderful morning of singing!

Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Meet the Stanton’s Team – David B. 02 December, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

IMG_2604David B. is a retired high school choral director and church musician who now enjoys splitting his time between Stanton’s and spending time with his granddaughter Lily. He always greets our customers with a big smile, and you can hear his joyful laugh all the way across the store! As a part-time employee, David chose to only answer “part” of our questionnaire, so he comes in at only 26 questions. :)

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Keyboard Department
  2. What do you consider your specialties here? – Jack of all trades, master of none!
  3. How long have you been working at Stanton’s? – 9 years, part-time
  4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Entering new inventory
  5. What is your hometown? – Springfield, Ohio
  6. Where did you go to college? – Taylor University (BS in Music Education) and Florida State University (MME)
  7. What is your major instrument? – Piano
  8. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Travel, read
  9. What days are you available at Stanton’s? – Monday and Thursday afternoons, and all day on Saturdays
  10. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – “How Great Thou Art”
  11. What is your most memorable musical moment?  Performing as the “on camera talent” for a children’s PBS music series
  12. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – Cello
  13. What musical sound or noise do you love? – Cowbell sounds in the Swiss Alps
  14. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – A dentist’s drill
  15. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why? – Watching
  16. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – The heavenly chorus!
  17. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – Actor
  18. What profession would you not like to do? – Coal mining
  19. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – About a 5
  20. Who was your first crush (if not a celebrity, some explanation)? – Sherry, in my second grade class
  21. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – Cardigan sweaters
  22. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – Hate!
  23. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – Power to bring peace to the world
  24. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – 3
  25. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – Win the lottery!
  26. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – Meatloaf, salad, and baked potato

Meet the Stanton’s Team – Jennifer F. 20 November, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

jennifer fryJennifer is a graduate of Otterbein College with a degree in Vocal Performance. She has worked at Stanton’s for over 14 years specializing in Sacred Choral, Classical Vocal and Handbell music. Jennifer is a soprano section leader in the Chancel Choir at First Community Church in Columbus Ohio, and is also the founder, Artistic Director and bass bell ringer for Handbells Columbus.

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Choral Department
  2. What do you consider your specialties here? – Sacred Choral, Handbell and Classical Vocal.
  3. How long have you been working at Stanton’s? – I started my 16th year the beginning of August.
  4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Anything that has to do with organization and/or pulling a choral trial of “high brow” music.
  5. What is your hometown? – Columbus
  6. Where did you go to college? – Otterbein College
  7. What is your major instrument? – Voice
  8. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – I sing in the Chancel Choir and Chamber Singer’s at First Community Church. I’m also the artistic director and bass bell ringer for Handbells Columbus.
  9. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Go to the gym, compete in field trials/earthdog/barn hunt and coursing with my Standard Longhaired Dachshunds, and meeting friends for happy hour at Black Creek Bistro.
  10. What days are you available at Stanton’s? – Monday-Thursday and Saturday
  11. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – A recording of Luciano Pavarotti singing “Ah mes amis.” Sheer heaven!!!
  12. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – Church choir ended in June. I can’t remember that far back.
  13. If you had a chance to perform with three musicians, living or dead, who would it be? – Robert Shaw, Luciano Pavarotti and Elton John.
  14. What is your most memorable musical moment? – Singing the Mozart Missa Longa with the Salzburg Cathedral orchestra and chorus when the First Community Church Chancel Choir and friends went to Europe 2 summers ago. Beyond words!!!
  15. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – It would either be bassoon or tuba.
  16. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – Playing the handbell piece “Pick A Winner” at a handbell festival. There were 4 of us and we wore sunglasses and had frog and lobster hats on.
  17.  What musical sound or noise do you love? – Low C of a 32’ bombarde/C2 of a Malmark Handbell/any note, below the bass clef, sung by a bass/lowest note played on a bassoon and/or tuba (are you seeing a trend here??)
  18. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – Beginning clarinets and/or nails on a chalkboard.
  19. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why? – Depends on the concert. If it is the Verdi Requiem, then I would choose performing.
  20. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – I would love to be in the choir that is conducted by Robert Shaw which sings the Verdi Requiem over and over!! (Is that specific enough??)
  21. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – Principal bassoonist in a European orchestra.
  22. What profession would you not like to do? – Port-a-Potty Cleaner Outer. STINKY!!!
  23. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – You tell me!!
  24. Who was your first crush (if not a celebrity, some explanation)? – Elton John
  25. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – Maybe, but I’m going to keep that a secret!
  26. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – LOVE!!!! Needs to be the front seat with my hands up. (Holding on is for sissies!!)
  27. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – Flying
  28. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – Not a clue. If I had to guess, I would say 6.
  29. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – Win the lottery when it hits a billion gazillion dollars.
  30. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – It would either be lamb or shellfish.

BEHIND THE SCENES: True Stories from Stanton’s 13 November, 2015

compiled by Dan C., Stanton’s resident staff jokester

qcBjqgxc5In the fall when school cranks back up, Stanton’s gets a huge increase in the number of phone calls and emails requesting all kinds of things. And with so many communications there is naturally an increase in requests, questions and comments that make you go, “Really?!?” Such as:

“I’ve got a high school brass trio that wants to go to Solo and Ensemble competition.
We’re in a state with no required list we have to follow.
The students want to play Johnny Cash’s Ring of Fire. Do you have that for brass trio?” [Really?!?]

“Do you know of any pieces for Alp Horn and Band?” [Really?!?]

“I need a copy of the piano piece Fur Elise by Beethoven – but I need it for harmonica!” [Really?!?]

sax_xmas_decWe’ve mentioned the escalating request in previous blogs. Here’s a recent one:
“I need music for a saxophone quartet” (Okay…)
“To be featured with a concert band” (Ummm…)
“On a Christmas piece!” (Yow!)

Then there are the ones that just make you scratch your head…

“I’m waiting as fast as I can for a Purchase Order number to come from our treasurer.” [How fast can you wait?!?]

“Do you folks carry trumpet muzzles?” [actually, what a great idea!]

Trying to read a teacher’s writing, a customer asked for the Hal Leonard “Interception” book. We knew he meant “Intermediate” and also figured he’s a football fan!

Recent email:
Customer Question – “I have an extensive collection of sheet music. Do you purchase at all?”
Stanton’s Reply – “WE have an extensive collection of sheet music. Do YOU purchase at all?”
After that tongue-in-cheek wisecrack, the employee then went on to explain a bit about how the retail sheet music business works.

Here are a few phone conversations:
Customer: “I found an item I need on your website. The catalog number is HB01”
Stanton’s employee, upon typing the number into the computer and finding that it is a very popular method book for horn by Fred Teuber: “Oh yes – the Teuber book.”
Customer: “No, I think it’s for French Horn!”

Customer with a pronounced southern accent: “I’m looking for Bob and Maria.” (at least that’s what it sounded like!)
Stanton’s employee: “I may not have heard you correctly – Bob and Maria?”
Customer: “No, A-V-E, Ave Maria.”
Stanton’s employee: “Oh, of course! I’m so sorry! Do you want the Bach/Gounod or the Schubert?” JeopardyCustomer: “Heck, I don’t know who writes ’em, I just play ’em!”

Let’s play Jeopardy…
The answer is:
“No sir, I don’t know which arrangement of Amazing Grace you just heard on the bus this morning.”
We’ll let you come up with the question! :)


Meet the Stanton’s Team – Terry M. 06 November, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

terry mMeet Terry, the longest-serving full-time member of our Choral Department staff! A life-long Columbus-ite, Terry is a euphonium player turned church chorister.

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Choral
  2. What do you consider your specialties here? – Filling orders and putting away stock
  3. How long have you been working at Stanton’s? – 33 years
  4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Lunch
  5. What is your hometown? – Grandview Heights
  6. Where did you go to college? – Kent State University
  7. What is your major instrument? – Euphonium
  8. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – I sing in my church choir.
  9. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Read and DIY home tasks.
  10. What days are you available at Stanton’s? – Monday-Wednesday and Friday-Saturday.
  11. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – Guitar
  12. What musical sound or noise do you love? – A cat’s meow.
  13. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – None really.
  14. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why? – Listen to a great concert.
  15. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – The choir.
  16. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – Journalism.
  17. What profession would you not like to do? – Medicine.
  18. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – 5
  19. Who was your first crush (if not a celebrity, some explanation)? – Sally in 6th grade
  20. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – No
  21. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – Love
  22. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – Invisibility and flying.
  23. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – 7
  24. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – Win the lottery.
  25. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – That would be Hell!

Meet the Stanton’s Team – Dan C. 26 October, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

Dan has worked at Stanton’s since 1979, primarily with orchestra music and print promotions. A “working” musician, he’s a classical cellist, a rock & jazz bassist and a folk & country guitarist/singer. His free time is spent with family or reading, gardening, cycling and working puzzles. His series of musical puzzles (RP3 Rebus Puzzle Picture People) can be found on the Stanton’s Facebook page each Sunday. He also has a reputation as a pretty good joke teller. Seriously. (Dan also takes the prize for the most verbose answers to our questionnaire!)

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Instrumental Music
  2. What do you consider your specialties here? – String Instrumental Music, Orchestra Music, print promotions
  3. How long have you worked at Stanton’s? – as of August 2015 it’s (gasp!) 36 years
  4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Finding the best music to recommend to our customers
  5. What is your hometown? – I was born at the tender age of zero in Cleveland, and when I was one my family moved to the suburb of Parma, the largest suburb in the United States at the time I was growing up there. To give you an idea, my graduating class was 1026 students and we were one of three high schools.
  6. Where did you go to college? – I went to Otterbein College (now University) because I wanted to be a bigger fish in a smaller pond after my high school experience. I got a Bachelor of Music Education and following my heart, chose not to teach. At Stanton’s, I vicariously teach by recommending music that I feel will make teachers’ music program more successful, so I still rely on the skills I learned in college.
  7. What is your major instrument? – My college instrument was cello, which I still play, but I play electric bass about as much or more, as well as guitar and ukulele.
  8. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – I play in an acoustic pop/country/jazz trio called The Cogs; we just finished our first CD. I also perform with The Sterling String Quartet, a couple of old time rock ‘n’ roll bands and I do lots of freelance gigs on cello and bass.
  9. What do you like to do in your spare time? – When I’m not working, gigging or rehearsing, I enjoy hanging out with extended family, reading, doing word or number puzzles, gardening and cycling.
  10. What days of the week can you be reached at Stanton’s? – Monday-Thursday & Saturday. I’m off on Friday, to accommodate weekend gigs.
  11. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – A funkified version of the old Lee Dorsey tune “Ya Ya” done by the Cajun band, L’Angelus.
  12. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – I played and harmonized on a cover of Cool Change by The Little River Band at a gig with The Bill Foley Band.
  13. If you had a chance to perform with three musicians, living or dead, who would it be? – I’d perform with my acoustic trio, The Cogs. The three of us have the greatest chemistry of any group I’ve ever played in, classical or popular. Since we’d need one more person, let it be the late George Harrison of The Beatles. He is one of the most under-appreciated guitarists of rock and roll. His guitar solo on “Something,” the song he wrote that the Beatles performed, is absolutely perfect. Nothing needs to be added or taken away. That’s the kind of musician I like to partner with.
  14. What is your most memorable musical moment? – I can’t choose between seeing pianist Vladimir Horowitz a couple of years before he died, where his energy almost literally lit up the stage and the first time I heard the a cappella group The Kings Singers, who astounded me so thoroughly, I sat mesmerized after the concert until the hall was empty.
  15. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – I’d choose the 5-string banjo since I inherited a real nice one from my father and haven’t spent much time with it yet, so I don’t play it very well, and I’d like to be able to do that.
  16. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – My string quartet played a wedding on a slow moving train. Two of us faced the other two on parallel bench seats at the back of the railroad car while the bride and groom (both big train enthusiasts) walked up the aisle between us. While reading the music, we would occasionally look across the aisle at the other two players for cues and such and we would see the landscape moving past behind them. The railroad cars were also rocking back and forth as they rolled down the track. So there was always a sensation of movement, both physically and visually. We were all pretty green with motion sickness by the end of it, but it was a truly unusual, memorable experience.
  17.  What musical sound or noise do you love? – I’m a sucker for close a cappella vocal harmony of just about any genre – choral, doo-wop, barbershop and current groups like Pentatonix etc., as well as The King’s Singers, mentioned earlier.
  18. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – There is a rhythm in a particular tempo in some hip-hop music that is (perhaps intentionally) too close to my heartbeat because it really makes me physically uncomfortable even after a short amount of time and I’ve got to turn the music off.
  19. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why? – I perform so much that it is very pleasurable to see and hear a great concert that I didn’t have to rehearse for or get nervous about – just enjoy. Listening to music well-played makes the heart smile.
  20. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – “If there’s a rock and roll heaven, well you know they’ve got a helluva band. (Righteous Brother’s Rock and Roll Heaven)” I’d choose that one.
  21. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – I would like to be a cartoonist or puzzle designer. I’ve already gotten started on that one – check out Stanton’s Facebook page on Sundays!
  22. What profession would you not like to do? – I wouldn’t want to be a politician and have to play the deceitful games that need to be played in order to be successful. Way too much unpleasant drama, full of conflict! I’m more of a co-operator and compromiser, which is not what politicians are these days.
  23. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – My answers so far may not reflect it, but I have a reputation as being a fairly funny guy. I was up for “class clown” as a high school senior and lost to someone I didn’t even know (my senior class was huge as mentioned above) but that didn’t deter me. I have fronted bands, which necessitated some “stand-up” schtick from time to time. I have quite an arsenal of jokes and know how to tell them, I do wacky voices, I draw cartoons, and spontaneous puns come pretty naturally to me. The trick is knowing when humor is appropriate or not. I often fall back on humor when a situation is uncomfortable, just to lighten things up, but it is sometimes not what is needed at the time. I’m trying to be more mindful of that. So I’d give myself a 9.7385 out of 10.
  24. Who was your first crush? – My first grade teacher left on maternity leave and her replacement was a beautiful young woman (at least I thought so at age 6!) who was fresh out of college and with whom I was quite smitten. I don’t even remember her name, since it was a long time ago! I think she got married toward the end of the year and I was crushed, hoping that she would have waited for me to grow up!
  25. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – Certainly not faux-hawks or goatees, but how about those huge bell bottom pants (we called them elephant bells) from back in the 70s? I always thought they were cool.
  26. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – I liked them as a young man, but now they just make me sore from being thrown around so much, so I don’t ride them anymore. It takes too long to recover!
  27. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – I think it would be fun to have the ability to become invisible. Either that or the ability to time travel without affecting the past or the future – just observe it, which maybe goes along with invisibility!
  28. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – When I started adding them up I was kind of surprised. I’ve got 3 pair for gigging (tax write-offs! – a dressy pair, a casual pair, and a goofy pair), 3 pairs of sneakers – a black pair, a white pair and a beat up pair for yard work, 2 pair of sandals, 2 pair of flip flops, 3 pair of dress shoes, 2 pair of work boots – so 15 in all!
  29. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – I’ve had a great job for 36 years (see question #3) so I’ll take the lottery. That would free me up for other pursuits and allow my wife to quit working if she wanted to, plus we could help out our children financially.
  30. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – My wife’s meatloaf, a baked sweet potato, succotash, homemade applesauce and my wife’s strawberry-rhubarb pie for dessert. (Burp. – ‘scuse me)

Meet the Stanton’s Team – Karen S. 02 October, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

karen sKaren S. is one of our longest serving employees here at Stanton’s, having been with the company for over four decades. Karen has the distinction of being one of the only non-musicians on the staff here, so we hope you enjoy her unique perspective! We’ve given Karen a break on some of those musician questions, so her 30 questions comes in at a slim 19!

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Accounting
  2. What do you consider your specialties here? – Being here so long that I can help fix anything for a customer
  3. How long have you worked at Stanton’s? – 45 Years
  4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Trying to figure out a problem on an account
  5. What is your hometown? – West Jefferson, OH
  6. Where did you go to college? – Columbus Business University
  7. What is your major instrument? – The radio!
  8. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Relax and watch TV
  9. What days of the week can you be reached at Stanton’s? – Monday – Friday
  10. What is your most memorable musical moment? – I got to go to the Rolling Stones concert!!!
  11.  What musical sound or noise do you love? – Country and R&B
  12. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – Jazz
  13. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – 3
  14. Who was your first crush? – Roger Lynch (Played in the Metros in High School)
  15. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – Hate!
  16. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – Magic
  17. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – 30
  18. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – Win the lottery. (Then I could volunteer at a perfect job and work when I wanted to.)
  19. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – Chicken and noodles

Meet the Stanton’s Team – Amy B. 23 September, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level. Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

amy bAmy is long-time Stanton’s employee in our Shipping and Bookkeeping departments. While Amy may be the smiling face you see when billing your account, our church customers may also know her as the trumpet player at our sacred reading sessions. Currently a member of the Dublin Silver Band, Amy enjoys spending time with her family and cultivating a great love of all things pasta!

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Bookkeeping and Shipping
  2. What do you consider your specialties here? – Because I’ve worked in so many areas of the business, I can take an order from beginning to end, completing every step along the way. I believe I might be the only person here who could do that.
  3. How long have you worked at Stanton’s? – 19½ years
  4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Helping customers on the phone or in the store
  5. What is your hometown? – Canton, Ohio
  6. Where did you go to college? – Ohio State
  7. What is your major instrument? – Trumpet
  8. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – I play cornet with the Dublin Silver Band, a British-style brass band.
  9. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Spend time with my family
  10. What days of the week can you be reached at Stanton’s? – Monday – Friday
  11. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – Three Dance Episodes from “On The Town” by Bernstein.
  12. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – Kingdom of Dragons by Philip Harper
  13. If you had a chance to perform with three musicians, living or dead, who would it be? – My husband, son & daughter
  14. What is your most memorable musical moment? – My senior year in high school I played the Concerto by Arutunian at Solo and Ensemble Contest. I was so “in the zone” that I didn’t notice anything going on around me and my accompanist. The room had filled with people before I started to play and I was quite shocked to see them all when I finished. It was probably my best solo performance ever.
  15. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – Piano
  16. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – I used to play in a quintet that performed at the Ohio Village at the Historical Society. We would dress up in period costumes and play for various events at the village. Once we were playing while the vintage baseball teams were warming up before a game and a foul tip came back and hit the end of my trumpet and busted my lip! I was on the DL for a while after that!
  17.  What musical sound or noise do you love? – A great singer
  18. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – Didgeridoo – not sure what that thing’s about!
  19. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why? – Performing. Nothing beats coming together with fellow musicians and making great music.
  20. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – Herald trumpets, of course!!
  21. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – Dog trainer
  22. What profession would you not like to do? – Septic tank cleaner
  23. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – The more relevant question is, how funny do YOU think I am?
  24. Who was your first crush? – Kirk Lombardi, second grade, blue eyes and curly brown hair – need I say more?
  25. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – If something goes out of fashion, it’s probably better left there!
  26. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – Love and hate
  27. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – Flying – not sure if that’s a super hero power, but it would be SO cool!
  28. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – Just enough
  29. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – Perfect job. I would get bored otherwise.
  30. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – Pasta, pasta, pasta!

Meet the Stanton’s Team – Joyce S. 04 September, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level.  Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

joyce stonebreakerJoyce Stonebreaker is a retired public school music teacher with over 30 years of experience, mostly with high school choirs.  She is currently an active pianist and accompanist in the Columbus area.  Joyce spends her free time playing tennis and traveling.

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – Choral Department
  2. What do you consider your specialties here? – Choral Music (specifically high school)
  3. How long have you worked at Stanton’s? – This will be my 8th year working part-time/seasonally.
  4. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Helping young and beginning teachers
  5. What is your hometown? – Cleveland, OH
  6. Where did you go to college? – THE Ohio State University (undergrad and grad)
  7. What is your major instrument? – Piano
  8. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – I work part-time at Otterbein University as a staff accompanist. I accompany 2 choirs, studio classes, recitals, musical theatre rehearsals, etc.
  9. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Play tennis and go hiking
  10. What days of the week can you be reached at Stanton’s? – In general, Tuesdays, Thursdays, & Saturdays during the months of July-February.
  11. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – The Star Spangled Banner, sung by Marlana VanHoose before the NBA final game
  12. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, as I was babysitting my friend’s 3-month old yesterday.
  13. If you had a chance to perform with three musicians, living or dead, who would it be? – Sing under Robert Shaw, play piano duets with Frederic Chopin, and accompany Isaac Stern.
  14. What is your most memorable musical moment? –  Playing the Saint-Saens Piano Concerto No. 2 (1st. mvmt.) with the OSU Symphony Orchestra at the Ohio Theatre.  We were kicked out of Mershon Auditorium because “A Chorus Line” was on its first national tour … the best concert conflict ever!
  15. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – Oboe
  16. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – Singing in a back-up choir for Celine Dion, Barry Manilow, Michael Bolton, and the Judd’s at Polaris Amphitheatre.
  17.  What musical sound or noise do you love? – a perfectly tuned string quartet
  18. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – a very-out-of-tune string quartet
  19. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why? – performing
  20. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – My mom’s family orchestra (my mom on piano, uncle on trumpet, one aunt on violin, and the other aunt on flute)
  21. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – Actuarial science
  22. What profession would you not like to do? – Coal mining … that looks like the hardest job in the world!!
  23. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – Probably about an 8.  I like to tease people, especially those who I like.
  24. Who was your first crush? – A little boy named Johnny B in my Kindergarten class.  I kissed him when we were getting in line for our bathroom break.
  25. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – Children and young adults taking piano lessons.
  26. Do you love or hate roller coasters? I used to love any roller coaster at Cedar Point, but as I’ve gotten older, I get sick
  27. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – The ability to solve all conflicts so that there are no more wars … anywhere!
  28. How many pairs of shoes do you own?  Probably around 15.
  29. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job?  Both!  I’d still like to work, but then be able to give money to all of my nieces & nephews so that they could pay all of their bills.
  30. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – Breakfast at Bob Evans.

Back to School: Fall 2015 Band Update 31 August, 2015

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist –

Now that school is back in session and marching band season has begun to hit a groove, I’d like to catch you up on band related news, features, and upcoming events for 2015-16. While everyone takes a bit of a break in June & July (yes, we take some vacation, too!), we are hard at work previewing all the new concert band titles, updating our website & Listening Library, picking promotions, and brainstorming ways to make your work a little easier. Here’s a rundown of new features and things to look forward to this school year:

What’s New
– If you haven’t already, you can check out all the NEW concert band titles on stantons.com. Head over to the concert band page and click on New for 2015-16!, and you can browse the new titles by difficulty or publisher.
– We have announced our Stanton’s Staff Selections for the new school year. Of the 550+ new band titles we previewed, these are the 80-90 best as chosen by our band staff. Preview them by clicking on Stanton’s Staff Selections on the concert band page, then choose 2015-2016 Young Band or 2015-2016 High School Band or visit our Current Promotions page.
– Watch your mailbox for our 2015-2016 Concert Band promotions featuring this year’s Staff Selections. The Young Band promotion was mailed this month; our High School promotion will arrive in mid-October.
– The 2016 OMEA Required Music Lists were released in late June and are available for preview on our concert band page.
– Middle School band directors in need of a quality repertoire guide should check out the recently released Teaching Music Through Performance in Middle School Band volume.
– If you have a jazz band, be sure to read my post from last week What (Music) Should I Do with My Jazz Band?

Tyler S. Grant

Features
– If you aren’t already subscribed (why not?), click here to receive periodic emails from us featuring uniquely themed Staff Selections, Composer Spotlights (3 coming this year!), the latest music, method, and textbook releases, and more!
– Check our concert band page often – the Featured Tabs along the bottom will change to highlight the best new pieces for concert band!
– We are excited to add Tyler S. Grant to the Featured Composers and Arrangers on our Listening Library! This young composer is consistently writing some of the best new music for young bands – you really should check him out!
– If you’re curious to know what my favorite new titles are, visit the Ken’s Top 10 – 2015 tab on our concert band page.
– Want to know more about the people you speak with on the phone and that handle your orders? Our Meet the Stanton’s Team series of staff profiles let’s you know who we are, what we specialize in, and what we geek out on!

Upcoming Events
– Our 14th Wind Band Invitational & New Music Reading Clinic – November 20-21, 2015 – Capital University
– Visit our booth at The Midwest Clinic – McCormick Place, Chicago, IL – December 16-18, 2015
– Visit us at the Jazz Education Network (JEN) Conference – Louisville, KY – January 6-9, 2016

That’s all for now! I hope you find these items helpful and fun, and that your school year is off to a smooth start.

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004. Besides music, he geeks out on comic books, amusement parks, the Muppets, and all things Pittsburgh. He also plays saxophone with Swing’s the Thing Big Band. You should check out their album Walk On Out the Door available on iTunes and Amazon.


Meet the Stanton’s Team – Ben H. 19 August, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level.  Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

Ben HuntoonBen Huntoon is the Jazz Education Consultant at Stanton’s Sheet Music. He received bachelors and masters degrees in music from Capital University and The Ohio State University respectively. As a professional trumpeter, Ben is accomplished in a wide variety of genres and has performed throughout the Midwest on many stages over the past 30 years. He also teaches trumpet, coaches brass ensembles and serves on the jazz faculty at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio.

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s? – I work in the instrumental department.  You know, the guys in the white hats.
  1. What do you consider your specialties here? – All things jazz.
  1. How long have you been working at Stanton’s? – Twenty-three years
  1. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Working with customers face to face and preaching the gospel of jazz
  1. What is your hometown? – Galesburg, Illinois… Home of poet Carl Sanburg and the location of the great Lincoln-Douglas debates.
  1. Where did you go to college? – Capital University, Bachelor of Music Education; The Ohio State University, Master of Arts
  1. What is your major instrument? – Trumpet
  1. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – Adjunct faculty at Otterbein University. Active freelance musician in Central Ohio and throughout the Midwest.
  1. What do you like to do in your spare time? – Cook, garden, read and practice trumpet.
  1. What days of the week can you be reached at Stanton’s? – Monday-Wednesday & Friday-Saturday.
  1. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – Beehive from “Lee Morgan, Live at the Lighthouse”
  1. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – I Love You by Cole Porter
  2. If you had a chance to perform with three musicians, living or dead, who would it be? – Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Horace Silver
  3. What is your most memorable musical moment? – Many moments, but one that comes to mind is improvising Amazing Grace on solo trumpet for a cathedral full of congregants in Dresden, Germany
  4. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – Piano
  5. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – Dressed in a floor length cape, wearing a cavalier’s hat with a feather and playing trumpet fanfares with a friend for the opening of a department store in a mall.
  6.  What musical sound or noise do you love? – My daughter, a professional USAF musician, playing oboe.
  7. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – In the Mood makes me break out in hives!
  8. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why? – Performing in a magical musical moment is like the ultimate drug.
  9. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – Playing with the angel Gabriel, of course! Isn’t that where all of the trumpet players hang out?
  10. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – National Park ranger
  11. What profession would you not like to do? – Sanitation worker. Those people have my ultimate respect.
  12. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – Funny “ha-ha” or funny strange???
  13. Who was your first crush? – My 8th grade science teacher, Miss Fox. Need I say more?
  14. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion?Elephant bells and platform shoes. I was stylin’ in the 70s.
  15. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – Love
  16. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – Split solid matter using the sound waves from a triple high C.
  17. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – Too many for a guy
  18. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – Winning the lottery would buy me time.
  19. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – Legumes

How We Pick Choral Promotions – the 2015 Update! 12 August, 2015

By Rachel Steele, School Choral Specialist (This post has been updated to include new 2015-2016 information, but was first posted on Dec. 1st, 2014)

A femusic listening 2w months ago, my colleague in the instrumental department, Ken Tilger, wrote a post about how that department picks the items for their promotions.  Not to be outdone, I’d like to take the opportunity to let you know how I and my partner in crime, Jen Sper, pick the items for our school choral promotions.

In late winter or early spring, publishers begin to send us their new releases for fall.  We get stacks of music (with demo CDs) to review from Hal Leonard (includig Shawnee, Walton, Boosey & Hawkes, G. Schirmer, Pavane, Fred Bock etc.), Alfred (including Lawson-Gould), Lorenz (including Santa Barbara and Heritage), Carl Fischer (including BriLee), Hinshaw, Alliance, Chorister’s Guild and a few other smaller publishers.  If you are thinking “Wow, that is quite a bit of music,” you’d be correct.  In fact, if you assign each piece an average listening/evaluation time of 3.5 minutes, we spend about 2,200 minutes, or 48 hours, or 6 full working  days (no lunch or potty breaks!) listening to more than 800 new releases.  For more data on our listening, scroll to the bottom.

When we listen, we’re not only keeping an ear out for our in-house promotions, but also for selections for our clinics (such as Stanton’s Super Session and Excellence in Choral Literature), OMEA Large Group Select Suggestions, and even music for Christmas, graduation and other special occasions.

music listening 3Round 1

Jen and I sit with the octavo in front of us and listen to every single selection from beginning to end.  We write our impressions, usually just a few choice words or phrases, into a massive spreadsheet that we keep for review purposes.  After this, a piece goes into either the “no” or the “maybe” pile.  Our “no” pile is quite a bit larger than our “maybe” pile.  We consider it a good release if 25-30% of a publisher’s titles end up in the “maybe” category.

Round 2

Now that we’ve combed through the riff-raff, it’s time to consider the balance of our selections for our in-house promotions.  We sort our “maybe” pile by voicing, and then by genre.    Just like good concert programing, we are looking for a variety of styles – current pop, classic pop, Broadway, folk songs, original compositions, spirituals, world/multi-cultural, holiday music and various foreign languages.

Round 3

Now it’s time to play through selections at the piano.  We grab a genre and play through, looking for things like:

1.  Is it well written/voiced in all parts?

2.  What can teachers teach or students learn from working on this piece?

3.  Is it enjoyable to sing/play/teach?

4.  Is it appropriate for school?

5.  Will it appeal to a wide variety of customers?

6.  If the song is available in multiple voicings, is one better than the other?  Why?

The answers to these questions will usually make our choices pretty clear, and then it’s time to make our lists, contact our clinicians, and design the actual promotional materials that you receive in your mailbox!

choral promotions by the numbers 2015-2016By the Numbers – This table shows the number of pieces that we promoted this year by publisher, and the percentage of their total offerings that we promoted.  You’ll see that even those publishers with the highest percentage of promoted items rarely break the 30% mark.

Other Points of Interest

  • Jen and I only look at promotions for school choral.  We have two other people who work specifically on pieces for church choirs, and they have even more selections to listen to than we do!
  • While it might sound like a cushy job to sit and listen to music for 8 hours a day, it can be mentally exhausting after a while.
  • No, we don’t always agree, but you’d be amazed at how often 2 very opinionated people say the EXACT same thing about a particular piece.
  • If there is something that one of us truly believes is worth fighting for, the other one will generally give in.
  • The best part about the process is discovering a new piece that is just amazing!  This year, our greatest discovery was the promotion from Chorister’s Guild.  Traditionally a sacred music publisher, 2015 marked their first school release, entitled “Sing!” from editor Mary Lynn Lightfoot.  As you can see from our percentages above, we LOVED IT!!!

We believe that devoting quite a bit of time and effort to this process is very important.   The 75 or so selections that make the cut are things that we recommend to you, our valued customers, for the entire school year. If you have questions about this process (or would like some recommendations), please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-42-MUSIC, ext. 1.

Rachel Steele has been working in the choral department at Stanton’s since 2013.  She previously taught middle school and high school band and choir for 13 years, and holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in music education from The Ohio State University.  Currently a member of the Heisey Wind Ensemble and a musician at Epiphany Lutheran Church (Pickerington, OH,) Rachel also enjoys reading, sewing, baking and the Pittsburgh Steelers!


Meet the Stanton’s Team – Barb M. 03 August, 2015

We’ve written before on the Stanton’s blog about our knowledgeable staff. Now, we’d like to give you a chance to get to know our staff on a more personal level.  Over the next several months, we will be having members of the Stanton’s team take our “30 Questions in 60 Seconds” questionnaire. We hope you will get to know the “real” us, and learn how we might better be of service to you!

barb profile pictureBarb has worked in the Keyboard Department at Stanton’s since 1981.  An active folk musician in the Columbus area, Barb also works with ensembles at her church and plays in the Columbus State Concert Band.  In her spare time, Barb loves working with animals and computer games.

  1. What department do you work in at Stanton’s?  – Keyboard and popular music
  2.  How long have you been working at Stanton’s? – Thirty-four years
  3. What is your favorite task at Stanton’s? – Looking at new issue music.
  4. What is your hometown? – Columbus, OH
  5. Where did you go to college? – The Ohio State University
  6. What is your major instrument? – Five stringed fiddle.
  7. Where or with whom do you currently perform/teach? – I play and conduct handbells and sing in the choir at church.  We also have a bluegrass gospel string band at church. I sing and play fiddle, autoharp, mandolin, buttonbox, recorder, and a few other things in string band. I also play in the 3rd clarinet section in the Columbus State Community College concert band.  Sometimes, they let me play percussion.  I got to play the gong in “O Fortuna” awhile back.
  8. What do you like to do in your spare time? – I hang out with friends, play computer games, and play music.
  9. What days of the week can you be reached at Stanton’s? – Monday & Wednesday-Saturday
  10. What is the last song/piece you listened to? – Something classical on WOSU.
  11. What is the last song/piece you played/sang? – The hymns yesterday in church.
  12. If you had a chance to perform with three musicians, living or dead, who would it be? – I would want to play viola with Mozart’s orchestra, clarinet in Sousa’s band, and fiddle with the Charlie Daniels Band.
  13. What is your most memorable musical moment? – I played viola in “Psalmis Hungarius” by Zoltan Kodaly in the Ohio State Orchestra when I was a sophomore.  It was awesome.
  14. If you could be instantly proficient on an additional instrument, what would you choose? – Piano.  You can never run out of piano music, and there is so much to explore.  I’d like to play more than the easy stuff.
  15. What is the most unusual performance you have ever been a part of? – I played fiddle for “Robber Bridegroom” some time ago. I have played a lot of musicals, but this one has a quartet onstage.  The upright bass and banjo were in the rear corner on one side on a raised platform, the pianist and I were in the opposite corner.  It’s the only time I  had to pay attention to what I was doing when I played a musical.  I wasn’t hidden in the pit.
  16. What musical sound or noise do you love? – Violin or viola
  17. What musical sound or noise do you hate? – A raucous electric guitar.
  18. If you had your choice watching a great concert tonight or performing in a great concert tonight which would you choose and why?  – I’d play, I love to be in the middle of that sound.
  19. If heaven exists, when you arrive at the Pearly Gates, what heavenly ensemble would you like to be assigned to? – Rotate me around, God.  I want it all!
  20. What profession other than your own would you like to attempt? – Something to do with biology.
  21. What profession would you not like to do? – I wouldn’t like to do any job that involved traveling away from home very much.
  22. On a scale of 1-10, how funny do you think you are? – It depends on my mood.  On average, about an 8.
  23. Who was your first crush? – I’m over 60.  I don’t remember anymore. ;-)
  24. Is there anything you wish would come back into fashion? – Not really.
  25. Do you love or hate roller coasters? – I liked them fine when I could ride them.
  26. If you were a super hero, what powers would you have? – I would like to fly and be really strong.
  27. How many pairs of shoes do you own? – Three
  28. Would you rather win the lottery or work at the perfect job? – I’d rather win the lottery big time, and then go to jam sessions, go bird watching, go to movies and art galleries.
  29. If you had to eat one meal for the rest of your life, what would it be? – Variety is the spice of life.  Don’t do that to me!

Last Call for the Nancy Bachus Piano Workshop 31 July, 2015

royal_town_crier_ap_ftrmjrLast call!  Don’t forget the annual piano workshop featuring Nancy Bachus, who will be presenting some of the best educational offerings for piano teachers from Alfred Music.  Come join us at Stanton’s for a morning of fun at the piano! The workshop is this Friday, August 7th.  Attendees can register at 8:30 AM and the workshop begins at 9:00 AM.  Hope to see you there!