Supplies

My goal here is to make it easy for you to find recommended supplies and accessories for your instrument. Most of these can also be purchased at local retail stores like Hills Music Shoppe and Music & Arts Center.

FLUTE

Swab – you want a silk swab with a string, like this one made by Hodge. They come in different colors, so just get whichever one you like. You must swab out your instrument after you play it before packing it into the case, or the moisture will damage the instrument over time.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

CLARINET

Reeds – the Royal brand reeds (the blue box NOT the orange box) is recommended. The Vandoren brand reeds are higher quality and produce a better sound. Size 2.5 is fine for 6th and 7th grade. By late 7th grade or 8th grade, you should move to size 3.0.

Cork Grease – you must grease your corks at least once each week. Be aware it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. You should not leave your instrument in a hot car anyway.

Swab – you want a silk swab with a string, like this one made by Hodge. They come in different colors, so just get whichever one you like. You must swab out your instrument after you play it before packing it into the case, or the moisture will damage the instrument over time.

Rico Reed Gard IV – These are designed to prevent your reeds from warping while they are in storage. The plastic sleeves your reeds come in do not do this. Get the Rico brand. The ridges on the D’Addario brand reed guard are too far apart and they mess up your reeds, do not get it.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush your mouthpiece inside and outside once each week with soap and water. Be very careful not to scratch or chip your mouthpiece while cleaning it.

Rovner Dark Ligature – if you need a new ligature, or if you want to upgrade from the basic ligature that may have come with your clarinet, get this one.

Neck Strap - this one by Neotech comes with a clip that attaches to the thumb rest on your clarinet. A neck strap makes it more comfortable to hold the clarinet, and makes it easier to play the keys with your right hand.

Hite Premiere Clarinet Mouthpiece – if you need a new mouthpiece, get this one.

Vandoren 5RV Lyre Traditional Mouthpiece - if you are really serious about the clarinet, and you want to upgrade to a professional mouthpiece.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

BASS CLARINET

Reeds – the Rico Royal brand (the blue box NOT the orange box) is recommended. The Vandoren brand reeds are higher quality and produce a better sound. Size 2.5 is fine for 6th and 7th grade. By late 7th grade or 8th grade, you should move to size 3.0.

Cork Grease – you must grease your corks at least once each week. Be aware it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. You should not leave your instrument in a hot car anyway.

Swab – you want a silk swab with a string, like this one made by Hodge. They come in different colors, so just get whichever one you like. You must swab out your instrument after you play it before packing it into the case, or the moisture will damage the instrument over time.

Rico Reed Gard IV – These are designed to prevent your reeds from warping while they are in storage. The plastic sleeves your reeds come in do not do this. I know this one says “tenor sax” but bass clarinet reeds are the same size. Get the Rico brand. The ridges on the D’Addario brand reed guard are too far apart and they mess up your reeds, do not get it.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush your mouthpiece inside and outside once each week with soap and water. Be very careful not to scratch or chip your mouthpiece while cleaning it.

Rovner Dark Ligature – if you need a new ligature, or if you want to upgrade from the basic ligature that may have come with your clarinet, get this one.

Hite Premiere Bass Clarinet Mouthpiece – if you need a new mouthpiece, or if you want to upgrade from the basic mouthpiece that may have come with your clarinet, get this one.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

ALTO SAXOPHONE

Reeds – the Rico Royal brand (the blue box NOT the orange box) is recommended. The Vandoren brand reeds are higher quality and produce a better sound. Size 2.5 is fine for 6th and 7th grade. By late 7th grade or 8th grade, you should move to size 3.0.

Cork Grease – you must grease your corks at least once each week. Be aware it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. You should not leave your instrument in a hot car anyway.

Swab – you want a silk swab with a string, like this one made by Hodge. They come in different colors, so just get whichever one you like. You must swab out your instrument after you play it before packing it into the case, or the moisture will damage the instrument over time.

Rico Reed Gard IV – These are designed to prevent your reeds from warping while they are in storage. The plastic sleeves your reeds come in do not do this. Get the Rico brand. The ridges on the D’Addario brand reed guard are too far apart and they mess up your reeds, do not get it.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush your mouthpiece inside and outside once each week with soap and water. Be very careful not to scratch or chip your mouthpiece while cleaning it.

Rovner Dark Ligature – if you need a new ligature, or if you want to upgrade from the basic ligature that may have come with your clarinet, get this one.

Hite Premiere Alto Sax Mouthpiece – if you need a new mouthpiece, or if you want to upgrade from the basic mouthpiece that may have come with your clarinet, get this one.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

TENOR SAXOPHONE

Reeds – the Rico Royal brand (the blue box NOT the orange box) is recommended. The Vandoren brand reeds are higher quality and produce a better sound. Size 2.5 is fine for 6th and 7th grade. By late 7th grade or 8th grade, you should move to size 3.0.

Cork Grease – you must grease your corks at least once each week. Be aware it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. You should not leave your instrument in a hot car anyway.

Swab – you want a silk swab with a string, like this one made by Hodge. They come in different colors, so just get whichever one you like. You must swab out your instrument after you play it before packing it into the case, or the moisture will damage the instrument over time.

Rico Reed Gard IV – These are designed to prevent your reeds from warping while they are in storage. The plastic sleeves your reeds come in do not do this. Get the Rico brand. The ridges on the D’Addario brand reed guard are too far apart and they mess up your reeds, do not get it.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush your mouthpiece inside and outside once each week with soap and water. Be very careful not to scratch or chip your mouthpiece while cleaning it.

Rovner Dark Ligature – if you need a new ligature, or if you want to upgrade from the basic ligature that may have come with your clarinet, get this one.

Hite Premiere Tenor Sax Mouthpiece – if you need a new mouthpiece, or if you want to upgrade from the basic mouthpiece that may have come with your clarinet, get this one.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

TRUMPET

Valve Oil – Hetman Piston Lubricant #2 is my favorite. Another option I recommend is Monster original valve oil. I have personally used both. I recommend synthetic oil, because petroleum-based valve oil leaves dirty residue in your instrument.

Slide Grease – this Venture grease is the easiest to use because it is in a small tube. Just be aware that it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. Personally, I use 100% pure Lanolin, which can be purchased online or at any pharmacy.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush out your mouthpiece once a week with soap and water. You can brush the cup with a regular toothbrush, and use this special brush to clean inside the backbore.

Snake Brush – use this to clean out the inside of the pipes. This must be done under water.

Straight Mute - this is the straight mute I recommend, the Bach 1860. I got one after I saw the trumpet section of the North Carolina Symphony using them. They have a good sound and play in tune.

Cup Mute -- this is the cup mute I recommend, the Humes & Berg Stonelined cup mute.

Bach 3C Mouthpiece – some students may find that they play better on the Bach 3C model mouthpiece, especially as they get into 8th grade and high school band. I have one you can try, then you can buy your own. Do not waste your money on other cheaper brands of “3C” mouthpieces, they are not the same and they are cheap for a reason. Get a Bach 3C.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.


FRENCH HORN

Rotor Oil – Hetman Medium Rotor Lubricant #11.5 is recommended. I recommend synthetic oil, because petroleum-based valve oil leaves dirty residue in your instrument.

Slide Grease – this Venture grease is the easiest to use because it is in a small tube. Just be aware that it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. Personally, I use 100% pure Lanolin, which can be purchased online or at any pharmacy.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush out your mouthpiece once a week with soap and water.

Snake Brush – use this to clean out the inside of the pipes. This must be done under water.

Holton Farkas MDC Mouthpiece – this is the most highly-recommended mouthpiece for French Horn.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

TROMBONE

Slide Lubricant – Yamaha makes lubricant that is very easy to use, and it is highly recommended.

Spray Bottle – as you use your slide, you will need to “cut” the Yamaha lubricant with water.

Slide Grease – this Venture grease is the easiest to use because it is in a small tube. Just be aware that it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. Personally, I use 100% pure Lanolin, which can be purchased online or at any pharmacy.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush out your mouthpiece once a week with soap and water. You can brush the cup with a regular toothbrush, and use this special brush to clean inside the backbore.

Snake Brush – use this to clean out the inside of the pipes. This must be done under water.

Straight Mute - this is the straight mute that I recommend, the Bach 1862. I personally bought the trumpet version after I saw the North Carolina Symphony trumpet section using them.

Bach 7C Trombone Mouthpiecethis is the most highly-recommended trombone mouthpiece. Do not waste your money on other cheaper brands of mouthpieces, they are not the same as a Bach and they are cheap for a reason. Get a Bach 7C.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

BARITONE

Valve Oil – Hetman Piston Lubricant #2 is my favorite. Another option I recommend is Monster original valve oil. I have personally used both. I recommend synthetic oil, because petroleum-based valve oil leaves dirty residue in your instrument. The valves of some baritones, particularly the Jupiter brand, seem to do a lot better with Blue Juice brand oil.

Slide Grease – this Venture grease is the easiest to use because it is in a small tube. Just be aware that it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. Personally, I use 100% pure Lanolin, which can be purchased online or at any pharmacy.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush out your mouthpiece once a week with soap and water. You can brush the cup with a regular toothbrush, and use this special brush to clean inside the backbore.

Snake Brush – use this to clean out the inside of the pipes. This must be done under water.

Bach 6 1/2 AL Mouthpiecethis is the most highly-recommended baritone mouthpiece. Do not waste your money on other cheaper brands of mouthpieces, they are not the same as a Bach and they are cheap for a reason. Get a Bach 6 1/2 AL mouthpiece.
**** You need to check if you need a Large Shank or a Small Shank mouthpiece. If you get the wrong size, it will not fit in your instrument.****

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

TUBA

Valve Oil – Hetman Piston Lubricant #2 is my favorite. Another option I recommend is Monster original valve oil. I have personally used both. I recommend synthetic oil, because petroleum-based valve oil leaves dirty residue in your instrument.

Slide Grease – this Venture grease is the easiest to use because it is in a small tube. Just be aware that it will melt if left in the sun or in a hot car. Personally, I use 100% pure Lanolin, which can be purchased online or at any pharmacy.

Mouthpiece Brush – you should brush out your mouthpiece once a week with soap and water. You can brush the cup with a regular toothbrush, and use this special brush to clean inside the backbore.

Bach size 25 Mouthpiece – this mouthpiece is designed for younger players and is highly recommended. An alternative is the Kelly size 25 tuba mouthpiece, which is made of plastic which is better for cold marching band performances.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

KEYBOARD PERCUSSION

Vic Firth Orchestral Medium Poly mallets – these are good general purpose mallets for xylophone and bells. These are made of very durable materials and should last for many, many years. Please do not waste your money on cheap mallets, they sound bad and are cheap for a reason. Yes, it really makes a difference.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.

SNARE DRUM

Drum SticksInnovative Percussion Christopher Lamb CL1 snare drum sticks are designed for concert snare drum, and the taper of the stick makes rolls easier and sound better. Get these. Vic Firth SD1 sticks are also good, but the CL1 are better.

Practice Pad – keep a practice pad at home so you can practice without having to bring your drum back and forth to school.

Small Lock – Use a small lock like this to lock the zippers of your case together.

Music Stand – practicing with a music stand will help you practice with better posture.