Greetings!! I started playing the flute at the age of nine, with my father as my teacher. My Dad had me try the recorder and tonette when I was younger, but I had no talent for those primitive instruments !! Anyway, in the 4th grade I came home from school one day and told my father I could pick an instrument to play in the school band. My Dad asked me what instrument I would like to play, and I told him the string bass. My Dad asked " Why ?".
I said because my neighbor Jay Lodson from across the street played one in The U.S. Army Band. My Dad told me that was fine, but he convinced me to play the flute because it was much more portable and also he could teach me much more because my father was a former concert flute soloist. My Dad who had only played a Wm. S. Haynes flute in his solo work, knew nothing about student flutes, and so he went to the nearest music store and bought me a proper student flute. He also knew nothing about how to teach a beginner, as he had only taught advanced students when he taught master classes at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria and his Master Class he taught in Carnegie Hall.
So, my Dad decided to teach not only me, but also a neighbor's daughter, so I would have someone to compare progress with. We both took lessons together for some time, probably about a year, before we studied individually. I enjoyed the school band, and did quite well. After about two years of playing, my father decided it was time to switch me from my closed hole, nickle plated, C foot joint BUNDY flute to a better open-holed flute. So, I got to play on my father's second Wm. S. Haynes flute, a hand-made model with a C foot joint. My Dad's flute, which he rarely allowed me to try, was a custom made Wm. S. Haynes with open-holes, drawn tone holes on a heavy body, and several extra keys. I had to be content with a completely stock Haynes.
I continued to play on my Bundy all through elementary school, and junior and senior high school. I played the Haynes at home, but I never played the Haynes at school, except for my concerts, and my Dad was always one of the proudest parents in the school, no matter how the band sounded ! A year after I finished high school, the Vietnam War was going strong, and my Dad thought I should think about the military, but as a musician and not an infantry fighter.
He helped me prepare for my auditions, and I was selected for The U.S. Army Band in nearby Fort Myer, Virginia. I was accepted and spent my military service from 1965 - 1968 there. While in the Army Band, I was issued an old Haynes flute, and later a brand new Powell flute, but I remained true to Haynes and only played the Haynes with the Band. I kept the Powell at home to practice on, I just thought the Haynes was better. While in the Army Band, I purchased a used Wm. S. Haynes flute, and my father was furious when he learned it was a covered hole model. He thought I had a perfectly good open-hole Haynes, and that was all I needed !!!
Since then, my collection of Haynes flutes has grown, but my father never changed his mind on the covered hole model. I still have my original Bundy, and I still play it ! In fact in recent years, it has gone on vacation with me to France and Egypt where I have had great pleasure playing it for the passing tourists !!! All of my Haynes stayed home, my Bundy got all the credit for my playing !!!
I don't think I'll ever get rid of it, MY FIRST FLUTE, MY TRUSTY BUNDY !!!!!!
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