About Woodwind Breeze

My Story

Like most people, I started learning music at school, infant school in fact. The triangle and the recorder and the xylophone. I didn’t have any confidence in my ability and wasn’t encouraged by my main teacher. One day I was in the classroom when another student was being taught music by another teacher. 

I was at the back of the room and started to copy what they were doing with my Xylophone. Banging out notes without even knowing what they were. The teacher saw potential or at least interest and helped me. This along with my parent’s encouragement gave me confidence and an interest in music.

At home, music played a large role both parents love to listen to music and their tastes were quite different. So, I was brought up on a combination of Elvis Presley and Queen, Yes, and, Pink Floyd. As I said quite different.

I moved to a better school at the age of 11. There you could play music. I wanted to learn the flute. I couldn’t afford to buy one or pay for the lessons so I wasn’t able to learn it.

I had to content myself with learning an instrument that was freely available to students and had free lessons which was a brass instrument, the cornet. Yipes, so loud! I cringe now. My poor suffering neighbors. Lucky I lived in a 200-year-old house with very thick walls! And I admit I always preferred polishing it and making it nice and shiny than actually playing it.

I can still remember the hardness of the mouthpiece with the wet spittle, the warmth from playing, and the metallic smell.

Not to help the lessons were in an Elliot hut which was a small building away from the school (very wise judging by the sound lol) and it was so cold.

In spite of this, I became good enough to go into the school band and play in school concerts at Christmas, etc. 

It wasn’t until several years later after I left school and college that my interest in the flute resurfaced and I decided to learn to play. So, I bought a lovely silver-plated flute from the local music shop. I took lessons and learned to play the flute.

Life was a bit hectic and I have an all-encompassing career and a few personal issues so flute playing and all other hobbies fell by the wayside. 

My interest in music resurfaced a few years later and I learnt to play the keyboard. Not brilliantly, but I learned it.

My life is at a stage now that I feel I want to get back into things that were once abandoned. Covid, age, and a health scare before Christmas have made me re-evaluate my priorities. 

Unfortunately, I might be overdoing it a bit as I have re-established most of my interests in art, craft, and music which is very intense as well as running a business. But that does seem to be a family trait!

I decided to go back into playing the flute. My sister plays the clarinet.

However, while researching I came across the recorder which was a fraction of the price and gave me an entrance back into music. 

Now, my view on the recorder is not kind. I played it at school from the age of 5 to 13/14ish. And it hurt my ears, an awful instrument. If you’d asked me would I EVER take it up again the answer would have been a resounding NO! Why on earth would anyone want to play that thing let alone do it as a career?

As you can see not exactly a positive feeling towards the recorder. So, it is with some surprise that I now have one in my house and am loving it. I guess things change. Ok, not entirely a surprise because I thoroughly researched and bought it. The fact that I did that is a surprise. The fact I love playing it even more so. (It is an Alto though).

It is better quality than the school ones and it is an alto recorder, I was adamant about that, thus avoiding that horrid screechy sound. (Which if you play properly and have a decent soprano instrument you are less likely to get anyway). But I prefer lower sounds. The high-pitched sound hurt my ears. The flute not so much for some reason. It seems more gentle.

I decided to also go back to the flute and learn that again. While I remembered everything about the recorder I cannot say the same for the flute. It was like I never played it. I had to start from scratch as a complete beginner and self-taught at that for a long time.

And just because I don’t have enough hobbies stuffed into my tiny house I’ve decided to learn the Ocarina at well. It’s an amazing little instrument and sounds out of this world. (My mum says it sounds like the recorder, lol!)

The one on the left I love playing, the one on the right holes too big to play.

I’d been searching the flute so much that an ocarina song came up on my YouTube stream. I was intrigued by this weirdly shaped dumpy instrument. I’d never seen one before, never even heard of it. I couldn’t understand the fascination with everyone wearing elf costumes while playing. Yet, it was quite the most beautiful sound I’d ever heard. So haunting, and unlike all the other instruments the higher pitches didn’t hurt my ears.

They say if you can play one wind instrument you can play them all. I am well and truly testing out that theory, lol.

I decided to share what I’ve learned here on this site. I hope it helps you have as much enjoyment as I get playing.