We started getting emails from Max Seigel over a year ago, saying he loved our mouthpieces but needed a special custom model to fit his unique needs and his old Holton Bass Trombone. Max has been finishing up a masters in performance at Manhattan School of Music and freelancing all over New York City. He is the star student of bass trombone wizard Dave Taylor.
When Max started getting calls to play with Wynton Marsalis and the LCJO, he casually mentioned it to Dave Monette and politely but persistently kept asking for the custom mouthpiece - something we usually will not attempt by mail from someone we have never heard play and without an in-shop visit.
To make the long story short, Max had an outrageous senior recital planned at the Manhattan School, and Dave decided to draw something up that was as close a guess as possible given we had never even heard Max play in person before. We came up with two designs and one of the two was the winner - a combination of new SLAP cup with a very large backbore, medium large throat and an all-new configuration, lighter than usual custom mouthpiece blank.
Max got the mouthpiece several weeks before his recital, liked it, used it and somehow managed to get a HUG (!) after the recital from the President of the School for his outstanding compositions and performance. Among other tunes Max performed was “When You’re Smilin” played by “popping” the mouthpiece and moving the slide to control the pitch of the “pops.” He also played Duet for Bass Trombone and Stripper, which we really wish we could have - er - heard.
Max will be performing with the Roy Hargrove Big Band on Sunday, June 15 at the Hollywood Bowl as part of the Playboy Jazz Festival. They will then immediately record an album at Capitol's recording studios to be released sometime this winter. He also plays every Sunday night at Birdland with the Andy Farber Jazz Orchestra (6-8PM) and every Sunday at Fat Cat with Jade Synstelien's Fat Cat Big Band (8:30PM - 12:30PM).
For more information, including video and audio clips of Max in performance, visit: www.maxseigel.com