Trombonist's Dictionary

alto trombone - n. A very weak tenor trombone.
bass trombone - n.1-Several mutually exclusive instruments hooked together by an ingenious set of tubes, rotors, levers and valves. Capable of very loud, very rude noises accompanied by a percussive symphony of mechanical clanks, squeaks, squawks and whistles.2-The lead trumpet of the trombone family.
bass trombonist - n. The one in the section who couldn't develop any high range whatsoever as a young player and is now getting even by drowning everyone else out whenever he gets a chance.
bass trumpet - n. An instrument that combines all the worst features of the trumpet and the trombone.
conductor - n. One who has accepted the fact that he cannot play but has NOT accepted the reasons why.
contractor - n. Someone who cannot play, does not know it, but thinks he knows how OTHER people play.
doodle tongue - n. A rapid tonguing style that is too weak.
double tongue - n. A rapid tonguing style that is too strong.
embouchure - n. An ad hoc and ephemeral arrangement of the tissues of the face designed to allow a trombonist to play a desired note. Some players claim to have only one. They are the ones who can only play one note.
flexibility - n. A talent best left to gymnasts and contortionists.
fortissimo - adj. A trombonist's mezzo-piano.
free jazz - n. Jazz for which no one will pay any money.
F trigger-abbreviation - Originally used when the first one failed in the middle of a concert and the player was overheard to say "F*!@ing trigger as he tried to make it work.
gig bag - n. A container designed to collect and hold dents.
high range - n. The range above where you can comfortably play.
jazz club - n. A place where people pay a lot of money not to listen to jazz, most of which does not go to the musicians to whom they are not listening.
jazz festival - n. A place where people pay a lot of money not to listen to music that is not jazz in the first place.
jazz trombone - n. (also called peashooter, slipstick, small bore horn, and primitive blow stick) Any trombone that sounds bad below middle Bb and shrill above middle C.
lead trombonist - n. (also referred to as principal trombonist) The one in the section w/the worst middle and low range.
legato - adj. A style of playing midway between glissando and staccato. Rarely achieved on the slide trombone.
low range - n.1 - The ugly part.2 - The clumsy part.3 - The range below where you can comfortably play.
microphone - n. A mechanical device designed to collect and amplify the least pleasing 5% of the sound of a trombone.
middle range - n.
1 - The range in which you can be sure not to miss notes. Usually less than a minor third.
2 - The range in which you run out of excuses.
mouthpiece - n. A convenient excuse for missed notes.
mute - n. A device designed to render the already largely ignored trombone completely inaudible.
no pressure system - n. A way of playing the trombone that lets lots of air escape from around the rim of the mouthpiece.
orchestral trombone -n.
1 - Originally a medium sized horn used primarily in support of the woodwinds and strings.
2 - In contemporary times, a gigantic horn used primarily to drown out the woodwinds and strings.
3 - Also contemporarily, any trombone that is too large on which to comfortably play the trombone solo in Ravel's "Bolero".
pianissimo - adj. No definition available in a trombone dictionary.
pitch - n. What all the other instruments do not have.
rubato - adj. What most conductors consider a steady tempo.
second trombonist - n. The one in the section who can play well neither high not low.
single tongue - n. A rapid tonguing style that does not work.
solo - n. Something played by everyone but trombonists.
spit valve - n. A device invented to torture people who sit in front of trombonists.
staccato - adj., n. Notes short enough that you can't hear the slide glissando that occurs between them.
string players - n. The ones with the earplugs. (Also saxophonists in jazz big band situations.)
tenor trombone - n. A trombone that is neither capable of being played high enough or low enough to be easily heard.
trombone - n. a manually operated air driven pitch approximator.
1 - A puzzle in the shape of a brass instrument designed to totally defeat whomever is foolish enough to try to solve it.
2 - A brass instrument that is most often used as camouflage and support for bad trumpet and french horn players.
3 - The interior lineman in the game of music.
valve trombone - n.
1 - An oxymoron.
2 - A trombone for people with short arms, a weak tongue, bad pitch and/or little or no hand/eye/ear coordination.