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Please read the 2013-14 Bradley Band Handbook and sign the acknowledgement at the bottom of the Bradley Band Student Information Sheet included in your first day of school packet. I have posted it below in both MS Word, and Adobe PDF.

Important Band Dates 2013- 2014

28th and 29th- All Seventh and Eighth Grade Students must bring
instruments and supplies to class

4th and 5th- All Sixth Grade Students must bring instrument and
supplies to class
5th- Smart Music Training Parent Night- 6:30 pm
6th- Smart Music Student Training- 8:00 am
10th- Student Conductor Training Session #1 (new conductors) 8 am
12th- Student Conductor Refresher Session (previous conductors) 8 am
17th- Bradley Middle School Curriculum Night
19th- Student Conductor Training Session #2- 8 am
20th- 8th Grade Band Night at Hough High School
23rd- Student Conductor Training Session #3- 8 am
26th- Student Conductor Training Makup Session- 8 am

11th- Hopewell High School Bradley Band Night (Marching Band Performance)
TBA- Marching Band Performance at a Home Football Game

7th- North Mecklenburg Christmas Parade (Marching Band Performance)
9th- Bradley Bands Winter Concert- 6:30 pm

11th- All District Band Auditions
24th- 25th- All District Band Clinic

12th- 14th- District Concert Festival

11th- Bradley Fine Arts Festival
25th- 27th- Possible Spring Trip (Performing Band)

10th- Solo and Ensemble Festival
27th- Bradley Bands Spring Concert

December 9th and May 27th are the only performance dates REQUIRED of all band students.

Show me my beginning Band ChoicesBeginning Band Instrument Videos

Joining the Bradley Band Brochure


Smart Music Parents Training Presentation
Here is the Power Point presentation and handouts from the Smart Music Parents Training presentation on Thursday, September 6th, 2012. 2013- 14 Parent Training will take place on Thursday, September 5th at 6:30 pm in the Bradley Band Room.

Sixth Grade Instructions for Securing an Instrument

Good Evening Band Parents!!!

We are just five days away from the opening of school for the 2012- 2013 school year. I am very excited to get your son or daughter started in what I hope will be a lifelong enjoyment of playing a musical instrument. This letter will give you all of the information you need to get the year started off on the right foot. Please read this carefully and let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

First, let's talk about getting a musical instrument. It is VITALLY important that you get a QUALITY musical instrument for your child. There are many instrument manufacturers out there that produce cheap instruments that at first seem very appealing because of their price point. Many of these instruments are much more difficult to produce a characteristic sound and often are impossible to have good intonation (playing in tune). I have found over the last nineteen years of teaching that the success rates with students playing inferior instruments is much lower than those that start out on a good student model instrument. Please help your child be successful by getting them quality. I guarantee you will be happier in the long run.

I am a big fan of the rent to own programs offered by our local music dealers. Here are some of the pros and cons of renting.

Low initial out of pocket expense

Often covered by a maintenance program for a small fee

Most are quality instruments

Can be returned if student does not continue in band

Can be exchanged if they move to a specialty instrument such as saxophone during the second semester

Many companies provide rental credit for the purchase of an intermediate model

Total price of the instrument is higher

As you can see, my pro list far outweighs the con list. The one drawback to renting is that the music stores base the rental payment on the retail price of the instrument which is always higher than a cash price. If you know this is going to be an instrument for the long term, buying can be a good option. Even though I am a fan of rent to own, my wife and I purchased my daughter her own flute when she began band last year. In our case, we knew that if she ended up not staying with the flute it would still be used. Renting vs. purchasing is a conversation you need to have as a family and make the choice that is right for you.

As far as WHERE to rent or purchase your instrument, the district only allows me to say that you should consult with a phone directory or talk to your neighbors. I can tell you that our CLOSEST music dealer is in the Rosedale shopping center off of Gilead Road at exit 23.

Next, let me talk about EXACTLY what supplies you will need to get with your instrument. Below is a list of instrument accessories as well as recommended instrument brands for each beginning instrument. Please look at this list CAREFULLY. I will discuss the band book after this list.

Flute care kit which includes cleaning items (should include cleaning cloth or swab and polishing cloth)

Cleaning rod (should be included with flute)

Music Stand (for home practice)

Recommended Brands- Yamaha, Gemeinhardt, Selmer, Jupiter

Clarinet care kit which includes cleaning items (make sure it is either wood or plastic depending on what the clarinet is made of)

3 Clarinet reeds of strength 2 1/2 from either Vandorn or Mitchell Laurie. Please avoid basic Rico reeds.

Reed case with ventilated grooves that holds two or four reeds

Mouthpiece cap (should be included with the clarinet)

Music Stand (for home practice)

Recommended Mouthpiece- Vandorn B45 or Premier by Hite
Recommended Instrument Brands- Yamaha, Buffet, Jupiter

Trumpet care kit

Music Stand (for home practice)

Recommended Mouthpiece- 5C
Recommended Instrument Brands- Bach, Yamaha, King

Trombone care kit (with slide cream NOT slide oil)

Small spray bottle that fits in case

Music Stand (for home practice)

Recommended Mouthpiece- 6 1/2AL
Recommended Instrument Brands- Bach, Yamaha, King, Conn

You must have everything listed above for your child to bring to their fourth day of band class on either September 5th or 6th. Their instrument case MUST have their name clearly marked on it! You may use an instrument or luggage tag, a label or a piece of tape with first and last name on it.

Method Book

All sixth grade students will be studying out the Essential Elements 2000 Book 1 Band Method. You can either purchase a copy of this book at the music retailer when you get your instrument or you can subscribe to Smart Music Practice Software which includes Book 1, Book 2 and dozens of supplementary methods and exercises. We started using Smart Music three years ago, and it has changed the way students practice at home. I am a HUGE fan of this wonderful practice tool. The best way to show you what Smart Music can do, however, is to have you go their website and see for yourself. With Smart Music, students have the advantage of being able to take quizzes and tests at home rather than in front of the entire class. Also, if they are not satisfied with their performance, they can re-record their performance until they are happy and then send it to me for evaluation. I have found that students using Smart Music practice longer and more often than students using the standard method book. Please visit the website and discover what a great learning tool this can be. I will have a Smart Music Parent Night on Thursday, September 6th at 6:30 pm in the band room. This informative session will show you all of the functionality of the programs as well as tips to help your child be more successful with Smart Music. The session should last one hour.


I would like all band students to get a small 1/2 inch binder with sheet protectors for their sheet music and music theory homework. They can also keep their required pencil and practice card in this binder so they never forget either of those items.

Practice Space

Please make sure your son/daughter is going to have an adequate practice space at home. They will need an area where they can practice without being disturbed by excessive noise or other distractions. If they are using SmartMusic, their practice space will need to be at a computer. Additionally, all students will need a comfortable chair on which they can sit up (kitchen chairs are usually ideal), a music stand and plenty of light. Remember, this is their homework for band class so we need to do what we can to provide a space where they can be most successful.

I think that is all you need to know before school begins. Remember they will not need their instruments and accessories until the fourth day of class. If for some reason your child has not chosen their instrument, we will take care of that on the first day of classes. We have a few who knew that they wanted either brass or woodwinds so we could place them in a class, but were unsure about their final choice. On the first day I will send home more information including practice procedures, testing, and classroom expectations. Thank you for allowing me to teach your child this year. I think it is going to be a wonderful experience for them!!

The Bradley Middle School Jazz Band and Hopewell Jazz Band on News 14!

The Bradley Middle School Jazz Band and Hopewell Jazz Bands are featured on News 14 after staging "Harmony for Haiti", a fundraising concert in support of ShelterBox USA.

Why Music Matters

December 22, 2008 — Jack Stamp giving one of the best examples of exactly why music education is so important and belongs in our schools

Benefits of Studying Music

A powerpoint that gives some great information about the benefits of studying music.

Bradley Band Announcement Line

Continuing for the 2010-11 school year: The Bradley Band Announcement Line!! Designed mainly for students and parents without internet access, the Bradley Band Announcement Line will provide weekly updated outgoing announcements about what is happening in the Bradley Band over the next week. If you know of someone who is without internet access, please pass along the Bradley Band Announcement Line phone number- 704-584-9080. Callers also will have the option of leaving a message for the director, however please note that this voicemail is only checked weekly. The fastest way to reach Mr. Owens is still through the school's direct phone number- 980-343-5750.

Smart Music Has Arrived!!

Smart Music, the interactive home practice system, has arrived at Bradley Middle School. This year, instead of getting a band method book for $7.95- $14.95, you can subscribe to Smart Music for $36.00 and have all of the method books we use in class as well as a majority of the sheet music and warmup exercises we will be using right on your home computer. Unlike practicing with the optional CD in the Essential Elements 2000 method book, with Smart Music you can adjust the tempos, create short practice loops for difficult areas, and be accompanied by a full band so you can see how your part fits into the whole piece. With optional weekly challenges and the ability to take playing quizzes and test from home on your schedule, this is going to really change how and how often you practice. Also, with Smart Music, practice cards are a thing of the past. You will be submitting all of your practice times directly to Mr. Owens through the Smart Music program. All of the information you need about Smart Music can be found under the Smart Music tab on the left. I think you are going to be amazed with how helpful and how fun this home practice system will be!