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With Christmas and the holiday season almost upon us it can be a good time to take stock. For me in the shop, this year has been a combination of sometimes having to dig in to get through (for example, the arrival of my second son, as wonderful as this is 😉 ) and recognising the good things that have come across my path.


The arrival of a new child is a big upheaval for anyone; for a largely one-man operation it certainly is. Soon these two monkeys will meet you in the shop as they work off their debt and learn the family business.

Arlo is the new arrival; cool, calm and sharp. Always laughing at the goofiness his older brother dishes up, he is at the same time working out how he can run rings around him within a short time. Oscar is just the monkey you see here.


A unexpected development this year was Chris appearing on the scene. Renowned for having his fingers in many different pies, he is both busy and a man of many talents. His latest pie is Vanguard Orchestral and just as I was starting to go stir-crazy on my own this year, he has brought his company, skills and experience to the shop.

Chris’s formidable sax skills and easy-going personality keep him incredibly busy as a player and teacher. He also manages all live music at The Rogue and Vagabond, Wellingtons busiest live music pub.

David McGurk has also returned…well sort of. He’s doing some admin from afar as we work out the logistics of a longer-term arrangement.

From the Repair Shop
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This year has been a frantic, but also enjoyable, one for us in the repair shop. This means the website has not been updated as much as I would like, but there are lots of interesting jobs being done. My highlight was overhauling a Vintage Martin Baritone with gold Schimdt pads. I have to admit I started out a skeptic of these pads but was a total convert. This year was also brought to you by Goretex Bassoon pads – gorgeous, firm, flat and snappy. Once again I loved them. There has also been a  myriad of oboes, saxophones, flutes and trumpets. 2017 promises to be just as busy – we are starting January with a fresh slate and a goal to keep time from work request to work completion to a maximum of 4 weeks.

From the Store


– We have had a recent shipment from Windsong, including most items they make around breath building and air stream support. The Breathing Gym books are great, along with the Air Bags and Breath Builders. Solid breathing support is fundamental to all brass and woodwind playing.
Berp Bio Oil is also a recent addition. Made from sustainably-grown sugarcane, Bio Oil is a non-petroleum, plant-based, non-toxic oil that some really like. It is available in three grades.
YBS62 Yamaha 62 Baritone 3 weeks old and looking brand new, it is being sold at a bargain price. These instruments are the gold standard in professional baritones and retail new for $10995. This is for sale for $8995 ONO, and comes complete with case and original box.
Pearl PF795RBEF CODA – This professional Pearl is eight years old and has all the added extras (D# roller,C# trill, gold lip plate). Immaculately maintained, this will be a great upgrade flute for someone.
P.MAuriat 67RUL – Top Selling P.Mauriat alto. Rolled toneholes and a smaller bore give this instrument an easy-speaking characteristic, but a full sound.

2016 Final Thought
It has been impressed upon me this year as my attention has been pulled in many different directions what an understanding, caring and personal relationship I have with you all. This is a blessing for me that I don’t take for granted. I wish you a safe and happy holiday season and look forward to serving you again in 2017.