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Mute Stories XII - Website Inquiries

 
On our website, www.tomcrownmutes.com, we have a well hidden link to Website Inquiries. Brass players occasionally find this link and we then receive inquiries about a variety of topics. Mostly the inquiry is about cork replacements, We even receive requests for corks from dog owners who’s dog somehow found his master’s mute and liked the taste of the corks. We supply replacement corks at no charge and with no questions asked.

Other messages are about how well the writer likes a particular mute and when he or she bought it, sometimes back to the 1970’s. One message called our attention to the toxicity of aluminum, brass and copper. Don’t Google toxicity in metals. We have enough bad news without this. A favorite topic is why we don’t make certain mutes. Wa-wa mutes for tenor and bass trombone. (we might sometime.) Why not adjustable cop, cup mutes for trumpet and trombone. (we are working on this). Why not Gemini piccolo trumpet straight mutes ? (why?).

My favorite mute Inquiry was several years ago, about wa-wa mutes for a double-belled euphonium. A young man wanted us to make wa-wa mutes for his double-belled euphonium, a small and a large wa-wa mute for the small and large bells. He said he played in an Iranian drum circle (what is that?). He wanted to equip his double-belled euphonium with two wa-wa mutes. I didn’t see how this would work without three or four hands. One hand to hold the instrument, one hand for the valves and a hand for each wa-wa mute. I frivolously responded, expressing my doubts, but suggesting that if we did make the mutes for him, he could have a scantily clad young lady work the wa-s, signaled by his blinks, left eye for small bell, right eye for large.(a sexist remark then, less so now with the current unprecedented (sic.) rampant trumpery). I never heard back from him and have been ever sorry for my “clever reply" to his serious request. If we had proceeded to make these two mutes it would have cost at least $500.00 a mute, including mandrels , spinning, buffing , testing etc. for one of a kind items. Would it have been worth it to him to spend $1,000.00 to have the only two double belled-euphonium wa-wa mutes in the world.

Maybe it would have been, but we will never know. Double-belled euphonium man in the Iranian drum circle, if you read this, please accept my apologies. I am sorry.