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The Trombone ForumCreation and PerformanceTrombonists(Moderator: zemry) Bill Pearce - favorite albums
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Pteranabone

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« on: Feb 10, 2017, 09:43PM »

 After running across his name occasionally, I finally picked up the Bill Pearce compilation CD, "Cherished Songs...".    Yet another great one I discovered way too late.

 It looks like he was fairly prolific in recording LPs; I would appreciate recommendations from the forum on which LPs to buy first.

 I also read all the existing threads but would like to know more about Mr. Pearce.    Did he ever record or collaborate outside of the Christian music genre?   Did he have specially made Bach 12 mouthpieces with large shanks to fit the Olds Opera, or did he use an adapter?   

I read some very kind and moving rememberances from Mr. Doug Yeo.  Did anyone else have the good fortune or blessing to know Mr. Pearce?
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Max Acree
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« Reply #1 on: Feb 10, 2017, 11:12PM »

I love Bill. Back during my first year of college his tone was honestly my favorite. Him and Urbie were the two I listened to the most. As far as I know Bill was a super devout Christian and spent most if not all of his life pouring his talents into that. He was a radio announcer for years on a Christian radio program called Nightsounds, I think. I'm not religious at all myself but I can still say the man had an amazing speaking voice and actually was also a very accomplished bass singer. There is one CD that I recommend which is called "Touch of Gold" which has a compilation of his greatest tracks on Trombone. As I do understand though, Bill played and gave masterclasses at a few of the ITFs back in the 70's and 80's. I believe it was at one of these that he eventually got his signature horn, a .547 bore Olds Opera that he used with a NY Bach 12 through an adapter shank. He sounded phenomenal on it. As far as Im aware this was really the extent of his involvement with anything that was not directly related to christian music. I know in his interview he also expressed an admiration for Urbie Green and Bill Watrous. I don't really know if Bill was able to improvise, with his facility and tone on Trombone, he almost didn't need it. The closest he ever really got to this point was in his recording of Joshua (not the miles tune). He has a cadenza at the end that is very flashy but i don't think it is really improvised. It was probably just something Bill worked out before hand and memorized. To my eyes, Bill is more of a stylist. He plays melodies and delivers them with impeccable phrasing.
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Steve Foote
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« Reply #2 on: Feb 11, 2017, 08:42AM »

Another Bill Pearce fan here!

I bought an Opera but somehow it just doesn't sound like his. Still love the horn.

Nightsounds has a website with a store  http://nightsoundsradio.org/shop.cfm

There are books, Trombone + Piano, which were published many years ago and occasionally come up on EBay. Most, if not all, of the arrangements are not written the way he played them but are written to sound like parts of his arrangements.

Welcome to the "Fan Club"
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« Reply #3 on: Feb 11, 2017, 07:27PM »

I believe Doug Yeo interviewed Bill Pearce . It's on his website I think. I have several of his CDs and heard him at ITA Festival in Nashville in the 70's. As much as I enjoyed his trombone playing his singing was just as good. When I was working on my masters at Ithaca College I listened to his radio program. I  found it refreshing spiritually.
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Max Croot
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« Reply #4 on: Feb 11, 2017, 08:28PM »

Hi My L.P is called Voice and Trombone. Side 1 he sings, with organ acc. Side 2 he plays. Couple of tracks I think he plays all 4 parts of a quartet.
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« Reply #5 on: Feb 11, 2017, 10:16PM »

I just listened to Mr. Pearce for the first time. What a great sound. Wish I'd heard this a long time ago.
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CharlieB
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« Reply #6 on: Feb 18, 2017, 04:24PM »


Bill Pearce is one of my all-time favorites.
I've posted these links before, but here they are again; an interview, and his last recording:

http://trombone.org/articles/library/viewarticles.asp?ArtID=105
http://trombone.org/snd/pearce-sunset.mp3
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« Reply #7 on: Feb 20, 2017, 06:45PM »

My parents had a Bill Pearce album that I listened to over and over.  It started with "Worthy is the Lamb."  I loved his effortless-sounding  legato.  I spent late middle school/early high school playing along with that song over and over by ear.  I finally got all the pitches and rhythms right, but it still didn't sound right.  He was up an octave from me!  :)  So I spent another couple years working my way up until I could play in unison with the recording.   It's probably the main reason I could play the high F in Defaye's Danse Sacree my senior year at contest.  His Joshua fit the Battle of Jericho was also very inspirational for me.

Anyone know if you can get his actual arrangements somewhere?  I know watered down versions were published for younger players, but what about the exact arrangements he recorded?
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stanzabone

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« Reply #8 on: Feb 21, 2017, 05:06AM »

And he got that buttery tone with what most of us would consider a mis-matched setup, a small diameter mic and large bore horn. Anyone know how different the more widely used 12C differs from the old 12 he was using? Those are pretty scarce, AFAIK.
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« Reply #9 on: Feb 21, 2017, 05:29AM »

You guys do know that's a highly-processed and engineered sound, don't you. Although highly proficient, he didn't sound that full & deep live, if "live" recordings are any indication.

And that's why it's misguided to compare how we play to how an artist sounds on a recording. A better comparison would be to compare either - how we play on our own recording that has had every enhancement possible made to it against a published artist's recording - or how we compare live to live. But even a live-to-live comparison is flawed if the performer has his sound pushed through a system. Still, a good goal to have - if we realize that it's kinda impossible to actually achieve.

And yes, I also love his album sound.

...Geezer
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CharlieB
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« Reply #10 on: Feb 21, 2017, 02:14PM »

Here he is "live."
I'd be exceedingly happy to sound like that.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fqlgtx6KI6E
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« Reply #11 on: Feb 21, 2017, 04:34PM »

I covered that. It's nice - but the sound ain't like what's on his albums and THAT was my point. So thank you for reinforcing my point. lol

...Geezer
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« Reply #12 on: Feb 21, 2017, 09:53PM »


No prob.
Always glad to be of help whenever needed.
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« Reply #13 on: Feb 22, 2017, 04:46AM »

 Good!

I oftentimes wonder what impact he might have had on music and 'bonedom had he not put all of his energies into the niche genre of religious music. I guess we will never know. He was the Elvis Presley of trombone. Elvis had the bulk of his achievement awards recording gospel music.

Perhaps he would have been just another terrific trombone player, whereas he saw his opportunity to be a big fish in a small pond and grabbed it. Smart guy!

I think sometimes artists become the kind of artist that sells vs the kind of artist they really want to be. Jethro Tull was a classical flutist, but made zillions as a rock star. Maybe being the kind of artist that sells gets a certain message out that would be lost if the artist chose any other kind of style. I  Don't know but in any event it's sad he died "young".

...Geezer
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Max Acree
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« Reply #14 on: Feb 22, 2017, 11:02PM »

Good!

I oftentimes wonder what impact he might have had on music and 'bonedom had he not put all of his energies into the niche genre of religious music. I guess we will never know. He was the Elvis Presley of trombone. Elvis had the bulk of his achievement awards recording gospel music.

Perhaps he would have been just another terrific trombone player, whereas he saw his opportunity to be a big fish in a small pond and grabbed it. Smart guy!

I think sometimes artists become the kind of artist that sells vs the kind of artist they really want to be. Jethro Tull was a classical flutist, but made zillions as a rock star. Maybe being the kind of artist that sells gets a certain message out that would be lost if the artist chose any other kind of style. I  Don't know but in any event it's sad he died "young".

...Geezer

I would have to disagree with you on that. Bill was ONE in a million. His tone, execution, high range were impeccable in every sense of the word and I have no doubt he could have done anything had he really wanted to. I also would disagree with you about the processed sound comment. While Bill may have engineered and tweaked his sound in post production, Ive known numerous people who saw him live and said his execution and overall concept of sound always remained the same. Even when listening to the live video that was posted a few comments ago, the sound still sounds comparable to what I know on his CDs.
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Geezerhorn

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« Reply #15 on: Feb 23, 2017, 04:41AM »

I would have to disagree with you on that. Bill was ONE in a million. His tone, execution, high range were impeccable in every sense of the word and I have no doubt he could have done anything had he really wanted to. I also would disagree with you about the processed sound comment. While Bill may have engineered and tweaked his sound in post production, Ive known numerous people who saw him live and said his execution and overall concept of sound always remained the same. Even when listening to the live video that was posted a few comments ago, the sound still sounds comparable to what I know on his CDs.

Okay, but I personally heard a HUGE difference between his "live" vs his album sound and yet I heard a basis for it in his "live" sound. But his "live" sound had a lot of air in it that an engineer removed as he broadened and deepened Bill's "raw" sound

It's the perfect example to me of just how big a role a great sound engineer can play. A great sound engineer could do a recording of any amateur on this Forum and engineer it to sound terrific; coloring tone, editing out mistakes, sharpening articulation, making fluid phrases out of chop, adjusting tempo, timing, etc. Those things are easy for a gifted AND well-equipped sound engineer to do.

I'll even go so far as to state that a great and well-equipped sound/video engineer could take a video of a player with a miserable sound track - separate the two - clean up the sound track to sound like a million bucks in all the ways I stated above, then re-sync the sound perfectly with the video. I've seen it done.

Even Bill, late in his life, said words to the effect that he had to finish a recording with a sound engineer - one note at a time. How do you think that's done? He wouldn't have needed to play every note in context as he wanted it for the finished product. He would just need to play a long tone on a given pitch and the engineer could adjust the attack, duration and decay to fit into the musical phrase. All a great sound engineer would need would be a series of long tones and he could create the whole song - THE WHOLE SONG. The long tones wouldn't even have to have perfect pitch. That could be adjusted as well. Yes, it would be a tedious process, but for a good sound engineer - it would otherwise be duck soup.

The technology of the recording industry had come a LONG way since they began with simple tape splicing. For decades now, artists have been able to make recordings that they would find impossible to duplicate in a live performance. And that is why I caution all students in Forumiteland to NOT compare their live sound with an artist on a favorite album, although it may be a nice - albeit unattainable - goal to have.

...Geezer 
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zemry

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« Reply #16 on: Feb 23, 2017, 06:05PM »

I loved the way he mixed his faith with his musicianship. I'm sure that he could have made more money playing secular music but he chose his faith over money.
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« Reply #17 on: Feb 23, 2017, 07:31PM »

I loved the way he mixed his faith with his musicianship. I'm sure that he could have made more money playing secular music but he chose his faith over money.

Yes....and through his fine trombone playing and great singing as well as his radio program he was and is a great blessing to many people including me
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« Reply #18 on: Mar 02, 2017, 11:28PM »

I'm listening to an album now titled What Wondrous Love
from 1985

Pretty sure I heard about him from Yeo's website
Pretty sure I got the album from a goodwill
Goodwill is good for LPs....got a Christmas LP with Jay Friedman and others (while in Chicago)
probably $2
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