All about musical instruments - menu page
So you want to learn a musical instrument? We advise you what instrument to play, where to buy one, how to get lessons, what it will cost - everything you need to know about instrumental tuition

About Pay the Piper
Why play an instrument?
What instrument
to play

How to buy an instrument
Other costs
Where to get lessons
How much progress
will I make?

Doing your practice
Music exams
Upgrading your instrument
Finding opportunities
to play

Switching instruments
What's copyright?
Links to other sites
Your questions answered







































WebCounter says you are visitor number

Copyright © David Bramhall 2005
This site is designed and maintained by PlainSite.

Pay the Piper



Just so you don't think we're
making all this up ...


Pay the Piper was created by David Bramhall.
A singer, clarinettist, double-bassist and pianist, David spent 25 years as a school music teacher in London, Scotland, Norfolk and Suffolk before becoming a manager of Suffolk County Council's Schools Music Service which employs instrumental teachers, loans instruments, provides lessons to pupils in most of the County's schools and operates its own examination system. It also provides bands, orchestras, choirs and other out-of-school activities for young musicians.
During his twelve years with the Music Service, David found that many of the enquiries he received were very basic ones relating to parents' need for information and reassurance about choosing an instrument for their son or daughter, about buying the instrument and maintaining it, and about what standards might reasonably be expected and what opportunities would present themselves. Paradoxically, as his task was to provide services to schools and not members of the public, he was not officially allowed to answer this type of question - though he always did! So when he retired from real work in 2001 it made sense to use some of the expertise he had built up over the years making such information available to those who need it through this website. He is greatly assisted in this task by having access to friends and former colleagues who are very experienced instrumental teachers, and can usually come up with any answers he doesn't know himself.
David has published extensively in various periodicals on music education, and has written two books about classroom music (Composing in the Classroom Opus 1 and Composing in the Classroom Opus 2, published by Boosey & Hawkes) and an eBook about choirs (Training your young choir published by The Choirmaster Press). He is also a successful composer of choral music. He has run youth orchestras and choirs for many years, has conducted in towns and cities all over Europe and was the founder and director of the short-lived but award-winning Harmony Girls' Choir.
In recent years he has turned his attention to writing fiction. His series of novels entitled The Greatest Cape (published by Walnut Tree Books) is available from bookshops and online, as is a short collection of ghost stories, "Aurelia".