Choosing a flute

Head joint upgrades, Part 1!

Are you feeling like your flute is letting you down? Do you feel you are ready for an instrument that can do what you can imagine doing? Are you looking to upgrade to a much better instrument—and yet, you don't have the funds for a whole new flute?

We've all been in this position, and the very best advice I can give you is to UPGRADE YOUR HEAD JOINT! The head joint of a flute is like the bow for a violin or cello—and believe me, our string-player friends spend a lot of time searching for a better bow, since it is so much more affordable than a better fiddle!

As long as the body of your flute is working well—and if it isn't, you should send it to Luthier Tomás Miranda right away!—then you can definitely make a huge positive impact in your performance by upgrading to a better head joint.

Which brings me to Powell and Powell's famous head joints: famous since 1927 for their response, flexibility and projection! I have in stock a wide selection of head joints, both Signature (a more accessible line which is still totally handmade) and Custom, in materials ranging from classic Silver, Grenadilla, Aurumite and Gold. There's literally something for everyone.

If you are interested, just contact me for a no-obligation trial, or attend the 5th Summer Flute Academy, where there will be oodles of stock available to try and buy.

 Gorgeous Powell head joints, waiting for you to find yours!

Gorgeous Powell head joints, waiting for you to find yours!

POWELL DAY in LISBON - A gigantic success!

A week has passed, and I'm finally "back in the saddle" here with some news! Sorry—busy time of year!

Our first-ever POWELL DAY was a gigantic success! For the flutists who came by, nonstop all day long, there was a "feast" of flutes, piccolos and head joints to try out, two rooms and three "specialist" ears to listen attentively. Everyone had, I do believe, a blast trying out all the gear, and exploring the differences that the various head joint cuts, metals, weights, and so forth DO, IN FACT, make to the resulting sound. This permits each person to find their perfect match—so that they can become their own dream flutist!

Meanwhile, the folks from Boston, Daniel Sharp and Rebecca Eckles, were quite taken aback by the fantastic level of the flutists coming by. Yup! We're a small country on the map, but flute-wise, we are getting pretty darn BIG! It's been an exciting time and things are only getting better and better. It's always cool when "outsiders" confirm what we here feel—the BUZZ!

So I thank everyone who came by, it was a blast! And anyone who would like a follow-up session, or couldn't make it on that day, just contact me to set up a trial—there are still plenty of flutes (piccs and head joints) to try out!  

 The early risers on POWELL DAY, with Tiago Canto, Dina Hernandez, Vera Morais, Tomás Miranda, Daniel Sharp, Rebecca Eckles and a LOT of flutes!

The early risers on POWELL DAY, with Tiago Canto, Dina Hernandez, Vera Morais, Tomás Miranda, Daniel Sharp, Rebecca Eckles and a LOT of flutes!

DIA POWELL - it's already TOMORROW!

Hang on to your hats, and hope for no (more) rain! Powell Flutes is coming to Lisbon with lots of great gear for all us flutists to try out! Don't miss this first-ever opportunity to meet with Powell folks Daniel Sharp and Rebecca Eckles here in Lisbon, and have a grand time trying everything out!

The "show" runs from 11am to 6pm, come whenever you like! For more information on the location, please contact me here, or via FaceBook Messenger. You don't need to register or anything formal! 

It is reported that there might be some food (my most famous American specialty!) on hand as well! Here's how Lisbon was looking just a few minutes ago: I think it's saying "WELCOME, BOSTON!"

 Lisbon at dusk…

Lisbon at dusk…

DIA POWELL em Lisboa! Já este Domingo!

Porqué é que deves deslocar num Domingo, quando podia ficar todo o dia no sofá? :)) Porque este é uma oportunidade EXCEPCIONAL de experimentar imensas variedades de flautas fabricados pela famosa empresa Powell Flutes de Boston, Massachussetts! Não só experimentar mas com gente da Powell a ajudar e explicar e guiar e ouvir com ouvidos experientes!

Naturalmente, lá estarei também, para vos acolher e ajudar como sempre faz com quem esteja interessado em experimentar flautas. E haverá flautas de todas as gamas e materiais da Powell—diversão total!

Para receber informação sobre o local é só me contactar. O horário do dia é das 11h até às 18h. Pode até ser que, sendo em Portugal, haverá um bocado de bebes e comes para mostrar a hospitalidade portuguesa aos americanos da Powell ;)

 Daniel Sharp and myself at the Powell Factory in Boston, Massachussetts. Venham conhecer o Daniel pessoalmente em Lisbon, este Domingo!

Daniel Sharp and myself at the Powell Factory in Boston, Massachussetts. Venham conhecer o Daniel pessoalmente em Lisbon, este Domingo!

DIA POWELL em Lisboa: 16 de Outubro! Venham experimentar!

Tenho grandes notícias para todos os flautistas: dois Representantes da Powell Flutes, Boston, EUA, estarão em Lisboa todo o dia de Domingo, 16 de Outubro, com um vasto conjunto de flautas para todos experimentar!

O Daniel Sharp e a Rebecca Eckles da Powell vão trazer uma excelente seleção de flautas Powell Custom Handmade, inclusivo em platina, grenadilla, prata sterling, e o novo Ruby Aurumite. Vão trazer ainda cabeças Custom Handmade de vários materiais e cortes de embocadura, flautas Conservatory, Signature, Sonaré e flautins! Será uma verdadeira festa de flautas em Lisboa! 

Para saber mais pormenores, é só entrar em contacto comigo por email! Ficaremos à vossa espera para um dia como nenhum outro!

 A sala de experimentar flautas na fábrica da Powell em Boston—estará em Lisboa Domingo, dia 16!

A sala de experimentar flautas na fábrica da Powell em Boston—estará em Lisboa Domingo, dia 16!

Powell Flutes USA in Lisbon! Sunday, October 16th!

I have exciting news: Representatives Daniel Sharp and Rebecca Eckles of Powell Flutes in Boston, USA, will be in LISBON on Sunday, October 16th, to show an amazing array of flutes, piccolos and head joints!! They are popping over from Spain for a long day of "flute talk" with anyone who would like to try out these amazing instruments. 

Daniel and Rebecca will be on hand, along with myself, with a selection of Handmade Custom flutes made in platinum, grenadilla, sterling silver, and the new Ruby Aurumite Custom Flute. In addition, there will be a selection of Custom headjoints and piccolos, Conservatory flutes, Signature flutes and piccolos, and Powell Sonaré flutes.

Take this first-time-ever opportunity to join us by sending me an email to receive details about time and location. See you then!

 The flute-testing room at Powell's Boston factory—coming SOON to LISBON!

The flute-testing room at Powell's Boston factory—coming SOON to LISBON!

Pointers for choosing a Flute Head Joint (1)

One way to upgrade your flute and keep to a budget is to substitute the head joint for one of the many head joints produced by Powell Flutes. The variety available is truly amazing, from different materials: sterling silver, Aurumite® 9k and Aurumite® 14k, yellow, rose and white gold of different weights, platinum and grenadilla wood! Furthermore, there are now four different "cuts", all of which produce the famous Powell projection and colors, but have slight differences that appeal to each player in a very personal way.

The best way to try out head joints is to make an appointment, and then experiment on every head joint you can possibly try—even ones that are out of your price range—in order to get an idea of what you like. Because there really are no "shoulds" in choosing a head joint: there is no point in choosing a head based on what your teacher or a famous flutist plays or what you think you should like. The only important things is how you feel playing it, and how it sounds TO YOU as you play it. Ideally, you can also get important feedback about projection from me or another musician, standing at some distance from you as you play.

You should play passages in all registers and dynamics, legato and articulated, in order to get a feel for the response in these different musical situations. Take your time and have fun in the process—with luck and a relaxed, experimental frame of mind, you're likely to find just the right head joint FOR YOU

 Powell Head Joints - gorgeous!

Powell Head Joints - gorgeous!