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Gerald Welker

Gerald L. Welker is in high demand as a performer, teacher, and clinician, having performed as a featured artist and having held numerous master classes at several universities throughout the U.S. and at the Royal Academy of Music in London.

Gerald was the 2nd Prize Winner in the professional division of the 2007 International Horn Competition of America, after winning the university division in 2003. He has been named a Yamaha Young Performing Artist, the National Federation of Music Clubs Brass Soloist of the Year, and has held numerous principal horn positions throughout the United States. Mr. Welker currently serves as the principal horn with the United States Air Force Academy Band in Colorado Springs, CO, as well as maintaining an active solo career.

Remembrance: Probably the highest honor that I have had in my career, was performing as a member of the world-renowned TransAtlantic Horn Quartet with Michael Thompson, Richard Watkins, and Charles "Skip" Snead (my teacher for many years). I went on a tour to London with this group in 2005. It was such an honor to play with such world-class men and horn players, not to mention that my favorite horn recording in the world features Michael and Richard (The Golden Echo). These guys were my heros, and here I was, treated as an artistic equal by the world's finest. I will never forget the pride and confidence that gave me.

On the trip, we played a live BBC show, celebrating the life of composer, Michael Tippett. It also happened to be Michael Thompson's 52nd Birthday, so indeed the beer would flow that evening:) I just remember feeling that all of my practice and hard work had really paid off. To be trusted by these musicians, not only to play to their level, but actually make the group stronger, was validating. It truly was my finest hour as a hornist, and I will never forget the experience.

 

My Kit

  • Horn: Lewis-Duerk LDx7 "Schmidt"
  • Mouthpiece: Paxman Halstead-Chidell, 25A, London Metric-Delrin Rim
  • Case: CardoCase- A Night at the Opera

Essential Must Haves

  1. Quality equipment: horn, mutes, oils, etc.
  2. The drive and desire to SERVE THE MUSIC!

Something Worth Learning

All the solo horn literature that you can get your hands on. Interstellar Call (Messiaen), Horn Lokke (Berge), Intrada (Ketting) are just a few great examples. Or, just grab some Bach Cello Suites. In any case, if you can make convincing music by yourself, then you will be a fine compliment to any ensemble.

Favorite Things

God. My beautiful wife, Joy, and my three daughters. I love music, serving primarily as a horn player, but also a vocalist, pianist, composer and arranger. I also love sports, fitness, fine wines, and COFFEE.

Practice Inspiration

I always want to strive to be the absolute best I can be. Usually, I garner inspiration from individuals who have proven to be the best in their field. The best example that I can think of would have to be Michael Jordan. He is proof that talent, and the desire to be the best, will get you far in your journey to mastering your craft.

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