Save the Internet

Unless you have been under a rock for the past week, you probably heard about the FCC’s decision to end net neutrality. Net neutrality is what makes the internet open and free.

Hannah B Flute | Save Net Neutrality

Even though the FCC’s decision is final, there is still hope. Multiple state attorneys general are suing the FCC, and we can even get Congress involved. But we have to act.

In today’s post, I am going to stem away from the normal music content. I’m going to write about how the whole issue of net neutrality affects us all, and how it affects this blog.

What is Net Neutrality?

Net neutrality was officially put into place by the FCC in 2015 under the Obama administration. The order barred internet service providers (ISPs) from charging more for certain websites or for a faster connection.

Basically, it required ISPs like Verizon and Comcast to treat Facebook and Twitter the same as email. To treat small blogs like this one the same as larger sites like Google.

It’s a pretty big deal. Without net neutrality, internet costs could skyrocket.

The Argument Against Net Neutrality

Some people argue that the government should not be regulating the internet. That taking away net neutrality would spur competition within the internet market.

The problem with that logic is that companies are money hungry. They know that the internet has become a vital part of many people’s lives. ISPs know that a lot of people will pay for internet, no matter the price.

If ending net neutrality is anything like giving tax cuts to the rich, it will not help the average person. I don’t want to get too political, but trickle down economics doesn’t work.

Deregulation doesn’t work.

The Future of Blogs Like This One

The future of this little blog is bleak, especially if the end of net neutrality takes effect. I’m a solo blogger with a full time day job. I can’t afford to pay ISPs to make my site faster.

I may not even be able to run this blog anymore. It may not be worth it.

Other small bloggers would probably agree. It takes a lot of work to run a blog, and most bloggers don’t have the same capital as huge corporations. We can’t afford to be in the so-called fast lane.

Blogs and bloggers need net neutrality. Blog readers need net neutrality.

The only groups that benefit from the FCC’s decision are the extremely wealthy and the larger corporations. The people and companies that can afford to pay a premium for internet service.

What Can We Do?

You can start by signing this petition.

Share posts like this one. Share the posts that list what you can do. Let others know that there is still a (small) bit of hope.

You can contact your local representatives and tell them what you think.

Check out articles like this one to find an ISP that still believes in a free and open internet. Avoid the ones that don’t or face premiums.

So…

Have you participated in the fight to save net neutrality? Will you do something? Let me know in the comments!

Net neutrality is super important, especially for smaller websites like this one. In order to continue sharing my content with you all, I need to know that I can do that for free. I need to know that it is worth it.

Gift Ideas for Musicians

With Halloween being over and the holidays coming up soon, I thought it would be fun to write a post about gift ideas for musicians. Whether you are a musician or you know a musician, this post is for you.

If you aren’t a musician, but you know one, it can be hard to think if gift ideas. If you are a musician, hopefully this post can give you some inspiration for your own wish list.

Killer Harmony | Gift Ideas for Musicians

Gift giving is one of the best things about this time of year, and I want to share my ideas for gifts that every musician needs. So without further ado, here are my top gift ideas for musicians.

NOTE: This post contains affiliate links. For my full disclosure policy, click here.

Music Stand

And not the teeny tiny wire stands. As a musician starts to progress and work on more and more music, they need a better music stand. Those folding wire stands can barely hold anything before they collapse.

You don’t need the most expensive stand out there, but you need one that is durable and can hold your music.

I have and love this Gearlux music stand. It is super durable, but it is also easy to take with me to rehearsals or performances. The top part is vented, with holes, that make it a little lighter, but still a great stand.

So if you have an advancing musician in your life, a new music stand is a great gift!

Instrument Stand

This is different from a music stand, because it holds an instrument, rather than music. There are stands for almost any musical instrument.

Almost any musician, beginner or professional, can benefit from an instrument stand. Putting your flute, violin, or saxophone on a stand keeps it safe when you’re not playing it.

Setting your instrument on a table or chair is not safe. You never know if it could get knocked off or roll onto the ground. Some one could sit on it. It’s just not a good idea.

An instrument stand saves you from that issue. Good quality stands are built to keep your instrument on them and secure in their place. My favorite brand for instrument stands is Hercules. They are made super well and don’t cost an arm and a leg.

Pencils…lots of pencils.

When writing on sheet music, you never want to use pen. The music might be a rental, or you may want to change something later. That is why pencils are the way to go.

But pencils can get lost or left behind at rehearsals. So an abundance of pencils is necessary. You could get the simple wood ones or some cute ones with music notes on them.

Another great tool to go with pencils is a pencil guard or holder for a music stand. These things keep pencils out of the way of your music, but still close by for when you need them.

This one is a great way to keep your pencils secure, right by your side. Another great pencil holder that can also hold other accessories is this one.

Blank Notation Paper

Notation paper is perfect for budding composers, aspiring teachers, and anyone else who wants to write their own music. Notation paper is also great for music majors, because they often have assignments that require blank notation paper.

There are a few different styles, but I really like this Hal Leonard one. It can fit in a binder, which is great for students, and it is also not too bulky.

While there are countless music notation programs, there is something about putting pencil to paper. You aren’t bound to the limitations of a particular program, and you can write anywhere. No need to have room for a laptop or tablet.

Case/Cover/Gig Bag

Most instruments come with good cases already, but it can be fun to give someone a cuter or more stylish case or bag. For flutists as well as clarinet and oboe players, Fluterscooter is a great brand.

I do not have any of their bags yet, but I think they are so cool and pretty. They are more expensive than other brands, so you want to be careful before giving these bags as a gift, but they are worth it.

I think the black patent leather bag is so chic and professional, and it puts any other case cover to shame.

Another great brand for cases and bags is Protec. They make cases and case covers for almost every instrument. I have their flute case cover, and it has lasted over four years now. They are insulated, and they come with an awesome shoulder strap to make carrying your instrument easier.

So…

If you’re a musician, what’s on your wishlist this year? If you know a musician, do you think you’ll get them any of these items? Let me know in the comments below!

Flute Deals & Rebates: Fall 2017

Buying a new instrument can be expensive, and coupons or other deals can help bring down the cost. So, I wanted to talk about a few flute deals and rebates that are going on now. If you want to buy a new flute, now is the time to do it. There are multiple rebate programs going on right now.

NOTE: I am not affiliated with any of these programs. I just want to share the information with you if you are in the market for a new flute.

Killer Harmony | Savings & Rebates for Flutists Fall 2017

I found all of these deals on FluteWorld, but you can qualify for these programs if you purchase a new instrument through a reputable dealer. Each of the programs have varying terms and conditions, so I will link to an information page where you can learn more.

So, let’s get started!

Jupiter’s Banding Together Celebration

Jupiter is a well known musical instrument brand, and flutes are just part of what they make. They have quite a few models that will qualify for this program, and the best part is the savings are instant.

This is not a rebate program.

You won’t have to wait to get your savings.

The Banding Together Celebration runs from October 1 through December 30, 2017. A few select Azumi flutes are also part of the savings program.

Qualifying Instruments

Piccolos: JPC 1000, 1010, & 1100E

Flutes: JFL 1000RBO, Azumi AZ1, AZ2, & AZ3

Alto Flutes: JAF 1000, 1000U, 1000X, 1100E, 1100UE, & 1100XE

Bass Flutes: JBF 1000

Contrabass Flutes: JCF 1000

More Information

Pearl Flutes

Pearl Flutes is offering a cash back mail in rebate for their Quantz flute line. These flutes are great for students who are outgrowing their first instrument. While I have not personally played any of these models, I do love my Pearl piccolo.

You will have to send in the rebate form in order to get your savings, but for $50, that is worth it. Any bit of savings helps.

This program runs from October 1, 2017 through January 15, 2018.

Qualifying Instruments

Flutes: PF-525, 665, & 765

More Information

Trevor James Step Up Rebate

I know a lot of people (online anyway, lol) who love Trevor James flutes. I have their 10x student model, and it sounds better than other student flutes. For this program, you do have to fill out a rebate form.

If you want to buy a Trevor James step up flute or low flute, you are in luck!

This rebate program started October 1, and it ends December 31, 2017.

Qualifying Instruments

Flutes: Cantabile, Virtuoso

Alto Flute & Bass Flute

More Information

Step Up to Yamaha 2017 Promotion

Yamaha is a very well known musical instrument brand. They are also another brand offering a promotion for any step up instrument purchased.

I have never played a Yamaha flute, but I know they are common for beginners. Some people love them enough to upgrade to a more advanced Yamaha model.

The Yamaha program is a rebate program. Some models will get you $50, others $100.

The program runs from October 1 until December 31, 2017.

Qualifying Instruments

Piccolos: YPC 32, 62*, & 81*

Flutes: YFL 362, 382, 462, 482, 577*, 587*, 677*, 687*, 777*, 787*, & 800 series*

Low Flutes: Alto & Bass flutes*

More Information

Please Remember!

Every flutist has different needs and what works with one flute might not work with another. Always try before you buy if you can, or make sure you can return the instrument if you are not satisfied.

Each of these brands make high quality flutes, and I would not recommend these programs if I didn’t trust these brands. However, you should still test out the models you are interested in. We all have different mouths, and we all have different needs when it comes to our instruments.

So…

I’m considering getting an alto flute from one of these companies, and if I do, I would love to do a review. Let me know if you would like to see that!

Are you in the market for a new flute? Do you think you will check out some of these instruments? Let me know in the comments!

Online Resources and Websites for Music

When it comes to music, the internet is filled with resources to help us out. There are websites like YouTube where you can find free recordings of pieces, online metronomes, and even sheet music downloads.

Killer Harmony | Websites for Musicians | With so many music websites, it can be hard to find the most helpful ones. I have compiled a list of websites that will help musicians of all levels.

I love using the internet to help me. I have found a lot of sheet music, music tips, and also career tips. In this post, I am going to share my favorite online resources with you. I hope you find something that helps.

Without further ado, let’s get started.

IMSLP

The International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP), or Petrucci Library, is a huge library. You can find so many different pieces from solo works to full orchestral scores. Some pieces also have audio recordings that you can download.

There is music for almost every instrument, even some obscure ones. You can search for instrumentation, composer, style, or for a specific piece. It is completely free to use, and I cannot recommend it enough.

If you want to learn a piece or practice your score study skills, IMSLP probably has what you’re looking for. The only difficulty might be finding pieces that are still protected under copyright.

8Notes

This website is great for beginner musicians and music teachers. There is a decent amount of sheet music for most of the orchestral instruments and a few others. Instruments outside the orchestra include piano, recorder, saxophone, guitar, and ukulele.

You can find music of different genres, like jazz or music for different holidays. There is also a forum and a music theory section to add to the website.

YouTube

If you need to listen to a piece of music, check YouTube. You are bound to find many recordings, some better than others. But the sheer amount of recordings, especially for popular works, means that you can hear different interpretations of the piece.

You can also listen to different recordings by some of the great players of your instrument. Listening to professionals is a great tool when learning an instrument.

Teachers can use YouTube as a way to market to students by sharing videos and recordings. Show off your skills. A YouTube channel can be a great way to attract students and clients.

Amazon

Oh, Amazon. How I love thy Prime. But seriously, Amazon is a great place to find sheet music and other music accessories. If you procrastinate buying a piece of music, Amazon Prime will deliver it in two days.

I haven’t been able to buy everything from Amazon, because they aren’t a music library, but it’s nice. I can also look for music stands, instrument stands, and other music supplies on there. They have a pen that is set up to create a music staff for you.

You need Amazon Prime in your life. If you don’t listen to anything else in this post, listen to this. Especially because you can use Amazon for more than just music.

Sheet Music Plus

I have yet to order from SMP, but I have heard good things about it. You can find music to download and music to order. I’ve seen music from all genres on there. It’s pretty cool.

The downside to using it as opposed to other sheet music websites is that the music costs money. But you can support other musicians by using it.

If you are a composer or arranger, look into this website as a way to publish your music. I am considering this for the near future, because it seems pretty cool. You can publish original music or arrangements of songs in their library and earn royalties when people purchase it.

Killer Harmony

Of course, I had to list my own blog and site. I post twice weekly about music. I share music tips and information with the goal of making music more accessible to everyone. Music, especially classical music, isn’t always as appreciated as it should be.

My dream is to pursue this thing full time and to create a valuable resource for musicians of all genres and levels. If you want to go behind the scenes, I suggest you follow me on Instagram (@KillerHarmony) and subscribe to the blog at the end of this post.

So…

Did I miss any music websites? What are you favorite music resources? Let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

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Taking My Own Advice + Big News!

If you have follows my blog for awhile, you would know that I am all about doing what makes you happy. I have written posts on why it’s okay to transfer in college, why you should pursue your passion and more.

Killer Harmony | Taking My Own Advice + Big News | Sometimes in life, you have to make a change. In order for me to enjoy this blog, I have to write about what I love. Music fits that more than college.

After taking time to think about things, I realized that I should take my own advice. As my time on college is coming to an end, I have lost motivation for writing about college. I still love helping people through my writing, but I will be making some changes here on Killer Harmony.

More Music.

I started this blog with the idea of writing about music, hence the name. I then moved to writing about college so that I could widen my reach, and it worked. However, I know that I am more passionate about music and sharing that. There are tons of other college bloggers, and I don’t feel like I can do justice to college related topics anymore.

I will soon be earning my degree in music performance, and I want to share what I have learned with the world.

I will be writing about learning how to play music or read music, and I want to help people of all levels express themselves through music! With recent events in funding for the arts, music is more important now than ever. I sincerely believe that music can change a person’s life, and I want to advocate for music.

New Schedule!

With these changes to the blog niche, I am also going to be posting on Mondays again. Tuesdays never felt right to me, and I think Monday will work much better. It gives me the whole week to work on a post, and you as readers can catch up whenever.

I would also like to start doing some more audio or video recording to post on the blog. That might not start until mid May, but it is something that I want to do.

More Passion. Better Posts.

As I said above, I have not been as motives to write for this blog as I once was. That is okay, as people and interests change. With the changes, I have decided that I need to take this blog in another direction.

Music is a passion of mine that will never die, yet my passion for helping college students has started to dwindle. I need to write about what I love so that I won’t give up as easily. I realize that I might be alienating some of you, but I hope you stick around.

At first, I plan to write posts about music that anyone can understand. I have some ideas brewing, and you don’t need any sort of musical knowledge to read them. I hope that my passion will come through in these future posts and that you consider reading a few of them before clicking away for the last time.

Promoting Music: Listening, Education and more.

I want to write about classical music and make it interesting. This generation has had some bad luck regarding classical music. School budgets have been cut, classical music is rarely played outside of specific venues and I want that to change.

I want to open your eyes and ears to a new world. I will teach some of the basics so that you can understand and appreciate music of all genres in a new way.

I want to make music more accessible to you all through the use of this blog, social media and other methods on the internet.

So…

Are you excited for the changes coming? I hope you enjoy reading and learning about music. Let me know what you want to see in the comments or on Twitter (@HannahHaefele)!

Thanks for reading!