Letter from Herbert L. Clarke Regarding the Cornet and Trumpet

Click here to see a photocopy of the original letter (195KB). Here is the text of the letter:

Herbert L. Clarke, Conductor
Anglo Canadian Leather Co. Band
Huntsville, Ontario, Canada
Jan. 13th, 1921.

Mr. Eldon R. Benge
Winterset, Ia.

My dear Mr. Benge:-

Replying to yours of the 19th just received, would not advise you to change from Cornet to Trumpet, as the latter instrument is only a foreign fad for the time present, and is only used properly in large orchestras of 60 or more, for dynamic effects, and was never intended as a solo instrument.

I never heard of a real soloist playing before the public on a Trumpet. Once cannot play a decent song even, properly, on it, and it has sprung up in the last few years like "jaz" music, which is the nearest Hell, or the Devil, in music. It polutes [sic] the art of Music.

Am pleased that you are making improvements in your playing. Keep it up, and become a great Cornet Player. You have an equal chance with all the rest, but you must work for it yourself.

Wishing you all the best of success, I remain.

Sincerely yours,

Herbert L. Clarke

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Saturday, October 09, 2021.

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