Today, I was gifted with the first ever review of Bandestration.  I’m more than please.  The review comes from Thomas Goss of

Bret’s focus is on the main constituents of band music: winds and brass. His site is a cornucopia of valuable information and insights about these instruments, as relevant to orchestrators as it is to band arrangers. He’s got an approach that is reminiscent of the taxonomic approach of Norman Del Mar’s “Anatomy of an Orchestra.” From his section on clarinets:
“It is possible to think of the clarinet family as we would the taxonomy of living species.  The genus Clarinet has many species, and several of those species have further subspecies.  Just as in wildlife, the true taxonomy of some of these beasts is debated.  Many of these species and subspecies, again like our wildlife, are in danger of going extinct (and six members of the family already have expired). Genus – Clarinet.”
Bret’s got some great introductory writings on the heavy hitters of the winds and brass, along with their neglected cousins, like the lupophone, the contraforte, and the ophicleide. I appreciate not only how he gives these auxiliaries a fair shake, but even goes on to propose a revitalization to the orchestra through the addition of new members. Bandestration is more than just a blog or a reference site: it’s really its own philosophy about understanding the roles and relationships of brass and wind instruments.