Dan McMillion – WT & Celebration

The Dan McMillion Jazz Orchestra For more information on the
2001 Grammy Nominated Flip Oakes Wild Thing Trumpet
danmcml@aol.com www.flipoakes.com

Concert & Clinic Bookings
Contact Frank Giglio www.bookingsdanmcmil@aol.com
Joshua M. Sullins
United States Navy Band Northeast


Here is my testimonial of the horn!


My first impression of the horn was that it felt really solid, meaning that the horn felt well balanced and comfortable to hold. Before I even put the horn on my face I was impressed with the feel and aesthetics of the horn (I purchased the gold-plated model). I played it for the first time in a concert band setting, and instantly it “popped” out above the rest of the band.

The sound was warm and huge, with lots of core and overtones. I was very impressed, but I was primarily excited to see how it would perform in the afternoon on a big band rehearsal. After the concert band session was over, I took the horn in a practice room and opened it up. I used the #1 slide. The first note I played was a really nice high C. Strong. In tune. LOTS of overtones compared to my Calicchio studio 1s-2 that I had used through college.

I played an F above high C and it totally locked. This is where my Calicchio (not to mention my strad) started to pinch off and get stuffy. The Wild Thing opened up on the double G. It was powerful, centered, and it had more zing than any horn I had ever played. I was happy. I had purchased the #3 slide and it came with the #2, but after trying the #1, I don’t need them. I might consider getting the unbraced “J” slide for combo situations, but I wouldn’t change the bore size at all. It is perfect. I did notice that above the double G, it was just sucking the air out of me… I could tell there was a little getting used to required, which is why I haven’t submitted my testimonial until now.

Over the last 5 months I have used my gold plated wild thing on COUNTLESS concert, marching, big band, combo, solo, and clinical settings. It remains the most open, free-blowing horn I have ever played. I found that the piece I used to play on (Monette BL3) was simply too closed off and too wide of an inside rim diameter for the wild thing. I switched to a marc. Shew1 and the horn is amazing.

It has a double C that shatters windows. I played in Time Square NYC for fleet week this year and I swear, I hit a double G that reflected off of a building 200 feet away, came back after the song was over and hit me in the face. I now know what it is like to be the lead bone.

So, in conclusion, the Wild Thing is truly an amazing instrument. It takes a little bit of getting used to, even if you are used to playing on big horns like I was, and perhaps a slight equipment/change of blowing, but it is well worth it. I am still working on it and fine tuning my equipment and state of mind while playing on the Wild Thing, but it is the best money I ever spent on a trumpet.

It is also worthy of mention that Flip has THE ABSOLUTE BEST customer service of any instrument manufacture/dealer I have ever encountered. He stands next to his horns and keeps his promises. I wouldn’t deal with any other repair man or trumpet dealer again. Thanks Flip!

Joshua M. Sullins
United States Navy Band Northeast
Freelance New England Trumpet Artist/Clinician

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