Fw: [Dixielandjazz] Jazz diseases/ Occupational marks

Robert S. Ringwald ringwald@calweb.com
Thu, 26 Sep 2002 22:04:47 -0700

Regarding the recent discussion, I sent a copy of the message below to
trombonist Jim Maihack.  The following is his response.

Placerville, CA, USA, Earth, Sol's System, Milky Way

----- Original Message -----
From: "Jim & Wendy Maihack" <maihack@pacbell.net>
To: "Robert S. Ringwald" <ringwald@calweb.com>
Sent: Wednesday, September 25, 2002 11:05 AM
Subject: RE: [Dixielandjazz] Jazz diseases/ Occupational marks

> Dear Bob,
> I love the beginning of this thing.  It says "Hi Dr. Fred, I find this an
> interesting thread."  It sounds like the first two lines of a limerick.
> Like maybe:
> Hi, Doctor Fred
> I find this an int'resting thread
> Though I've played 'til my knuckles
> Have knots bumps and buckles
> I've never made very much bread
> Oh well.....
> Surprisingly perhaps, the finger Rob refers to looks just fine on my hand,
> but my left middle finger has the enlarged joint - on the index finger
> And what's really surprising is that my daughter Jeani was born with the
> same enlargement on her left middle finger.  And she never played the
> trombone.
> Who gives a WHAT!!
> Jimaihack

> > Hi Dr. Fred,
> >
> > I find this an interesting thread. I agree with you that perhaps the
> > incidence of physical diseases among jazz musicians may not differ from
> the
> > general population to a statistically significant degree. Perhaps
> > the research to mental health might be more revealing. I am thinking of
> areas
> > like depression, addictive behaviour (drugs, booze, nicotine, sex, yes
> that
> > too!), bi-polarity, relationship commitment etc.
> >
> > As far as occupational marks are concerned, here is one that applies
> > exclusively to trombonists. I invite all trombone players on the list,
> that
> > is those who are right-handed and hold the instrument with their left
> > and move the slide with their right hand, to take a look at their left
> > pinkie. Specifically, to the inside of the first joint of the pinkie. I
> would
> > not surprise me if you notice an enlargement of the joint. Compare it
> > the pinkie of your right hand. This is the result of how you routinely
> hold
> > the horn. Now, this will not have any impact on our life expectancy, but
> > think it is interesting nonetheless. The only thing it does for me is
> that,
> > while I do not have particularly strong hands, I can snap a pencil with
> ease
> > between the fourth finger and pinkie of my left hand. Not that I have a
> > frequent need for that; it's just one of those things.
> >
> > Speaking of frequent needs, another occupational mark which, I suppose,
> > applies universally to brass players, is the fact that we develop very
> strong
> > lip muscles. This may also apply to reed players who use double reeds,
> like
> > to oboe. These strong lip muscles come in handy under certain
> circumstances.
> > I could expand on that but, then again, I don't want to be thrown off
> > list :>).
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> > Rob "Trying to keep in shape" van der Plas
> > Scottsdale, AZ
> >