The life of the gigging musician can be pretty tough.
Weddings, parties, receptions, corporate events, muddy field concerts…. All can involve many hours of sight-reading a wide variety of arrangements with new colleagues in adverse conditions. Cramped quarters, dark corners, and, worst of all, outside. Wind is not the musician’s friend!
I doubt there is a musician on the planet who hasn’t at least once seen their music go flying during an outdoor performance when the wind catches it. Players have tried all sorts of solutions- clothes pegs, plexi-glass sheets over the music, stands with little metal arms- but none really work without getting in the way because all of them have to be removed before turning a page and re-set after the page turn.
I thought I would take a minute to call everyone’s attention to a truly useful invention-created by musicians for musicians-
The “Gigclip” (yes, they have patented and trademarked it!)
Gigclips were the invention of two busy freelancers who finally had enough of chasing their music accross the stage at outdoor gigs.
Gigclips fasten at either end to the stand, and between them runs a clear, flexible elastic strand whose length can be adjusted. The elastic’s tension holds the music firmly on the stand, but can stretch without tearing the music for quick page turns.
You, the player, can adjust the length of the strand, thereby adjusting the tension. You can turn the page without removing the clips.
I have tried them outdoors both for chamber music concerts as a cellist and for pops gigs as a conductor, and they’re pretty user friendly and are definitely an enormous improvement over anything else I’ve used. I had no trouble adjusting them to different size scores and parts either- they work with standard size sheet music, huge conductor’s scores and pocket scores just fine. The can be used on either a wire stand or a proper stand.
I know this sounds like a shameless plug, but I have no interest in the company (and they’re certainly not paying me to say this)- I’d just like to see some enterprising working musicians who’ve shown some great initiative see some success, and I know the product is useful and needed.
Their website is at Gigclips.net. You’ll see it is a small operation at this time, but the clips are properly made and packaged, plenty sturdy and their deliveries are extremely prompt and reliable. $6- try them and tell a friend if they work.
c. 2006 Kenneth Woods