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Tuba lips and guitar nipples

I got this fascinating article about injuries, mostly of the reptitive-stress type, that professional musicians often suffer from a mailing list I’m on for the Rice MOB. Though I’ve played the alto sax for 25 years (once again, for longer than Mikey has been alive), I’m basically just a Sunday hacker, so the worst injury I’ve ever suffered is teeth marks on my lower lip.

(NB: To play the saxophone, you curl the lower lip over your teeth, stick the mouthpiece in your mouth, and lightly rest your upper lip and upper teeth on top. This is called the embouchure, which I’ve just realized is (gasp!) a French word. Guess that means I’ll have to start calling it Freedom Mouth or something like that. But I digress. Anway, do this sort of thing for a few hours and you’ll get a nice impression of your choppers inside your lower lip. Aren’t you glad you know that now?)

One thing this article doesn’t touch on is the hazards faced by marching bands. Band uniforms tend to be made of wool/polyester blends, so when it’s hot outside it’s really hot in those clothes. Other bands regularly deal with cold, rain, snow, and the occasional rogue football player. Wearing a tux on stage is a lot safer, I must say.

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