Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

The Melody Of These Two Obscure Instruments Lingers On

Credit Gabriel Spitzer
KNKX newsies Ariel Van Cleave and Ed Ronco have no problem with tooting their own horn.

This story originally aired on November 18, 2017.

All Things Considered host Ed Ronco and Morning Edition producer Ariel Van Cleave came to learn their respective instruments after things didn't work out with their first choice.

Ed started with the trumpet, but the combination of the smaller mouthpiece and a mouth full of braced turned out to be a painful experience. So he moved to the baritone horn, which had a larger mouthpiece, and never looked back.

Ariel, on the other hand, just had a distaste for her assigned instrument, the trombone, and at the encouragement of her father, she switched to euphonium. 

Neither of these instruments, which both sound a lot like a trombone, get a lot of play in orchestral settings, but that didn't stop Ariel and Ed from continuing to play through college. 

At Michigan State, Ed joined the Spartan marching band, and while he was initially a less serious musician, the opportunity to participate in a talented marching band was inspiration to work harder at his instrument.

Ariel's motivation to continue on, however, came in college after the passing of her father, who also played euphonium. Ariel looked at her euphonium as something that got her through that time, and continues to look at it as "an anchor to feel steady." 

While neither of them play as much as they like to today, they've found a little bond with each other through their instruments, and from time to time will blow a few notes together, keeping a little slice of their past, present. 

Kevin began his career at KNKX in 2003, where his first responsibility was to eradicate the KNKX Jazz Library from all Smooth Jazz CD’s. Since then there is not much at KNKX he hasn’t done. Kevin has worked as a full time jazz host, news host, and has hosted, at least once, almost every single program on KNKX. Kevin currently produces 88.5's weekly show Sound Effect. Kevin has conducted or produced hundreds of interviews, has won local and national awards for newscasts and commentary, and helped make the KNKX Grocery Tote famous.
Gabriel Spitzer is a former KNKX reporter, producer and host who covered science and health and worked on the show Sound Effect.

Why Support KNKX?

You depend on KNKX for trusted, in-depth local news, music by knowledgeable hosts and enlightening NPR programs. We depend on members for more than half of our financial support.

Give Today