For years tuba players, band and orchestra conductors and sound engineers have agreed that the quintessential and defining tuba sound was that produced by the historical J.W. York and Sons tubas. It is a sound that disappeared along with the old York craftsmen and the long lost J.W. York and Sons secret live metal formulas. The legendary tuba sound was the secret trademark of the famous J.W. York and Sons, "House of York" of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Due to poor record keeping, along with the sale of the company in 1940, experts agreed the sound would probably never be perfectly recreated. J.W. York and Sons had possessed significant expertise in the characteristics of the brass alloys as well as in instrumental design and construction. All of this expertise was lost.
However, after more than fifty years of trial and error experimentation by numerous American and European musical instrument companies, the sound of the J.W. York and Sons tubas has finally been reproduced to a never-before imagined degree of exactness of tone and timbre in a modern day instrument. Zigmant Kanstul of Kanstul Musical Instruments is now able to recreate the magnificent sound qualities produced by the historic J.W. York and Sons tubas!
Two tuba-playing scientist-engineers and musical archaeologists have been instrumental in allowing this exciting development to take place. Tom Treece and Robert Carpenter - both respected and internationally recognized scientists and musicians in their own rights, had been wrestling independently with the puzzle for years. The two men eventually met, and later teamed up with Zig Kanstul to conquer the mystery once and for all.
With the assistance of the U.S. Copper Development Association and the cooperation and contributions of music industry and scientific experts, Treece and Carpenter began a period of qualitative and quantitative experiments, including a year-long series of laboratory tests of brass samples taken from eight original J.W. York and Sons tubas from the early 1900s.
Utilizing the research of Treece and Carpenter, new data of molecular structure regarding the properties of the original brass, and his own usual adherence to the exactness of the physical integrity of airflow and resistance, Zig Kanstul is now able to recreate the magnificent sound qualities produced by those historic J.W. York and Sons tubas!
These "Zigmant Kanstul" tubas are currently being hand tooled and and hand crafted at the Kanstul plant in Anaheim, California, and are now being offered to the market. Before shipment, each instrument is tested by a professional tuba player.
Here's what people are saying:
Finally, there is no need to go outside of the USA to find a quality built, world-class sounding instrument for your ensemble.
Mike Roylance - Principal, Boston Symphony Orchestra
The Kanstul CC tuba is astonishing.
Robert Simon - Conductor, Piedmont Wind Symphony (North Carolina)
The new Kanstul C tuba is the most versatile tuba you could ever want! I have played it in the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, in brass quintets, and with a jazz/rock band, live and in a recording studio...and it is fantastic is every venue! It is the ultimate ''all around'' tuba, and I highly recommend it
Robert Carpenter - Principal, Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra
This is a horn that has me excited about playing tuba.
Allen Lawless - Army Bandsman, ret.
Plays like a go-kart...it just goes!
Howard Miyata, Educator and Freelance Tubist
I love the horn by the way. Best money I could have spent! Honestly, I could not be happier with my decision. Thank you!
Allison Lazur, Freelance Tubist
The Kanstul F tuba is a new voice in the modern symphony orchestra - it bridges between the bass trombone and tuba sound to fill a void that has long existed in the low brass section.
Jeff Thomas - Principal Trombone, Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra