Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

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Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by tskeldon » Sat Jul 21, 2018 9:23 am

Hi everyone,

This is my first real post on this forum, so even though I've spent a few days looking around, I may have missed a similar thread. If so I apologize! But there is a wealth of experience and knowledge here and I hope to tap it.

I'm interested in buying a Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Model Trombone (because he is the only remaining idol of my musical youth), but there is not much discussion around them.

Martin set themselves a difficult task at the time trying to reestablish themselves and break through the prevailing paradigms, despite having had a track record with brass instruments in their early years.

If I'm remembering correctly, a local musician and instrument repairman in my town was the first to start importing a little valued brand of instruments called Yamaha into North America. Whatever happened to them?

This forum seems to be a healthy environment that supports advocates of all styles and instruments regardless of whose name is on the bell.

So, if you know any interesting or little known specifics about this particular instrument (beyond bore and bell size please), have personal experience of this instrument, or have played in section with one, please post.

If you have a little used, mint condition horn (or know of one) that you would like to sell, thats even better. Thank you in advance for your well considered and patient consideration of this newby post.

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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by Davidus1 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 10:56 am

Thanks for posting this. I am interested in learning about this horn as well and came to the forum today to search for info on it. I'm going to look into the archives. I was able to play one a few weeks ago and really really liked it. Not sure on the bell size but I believe its a .500 bore horn. 8 bell. It was a nice open blow and had a great sound. Terrific horn!
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by ngrinder » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:00 am

There’s one for sale now at Josh Landress’ shop in NYC. It’s a great horn, (full disclosure, I have it ther on consignment, so I’m a bit biased!) I have owned two and they are really fine instruments!
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by tskeldon » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:06 pm

Hi ngrinder,

Unfortunately his websight is down, so I can't find out anything about yours. The one a Dhillon's has extreme acid wear on the contact points. That being the case, the previous owners body chemistry likely means that getting the lead-pipe out would be a difficult in not impossible job. Keep me updated. Thanks!

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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by walldaja » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:36 am

I play tested one and thought it was over priced. Lot more small bores out there that sell for a lot less. My friend, who I was play testing for, ended up buying a Jupiter 691.

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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by spangy » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:01 pm

I have a Martin tr4501 Urbie that I play frequently. Its a very quick responding nimble horn that's a lot of fun to play. Very lightweight. For such a lightweight weight horn it has a nice core of sound. For small combo work its pretty hard to beat. My only gripe would be cutting through with loud big groups.
Martin was acquired by Leblanc as was Holton. So I believe these were built by Holton. I have a Holton tr-100 which has some similar features. I remember a post from TTf member Chip Hoehler ( anyone know how he's doing?) that the Urbie is basically a light weight yellow brass version of the tr-100.
Good luck with your hunt. I found mine on Craigslist. Its not mint but it plays great.
Just one more thought; these are light weight horns, so if the horn was a good player and used a lot, its probably going to have some wear and tear. Mine did. But its how it plays and sounds thats the important thing.
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by DaveAshley » Wed Aug 01, 2018 10:04 pm

I just discovered the Urbie in January when I was in New York. I tried one out at J. Landress Brass, and quickly realized how well it would work for the ship gig I'm doing (on-mic 4-horn dance band). That was it - I picked it up, and believe it or not, I've gotten another since then! The two are a bit different (one bell is lacquered and one is not), but both are excellent horns. I had my Butler carbon fiber outer fitted to one slide, and I've been switching between the bells. Talk about a SUPER lightweight setup (which is good, since I've been experiencing some achy joints in the last year or so.)
Quick thoughts on playing an Urbie -- It's snappy, quick, and nimble! I've never played a lightweight horn that holds together so well when pushed. In fact, for years, I've just been convinced that I prefer heavier horns. (If you held my Lawler, you'd understand!) I do imagine that at *extreme* volumes, the Urbie might get a little "splashy" and buried, but I haven't had any problems yet.
I currently own something like 15 trombones (Williams 6, custom Lawler, Connstellation etc, and have owned dozens more), and simply put, I'm using the Urbie(s) more than all the others. I'm a VERY happy customer!
By the way, the bells on both horns measures at 7 5/8 -- I've heard that some are 8 inches, but not in my case.
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by RJMason » Fri Aug 03, 2018 12:26 pm

The Urbie at Landress’ shop is great! I tried it out for a few weeks and loved using it, so easy to play and respond. Lightweight but doesn’t feel brittle and very well balanced. Ended up not pulling the trigger as I have too many horns and not enough money ;( . Might change my mind. They are really amazing horns. I have to play reallly loud in a few gig settings and it kind of gets too bright for my liking, but cuts well. Sleeper instruments that I feel may make a comeback. To me they are on par with a similar set up you could get From shires, Rath, Edwards, in my experience playing horns with the same specs from all those makers as well.
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by tskeldon » Fri Aug 24, 2018 3:34 pm

Hi Dave,

I just got my first Urbie from Doug Bert and am also looking for a second. This one is in beautiful condition. I will be using it in a quartet also, but I always add a voice; that way I get to riff around the vocals when she is singing. It's funny, she thinks she's the featured performer in the group, but I only hired her to provide a melodic architecture over which I attempt to emulate and slavishly impersonate Urbie,without too much insulting his greatness.

I recently apologized to him for the disservice I do the memory of his persistent talent, but no where near profusely enough for the too obvious disparity between our relative talents, and for the private misappropriation of his name in the depths of my own mind as I attempt to channel his musical spirit. It will take a greater talent than mine (or anyone else's for that matter) to prove a legacy worthy of him, with not enough years left for either of us, for me to adequately repay and replay his talent.

I have a question about what mouthpieces you have used successfully with this horn. I have tried it very briefly with a selection of standard mouthpieces from Bach 6's-to 12's with various cups, and found huge differences in the way the instrument responds. The 7C seemed to interface most happily for me (I have both narrow and thin lips leaving quite a bit of space inside the cup). The 11C didn't seem to connect with it at all; a Schilke 51B proved a better partner. What advice does your experience direct. Thanks!

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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by BrassedOn » Thu Aug 30, 2018 1:13 pm

I had one years ago, and i agree light weight and nimble. Pretty tone.

However, too light for me. I kept denting the bottom bow of the hand slide, just a tap on the foot of a music stand or whatever. And I played in larger groups like big bands. Yeah, better for combo work for me. Ultimately, I needed more of a workhorse and have played King 3B Silver Sonic ever since. Tho I like many other horns, I'm in my comfort zone.
"Do less, better."
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by KMills » Thu Jan 03, 2019 4:14 pm

I came across this discussion page while I was looking for information about replacing my lead pipe. I played an Urbie Green Martin for the first time at a convention booth in 1979, and immediately ordered one. With the discount (Manny's? Giardinelli's?), it cost $240! I haven't played or owned another horn since. I've used the same Bach 11C mouthpiece that whole time, too. Can you tell I'm not a gearhead?

I've played my trombone a lot - a lot - since I bought it, and I love it. It can be loud and brassy or dark and subdued. It responds well in all registers. (Well - responded well in all registers before age started to shrink my usable range.) It is very light, although I don't notice that until I pick up someone else's horn. It has been very durable, although, granted, I make an effort to be careful with it.

All of that leads to my current slight anxiety, as the local repair guru has informed me that the lead pipe is starting to deteriorate. I don't want it to fall apart mid-gig, so I'm considering having him replace the lead pipe - if that's even possible, since it's soldered in and also probably encased in 40 years of petrified spit goo. If it is possible to replace the lead pipe, I'm worried about how much that will change the response and how hard that will be to get used to. Not your problem, though. For anyone considering buying a circa 1978-79 Martin, I recommend it highly. Great horn.
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by Kingfan » Thu Jan 03, 2019 8:42 pm ... 3527844385
There is one in Ohio going for $425 if anybody is interested
I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are still missing! :D
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by Trevorspaulding376 » Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:36 pm

Compared to a king 3b and some other horns I’ve played like a conn 6h etc , to me the upper register really comes out with a lot more ease then on other horns. Not that it doesn’t come out straightforward on those horns but just really smooth and nice to play up high. It almost plays itself up there.
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by jjb2019 » Tue Feb 19, 2019 4:46 am

Hi there everyone. I'm a little late to this thread however, I am a retired Trombone player and I have a beautiful Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone for sale and wondered if anyone here was interested? I am based in Brisbane, Australia, but am happy to post the horn to anyone if they are interested in buying it. I have been reluctant to sell it as my instruments always have sentimental value to me, but my best intentions to play it over the last ten years have never resulted in any action and it deserves to be played. I'm a professional singer/and guitarist/bassist, and I picked up the trombone through my high school and uni years, but have never found the time to keep up the playing amongst all the other interests I hold. Hence the horn is in immaculate condition, having been only played for a few years and been in storage ever since. I will post photos in the Classifieds, but thought this was the best place to start.
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by Jantbn » Tue Feb 19, 2019 9:11 am

I have had one since they first came to England in 1979.
Love it, its my fav. I use it for most things except Classical.
Speaks really easily and can et still get a good full sound if treated with respect !
Do blow the one you plan to buy as they can be very different.
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Re: Martin TR4501 Urbie Green Trombone

Post by dfeheley » Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:39 pm

Brass Ark is advertising a Martin Urbie Green in “near factory new” condition
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