A reader on Tumblr writes:

Hey! I’m a new follower of yours! Just curious, I currently have a Mollard and Custom Batons, what is your baton preference?
— atrck09

Welcome, atrck09! Good question. I personally prefer Newland Custom Batons with fiberglass shafts. Although, coincidentally, I am currently using a Mollard that I have because after many years of faithful service, my Newland’s shaft split and I need to replace it. The folks at Newland are extremely friendly and professional and I highly recommend them next time. They are especially affordable if you go with one of their stock models, but you can get also get highly customized batons with very specific lengths, handles, handle wood types, staining, etc. And the craftsmanship is top notch.

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Personally, it’s only now after quite a number of years that I have started to worry too much about a baton that feels right, so I wouldn’t sweat that part too much. Basically, find something of decent craftsmanship (not the cheap music store batons!) and keep experimenting, especially at music conventions (which is the only chance to really shop hands-on).

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UPDATE (11/28/2018): I am very pleased with my latest Newland. I opted for an 11” shaft this time (an inch longer than my other baton). This time, I chose the dark green fleck acrylic handle in the “Tapia” style.

newland batons green

Below is my other Newland Baton, some version of which I have used for the past 15 years.

Jordan Randall Smith is the Music Director of Symphony Number One.