A little reverse psychology about embouchure and mouthpiece selection

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Local 357, Sep 15, 2012.

  1. Local 357

    Local 357 Banned

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    A long time ago it was said

    "trumpet players with thin lips should choose smaller mouthpieces"

    and the reverse about large lipped cats. Read this long long ago I think in my "Bugling Merit Badge" pamphlet from the Boy Scouts. And that book was from well before my time even.

    Here's an idea that not only may make that an invalid statement but possibly the reverse that

    "thin lip players should consider a larger mouthpiece" have perhaps a little more validity

    (my thought is that neither concept is all that helpful but read on...)

    Those with thick, flabby lips may have a natural tendency to be able to make the very smallest of aperture hole while still maintaining loose vibrating surfaces. These smaller apertures can thus take advantage of the smaller/shallower mouthpiece cup.

    Look at Cat Anderson? He used the smallest piece I've ever seen here: Cat Anderson

    Another African American with the typically large lips was Clifford Brown who use what? From our very own T/Master I found:

    "Clifford Brown's mouthpiece that used to be marked 17C1 is now marked 10 3/4CW"
    Now that's small!

    Then on the other hand the person with thin lips may possess a coarser lip texture. So he may need a large piece in order to allow good resonance. His lips naturally more stiff.

    Just sayin....
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2012
  2. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

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    Rules of thumb, just don't extend to lips.
     
  3. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    And loose lips sink spits.
     
  4. TrumpetMD

    TrumpetMD Fortissimo User

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    Interesting thread by Local.

    The relationship between embouchure size and mouthpiece size is very complicated, and not well understood. It is neither proportional nor monotonic. And while we often compare mouthpiece size to shoe size, this really isn't true.

    Mike
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2012
  5. DaTrump

    DaTrump Forte User

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    I'm surprised Toby isn't here yet....his ears are probably on fire
     
  6. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    True, but comfort is the real truth when comparing shoes and mouthpieces. It is really all about comfort.
     
  7. DaTrump

    DaTrump Forte User

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    Kelly leads for everyone!
     
  8. TrumpetMD

    TrumpetMD Fortissimo User

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    Absolutely! This I agree with.

    But the comparison falls apart when we add measurements into the metaphor. We use foot length and width to pick the right shoe size. There really is no predictable equivalent for "measuring" your embouchure to come up with the correct mouthpiece size.

    Mike
     
  9. DaTrump

    DaTrump Forte User

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    Right, there are infinitely many variables and certain tolerances that can be considered acceptable, but not optimum.
     
  10. GordonH

    GordonH Mezzo Forte User

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    There is no correlation. Its down to embouchure rather than lip size. I have quite big lips and used to struggle on small mouthpieces (anything smaller than a 3C was impossible), but after changing embouchure a few years ago I can play on anything including the Jet Tone MF that I use for big band playing. Its mainly down to aperture and overlap of the lips. I have much more vibration in my bottom lip now. I suspect a lot of large lipped players overlap top and bottom too much and mainly buzz on the top lip.

    What I can't do is play on wide flat rimmed mouthpieces. They just take too much warm up. The MF does not feel flat so I can get away with it - and play for hours on it.
     

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