A Second Opinion

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Batman, Nov 18, 2013.

  1. afp

    afp Pianissimo User

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    More like debating the actual scientific evidence (or lack thereof) concerning global warming with an environmental activist. No amount of facts will make them alter their position........
     
  2. musicalmason

    musicalmason Forte User

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    Cant help
     
  3. Batman

    Batman New Friend

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    ^ Has kindly deleted his unhelpful comments.
     
  4. musicalmason

    musicalmason Forte User

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    Cant help
     
  5. Batman

    Batman New Friend

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    ^ Has kindly deleted his unhelpful comments.
     
  6. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

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    Wow! Threads on TM can drift off the mark sometimes, but threads with merit do tend to stay aligned with the original post. (Though there are also some threads with merit which gave up on the original post long ago...)

    The comparison between different "experts" discussing playing methods and other people with entrenched positions discussing climate change causes or religion is not an unfair one and has some relevance to this thread. Examine your experiences with your two teachers with this in mind - if you reckon it doesn't apply then okay. Maybe other visitors to this thread will benefit.

    Kind regards,
    --bumblebee
     
  7. Batman

    Batman New Friend

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    ^ Sorry, Musicalmason has deleted his original comments so now my posts look completely out of order and uncalled for.

    I wasn't questioning the value of the comparisons that you're talking about. In fact, I can see where they're coming from.
     
  8. Dr.Mark

    Dr.Mark Mezzo Forte User

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    Hi Batman,
    You asked:
    "In my lesson last week I asked about building a higher register as this is something that I have always had trouble with. However, when I made reference to embouchure and tongue position he suddenly became very dismissive/ evasive and insisted that the only thing I needed to concern myself with was air flow as it is simply the air speed that controls the pitch of the note. "Focus on the air speed", he said, and everything else i.e. tongue position and lip compression would just "sort themselves out".
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    Whew! this is a tough one. I've been playing in the upper register since the 1970's and yes, air is important but to think that everything else will sort itself out isn't the way I'd go. For example, what if the use of your air is great but you're using the mouthpiece pressure of a gorilla? If you want to learn how to play in the upper register, it's a fairly easy thing to do. How do I know this, I can get kids to play E & F above high C in no time flat. If kids can get it, so can you. Watch Adam Rapa/Natalie Dungey double high C lesson. You will learn alot. FRESHMAN ALERT!! Don't piss off your instructor!!!
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    If I only think about the air without paying any attention to the embouchure, could this not lead to the formation of bad habits? For example, I suspect I begin to tuck my lower lip underneath the top slightly as I begin to ascend on the trumpet.
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    Lips and approach will vary from person to person. Arturo Sandoval and Wynton will generally point the horn down just a little when going into the upper register. The thing is that high notes are not hard. FRESHMAN ALERT!!! don't piss off the instructor
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    Following on from this, when asked about lip slurs/ flexibility exercises, he said he doesn't like the name "lip" flexibilities because it's misleading in that students tend to then try and do everything with just the lips alone. I agreed with him because, I said, "it's more about tongue position" i.e. aa, oo, ee... but, again, he didn't like it! He said he didn't like calling them "lip" flexibility exercises because it's all down to the speed of the air and I shouldn't be trying to use different vowel sounds for different notes...
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    Okay, I've read enough. Why are you asking and nitpicking this guy with questions that have answers you might not want to hear? Just do your lessons. All this other stuff can be worked at your leasure, right? Why enter this POWERFUL person into the fray? You're a freshman and brand new. Your biggest task is to not wash out. Don't think for a minute that the instructor doesn't have your chicken tenders in a vise clamp. Just work your lessons like he says and he won't squeeze the clamp. If you want to sound like Maynard or Balsom, great. But do your lessons and before you ask more questions ask yourself first "Is it productive to ask this question?" Don't be one of those students that come across as wanting to know everything about everything before they know anything. Just chill, do as you're told and do your lessons.
    Probably not what you want to hear but hopefully some of it will sink in.
    Dr.Mark
     
  9. Batman

    Batman New Friend

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    ^ Haha, you're right; it's not what I wanted to hear at all! I just like to ask questions and understand why I'm being told to do a particular thing - especially when the advice is so different to what I've been told before... "focusing on air speed" and letting the embouchure and tongue "sort themselves out" just seems so vague to me; I like to know exactly what to do. (Plus, I'm not deliberately trying to be controversial or piss anyone off, I just wanna get better.)

    Do YOU use vowel sounds? Do YOU consciously think about your embouchure as you're playing, or just air? I won't say anything in my lesson but I'd like to get just a few opinions on here behind the safety of my laptop!

    Thanks for your reply.

    Edit: Off to bed now. Thanks for all your replies so far. I'll check back again tomorrow morning. :)
     
  10. Dr.Mark

    Dr.Mark Mezzo Forte User

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    Apr 5, 2011
    you're right; it's not what I wanted to hear at all!
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    Probably not, but I've flunked tons of young freshmen who came across the same way. They generally use a logic from the past as an excuse to not do the work of the present. It's a familiar behavior and not unusual at all.
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    I just like to ask questions and understand why I'm being told to do a particular thing - especially when the advice is so different to what I've been told before.
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    I always hate when students ask a lot of questions about a topic before they have a knowledge base. Let's face it, your range sucks, chances are you use a lot of mouthpiece pressure to play and have no idea of the relationship between singing and playing the trumpet. Your biggest problem isn't technique on the trumpet. It's technique(whether it's based on arrogance or nervousness) on how to communicate with someone who's in power.
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    I like to know exactly what to do.
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    The people that need to know exactly what to do, don't ask those questions. These are people starting out and can't figure out how to make a sound on the horn. You are not of that ilk. There are no exactlys and you should quit using it as a weapon. The only exactly is doing exactly what you're told. If you don't want to be in school, that's okay, quit and maybe come back later in life because if you were in my class and started asking questions about my directives at every turn, we'd be having a meeting in the Dean's office.
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    Do YOU use vowel sounds?
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    Yes! But I'm not your typical trumpet player.
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    Do YOU consciously think about your embouchure as you're playing, or just air?
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    When I'm practicing, yes. When I'm performing, sometimes. Especially when I get tired and I start falling back on bad habits. It's easy to force the air when a person gets tired or distracted and it's easy to use mouthpiece pressure when a person gets tired.
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    I won't say anything in my lesson but I'd like to get just a few opinions on here behind the safety of my laptop!
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    If you keep your yap shut, you just might make it. If not, then you'll probably be saying at your next job, "Do you want fries with that ma'am"?
    I hope you listen because I've seen this type of behavior a thousand times before and 99% of the time the results are the same, they drop out or change majors. Contrary to what you might think. I would very much like to see you as one of the 1% that actually get a degree. Good luck
    Dr.Mark
     

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