A tuba player learning trumpet. Some questions.

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Funcoot, May 14, 2009.

  1. Funcoot

    Funcoot New Friend

    May 14, 2009
    Hey guys, I'm new to this forums and have some questions. Prepare for a big post! All answers are greatly appreciated!

    I'm pretty new to the whole music scene. I've been playing tuba since mid February and have been getting better ever since. I can play a few scales, chorales and even a few songs.

    I practice almost every day at school, cause I get some free time from my coach in P.E. (I am physically fit and dress out in gym, so the coach really doesn't mind me going to the band room). I am continuing to progress, and my real goal right now in my tuba playing abilities is to work on improving my articulation.

    I know that now would be one of the worst times learning trumpet (since I am still new to tuba), but I wouldn't make it a priority, especially when things in band get busy, I really want to peruse trumpet as hobby more than anything. I wouldn't mind joining a ska band in the future, cause I really have a passion for the music, but that's a long time down the road.

    I am good friends with the section leader, and he said he would be glad to give me some lessons. He let me try out his trumpet today, and I really enjoyed it. So now that the little bio/story is over, here comes the questions.

    Would learning the trumpet help me out with my tuba playing as well, or my overall musicianship?

    Will my tuba embouchure probably suffer, even if I play it a lot more than trumpet? Will my trumpet embouchure suffer from that?

    Since I am a tuba player, I'm of course used to a pretty big mouthpiece. Do trumpet mouth pieces also vary in size and are there particular sizes or models that certain brands make that I might feel more comfortable transition with? Should I bee looking for a wider rim and deeper cup?

    Also a good student horn. I'm not looking for the best quality, but I just want something that will sound decent. Any particular cheaper models you guys prefer (around $500ish).

    Anyways, thanks in advanced!:thumbsup:
    Last edited: May 14, 2009
  2. SpiritDCI08

    SpiritDCI08 Piano User

    Feb 11, 2009
    Fort Campbell, KY
    Funcoot, as a former tuba/contra bass player I advise you not to persue the two horns at the same time. I too picked up a trumpet as a hobby, i wanted to play it in a jazz and in the same day play tuba in my symphonic ensemble. The two horns are not alike at all. I'm not an expert at this so I can't give you got scientific reasons why but I wouldn't do it. When I was playing both I noticed that play trumpet engulfed me. I never really wanted to practice my tuba, and when I did I never seemed to have a good practice session. The two horns use different parts of the mouth and the concept of playing them are different. It affected my tuba playing the most, and it almost cost me my position is Spirit Drum and Bugle Corps. I do understand the feeling of wanting to do both though. Trumpet and Tubas are always going to be the coolest instrument on the field. But my advice is to pick.
    I'm sure others can help you more in this field.
    And yes, just like tuba pieces, trumpet pieces come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Do some research and find the one that FITS YOU THE BEST, not your friend.
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I still play tuba next to my trumpet and they are 100% compatible. You will not damage anything as long as you get enough time in on your main axe. If you only have an hour a day, it is a question if you have enough time to do reasonable justice to both. You won't know if you don't try, go for it and let us know!
  4. brassplayer

    brassplayer Pianissimo User

    May 6, 2009
    San Gabriel, CA
    Congratulations on following your passion for music! Since you're fairly new to the brass scene, I would recommend that you stick with one instrument for a while longer before taking on an additional horn. Once you've mastered the basics on tuba, you can definitely transfer some of those skills to trumpet.

    In my case, I'm a trumpet player who picked up the tuba along the way. My years with both horns have led me to believe that it's easier to go trumpet to tuba rather than tuba to trumpet. But your mileage may vary.

    Have you put any thought into putting the tuba aside for now and just concentrating on trumpet? It would be easy to return to the tuba after that, IMO.

  5. Funcoot

    Funcoot New Friend

    May 14, 2009
    Setting down the tuba simply isn't an option seeing as I am a sophomore in high school, and my junior year is approaching. I plan to have music aid me in to getting into college. I want to use my tuba playing skills (some day) to get me a small scholar ship. A friend of mine (who is now graduating) was in the same situation as me and walked away with $4,000 in scholarships.

    I still plan to peruse trumpet mildly as a hobby. I probably wont start recieving lessons from my friend until mid summer, so by then I should have most the fundamentals down with my tuba technique, and will practice to ensure it doesn't suffer.

    So any horns anyone recommends? Should I check out ebay for an Olds Ambassador?
  6. Cleveland600 1974

    Cleveland600 1974 New Friend

    Apr 27, 2009
    Houston TX
    Funcoot, my main axe IS tuba (hey guys don't "be hatin'"-- I started out on trumpet and still a trumpet player "at heart"...besides this forum has the coolest people, right???) and I play my trumpet on occasion. Now this little confession would have never been typed if I did not think this was important. I am in total agreement with SpiritDCI--at this point in your development, I urge you to select which instrument you want to continue with--BOTH require ALL of your effort at this point in your life if you want to be a successful player and although you may consider playing trumpet a "hobby" I assure you it will interfere with your tuba playing.

    As a tubist, you will be entering a much more competitive field than ever before for not just scholarships but for placement in the top music schools. You have so much to learn about your tuba (I've been playing for over 30 years and still continue to learn more about it!)

    These are two very different instruments with two very different mindsets and approaches to them. I encourage you to please consider what I have written and feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

    Jerry Johnson
  7. Funcoot

    Funcoot New Friend

    May 14, 2009
    Well there is another thing I probably should have mentioned. I don't plan on majoring in music on college (key word, plan). The college I am thinking of going to (Troy University) gives plenty of music scholarship money, to non music major musicians, but I understand that I need to concentrate on one instrument.

    It's still an interest that I want to pursue, but like a few have said, it will probably have to wait until next year and when I have my fundamentals down. Still looking for some opinions guys. Keep em comin'.:thumbsup:
  8. Funcoot

    Funcoot New Friend

    May 14, 2009
    Sorry for the bump, just looking for more answers. :cool:

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