Been Away From Playing For Awhile

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Dave Hughes, Jun 17, 2013.

  1. Dave Hughes

    Dave Hughes Mezzo Forte User

    Oct 19, 2010
    Rochester, NY
    I've been away from the forum for awhile, and was playing sporadically. But over the past month and a half I've been playing almost every day, and my chops seem to be back in order.

    A couple of observations:

    1. My Connstellation 28b is a much better horn than my Xeno- so I got rid of the Xeno.
    2. My music comprehension is better than it was, because I actually started to read and do more etudes.
    3. Not playing for awhile made me conscious of HOW I actually play. I have started to stay out of the MP a lot more...One weird side effect is that I can wail on an old Al Hirt Model A I have (which I used to always bottom out in).
  2. Comeback

    Comeback Forte User

    Jun 22, 2011
    Fort Wayne, IN
    Great to see you back, Dave. Best wishes as you continue!
  3. Dupac

    Dupac Fortissimo User

    Aug 19, 2008
    Bordeaux, France.
    Welcome back! Happy to read you again.
  4. trumpetguy27

    trumpetguy27 Mezzo Piano User

    May 30, 2008
    Hey Dave,

    Glad to hear things are going well and you're back in the saddle! I know we have crossed paths on FB and here but I don't remember if we have ever spoken about how I am a recent "comebacker" as well. I was away from playing for a few years due to my neuro issues that eventually led to brain surgery etc. I can definitely relate to what you're saying in a lot of ways and while I wish I hadn't had to take the time off, in the long run it has made me a better player in a LOT of ways. More than anything it was sort of a "reset button" allowing me to get away from bad habits I knew I had back when but couldn't get away from because I was always playing and reinforcing them. Before I could get away with blowing lots of air and muscling the notes out... and it largely worked for me, but now I have to be more efficient and technically correct and not FORCE things. The result? My range is now several notes higher than it ever was before and my endurance is at a level AT LEAST as high as when I was 15 years younger and practicing 4 hours a day as a music ed major.

    There are several other examples of how it has improved me as a musician/trumpet player but you get the idea. I can't count the number of times I have played something now and said "Yeah I wouldn't have been able to do that before" but now I have a certain clarity in my approach that I wouldn't have ever realized without the time off.

    Anyway... Once again, glad to see you back and keep on thinking about all of this as a positive thing!
  5. graysono

    graysono Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 22, 2007
    Hyde Park, Utah
    My own experience was that the chemo process, including the induced neuropathy, killed my chops. I simply had to discontinue playing for the duration because within 10 min or so, my chops would effectively cramp. I am still getting some maintenance chemo and I note that my endurance goes down during that period (every 6 mos). But it always comes back. Ditto to all of the above in terms of patience, and that old Asian saying, "Slowly, slowly catchee monkey." Slowly indeed.

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