Bob Findley's Method Book

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by gregeph, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. gregeph

    gregeph New Friend

    Apr 18, 2008
    I just purchased Bob Findley's Method Book which looks very good. The book is clearly influenced by Carmine Caruso who I had the privliege of studying with in the early 80's. The reason for my post is that I wanted to see if anyone has experience with Bob's thinking on support. He has you do an exercise of playing a "G" second line until you run out of air. The purpose is to feel how much you need to use your diaphram as you run out of air. Bob teaches that this is the way the diaphram should feel at all times to provide support regardless of whether your playing a loud lead passage or a simple riff in the low register. Given Bob's credentials and abilities, I take this counsel very seriously. I have been practicing this way - although only for a few days - and I am very excited with the results. Specifically, it feels like I can draw on the support of my diaphram instead of my lip.

    Can anyone comment on this, i.e. if they use it, if they have taught it and how it has worked out?

    P.S. - I remember years ago a clinic with Bobby Shew that he said he uses a similar approach and - if I recall correctly - that he picked this up when he on the Buddy Rich band. He took over the lead book and was dying until he started playng with this type of diaphram support.
  2. Pete

    Pete Piano User

    Nov 17, 2007
    Bob's book is excellent! I talked with him at the ITG Conference at UMASS about it last June. I think that all the concepts that he talks about are excellent, and he has been in the middle of the LA studio scene for many years.

    Some of the things that he talks about aren't necessarily Carmine Caruso things, but he did study with him, and uses some of the terminology in the book. He does speak very highly of Mr. Caruso, and expressed that he is very greatful that he had the chance to study with him.

    Bobby Shew uses the Yogi Complete Breath, that is modified somewhat to play the trumpet. You don't use the step that has you holding the breath for a few seconds, and you raise your shoulders at the last part of the inhalation. It's trumpet world name is the "Wedge Breath". Bud Brisbois, according to Bobby, showed him how to use it. I went to a Maynard Ferguson clinic many years ago, and he suggested that we learn to do Hatha Yoga breathing. He did not specify the "wedge breath" or Yogi Complete Breath. Just learning how to do the relaxed inhalation is beneficial in itself. Players such as Eric Miyashiro, Roger Ingram, and Adolfo Acosta use the "Wedge Breath" just to name a few.

    I teach students how to do the Hatha Yoga relaxed breath. They are usually so tense with their upper bodies, that they can't physically let go and allow it to happen. When they do get it, it does help a lot.

    Here's a link to the breathing info:
    The Science of Breath || Chapter 8: The Yogi Complete Breath

  3. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    David Monette's website discusses "Take a Breath" - same sort of concepts as far as I can determine, see: -

    David G. Monette Corporation
  4. flugelgirl

    flugelgirl Forte User

    Jan 20, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    I had some master classes at Maine Jazz Camp with Bob and Chuck Findley when I was younger, and got to spend a good deal of time hanging out and talking to them, also. Bob's Six Note excersizes are great - helped me a lot. He's a really fabulous teacher, and is worth having a lesson with if you ever get the chance. Great person, too!
    I found the running out of air concept to be similar to the Claude Gordon studies - very helpful.
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2008
  5. TrentAustin

    TrentAustin Fortissimo User

    Oct 28, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Bob was my first real trumpet teacher at MJC as well. What an amazing "first" instructor. I credit a ton to both him and Chuck (especially for setting me up and making me think that the trumpet wasn't difficult).

    The book is great and a must in my studio collection.
  6. MPM

    MPM Pianissimo User

    Nov 10, 2003
    I've had Bobby's book for a number of years and "still" refer back to it reguarly! I really like the way it's layed out, in the question and answer format. It's very logical and isn't one of those, "play this exercise & that exercise and you'll be playing double high C's by the end".

    Generally speaking yes, I'd pretty much agree with Bobby on the support aspect. But, don't let it make your body tense.

    "" I went to a Maynard Ferguson clinic many years ago, and he suggested that we learn to do Hatha Yoga breathing. He did not specify the "wedge breath" or Yogi Complete Breath. Just learning how to do the relaxed inhalation is beneficial in itself. ""

    RELAXED INHALATION - Bingo ... then the thing is to keep that same relaxed feeling while playing (the exhalation). A great example to see ... I don't know how to post links to youtube clips, but look up something like "Jim Manley with the Air Men of Note" There are two great you tube clips that Kevin Burns posted. When watching them keep in mind it's not intended to really be about high notes, although there are plenty there, but about being as relaxed and efficient as possible, and how it can great help your sound.

    All the best.

    Now back to Bob Findley .... Get the book. It should be a 'mandatory' for all trumpet players.
  7. chris_tpt

    chris_tpt New Friend

    Apr 16, 2008
    Queens, NY
    Hi all, new here. My first post. Great forum!

    I took six lessons with Vince Penzarella back in the 1980's and I've been listening to the tapes of those lessons again (I recently converted them to CD before the tapes disintegrate :D ). I'm sure most of you know about his philosophy on breathing and being relaxed -- avoid tension was a mantra of his. He has his students doing breath excercises on a 5 liter respiratory bag to get the sensation of filling up and expelling air without becoming tense in the upper body -- something like a bellows -- air in constant motion. He didn't like to talk about diaphram support or embouchure much since he thought proper breathing would automatically take care of all that.

    I'd like to check out the Yoga breathing techniques mentioned here and see how they compare to the Penzarella thing (which actually comes from a lot of Arnold Jacobs teachings). Edit: I just looked at the page referenced above (The Science of Breath || Chapter 8: The Yogi Complete Breath) and the Yogi breath is through the nostrils -- in line with the Caruso (and Laurie Frink) studies, but not Penzarella. Penzarella also wouldn't advocate holding the breath for a few moments since that can bring tension into play.

    I definitely want to check out this Bob Findley book.
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2008

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