I made a recent "discovery" about my playing. I video taped myself playing to send a clip to Jason at Monette so that he could be as informed as possible about how I play in advising me on equipment choices. As soon as I viewed the video, I could see that I raised my head as I played up to high C (really, anywhere above the top of the staff). I noticed that this also correlated with a loss of resonance in my sound and a tightening feel that I could see in the video. Well, Jason noticed the same thing and suggested that I tuck my chin more as I ascend and also referred me to the Monette Prana acclimation stuff on Monette's website. I've read all this stuff before, but somehow was too dumb to really study my own playing and apply it. Now that I've been working at keeping everything aligned, it's made a huge difference in my tone, articulation clarity and upper register. I now realize that much of the resistance I was feeling as I ascended to the upper register was just overcoming the tension I was creating by raising the bell and tilting my head backward. By focusing on the angle of my head, neck, shoulders, hips, etc. and letting the bell fall whereever, it's made a huge improvement. The improvement is even more pronounced on the higher trumpets. Sometimes we miss the obvious. I'm trying to hook up with Adam Rapa and Charlie Schlueter next month for some lessons and I'm going to ask them to focus on body use, breathing, efficiency, etc. over all else. I think that's really the key to unlocking a lot of potential in my playing that I've been missing for years.