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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by limbo, Aug 11, 2008.
It might be too much pucker, or maybe not enough--the internet is not the best way to diagnose stuff! If you work on practicing whisper quiet (ppppp) that will force your chops into a very efficient form. Try practising too, without an attack (poooh), again for efficiency. You'll get plenty of strength training at camp! At the end of each day, warm down by playing very softly, and don't try to be the loudest person on the field.
do you have a private teacher? I've been through EXACTLY what you went through. I got my braces off and two months later I still had no range and no tone. I went to a great private teacher and he changed my embouchure. This was during marching season, and it was fairly difficult to march and play while I was trying to change my embouchure. You may not need the same prescription, but your local university trumpet professor could certainly help you with this. Good luck!
I would think your band director would understand your situation......
23 trumpets??? That sounds way too much. Don't worry that much about the band now. Concentrate on your playing. Even if you get back to 7th chair again, after you get used to the new geometry of your mouth, you should be able to regain your 3rd chair. Lesten to Vulgano. You can add to add lots of long tones, slurs, arpeggios etc without forcing anything to get faster your range back. Be patient and you will get even better than before the removal of the braces. Diligent practice and patience is the key.
Don't worry about tone quality for marching band...just volume (kidding) Long tones and lip flexibility exercises (daily) keeping the pressure off your lips...let the air stream vibrate the lips. Jamming a piece of metal against them does not really allow them to vibrate. While on the braces you may have made some compensation in your embouchure to accommodate the braces. Hopefully, you worked on not applying pressure with your braces on. (probably hurt). Another thing that happens with braces is that there is a tendency to make your "buzz" with just lip pressure instead of air..... and away goes your tone. Your band director will be psyched that you are off braces, because he will get more volume and good tone. Lastly adding any amount of thickness to the teeth will affect your embouchure.
Have a great MB season and remember to take that MB big sound and pare it down for concert season.
Most of my students have similar experiences when they get their braces off. Remember that the braces restrict the movement of the lips (they pin them into position). Now that they are gone, your lips are more free to slide around on your teeth. The result is a setting that is more closed than it used to be (i.e. you have slightly more lip tissue inside the mouthpiece).
I use a simple exercise with my students to help them adjust to the new setting:
First, buzz sirens on the mouthpiece. Start on a comfortable pitch and slowly slide up as high as you can comfortably, then hold the top for a couple of seconds before slowly descending. Go down past your starting pitch to the lowest comfortable note, hold, then come back up to starting pitch. Keep the sound as rich and resonant as possible throughout. As you slide through your range, take note of "dead spots" where the lips are less responsive (or non-responsive). Next, isolate the dead spots and "iron them out." Start buzzing slightly lower or higher than the dead spot and work through it until you are able to smooth the sound out. After you've worked through the dead spots, go back and buzz the siren exercise again to test your work...should be smoother and more connected now.
Next, go to the horn and duplicate the siren exercise using a slurred chromatic scale...start on a comfortable note (like 2nd line G or 3rd space C), go up as high as you can, hold the top note for a second, then go down to low F#, hold for a second, then go back to the starting note.
Hope this helps,