Buzzing School of thought

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by anthony, Feb 19, 2016.

  1. eviln3d

    eviln3d Pianissimo User

    Jun 5, 2013
    growing up I had 3 different trumpet teachers as I progressed... They all were into buzzing on the mouth piece and one also pushed buzzing with no mouthpiece at all. I never thought it hurt anything, frankly I always thought if I could hit high C without a mouthpiece it was proof I could do it with a mouthpiece and wouldn't need to use pressure to try and force the note.... The one instructor I had that pushed buzzing with no mouthpiece at all could pretty much sound like an insect, and he did have a very good range.
  2. gsmonks

    gsmonks Piano User

    The buzzing thing is a scam and a fraud, and always has been.

    It's one of those quaint leftovers, like "playing from the corners", which is complete nonsense. The corners should always be relaxed and flexible. After all, they must be so in order for you to breathe efficiently.

    Your lips don't buzz when you play. This goes directly to the matter of how brasswinds work, and closed- and open-tube acoustic properties.

    What happens acoustically when you play is that the air-column inside the horn becomes part of a standing-wave. In order for the standing-wave principle to work (for those of you that have studied the acoustics of brasswinds), the lips necessarily become part of the wave-process. In order to do so, they must be open, aka not buzzing, aka not touching. If the lips actually touch, the standing wave ceases to function.

    I don't buzz when I play, I never have, and in person I can demonstrate the fact. You can pull the horn off the mouthpiece while I'm playing, and all you'll hear is a faint resonance, that is the ACTUAL sound you make.

    So much baloney in the brass-playing world. Will it never go away?
  3. anthony

    anthony Mezzo Piano User

    Mar 3, 2009
    ALRIGHT you said it baloney is the word buzzing is nothing but b.s.
  4. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008
    If your lips don't " buzz/vibrate ", there is no standing wave created. The air column is not enough. Put your lips on the outside of the mpc or receiver and see what sound it makes. Blow as hard or soft as you want. You'll make no sound but phwoooo.
  5. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

    Aug 7, 2013
    Lagos, Nigeria
    ...and the trumpet tubing is the strange shape it is because it is a CLOSED-TUBE instrument. Its collection of odd harmonics need to be 'massaged' into a usable complete harmonic sequence (bar the fundamental) by carefully designed expansion of its tubing from mouthpiece throat to bell.

    And the closure of the 'closed end' is created by closure of the lip aperture, without which the mouthpiece cup would be unable to vary its pressure: a necessary prerequisite for a fully resonant air column.

    We buzz.

    It is quite stubbornly resistant.
  6. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008

    Evidently you have some axe to grind. I don't know why and don't care. The only thing you got right is that there is a standing wave. You do fail to explain how it comes into being and how it is stopped (your explanation is wrong). Lack of airflow sufficient to cause the lips to buzz/vibrate/oscillate stops the standing wave/sound from coming out the trumpet. And there are other factors related to fatigue that stop the standing wave, but they aren't germane. I would suggest you read how brass-wind instruments work. It may or may not help your playing. I don't know how my computer works, but yet I'm here typing in the interwebs. Many good players have no clue as to how their instruments work. You may be one of those. BTW, I have never heard of "playing from the corners" so I don't know what that is supposed to mean.
  7. gsmonks

    gsmonks Piano User

    The "playing from the corners" thing was standard canon for a very long time. I know band directors today who are still teaching it. Back in the 60's, my trumpet teachers used to get us to break a paper straw into pieces, insert a piece in each corner of the mouth, and hold on to them as tightly as possible.

    The lips don't buzz when you play. They undulate in time with the standing wave, the soft part at the centre becoming part of it. As part of the standing wave, they become part of the tone you hear, not a buzz. A buzz is governed by a whole different set of rules. For a buzz to occur, there must be no horn, no mouthpiece. The soft parts of the lips flap back and forth, producing the buzz. Two entirely different phenomena, two entirely different situations.

    To clarify further: buzzing is produced when air passes through the aperture, causing the soft parts of the lips to flap back and forth. A tone is produced as air passes through the aperture, causing the soft parts of the lips to undulated up and down, not back and forth. The lips, when part of a vibrating air-column, go "owowowowow", not "bz-z-z-z-z".
  8. gsmonks

    gsmonks Piano User

    Oh, and for any doubters who know a bit about acoustics, try this on for size:

    Draw two diagrams:

    Diagram A: draw the wave-form generated by a pair of buzzing lips.

    Diagram B: draw a standing wave on a sheet of very thin paper, then try to match it up by overlaying it the wave for produced by buzzing lips.

    You'll see right away that it can't be done. "One of these things is not like the other . . . "
  9. Jerry Freedman

    Jerry Freedman Piano User

    Mar 4, 2005
    Buzzing is one of those things like pedals that are recommended by some teachers, allowed by others, and forbidden by yet others. For some players buzzing can produce miracles and lots of pros swear by it. For others its useless or even detrimental. Since everybody's embouchure is different and generalizations, especially if pronounced as rigid commandments are not useful. Be pragmatic. Try it, if it works, keep doing it, if it doesn't stop doing it
  10. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008
    Now you're just arguing semantics.

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