Changing my embouchure

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by 1stTrumpet, Dec 28, 2009.

  1. B15M

    B15M Forte User

    Dec 30, 2003
    Monroe Ct.
    Everybody wants you to get a teacher, can't hurt. The teacher can't see in your mouth.

    I think "get a teacher" is the catch phrase here
  2. dhbailey

    dhbailey Piano User

    Jul 28, 2009
    New Hampshire
    A lot of great advice from the members of this forum -- the best being to find a good local teacher to work with, even if you don't need an embouchure change.

    It sounds from your message that the person who suggested the embouchure change felt your range, endurance and tone were issues which could be fixed with an embouchure change. He heard you, we haven't heard you. So we can't know if you have problems in those areas (what trumpet player doesn't want to improve in those three areas?) How is your tone now? How is your endurance now? How is your range now? If you are content with how they are developing and if the people around you (most notably your band director) aren't complaining, you may be doing exactly what you need to right now. However, I wouldn't completely rule out the advice for an embouchure change -- if there are no good trumpet teachers nearby, then consider scheduling an hour lesson with a teacher in the nearest metropolitan area and taking the day to travel there and have the lesson. You need to work with an expert who can hear you play and then make informed suggestions based on that. And if an embouchure is indeed needed (they may not be needed very often nor by very many people, but there are people for whom they are necessary), then be patient and don't attempt it on your own, do it only under the guidance of a teacher you can work with on a weekly basis so that you don't end up with the same limitations but in a different spot on your embouchure.

    Possibly a new mouthpiece could turn your playing around, or working on different exercises in your daily practice routine. It's impossible to say without being right there watching you play.

    On a more general human-nature level: Isn't it curious how people can compliment our playing all the time and we sort of shrug it off as being the kindness of people who don't really know, yet if one single person makes a negative comment about any aspect of our playing, we take it to heart and feel devastated and immediately try to change whatever that person complained about? I see it all the time in people around me and I work hard in my own soul to take all the comments (good or bad) from others as equally important, so if I shrug off compliments, I also shrug off derogatory comments.

    Ultimately what matters to me, and is the only actual goal I can work towards, is my own personal satisfaction in the trumpet playing I do. I suggest you think along those lines for yourself, also -- were those comments by that person suggesting the embouchure change valid? Do you feel you need a lot of improvement in those areas? Then find ways to work towards improving them, and if ultimately it involves an embouchure change, then be willing to work through that (with the help of a professional). But even if you do feel you need improvement in those areas, you may simply need a new approach to your daily practice routine and nothing as drastic as an embouchure change.
    Vulgano Brother likes this.
  3. david778

    david778 New Friend

    Sep 23, 2009
    All i have to say is to me i think it is up to your preference on where the mouth piece is. i am speaking from experience a while back i had had a audtion for the cavaliers and i worked very hard with thier technique on improving intonation and all of the above. time passed and my sound improved greatly audtion time was coming around and my audition piece was sound great and i was very pleased with my sound and so was my director from my college. i was practicing and my section made the same comment about mouthpiece placement. bad mistake i followed what he said and complete disaster with my music. i had a hard time playing in the high range and low range and also having airy tone. my audition was ruined because of this, changing position takes alot of time. the idea of changing position is unneeded because everybodies mouth is different so placement is not always going to be the same.
  4. Al Innella

    Al Innella Forte User

    Aug 9, 2007
    Levittown , NY
    How can anyone walk into a class and tell people to change their mouthpiece placement without knowing their playing history? Did this so called expert ask you if you practice every day, and for how long? Did he try to help you by assigning things to practice , such as correct breathing techniques , tongue placement , long-tones ,lip-slurs, etc. ? Find a qualified teacher and work on the fundamentals , then if you still have problems and want to change, find a teacher who has knowledge of different embouchure types ,and doesn't try to turn you into a copy of him/her. Hey you want to see an embouchure that should have been changed in grade school, check out former 1st trumpet of the Boston Symphony ,Roger Voisin's.
  5. Bach Kid

    Bach Kid New Friend

    Dec 31, 2009
    I am sure that the guy just gave a suggestion that it could help
  6. david778

    david778 New Friend

    Sep 23, 2009
    yeah its been about 4 years since that audition and i am glad that i went through with that audition it was the best thing that i could have done even though i never made it. thats fine with me learned making the audition is not everything. but my playing has improved by thier guidance and has inspried me even more so right now i am working on getting into the marine corps band and someday getting into thier drum and bugle corps.
  7. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Thousands of small steps are generally better than trying to move the mountain in one piece.

    IF you get a decent daily routine, pay some attention to your body use, work on your breathing, much of this embouchure stuff just disappears.

    My teaching experience shows that a steady diet of long tones, lip slurs and easy tunes does WONDERS for just about all players. In addition, I don't have to worry about that advice messing you up.
  8. NYCO10

    NYCO10 Pianissimo User

    Feb 20, 2010
    United Kingdom
    Picking up that you mentioned you were at school i would assume you are still in your teens? and in terms of an embouchure change it will take a while. i used to play quite considerably of center to the left it has taken me about 2 years to get it nearly perfect in the center. but be patient i found that playing through some of the first execises of the arban book helped me in 'redeveloping the muscles' and back on the straight in to producing a clear tone again. best of luck to you and be patient!

    Peace NYCO10
  9. a marching trumpet

    a marching trumpet Mezzo Piano User

    Feb 11, 2009
    Murfreesboro, TN
    Personally im a touch off my center, to my right and I'm not to shabby, but yeah do try to find a private lessons teacher, (hate to say it) but I have a natural french horn embochure but my director wont let me change if my life depended on it, so maybe your embochure is fine, but perhaps your on the wrong instrument? it happens? (I still love trumpet and wouldnt switch anyways)

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