College student suffering severe range & buzzing issues - help!!!!!!!

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Jason R., Jun 17, 2010.

  1. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I agree that conceptualization and visualization can help - I was shown some things at one point by a pro lead player that served to make my life a lot easier on a gig - stuff that originated with Don Jacoby.

    Anyhoo...Here is the bulk of what I sent. Keep in mind, I sent this stuff along because as mostly a self-taught player (meaning I haven't had a lot of lessons - I just keep my eyes and ears open, and I've been fortunate to have been in a position to gig with a lot of really fine players) these are things I have developed on my own over 25+ years of playing this hunk of metal that worked for me. Feel free to pick and criticize, but it works for me, and I think it would help a lot of other kids who have some chops issues due to a lack of focus, strength or development with their chops.

    One thing I should have added is the importance to clarity of sound with all of that. I have found in my own practice that once things start to focus and the mouthpiece pressure reduces, the sound rounds out and becomes more dense and opaque. The "meat pillows" idea would be a helpful visualization there.

    I also just realized I forgot to talk about scales, but that was more of just a knowledge thing - I play through all of my major and minor scales in the circle of 5ths as part of my warm-up. This also was only meant as a beginning

    Ok - hack away. :D
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2010
  2. guyclark

    guyclark Piano User

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    Hi, Veery!

    My point about the single big lip is quite analogous to the double-reed vs. single reed woodwind system. In an oboe or basoon, the two reeds move back and forth in synchronicity, and modulate the air stream passing between them. In a clarinet or saxophone, the single reed moves against a stationary mouthpiece, again modulating the air flow between them.

    I see a clear relationship to the lip movement and sound. As a recording engineer, as well as my other jobs, I see the audio waveform in my editor. Brass instruments played loudly, or badly (for my taste) produce an asymmetrical waveform. A flute or softly (or correctly for my taste ;-) ) played trumpet or cornet produces a much more symmetrical waveform.

    Again, I think that if you are looking at a pair of moving lips in a trumpet system, you are likely to not be able to see the kind of resolution of detail needed to resolve this question due to the limitations of the fluoroscopy and fiberoptic technologies used for imaging.

    I think this discussion is very much to the point of the original poster who was concerned about range issues and buzzing (which I originally took to be "buzzing in the sound of his playing" which I realize was incorrect). When the statement was made that the lips should be placed together, I had to make sure that that was taken correctly, because as is now obvious, I have a concept of playing that prefers that the lips don't interfere with one another.

    Later!

    Guy
     
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Jason,
    there is a lot of heavy stuff here and honestly, I don't think much of it is useful without a one on one with the people in the know.

    You say 10 years and only a G on top of the staff. That means something serious needs attention and the internet is basically useless for something like this.

    I see 2 paths for you:
    1) you are a music major and probably have a trumpet professor available. Sit down with them and see what they have to say, then take the whole summer semester and do that - no other gigs, just the stuff that THEY (who have seen you play) think is good for you. I suspect there will be a lot of very soft playing, long tones, lip slurs, breathing exercizes and very easy tunes.

    2) go on the internet and get advice from players that know NOTHING about you, where you have NO PROOF that any of their methods really work and take a chance that the advice that you got does not match you or your situation.

    To be honest, if I have to think about my lips and whether they touch or not, I missed something a long time ago. Any of that stuff may or may not be true. I say, don't teach it. A good teacher should give exercizes that promote correct playing without ANALysis. Once we have achieved a certain amount of proficiency, then we can spend time with theories and the like. All of that stuff is only in the way before your face works. You do not need visualizations. You need a teacher that will tell you what NOT to do. I am convinced that what you post has more to do with that than what else is probably OK.

    My concept of playing is that the whole body contributes to the success or failure. We need to get breathing and body use working with simple stuff like long tones, easy slurs and tunes first. Then we can move into areas like range, articulation and endurance. Without the very basics that you obviously are missing, you are trying to hit a moving target.

    Forget physics and geometry. Talk to your prof.
     
  4. Al Innella

    Al Innella Forte User

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    QK, the way I see it you had a private teacher from middle school thru high school, and two semesters with a college prof. and still have the problem. I would say these teachers are not for you,they either don't know how to tell you what they want you to do, or they just don't know how they themselves get the results that they get out of the horn. I would say it's time for a different teacher to at least get your chops working correctly.
     
  5. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    Well, here we are again, in disagreement.

    For starters, you mention in point #1 that you suspect that there would be a lot of very soft playing, long tones, yada yada yada... Gee, color me stupid, but I thought I suggested that with what I sent to him.

    The proof that the method works is the fact that what I sent wasn't anything special, but the very same things (albeit in a slightly different, freer format) that you get from a lot of private teachers and various method books.

    He admittedly doesn't practice as much as he should, and some solid work on basic fundamentals in the foundation will more than likely (I'd give it at least 90%) get him on track with his chops so that he has basic, usable range from low F# to second ledger C.
     
  6. mchs3d

    mchs3d Mezzo Forte User

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    Personally, my view is rather simple. I think that, if the OP is having range issues, it may be time to start practicing more. I would say that it is very good that you have has an eye-opener of a first year, because it will help make you a better player. Just ask your teacher what needs to be done, and I will bet, if you apply it and have patience, you will improve.

    Not everybody has great high-note chops, but you can certainly improve them, with a little smart work.
     
  7. Markie

    Markie Forte User

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    Hi trickg
    Here's the Poster's question:
    So in short, I've been playing for 10 years, and can't consistently hit anything above the G sitting on top of the staff. Any suggestions on getting my range up to par? I appreciate anything and everything.
    -------------------------------
    What Trickg sez about me recommending Arch Tongue and Hiss, Mouthpiece Pressure Assessment and How to use imagery to help stave off mouthpiece pressure:

    "Markie, even those are kind of beside the point. Why mess with a mouthpiece pressure assessment when he can dive right in on some basic exercises that will help him reduce and find the balance point for how much pressure he's using?"
    ---------
    Why tell the Poster about mouthpiece pressure!?!
    Because practice doesn't make perfect, Perfect practice makes perfect.
    The #1 problem with working on range is using too much mouthpiece pressure.
    trickg, you do play the trumpet, right?
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2010
  8. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    TrickG,
    I think you need to find your self esteem elsewhere. There is no rule about us having to agree, or you bringing it up excessively. Your "qualified" comments will be regarded as such by TMers whether they line up with mine or not. There is no additional credibility for you or me when we agree.

    After 10 years of not getting where he needs to be, the thread owner needs to make a choice: do what the local qualified teacher says, or mess around further. Those were my choices 1 and 2 in a nutshell. I really suspect lacking discipline is his problem, not practicing enough and not what he should. We cannot change that here. Trying EVERYTHING recommended above means he graduates with no improvement.
     
  9. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I certainly don't get my self-esteem here, and I don't roll into virtually every thread trying to bludgeon everyone with my own personal opinions on virtually every trumpet or music related subject in an effort to prove how much I think know. It's definitely not me trying to improve my self-esteem here on the board.

    My issue with agreeing or disagreeing with you is the attitude that exudes from your copious posting as if you are the ulimate autority here on the board when it comes to playing methods and practices, or anything else for that matter, and the fact that much of what you post seems like a lot of personal opinion rather than fact, most of which doesn't line up with what I've learned and read about playing this instrument over the course of about 30 years. I have no clue who you are other than the fact that you post here a lot and somehow you are a moderator. (Side note - I was here on the board from its inception, and was one of the original moderators until the ownership of the board changed hands years ago, and original mods were replaced with people with more recognizable names. Not that it really matters - I'm simply saying that being a moderator doesn't make anyone an authority.)

    My comments on these boards are always based in common sense when it comes to approaching the trumpet. Those lessons are basic things that can be applied to virtually any aspiring trumpet player on the planet and it will help them improve.

    Rowuk, you sail into a thread spouting various things as singular, abosolute fact, and while I fully believe that you believe what you wrote, and may even work for SOME people, (and might even be correct on occasion) they are by no means the only way to get from point A to point B.

    Markie, go back and read my quote that I extracted from my PM - I believe I mention the reduction of mouthpiece pressure multiple times, although frankly I think the point is moot - we haven't heard from the original poster in a while.
     
  10. Markie

    Markie Forte User

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    "What we do in life echoes in eternity. At my signal, push Ignore"
    Markieus Deciblus Trumpetus
     

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