Concept of Sound

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by anthony, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    The first thing I asked was what song the first year trumpet student wanted to play ... and I got some very good answers. My next question was, "Can you play that song?" The answer was NO! I asked why not, and the answer was ... I don't know how. The "how" is my effort to get them to play their song. Always remember the song they wanted to play! If you don't have the music, get it. More often the music they want to play has many elements of what you want them to learn and is a great teaching tool if used frequently and augmented from the texts.
  2. EdMann

    EdMann Mezzo Forte User

    Sep 20, 2007
    Los Angeles
    I guess that begs the question, why are you playing trumpet if you haven't listened to much trumpet? Boy, when I was younger, that's about all I listened to (not so much now) and it was one of the only instruments that got the goosebumps going. I can't imagine playing without that sound in my head, even now.

  3. Phil986

    Phil986 Forte User

    Nov 16, 2009
    Near Portland, OR.
    Listening to great players is very important. However, to truly understand what it is they're doing that produces the result you hear,so as to be able to emulate it, one likely needs a teacher, in fact several of them over the years. I'll add that listening to players of other instruments can be just as useful. For us trumpet players, there is no end to how much we can learn from listening to great singers, but also oboe players, clarinet players, trombone players, tuba players, cello players (those are just a few of my favorites).

    I find it ironic that you mention Tine Thing Helseth and Alison Balsom, who grew under the guidance of very qualified teachers, and then proceed on saying that the great learned by themselves. Some great Jazz players learned by themselves, others had extensive education. The vast majority of great classical players receive a very thorough education in trumpet and in music in general. Once in a while, one comes along who is so gifted that education is almost superfluous (Sergei). They still have to learn about music. They are one in a few millions. If you think you're one of them, go ahead on your own. Perhaps the teacher you didn't like identified that the exercise he was having you do for an entire lesson was the one thing you needed the most, that could unlock everything else. Did you ever talk to him about your frustration? Teaching is not a one-way road.
  4. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    I see such comment as to "learning by themselves" as not being a contradiction to the guidance they received by their teachers. I believe the teacher is there to take you through the steps of beginner, intermediate and master. Once the level of mastery is reached, then I think it is very important to enter a phase of self-learning. In a way, that is how the PhD degree is structured, based on a foundation of knowledge achieved from the Bachelor Degree, and then moving on to less structured learning, with a high level of independent learning. I would hope that all trumpet players wanting to achieve excellence would go beyond their teachers' skills to by progressing to the stage of self-learning. This in fact is the best way I know of developing one's OWN sound.
  5. Phil986

    Phil986 Forte User

    Nov 16, 2009
    Near Portland, OR.
    I couldn't agree more. Maurice Andre's path is a case in point. So is Coltrane's. In fact, the ability of some to continue learning and seek more learning, even after they have reached the superior levels, is a defining characteristic of greatness, and not only for music or trumpet playing. However, that is possible only after one has reached the level where the means to do it have been acquired. I find it a far safer bet to use the guidance of good teachers to get there, but some rare gifted ones can do without. I'm not sure the op was arguing from that kind of level, although I could be mistaken.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2012
  6. Richard Oliver

    Richard Oliver Forte User

    Jul 18, 2006
    Casper, WY
    Anthony, here's something you can listen to. Takes 1:51 of your time since you're talking about listening to great players to create a sound concept in your head, hears, and heart. Philadelphia Brass Ensemble from, what, 1967? Gil Johnson and the boys. There's a name you can learn about. He had lots of teachers and was great.

    The playing is so great on this simple tune had to give it another listen. When I first heard it, I said, Gosh, I wanna sound like that.

    All the best, Richard.

    Also, Roy Firestone interviewed Chris Botti about a year or so ago. Maybe you can find it here on TM. TH has it. Part of the interview, he talks about exactly the same thing you're talking about. Not in the same way or from the same directions, but the topics you share, each in your own words, bear upon each other.

    Found a link for you:
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2012

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