Dead Lips

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by dildav, Jan 29, 2009.

  1. dildav

    dildav New Friend

    Nov 22, 2007
    I am an older (80) comeback player for about ten years. All of a sudden my lip has gone dead i.e. no ability to play upper register.I have been playing in a Community Band (3rd chair) with no upper register problems. Any suggestions for getting back to normal.
  2. s.coomer

    s.coomer Forte User

    Mar 25, 2005
    Indianapolis, In
    More than likely your lips are not "dead", but they are stiff. As we age our lips can stiffen up. The cure for this is to work on some flexibility studies. I do them daily and spend probably some 30 minutes per day working on flexibility. I would say you need to get some flexibility studies and put in the time. Vizzutti's trumpet method book one has a whole section of flexibility studies.
  3. oldlou

    oldlou Forte User

    Aug 28, 2005
    Grand Rapids, Mi.
    As a fellow elderly ,( age 72 ), comebacker, playing principal in one community concert band and utility in another, I sympathise with your problem. I doubt that anyone can diagnose your actual problem and prescribe any effective remedy via internet conversation. You are in need of a professional trumpeter to watch and listen to you play. Good luck.

  4. ChopsGone

    ChopsGone Forte User

    Jan 26, 2009
    Northern California
    I've seen suggestions in some of the older methods (from cookie-cutter cornet mouthpiece days) about massaging the lips several times a day. They also suggested rubbing something onto them; can't recall what, but with ChopSaver and other products like it, there's no reason to experiment with lard or Vaseline. If nothing else, a little massaging could help improve blood circulation in the area. But a visit to your doctor might also be advisable.
  5. Markie

    Markie Forte User

    Jan 4, 2009
    Clarksburg, WV
    Hi Dildav,
    Markie here,
    If your lip just quits vibrating a couple of things might be going on. Let me ask you a few questions that you won't be able to answer until you've played and done a little self assessment.
    The reason I ask that you assess first is, that as humans, we are creatures of habit. Usually a bad habit (say for example using pressure to play higher or leaning forward in an unbalanced manner) will start off small. Unfortunately, often a bad habit works so it is reinforced. Once its reinforced it easily becomes engratiated into our playing.
    You might be suffering from nothing more than just a little trumpet VD. Yes, that's right, Trumpet VD!!! You picked up a little bad habit somehow and now it's effecting your performance.
    OK here goes:
    Honestly give yourself a good workout until the lip dies.
    Do you notice the sound becoming strained and buzzy before the lip dies?
    If so, the corners of the lips may be giving out. To compensate for the buzzy sound, you unconsciencly apply pressure which removes the buzziness. As you continue to play using the pressure, the lip give out. If this is what you find, then rearrange your method a little.
    1)As soon as you start sounding crappy, put the trumpet away for a while.
    2)Start doing lip flexibilities (bugle slurs about 3 honest minutes twice a day focusing on keeping those corners tight, the aperture loose and the hand pressure at bay).
    Now, if you've tried this method of self evaluation and repair and still find no relief,(shouldn't take more than a couple of weeks until you start to see an improvement) please go see a trumpet professional so they can actually watch you play.
    Good Luck, I hope it helps!
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2009
  6. dildav

    dildav New Friend

    Nov 22, 2007
    Thanks to all of you.Here comes long tones and flexibility studies.

    Thanks again
  7. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

    May 4, 2007
    Greensboro, NC
    Do you have pro teacher who is experienced with embouchure problems to consult? Not all teachers have experience with chop problems
  8. stchasking

    stchasking Forte User

    Jun 11, 2006
    Try pedal tones along with the flexibility studies. Play lots of low notes and hold them. There are plenty of exercise books available.

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