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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by rviser, Jul 22, 2009.
No, if anything it would be tougher. Efficient players get around regardless of what is screwed onto their chops.
Most of the time what players think are slots are just how well they can hear themselves. They have nothing to do with one another. If somebody needs to believe in hardware, who am I to spoil the bliss caused by not knowing better.
Well you have a point ,the human mind is a powerful thing just thinking that a trumpet can make you better may actaully make you play better. Also trills are technical you have to make sure that your fingers and lips are in sync so it doesn't matter really.
In my thirteen years of private lessons, none of my teachers -- that I recall -- mentioned "slots".
I guess I can site-search here, but what specifically is slots? Is it how much a certain horn wants to play at the center of the resonance it was designed for? So, for instance, a strad 43 bell has a broader "slot" than, say, a 37 bell?
Is this just a subjective term or can it be defined in physical measurements? I'm asking sincere, because I certainly wouldn't want any horn that just locked on pitch like some keyboard instrument.
Slots are gaps in the brain structure that allow us to crack notes. They can also be described in the Las Vegas interpretation that means that playing trumpet is like playing the one armed bandit. You get the maschine started - and the house has the odds on the jackpot. In this respect, most people believing in slots accept the fact that their odds of winning are VERY low!
The REAL "slot" is simply an expression of the efficiency and "Q" of a node in a resonant system. That does not translate to playing security or anything else - as there are many out of tune nodes. A fine trumpet designer does not build "slots". They increase the PLAYABILITY by juggling all of the available factors. I like Dave Monettes use of the word TARGET better. It is technically and semantically correct.
Hardware still affects the slots or targets though, right? Bigger mouthpiece usually tends to have bigger area of target for notes whereas the smaller mouthpieces the targets are closer together?
It is not that easy. If I hook up a sound generator(dummy lips) and an oscilloscope, I can measure the slot, efficiency and intonation. there will be differences between designs.
Take away the neutral measuring equipment and substitute a real person then everything changes. Why? Because we listen to what comes out of the front of the horn. If the brain likes what it hears, we are comfortable and more secure and THINK that the slots are better. Take the same trumpet and play it in a great sounding room and then outdoors at a lake or similar. Indoors you feel that the horn is MUCH easier to play, slots better, blah, blah, blah. Outdoors the same horn is MUCH stuffier and harder to play.
What most players assume to be slots is the feedback of the instrument/room. That has little or nothing to do with the "slot". Trumpet designers design "inefficiencies" into the horn so that the player can hear themselves better. That energy is generally lost for the audience.
My advice is for all the kiddies to forget that they heard the word "slot" and just focus on sensible practice. It makes sense to claim "I can really hear myself" or I feel more secure than....... or this horn is like a toboggan ride - I slide all over. Those are symptoms that really occur and are true.
There is no direct correlation with big mouthpieces or bells regarding Q in a resonant system like the trumpet. It really depends on many more things like backbore, throat, sharpness of the rim, mass of the instrument, taper of the leadpipe and bell as well as the interaction between all of those things. It is far too complex to accurately describe in a paragraph or two.
I'm what you could an old timer, played my first big band new years gig at 16 yrs. old, back in 1967, I never heard of the term slotting until I talked to some younger players,and then joined some of these trumpet web sites, we used to call this centering your sound and this always came from the player, not from the the type of equipment he was using, there is too much emphasis on using certain types of mouthpieces and trumpets to attain this instead of learning how to properly play the instrument, every time someone comes up with a new gimmick to supposedly make things easier, everyone looking for a quick fix immediately jump on the bandwagon, practicing slurs and trills make them easier not slots.