Does your Bb fit? Is fit important?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Comeback, Mar 4, 2013.

  1. Comeback

    Comeback Forte User

    Jun 22, 2011
    Fort Wayne, IN
    I'm definitely not advocating for radical reshaping of our instrument of choice, but ergonomics might be really important to some. For instance, we frequently have posts concerning pressure and how much is too much, and others about finger position above finger buttons. If comfort, pressure conditions and finger strike mechanics can be improved by simply moving from trumpet to cornet, then why not? That preceding question is sincere, I certainly acknowledge that I could be missing something important.
  2. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    OK, I'll admit to being a snobbish chauvinist. The cornet came about because making valved trumpets that play in tune was almost impossible at first. Our early chromatic instruments (other than the slide trumpet, and would love to get my hands on one of those some day) were the cornet and keyed bugle. We had this centuries-long tradition of trumpet players with their guild and allegiance only to the Emperor that died out not too many years before these weird and curious cousins started elbowing their way into salon music. Orchestral trumpeters and hornists resisted the valved instruments at first because they did not sound as noble as the real deal.

    Anyway, (sorry to be rambling) although the proportion of cylindrical to tapered tubing is very similar in modern cornets and trumpets, I still consider cornets to be bastard cousins to the trumpet. Like I mentioned, I'm a snobbish chauvinist.
  3. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Heart of Dixie
    Since the modern trumpet adopted the valve system and the larger ratio of conical to cylindrical tubing of the cornet, I'd say it's the other way around...
  4. Randall Nelson

    Randall Nelson Mezzo Piano User

    Nov 26, 2011
    WA State
    I too have to be careful with this as my "ape factor" is not huge...I'm more Neanderthal.:shock:

    The scientist in me does tend to notice the difference in vintage horns and some horns are better and some are not as comfortable at first. Example, my Liberty Balanced or Recording are much more comfy than the original Liberty or Olds Ambassador I have (had...Ambassador left last week).
    Interestingly, I don't notice anything similar to this on modern horns like my Kanstul Chicago or Lawler. I switch between and never think about it.
  5. edfitzvb

    edfitzvb Forte User

    Jun 10, 2008
    Woodlawn, VA
    I would have to agree with Dale that the modern trumpet has more in common with a cornet than its predecessors
  6. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    And the cornet with the trumpet, although some (not all) sheppard crook models do get a "real" dark and sweet cornet sound. The rotary valve trumpets have a much shorter section that is tapered and sound like trumpets.
  7. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    I've yet to play a cornet and I seking an opportunity to compare. (I wonder if there is such a thing as a bastard cousin?)
  8. Forte User

    Jan 27, 2008
    Brisbane, Australia
    Ted, you're welcome to try my Ambassador cornet if you come to Brisbane. :)
  9. nieuwguyski

    nieuwguyski Forte User

    Aug 9, 2004
    Santa Cruz County, CA
    Selmer Grand Prix and K-Modified trumpets also have valve blocks closer to your face. A side effect of this layout is that such trumpets can feel bell-heavy -- especially with a copper Jo Ral bubble mute plugged in.
  10. nieuwguyski

    nieuwguyski Forte User

    Aug 9, 2004
    Santa Cruz County, CA
    Even at the amateur, playing-for-fun, community-group level there are expectations about what instruments are "appropriate." If you show up to play in a decent community orchestra with a shepherd's-crook cornet, even one in C, you'll probably be encouraged to bring a trumpet next time. If you refuse, you may well be invited to not come back. Same thing if you bring a cornet to an amateur big-band rehearsal. Or refuse to play flugelhorn on parts that call for it, because you find your flugelhorn uncomfortable to hold. Or try to play trumpet in the cornet section of a brass band.

    If you are willing to let your horn preference dictate what groups you play in, then there's no problem.

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