Ear player puzzling over transposed notation

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Jay-Eye, May 2, 2010.

  1. amzi

    amzi Forte User

    Feb 18, 2010
    Northern California
    Last edited: May 2, 2010
  2. Jay-Eye

    Jay-Eye New Friend

    Apr 15, 2010
    Sunny Birmingham, UK
    And that's where my problem lies! I'm talking about playing by ear here, not from music. I've spent a lifetime playing the note, with it called by its correct name. I don't claim to have perfect pitch but my ears tell me when a tune is in the key of C for instance. According to your example gbdeamer, trumpet players (and others) learn the wrong names for the notes so that when everyone else in the group knows they're playing C, the brass players think they're playing D!

    Sorry, but I'll still know I'm in C and I'll want to play C. Not C as notated but true C -o- . I realise that'll be the same note as the one who thinks he's playing D. I guess I think it's silly to call it by the wrong name. I'm sure I've encountered brass players in the past who haven't realised they're playing a different note to the one written!

    I'm not worried at all, bagmangood. But I am mystified!
  3. Dupac

    Dupac Fortissimo User

    Aug 19, 2008
    Bordeaux, France.
    IMO all the confusion comes from the fact that you think like a pianist while playing the trumpet : if you do 13 (in the lower part of the stave) you are playing a D, not a C !
    It's a D, Jay-Eye, it's written D on YOUR sheet, and please, think D. Don't pay attention to the fact that others (like pianists) think "this guy is playing a C"... At the same time, an alto-sax player thinks "this note is a A", but it's HIS problem, not yours !
  4. nieuwguyski

    nieuwguyski Forte User

    Aug 9, 2004
    Santa Cruz County, CA
    If you don't read music, and don't plan on learning how, why would you care what the rest of us silly music-readers do? Jam on, in concert pitch, to your heart's content!
  5. Dupac

    Dupac Fortissimo User

    Aug 19, 2008
    Bordeaux, France.
    When writing my last post, I haven't yet seen your last answer (to Gbdeamer)... So, if you cannot think "like a trumpeter", and don't want to have metaphysical problems, the only solution is to switch to C trumpet (Or maybe to the trombone ?).
  6. Dupac

    Dupac Fortissimo User

    Aug 19, 2008
    Bordeaux, France.
  7. Dupac

    Dupac Fortissimo User

    Aug 19, 2008
    Bordeaux, France.
    A last word, from my part :
    Imagine you want to play the Eb cornet, a very pleasant instrument, not so far from our usual Bb trumpet. With the same fingering 13 giving that is C in concert pitch and we all (but you) trumpeters call D, you'll get a F in concert pitch (called D by all Eb cornet players). So you'll have to recall all the fingerings, to rememorize all the notes, when switching from one of the horns to the other ? THIS is silly, IMHO.
  8. ozboy

    ozboy Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 17, 2007
    I have been playing for a long time and taught myself to play by ear from the very beginning. Initially I played nursery rhymes and moved them into various keys.
    After a while, intervals become physical responses that are automatic. If you drive a manual car, you can appreciate for a while that initially you have to consciously think through every component. After a while the steps become a form of subconscious response.
    How do you build this ability? You can practice the same intervals a variety of keys. Link certain intervals to certain triggers. eg maj 5th is the interval from the beginning of Twinkle Twinkle.
    unfortunately to get to this position, there is a fair bit of repetitive scale and interval work required.
    After a while, when you establish in your head the tonal centre or key you are going to play in, things become pretty much automatic.
    I also practice scat singing and then playing the phrase back. Most people can sing what they want to play. Don't know if this is along the lines of answering your original question
  9. Printer

    Printer New Friend

    May 1, 2010
    San Francisco
    IMHO, Dupac makes perfect sense. On a B-flat trumpet, a written C is a concert B-flat. But just think of it as a C. If, however, you are playing from piano music rather than music scored specifically for a B-flat trumpet, it would make more sense, at least for a beginning player, to play on a C-trumpet, until you learn to transpose.
  10. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    Here's a thought - play music written for Bb trumpet. :-o

    (Yeah I know JI, not the original thought - couldn't help myself.)

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