embouchure problems?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by DLP08, Oct 12, 2007.

  1. DLP08

    DLP08 New Friend

    Sep 2, 2007
    Hey again, to everyone here at Trumpet Master!

    I have a slight embouchure problem that I can't seem to get rid off.

    It has been causing me more than I can handle, and long story short, my bottom lip tucks behind my teeth. I can't seem to move it away or I can't get a sound out. It also seems rolling in my bottom lip is the only way to get my top lip to cooperate. Though there is the occasional time where my bottom lip rolls back out and flutters against the bottom of my mouthpiece.

    Very frustrating stuff. Any insight?
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I also have relatively large lips and roll in the lower lip.

    You say that you have a "slight problem" but that you can't get any sound out. That sounds more like a major problem!

    Embouchure problems really cannot be diagnosed over the internet. There are too many things that can be happening here. I do not think that a roll in is a problem unless someone suggests that it is and we start to worry about it. My point: if someone QUALIFIED told you that was bad, they could also tell you what to do about it. If someone unqualified told you: go into IGNORE mode. Your energy needs to be focussed on playing not worrying!

    What I can say is that whenever you have an inexplainable change in your playing, go back to the basics: deep breath, exhale without holding the air in. After you have mastered that, replace exhale with play: no tonguing. Once you can produce a stable tone and the transition between inhale and play is smooth without any throat tension, your chops are basically functional. Add the tonguing carefully and you should be on your way.
    ALWAYS take a big step back when you have a problem. AND always be wary of advice - especially from the internet!
    When in doubt, get professional help and take that advice. Changing gameplans midstream usually courts disaster!
  3. DLP08

    DLP08 New Friend

    Sep 2, 2007
    Thank you for all the replies.

    I realize without a visual and hearing aid, embouchure problems can't be fikxed too well.

    So maybe a lip roll in IS normal to some huh (though i still have small lips :D)? I just always figured it was bad technique. I can get a sound out, but only when I roll in. The reason I think it is a problem is my sound. My tone isn't bad, and all around im an alright player, but my volume cant go above a "forte in a small room". I always have blamed that on my bottom lip rolling in. I guess I need to just shut up and play huh?
  4. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    We as trumpeters tend to overdo everything. If we didn't, we probably would have picked some less cool instrument. So, if you're rolling the lip in, are you doing that exclusively? A lot of our embouchure is isometric in nature, with opposing muscles operating at the same time. You might try the following: roll the lip in like normal and push out at the same time. If you notice a drastic improvement, that would be fantastic. If not, then try something else--at least you'll know what doesn't work. Good luck!
  5. patdublc

    patdublc Pianissimo User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Salisbury, MD
    I too, play with my lower lip curled in. In the big band that I play lead in, there is a guy who plays with his bottom lip rolled out. We sound fine together. Go figure. Neither one of us has a "text book" embouchure.

    I don't really consider my "roll in" a problem. Given a perfect world, I would probably prefer not to have it, but I don't really see it creating problems. I have changed my embouchure several times for several reasons. In reality, no change was abrupt. Each change that I have worked on has been more of an evolution.

    For more understanding on the lip position, do a little research on the Reinhardt methods and the Balanced Embouchure approach. These tools can help you classify the type of embouchure that you have and the (general) pros/cons of such a setup. Granted, it is a bit different for every individual, but these are some very useful tools.

    Once you have studied these a bit, perhaps you will be ready to decide if you really want to make a change or not. I think changes like this are always best done under the tutelage of a good teacher.

  6. ccNochops

    ccNochops Piano User

    Sep 30, 2006
    White Marsh, VA
    You mean there's another way to play? I didn't even think about it, but my lower lip tucks over my lower teeth also and I have standard issue B flat lips. Not big by any means, never thought about it really......chuck:dontknow:

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