Embouchure question

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by musickaye, May 20, 2009.

  1. mimic

    mimic Pianissimo User

    May 3, 2009
    I too came back to playing after a 15 year layoff. There are no brass teachers in my area so I did the wrong thing. I bought an Arbans book and started at page 1 and tried to work my way through the book. What a mistake. After 10 very frustrating years with only sporadic and non sustainable progress I went to the internet for advice. This helped a great deal in correcting some well ingrained bad habits. I also realized that I need to find a good instructor, which I am in the process of doing. One bit of advice that I took off this forum is using slurs. I tended to stay away from doing them because I simply wasn't good at it. Now that I have done them for some time my progress is much better. I have talked to some returning players and hear very similar stories to yours and mine. Use of long tones and sluring seem to be a very good way to start on the road back.

    MTROSTER Piano User

    Jan 25, 2007
    You don't mention if you have a teacher. I returned to trumpet afeta 20 year hiatus, but started from scrtach with a good teacher;it worked. Also a couple of months will not do it aftera layoff of 40 years. Be patient.
  3. musickaye

    musickaye New Friend

    Jan 31, 2009
    Monmouth County NJ
    Mtroster and Mimic,

    Thanks for the very good advice. I will try and be more patient. I know this is what I must do. No, I don't have a teacher yet. for many reasons I can't get one until September. I was hoping I could get back somewhat on my own. I hope I don't develope anymore bad habits. I will keep going forward. Thanks for the help and kind words.

  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Kaye, you will NEVER be able to play like you did. It would actually be moving backwards. We develop in the course of our lives and all of that finds its way into our playing.
    I am sure that patience is something that you have learned elsewhere. Simply apply it here. You will get there if you don't rely on miracles!
  5. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

    May 4, 2007
    Greensboro, NC
    It's been my experience that range and endurance are the last to come back. It will take months. Treat your embochure like it is a beginner. If you have the right approch, your will come back better than when you stopped.
  6. backtotrumpet

    backtotrumpet New Friend

    May 9, 2009
    I am just going to mention a few things to check and try. But ultimately it could be many issues and you need a good private instructor to make sure you are progressing properly and figure out what the issue may be.

    I will share some mindsets that may or may not help - again, get a professional teacher (I am not a pro - so take this with a grain of salt).

    Do not close or pinch your lips - corners tight and middle loose to allow air. Try blowing through a straw with lips set like you will be whistling. I started to curl my lips too much which killed my air flow, reduced range and stoped the focused stream which hurt tone quality. When I focus my lips like I will whistle and blow with tons of FOCUSED air (like through a straw) - I can expand my range much easier.

    Visualize creating a hole with your lips and puckering up for whistling (maybe a little curl but not too much that it kills air focus). Then blow and use the back of your tongue to guide the air. Do not add pressure - this is a dead giveaway that something is mechanically wrong - I use very subtle pressure change from middle to high C. Lots of air support and movement in the back of my tongue to guide into the higher notes.

    Play around with these and see if anything works. If not - dont worry. A good instructor and time will help you.
  7. musickaye

    musickaye New Friend

    Jan 31, 2009
    Monmouth County NJ
    It's really interesting to see how many folks have gone back to their horns after many years. I will try all the systems and tips and see if any of them work for me. As soon as I can, I will hunt down a good teacher in my area. I think having another pair of eyes is what will ultimately put me on the right path. I didn't realize how very hard the road back is. Please keep the help coming.

    Thanks everyone,

  8. gcast

    gcast New Friend

    Apr 12, 2009
    It's never a bad idea to put music back in your life. Don't kick yourself so hard and have fun with the comeback.
  9. oldlou

    oldlou Forte User

    Aug 28, 2005
    Grand Rapids, Mi.
    It has been said here many times in the past, but I will reiterate it. Find and join in a local musical group, such as a local concert band or orchestra. It surely was the tool that I used successfully in my comeback after over a 45 year hiatus. It forced me to practice regularly and to find a top level private instructor. I can't reccomend it highly enough.

  10. musickaye

    musickaye New Friend

    Jan 31, 2009
    Monmouth County NJ

    My husband (a returning clarinet player) and I just joined a local symphonic band. We love it and it has helped. I second that idea it is also great fun. However, I do play on the low side because I really am not ready for people to hear me yet. But it is getting better slowly.

    Good advice....OldLou



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