Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by treblemaker, Apr 16, 2007.

  1. treblemaker

    treblemaker New Friend

    Apr 4, 2007
    Over the last year or so I've developed a bad habit of rolling my lips in instead of tightening the corners of my mouth when I play. I know what I'm doing wrong, I just can't find a way to fix it. I've worked a lot on my mouthpiece only, but the problems come right back the very next day. The weird thing is, it doesn't affect my playing at all; range, tone, and endurance are all great. I know I should fix it, but it's just not top priority since it isn't hurting me. If anybody has any more creative ideas to fix the problem(or any ideas, really), I'd really appreciate it.
  2. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    If range, tone, and endurance are great, there may be no need to fix anything. How's your tonguing, flexibility, etc. ? If you can be a complete trumpet player and nobody complains (heck, even if they do) you might want to think twice before beating yourself up by not playing "by the book." You might just end up re-writing it!
  3. treblemaker

    treblemaker New Friend

    Apr 4, 2007
    That's what I was thinking. And yeah, I think I have a pretty solid grasp of trumpet concepts. :-) But there's one thing: after I play, I end up with a red ring around my mouth from pushing the horn into my face. That i'm getting under control, but I'm starting to wonder if it has anything to do with my embouchure. :dontknow: I guess I'll figure it out eventually.
  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    The red ring may not have anything to do with your embouchure as such. Look at Solar Bells' avatar!
    I firmly believe that embouchure is not a very good "self-help" topic. If you think that you need to change something, get a second opinion before eventually chasing a ghost!
  5. barato

    barato New Friend

    Jan 17, 2007
    Somewhere in Ohio
    My friend who I play with in my H.S. jazz band also experiences the red ring. I believe this red ring is caused by pressure, for you are pressing back like crazy to do certain notes. That is what I believe is happening to him, but there could be another cause. Oh well... Good Luck with your playing.
  6. Solar Bell

    Solar Bell Moderator Staff Member

    May 11, 2005
    Metro Detroit
    I do use a bit of pressure, but I have the ring pretty much all the time. Playing or not.


    But listen to Rowuk's advice. He is right on.

  7. Dustin

    Dustin Pianissimo User

    Jun 19, 2006
    West Virginia
    Don't fix it if it ain't broke.
  8. Pedal C

    Pedal C Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 24, 2005
    I don't think the red mark means anything by itself. Even if play low notes, very softly with only enough pressure to seal the mouthpiece to the lips (I'm not saying you SHOULD with artificially light pressure like that, but IF I do) I still get a big red circle. It's not significantly different if I play loud or high...my lips just redden easily I guess! The point is that it can't be a diagnosis all by itself. Maybe you use too much or not enough pressure, but the look of your lip isn't the way to tell.

    Sometimes the lip can look kind of beat up and work fine...just look at Wayne Bergeron's picture in the recent ITG. He's incredible, and there's obviously been some pressure applied to those lips over the years!

  9. tpter1

    tpter1 Forte User

    Jan 12, 2005
    Northern New York

    Maybe I'm mistaken...but it seems that Maynard's lip looked a bit like a pork chop, too. If you sound good, have good endurance, are playing consistently and reliably and everything else is in place, I would not really worry too much about it. If you have to compensate in ways that create tension and cost you endurance or sound, then there's a problem and you should consult with a teacher.
  10. Kamikaze

    Kamikaze New Friend

    Apr 23, 2007
    Hello! I'm new here but have been reading for some time now and I wanted to comment on the " rolling in the lips ", by treblemaker.

    For some people, that type of embrochure may be more effective as it is part of the concept of play pioneered by Roy Stevens. I have seen Mr. Stevens' student; Roy Roman tout the " No Pressure" system where the mouth has an aperture of approximately 1/4" opening between the teeth, the top and bottom lips are rolled in to cover the teeth and the lower jaw is brought forward. The facial muscles are brought in a downward position where the face appears like a frowning bull dog but the velocity and pressure of the airstream is used to vibrate the portion of the lips contacting the mouthpiece.

    Roy Roman demonstrates his techinique doing warm-ups in the upper register while laying the horn on it's side in the open palm of his hand! No fingers to grasp the horn in anyway to "pull" it into the mouth. He does this and plays double and sometimes triple high "C's"! BTW, the mouthpiece is placed direct center of the top and bottom lips.

    Now I was taught the Louis Maggio and Claude Gordon methods and often fought with the lip position and the "Pucker". I had much difficulty adapting to this method and with the teacher telling me, "This is the best and ONLY way to play!" I later changed to a different instructor but never knew what technique he taught but learned more in theory and playing than making a good sound and a full range.

    So, I basically learned "The wrong way" on my own and I feel my tone and endurance suffered. I have a decent range but have decided to go back to the drawing board and "re-learn" to get a broader, fuller sound with more power and control. Of course improving upon the range is a big consideration but I'm interested in hearing some details on what techniques some of you were taught, what styles of music you mainly play, what type of lips and facial structures you have and of course what type of horns and mouthpieces you use.

    I realize some of you have learned different techiniques from various instructors but I'm trying to see what works for you and how your jaw, lips, and facial structures are. This will give me a better idea of what I need to look into for myself and my child who is just starting out.

    Thanks for putting up with this long post!;-)

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