Emulating a great player's tone

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by _TrumpeT_, Feb 21, 2007.

  1. _TrumpeT_

    _TrumpeT_ Piano User

    Apr 26, 2006
    Isn't it wonderful how one can emulate (to a certain extent) a great player's tone just by listening attentively and thinking "I want to sound like that!" Sometimes I really want to find out how all that nerve system connecting your ears and your lips are working to create that effect. Okay, this thread doesn't NEED a response (although you are more than welcome to make one) but sometimes I like to really appreciate the mysterious ways our bodies work.
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    To be honest, I don't think it is possible to "emulate" to any extent someone elses tone.

    Listening and thinking does increase your awareness of what other players are doing. A sense of someone elses phrasing, vibrato, MAYBE even tonal shading can be learned, but that is a long process and ony a fraction of the essence of someone elses playing. The more intensively you pay attention to what others do, the more inspiration you get from the WHOLE community - thus creating a NEW INDIVIDUAL. Now THAT is wonderful. It is a different situation when you are playing with someone else and you line up style and tone to create a section sound. Your ears/brain pick up both sounds and you tune yours for maximum total resonance.

    There are no nerves connecting the lips and ears (I am constantly reminded of this when observing my 14 year old daughters' telephone conversations.....). The brain is solely responsible for content.

    What you suggest would be a great comedy act however! We have great voice impersonaters out there - I am not aware of any trumpet impersonaters............ (Although at the last music fair in Frankfurt, Germany there were a lot of feeble attempts to impersonate Maynard............)
  3. Brad

    Brad New Friend

    Nov 23, 2004
    Listen to Aurtoro Sandavals CD Trumpet Evolution. He emulates the history of jazz trumpet from King Oliver to Wynton. I think articulation play a large role in sounding like someone else.

  4. dcstep

    dcstep Mezzo Piano User

    Nov 27, 2003
    This opinion really surprises me. :-)

    I've heard several great players convincingly emulate other great players, in both tone and choice of "licks." Most recently I heard Warren Vache slip into a full-on Louis Armstrong mode for a full song. Not long before that, I heard Trent Austin move from Louis, to Clifford to Dizzy in a matter of seconds and he didn't have to tell us what he was doing.

    I agree that we tend to stir our influences all together and, hopefully, develop "our own" sound, but it IS good exercise to listen and emulate. Just don't forget that you're emulating and don't cover up the "real you."


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