Getting along with other players in your section

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Eclipsehornplayer, Nov 1, 2005.

  1. Eclipsehornplayer

    Eclipsehornplayer Forte User

    Sep 14, 2005
    Metro Detroit
    Hey all, I guess today's my day to post!

    Another question that I thought I'd bounce out here on the forum.

    I'm playing in a community band, feels great and ejoying it imensely. I'd like to do quartet, quintet, and the like but that's another thread.

    Anyway, for what's it's worth I'm playing 3thd Trumpet/Coronet. I'm actually quite surprised by how challenging some of our parts can be.

    Our section lead, 1st chair, principal what ever you want to call him plays quite well, as do all of our trumpets.

    So here's what the post is about, anyone have trouble getting along with section mates and how do you deal with it.

    Let me explain, I'm not an ego freak. I know that I'm just not on the same page as a lot of trumpet players, including my section lead. I went to complement him on a piece he played recently and he kinda shunned me as if to say, "Go from my sight lowly 3thd trumpeter"

    Of course this is what I felt, not what he said. He actually said nothing at all, looked away from me and continued talking to the 2nd chair 1st trumpeter. I was certain that I had not interrupted their conversation, and was surprised to be treated in such a manor.

    So, 1 week later at our next practice I took note of some really good work he was doing, and again complemented him by saying how well he played. He just kinda frowned, and looked away.

    I had to fight the urge to lay the Motor City smack down on him big time! :x And I'm not a violent person.

    Being a rationale adult I did not, but it troubles me to be treated in such a manor especially because I do not know why.

    When I was 1st chair section lead in Jr. High and High School I was a little Cocky I admit, but I was not un-approachable nor did I think that my crap didn't stink. I know just stay away from the guy and don't say anymore. Easier said then done.

    Just some thoughts, now for the advice part. What would you do in my position, or how have you handled this in the past?
  2. FreshBrewed

    FreshBrewed Mezzo Piano User

    Nov 11, 2003
    Houston, TX
    Interesting topic. Maybe during a break you should confront him and see what the deal is all about. Maybe you have just caught him in a bad mood both times and it's all a misunderstanding. In any case, I would approach him about it.

    If he blows you off and it really bothers you that much, find another band if possible. The possibilities are endless when dealing with section members. This is especially true when dealing with trumpet players and the ego factor. Being in the Army, the trumpet section I play in changes about every three years, so I have played with quite a few different sections over the years. Each time we always find a way to work out our differences even if it means agreeing to disagree. Remember that it's all about the music.
  3. BradHarrison

    BradHarrison Pianissimo User

    Oct 31, 2005
    Toronto, Canada
    Sounds like he's a bit of a jerk. When I've had problems with people in bands I usually just stay out of the other person's way and they generally return the favor.

    If there's someone you're close to in the band that knows the guy you might want to discretely mention it to them and see if they know about him. Maybe he's a jerk and everyone knows it! But be careful who you discuss this with...even if you don't get along with the guy you don't want bad vibes/politics in the band.
  4. gzent

    gzent Fortissimo User

    Nov 5, 2003
    Rochester, MN

    I haven't seen that since high school - that's too bad.

    If he doesn't acknowledge you then just let him be.

    As a fellow comebacker remember:
    1) Always bring a positive attitude to the group and respect your band leader
    2) Learn as much as you can - listen, listen, listen
    3) Keep working to achieve the next 'level' and look forward to the next group
    4) Never turn down a gig - you'll be amazed how many calls you'll get
    5) Never try to grab the spotlight, it will find you when you are ready to shine

  5. MahlerBrass

    MahlerBrass Piano User

    Oct 1, 2004
    Houston, TX
    I've never been around a trumpet section like that long enough for me to want to change something about it, just random gigs here and then with the lead player with something up his :whistle: I've been lucky enough here at my school to play in a section that gets along very well, a tight group that will rag on each other and give each other criticisms in a possitive manner, and of course the occasional "dude that sucked" being thrown around, all in fun of course. Why not just try talking to the guy, a lot of times people just need to be made aware of what they're doing, I know I have to now and then, you'd be surprised how much some people appreciate something like that, best of luck!
  6. tpter1

    tpter1 Forte User

    Jan 12, 2005
    Northern New York
    Sounds like you need to just ignore him. That whole thing sounds rather childish from this side of the story. Show up, play the he** out of your part, do what the conductor says, blend, and go home. Leave him be...tall egoes make tall mistakes and he will step in a large pile one day.
  7. Tootsall

    Tootsall Fortissimo User

    Oct 25, 2003
    Yee HAW!
    One thing you didn't mention... how did you get into the band? Was it through a recommendation and then contact the director? Another member of the section? Just "show up cold"? Any audition involved?

    Sounds like the turkey is just trying to show his dominance... the old "Alpha male" thing. Try asking him for advice on something simple and see how he reacts rather than (possibly) giving him the idea you are patronizing him. Maybe your trumpet is shinier or fancier or more costly than his? (don't's been known to happen!)

    How do you relate to the other members of the section? They are all OK with the "new guy"?
  8. cornetguy

    cornetguy Mezzo Forte User

    Sep 12, 2005
    Saint Paul, MN
    I learned this the hard way as an undergraduate dealing with unprepared conductors, but it applies in this situation.

    Rule 1 Shut up and let the trumpet do the talking

    rule 2 dont forget rule one
  9. Larry

    Larry New Friend

    Sep 21, 2005
    I’ll admit that it took me years to learn how to properly accept a complement and just say, “thank youâ€. Back in my younger days I would say thank you, but then felt compeled to ramble on about how my playing really sucked and didn’t come close to measuring up to the standards of my trumpet heroes, blah, blah. This guy, though, is a total jerk. There’s no excuse for it. If what you describe is accurate, the guy has no class. If you’re enjoying the band keep at it but otherwise just blow this guy off.

  10. Beau Kemp

    Beau Kemp New Friend

    Oct 28, 2005
    There's no way I could ignore that. I'd probably give him one more shot, and if he didn't say anything I would confront him. I would probably say in a non-threatening manner "helloooooo, anyone home?"
    I can't stand to be blown off like that, and hopefully the person doing it was just sidetracked or concentrating on something else. Even the lowly 3rd part guys deserve respect. Heck even the trombones deserve respect

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