Harrelson Bravura - Impressions of an Amateur Player

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by tedh1951, Jan 16, 2010.

  1. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    I have taken possession of a hand built Harrelson Bravura recently with a #1 leadpipe and #4 bell combination. This trumpet is intended to be used in Stage/Jazz Band and Big Band genres and is likely to sit with me in the 2nd and 3rd chairs, as required. (The build combination is similar to one often preferred by Monette players, apparently ref. Harrelson website).

    The other options I specified included medium weight upper and lower caps, Amado water keys, and monel valves. I asked that the instrument be a brushed finish and then silver plated (gives a nice brushed grain to the finish - not quite frosted but similar) and polished caps, inner bell, and leadpipe. I haven't had inserts set into the valve buttons which are just polished silver.

    As to playing, well this trumpet is being compared to my normal instrument a Getzen Eterna Classic 900 (1973) that I have used with a Monette B6 non Prana MP for the last few years and have found to be a nice light weight horn capable of imposing my sound if I choose. The 900 replaced a Getzen 700 S and I found the 900 provided more feedback as the gauge of the bell is lighter.

    The Bravura is a solid trumpet in every respect - it is quite heavy >3kgs - much heavier than the Getzens, and with the Bravura bracing, heavy caps, and solid build takes some getting used to - having been 'acclimatizing' (sp) for the last three weeks following Jason Harrelson's very specific instructions, my sound is strong and pp seems to be easier somehow. My ability to slot notes throughout my range is enhanced, the trumpet just seems to react to me thinking (hearing if you like) the note that I want. My Barvura is easier for me to play in that it doesn't seem to choke as I venture into my upper range and the sounds is clear, clean, and "on song". The valves are good - the Getzen valves are considered some of the very best - the Bravura valves, using Ultra Pure from the off are as good (not better, but as good).

    On the downside - the polished leadpipe shows my fingerprints but that just reminds me to wipe the trumpet down after I've finished. Some don't like Amado water keys, but these particular ones seem to be better built than the 'same' keys on my Getzen.

    I have been practicing alone in a large 'live' hall as per Jason's instructions and staying with the Harrelson exclusive of my other trumpets - now if I can only get some more work on my timing, and attacks.

    Any questions - I'll try to give a sensible answer. (Oh, the medium caps still allow the trumpet to 'just' fit in the Pro Tec type Getzen case that I use - I checked the clearance after some comments on TM recently - it is close though)

    No - I'm not acting as an agent for Harrelsons, rather I'm a satisfied customer who may be able to assist you in "knowing" the Harrelson Bravura a bit. I am, in essence, endorsing my decision to go with Harrelsons and you may find some of my comments on Jason's website.

    My comments may, or may not, turn you onto, or off, Harrelsons - but at least I have been able to give you personal experience and playing impressions, perhaps to assist in your future selection.
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2010
  2. gbdeamer

    gbdeamer Forte User

    Oct 16, 2008
    Congrats on your new horn!

    Best of luck...
  3. Solar Bell

    Solar Bell Moderator Staff Member

    May 11, 2005
    Metro Detroit
    This thread is useless without PICTURES!!! :-) :play:
  4. bagmangood

    bagmangood Forte User

    3 kilos? :shock:
  5. Buck with a Bach

    Buck with a Bach Fortissimo User

    Dec 29, 2009
    Canton, Ohio
    He is in Australia, Bagman.........:dontknow::roll::oops:
  6. bagmangood

    bagmangood Forte User

    What, stuff weighs more there? or the people are stronger there because the beer is better? Or do the scales work in reverse. hmmmmmm.......

    Also, on a vaguely serious note - do you use a SWE mouthpiece or do you just use the stock monette with the horn?
  7. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    OK - 6.61386lbs (Avp) the conversion is relatively easy. Yes - really good solid feel, but you soon forget about it and it isn't a problem at all.

    Ever so occasionally I have had to mix fluids at the ratio of 27 ppm (parts per million) into B747 fuel tanks holding 183 metric tonnes of fuel. The bottle of stuff (sourced in the US) comes in fluid ounces. With no power on the airplane, the fuel gauges (gages) don't work, so the fuel has to be measured in inches with a stick, converted to US gallons, multiplied by the specific gravity of the fuel (generally somewhere between .790 and .803)
    and then about 9 ozs of fluidic stuff added to the fuel.

    And you blokes worry about 3 kgs? ;-) ROFL
  8. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    SB, there are some photos in my album under "Harriett Harrelson". These where taken as the trumpet came straight out of the box from Jason and still has some travel marks from the rubber bands used to restrain the slides in transit. Would you like me to transfer those photos into a post?
  9. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    Thanks lads - but 3 kilos is three kilos, even in the States.
  10. ComeBackKid

    ComeBackKid Fortissimo User

    May 11, 2009
    Yorba Linda, CA
    Wow! My Olds Super weighs exactly 1/3 that amount (1kg). Yours not only has a "solid" feel but a "heavy" feel as well. Do you rest the bell on the music stand?

    I suppose 3kg isn't much to a B747 but after 3 hours of playing in a concert...? Your arms must look like Hulk Hogan's.

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