Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by gid120, Feb 3, 2012.

  1. brad361

    brad361 Pianissimo User

    Feb 12, 2008
    Great, lessons are the way to go.
    Regarding practicing in hotels, there are practice mutes available, although many of them do have a tendency to change the way the horn responds. Yamaha also makes their "Silent Brass" system, which some people like (it's not one of my favorites).

    Just a few ideas.

  2. gid120

    gid120 New Friend

    Jan 31, 2012
    I actually have a DW practice mute but is quite hard to play a piece on it. My pro friend told me to use it to eventually get a good sound rather than muffle the sound to play in hotels. It's better than nothing I suppose. I was actually considering the silent brass as well but never got round to buying one.

    Thanks again
  3. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

    Mar 6, 2007
    Ithaca NY
    You need to be creative in finding places to practice unmuted. Sometime blowing with the bell stuck in a closed full of clothes is the best one can do. If you travel regularly to the same places, perhaps there are churches, clubs (VFW, ELKS, Eagles), or other places with rooms where you could practice. Some hotels/motels have convention space you could use when available.

    When weather permits you can play in your vehicle, or in outdoor public spots ike parks, parking lots & garages, highway rest stops, etc.

    DO NOT FRET ABOUT RANGE. Play what is comfortable and push your envelope a half step at a time. It may take a year to add a 3rd or 4th to what you have now. Don't forget to spend time at the lower end as well as the upper. Enjoy playing songs you learn by ear within your playable range. Tunes like Mary Had A Little Lamb and Row, Row..... are fine for that. Play them in different keys - F, G Eb, C,A so you learn the scales in the process. HAVE FUN = rule #1.
  4. PatMurphy

    PatMurphy Pianissimo User

    Aug 9, 2009
    Cherry Hill NJ
    You did not say how long/short you have been playing. 3 months or 3 years. I am not a pro, nor will I ever be, but I LOVE to play and see the appreciation in the faces of the audience when I play. My input is, TONE! Having a nice depandable 2 octaves to work in, (which is what you have at this stage), that has the tone I WANT to hear is way more important to me than if I can scream. I also found it is quite hard to hear yourself since you are behind the instrument and do not hear what the audience hears. Try playing to a hard surface such as a mirror. Or in a big room so you can hear the voice of the instrument. (I HATE practice cubby holes)
    As for the hotel problem, since we have to exercise our lip and diaphram every day, when I travel I ask the "desk" if they have some unused meeting room or a room down on the utility floor for me to use. Many time they are happy to accomodate me. When I stay at a high rise on the ocean, I play on the balcony since to offshore wind takes the sound out to sea. I have practiced in quarrys, under bridges, so I undestand your need not to bother folks. BUT I need to play loud and soft not just at a constant whisper
  5. jtpowell

    jtpowell Pianissimo User

    Mar 15, 2011
    I'm an adult beginner as well and that's normal. I started playing March last year and while I could occasionally squeak out something above the staff it was never pretty. I'm just now consistently being able to hit f,g, & a b and c if I'm warmed up but still fresh. As Claude Gordon would say "Do not be impatient". If you stick with the fundamentals you don't have to worry about range, it will come when it comes.
  6. Satchmo Brecker

    Satchmo Brecker Piano User

    Jul 19, 2010
    I'm a relative beginner myself (2 years now) and feel your pain about practice time. I've posted elsewhere on TM about how I had alot of success with tiny practice sessions. I can fit in a few minutes here and there, so I try to get very focused, practice one thing in a mini-session at a time, etc. So I might practice an hour a day, 5 minutes at a time (on weekends obviously). Of course eventually you'll have to have extended sessions, but don't rule out a bunch of minnies :)
  7. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    Perhaps others would appreciate the sound of a trumpet more, were one to actually be performing music, but even my wife doesn't endure my practice in our home whereas I play the same over and over again until I'm satisfied. Others will tromp on me for mentioning the Yamaha Silent Brass system (YSB), and before I go further, I'll state a disclaimer that you too may not like such if you acquire one as you may feel it has too much back pressure like you stuffed your bell. Yes, it has some I'll not deny and less with the electronic console turned on, but it silences the output most to others and still allows you to hear what you play, and better so if you use better earphones with it. While I do not like any mute, I use them when the music or conductor wants me to, and the YSB when I must have a silenced output to others. I paid about $130.00 new for my YSB, but many who are dissatisfied offer them for pre-owned resale.

    Only this past year, I've begun to tutor 4 beginning 5th graders in August 2011 and now they are in Book 2 with a so so range from concert middle C the line ledger below the treble staff and midway between the treble and bass clef, to the F in top line of the treble staff, all as they are shown in Bb trumpet music without transposition from concert music for a C instrument. Too, all are playing on 7C mouthpieces, though I don't think a mouthpiece at a begiining stage makes much difference, and only one of the four has acquired a YSB ... so far, due to a night shift working day sleeping father at home.

    I will also suggest you practice as softly as you possibly can for now.

    It would help many of us here on TrumpetMaster to help you if we knew the specifications of the trumpet you are now playing. The make is usually on the bell, and sometimes the model number or model name is on the mouthpiece receiver. A serial number is usually on the second valve casing, but you need only reveal the first 3 numbers.
  8. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land

    I've re-read my intial response to you, and it seems a little "direct" - whilst my intention was for you to focus quickly on the message, the application was abrupt, my apologies - although I don't think that the message needs to change.

    Let me say this to you though from my experience as a comeback player following a poor laying of trumpet foundations when I was 12, and a subsequent 37 years between gigs. I returned to the trumpet at 49 years of age, with two children in the family, a hefty mortgage, I was a shiftworker who travelled a lot, and all whilst completing a post graduate degree by distance learning. The trumpet was, in essence - "time for self" - you need that for all the other stuff to happen well.

    During travel times, I tried to book an apartment rather than a simple one bedroom hotel room - gave me more space for little additional cost (I paid the extra $5 or so and my employer picked up the single room tab) - I carried a Weril pocket trumpet and a bubble mute (like a harman but with a Rubinesc shape) I arranged my clothes, and spare towells, around the room on hangers (as much as you can), closed the heavy light blocking curtains and opened all the wardrobes to break up the space. Then I played softly with the stem in the mute. I only ever had one comment, a lady in the lift one morning commented on 'someones' TV being too loud - it kept blocking out the enjoyment of somebody's else's trumpet practice. We shared a cab, apparently her late husband had played trumpet, and she missed his practice sessions.

    So, not all is lost for you, short sessions work well in such situations - limits the chance for the other guests to home in on the sound, and hotel doors are fireproof - some doors in the US have a large gap underneath - dampen the floormat from the bathroom and roll that into the gap. The practice sessions are not ideal, so bigger spaces without a mute, are essential too. I DO NOT recommend playing in the car though.

    The other suggestions here are 'Gold' - but find what works for you. You and I have a long way to go, and you'll need to keep up - I'm getting older by the minute and I need to enjoy my playing so I don't need to scream. Build your basics carefully and thoroughly select a simple tune as a marker so that you can keep coming back to gauge (gage) your progress - I use Londonderry Aire (Danny Boy) and as others have said - have fun.
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012
  9. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    learn to play very softly --- you can actually play with good sound, and play without a mute, and have it soft enough to NOT be heard in the next room --BUT GUESS WHAT???? it takes time to do that, lots of time, and practice ---- but playing very softly will help develop your embouchure ----time, lots of it, --- years ---- but eventually given enough time and repetition, and a few years ----
  10. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    Ted, there some similarities in our trumpeting style viz we both had biggee breaks or lapses in playing and we both recognize the need for "time for self". Differing from you, I now believe I had learned great fundamentals from Dr. Walter H. Cameron, who was my instrumental music instructor in grades 5,6, & 7, high school band director 8th thru 12th grades and also my private tutor thru out. It only dawned on me in the last month as to the difference between Dr. Cameron and Herbert L. Clarke whereas they both once played cornet in John Philip Sousa's Band. Too, I must say that my 2 brothers and I deafened our neighbors with all of us playing brass horns in uninsulated frame detached houses that were so close to each other that my arm span could reach from one to the other by the time I graduated high school.

    Too, I've got to give my Mother a lot of credit towards my music stimulus whereas she was playing piano in our house as long as I can remember and often accompanied my brothers and I, both with our vocal and brass. She was the one that shaped my now direct read transposition of piano music for Bb instruments.

    While Danny Boy is in my current repertoire someone will have to pay me to now play it again. I'm now non-alchoholic and it is melancholic.

    GID120, I hope you can grasp all we've said. There's 2 places I hope you don't practice: 1: under a bridge in a metropolitan area, and 2. In your vehicle, especially while driving.

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