Hey Thin Lip People...

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by y-o-y, Nov 16, 2009.

  1. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    you are absolutely right. The open internet is family channel.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2009
  2. Blind Bruce

    Blind Bruce Pianissimo User

    Apr 17, 2009
    Winnipeg Canada
    Speaking of thin lipped master trumpeters, how about Johnny Zell?
    He has the finest, most mellow tone I have ever heard.
  3. y-o-y

    y-o-y Pianissimo User

    Sep 25, 2009
    Long Beach, CA
    I guess my post wasn't very clear. I wasn't intending to spark up the "thick/fleshy lip" debate. Rather I was curious to see if anyone on the other end of the spectrum (i.e. players with thin/skinny lips) had ever been mislead/discouraged by someone of relative authority regarding this particular physical characteristic and how it may negatively impact their capacity. I have never heard such a thing and wanted to know if the knife cut both ways, so to speak.

    As it turns out, you thick lip people are a much more sensitive bunch then I anticipated :-P
  4. sj3209

    sj3209 Piano User

    Nov 22, 2006
    Amador County, Calif.
    I was involved in a farm accident when I was a young boy. But I've made a good living playing even with no lips at all. See below.


    Even better, since I lost my teeth, I can scream like Maynard.
  5. y-o-y

    y-o-y Pianissimo User

    Sep 25, 2009
    Long Beach, CA
  6. highcisimpossible

    highcisimpossible New Friend

    Feb 10, 2010
    Just came across this thread, and have got to have my say....I have pencil thin lips. I play mega up to G on the stave there after it falls apart. When I started to learn 8 years ago my tutor thought I was so good I must be gifted!!!Then came A on the top of the stave:-(. In 7 years of spending a fortune on mouthpieces, books, different tutors, different trumpets...hours of daily practise sneaking away from work because I love the horn and want to play SO SO badly I have NEVER NEVER managed to play out of the stave. There are very very few successful thin lipped players. Most successful players have thick lips.Don't believe me????Well Google pictures of any player you can think of :bet 8 or 9 are medium of fat lipped!!!!! The reason for this is that the extra lip flesh allows for technique errors. Sometimes I will blow high C but only by pure fluke. I simply do not have the tissue mass to ensure a constant embrouchure it is easily destroyed by bad mouthpiece placement or a bad breath or bad pivot or just from setting my lips slightly badly ( there is no way the complex muscle structure of the face is going to set the same way every time you form an embrouchure :fat lips act as a buffer to allow for the anomolies). A trumpet is only a tool. If it was practical to play this tool with thin lips there is no way on this earth,with all the effort i have put in, I would not be playing out of the stave.I would of by now figured out a way, that is only logical common sense. And I am not saying I want to play two octaves above C, I just mean unless a player can hit high C :95 times out of 100: he/she has not got a "practical" instrument. So my friend just be a little patient your lips are no hinderance. Haha I think from this long reply you can see how frustrated and angry I am with it all.I had a full head of hair when I started.Wish I had your big lips........Just had a further after thought..3 years ago out of fustration I bought an alto sax. Compared to trumpet its ridiculously easy. BUT!!!!!!!!! I found that the vibating reed would cause my lip to swell. So if I played the trumpet after half an hour on the sax...lo and behold: high A high B high C. I quit the sax because I was told by a tutor it might interfer with the trumpet.
    B15M likes this.
  7. Phil986

    Phil986 Forte User

    Nov 16, 2009
    Near Portland, OR.
    Highcisimpossible, your story is a little strange. There are plenty of screaming thin lips players. I've met some of them. Pierre Dutot, former trumpet teacher at the Lyon's National Superior Conservatory (France) has super thin lips. The first screamer I ever met had the thinnest lips I've seen yet. That was just after I started learning and it convinced me on the moment that high notes are for thin lipped people. But that same day I saw Roy Hargrove opening for Wynton Marsalis in Vienne (France).

    There are many talented thin lipped players in orchestras all over. Some of the best players in the instrument's history have thin lips. Maynard did, if I recall. Thick lips players tend to have long term difficulties because they apparently tend to use too much pressure (Louis Armstrong, Freddie Hubbard, even Miles). It's possible that the shape of your lips is responsible for your troubles but then what did Doc Severinsen do that you're not doing? And Maurice Andre? and Sergei? Guy Touvron? Pierre Dutot? And the countless others? There has to be someting else.
  8. seilogramp

    seilogramp Piano User

    Nov 23, 2009
    Georgia, USA
  9. crazyandy88

    crazyandy88 Pianissimo User

    Nov 3, 2007
    Fayetteville, AR
    I have pretty thin lips and have never been told that I should quit or that I am doomed because of it. I have however been told to stop walking do to my inadequate narrow feet...
  10. Jerry Freedman

    Jerry Freedman Piano User

    Mar 4, 2005
    Leon Merian had thin, almost invisible lips and he played okay

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