Higher range easier/harder on cornet/flugelhorn?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by GuyMcPerson, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. GuyMcPerson

    GuyMcPerson New Friend

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    Hi all, so I recently rekindled my love for trumpet after too long of a break. I had previously played for about half a year and had a range from the lowest f# that wasn't a pedal tone (though i could do a few) to the first G above the staff. Well, I also play a few other instruments (sax, piano, guitar, etc.) that I was preoccupied with and hadn't played trumpet in like.. 3-4 months.

    I went to a buddy's birthday party, and of course a lot of my friends are musicians. Another friend had this old cornet of his that I was jamming on when not playing guitar. Now on my trumpet, I had never really been able to consistently get over that G limit i talked about. When I started playing this guy's cornet, after warming up I was easily and consistently able to get to the C above that, and the whole upper register felt easy to get to, even after quite a bit of jamming.

    Now I haven't tested another trumpet yet to find out if maybe there's something making it difficult about mine. I've always had a strong stance on "don't blame the instrument" and that you should always work to overcome things like weak technique or bad tone by practicing and getting better on what you have, then getting a new one so you have 'no excuse'. But this standpoint comes from someone who plays instruments like guitar/piano primarily who are a lot easier to understand in functionality, and there's no "range building" you have to do on that since you have access to the whole range from minute 1.

    I digress, do you guys think that certain ranges are easier on the trumpet 'family' (by that I mean cornets/flugelhorns/instruments that are essentially the same and not just from the brass family) and do you experienced trumpet players find that there ARE issues with instruments when it comes to developing range?
     
  2. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Experience tells me the instruments are innocent... it is the player that is guilty of not being able to develop a personally attainable workable range... never blame your instrument!
     
  3. nieuwguyski

    nieuwguyski Forte User

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    Most of us find it harder to play high on flugelhorn. By that yardstick, yes, equipment matters and the high range is easier on trumpet than flugelhorn.

    Bring it on, all you who can scream on flugel. I'll simply melt back into the much larger crowd of players who can't or don't want to, and have admitted as such. To tell the truth, I've only rarely heard a player with great high chops on flugel who I would like to sound like where I play -- in the middle and lower range. Freddie Hubbard, sure, but offer up some other samples.

    To the OP: Obviously you were playing whatever mouthpiece this cornet had, since it doesn't sound like you played cornet in the past. You encountered a combination of instrument and mouthpiece that worked very well for you -- on one particular night. The mouthpiece probably wasn't a super-deep V cup with a tunnel for a throat, but who cares? The point is, that same combination of equipment might not work as well for you tonight, or after a month if you played it regularly. A different cornet and the same mouthpiece might not work as well. The same cornet and a different mouthpiece might not work as well.

    If I were you, I'd try to borrow that very cornet and mouthpiece and practice every day for a month. Let us know what you discover.
     
  4. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

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    My cornet mouthpiece is very different to my trumpet mouthpiece and I find it harder to play high notes (above High C) with it. I have the same experience when using this very deep cornet mouthpiece with an adapter on my trumpet, so I tend to think it is the mouthpiece variable for me.

    (I did try using a cornet mouthpiece more like my trumpet one but that made the cornet sound more like a trumpet and not what I wanted, so I reverted fairly quickly.)

    --bumblebee
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2013
  5. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

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    It depends on the horn, the mouthpiece, and your level of skill at any given moment. I have cornets that are pretty easy to play up high, and some that are more work. Of course, a C-cup or smaller cornet mouthpiece helps a lot, but doesn't really produce the sound most people are looking for on cornet. My flugel is easy to play high with a shallowish flugel mouthpiece, but the tone thins out up there - flugelhorns aren't really suited to upper-register playing, in my opinion.
     
  6. Buck with a Bach

    Buck with a Bach Fortissimo User

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    Upper register on mine is pretty limited, too. G above the staff is about it, and the lip has to be pretty fresh:oops:
     
  7. VetPsychWars

    VetPsychWars Fortissimo User

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    I'm sorry, I have to disagree with this. After a bunch of years of being told that anyone can succeed with average-sized equipment, and failing, in desperation I tried a small mouthpiece with a sharp rim and for the first time ever was able to play higher with much longer endurance.

    You have to match your face to the combination of horn and mouthpiece. If everyone could succeed on a Bach 3C, we wouldn't bother making any other sizes.

    Tom
     
  8. GuyMcPerson

    GuyMcPerson New Friend

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    Thanks for the interesting feedback, again I'm naturally inclined to never blame the instrument but I don't know trumpet nearly as well as I do the other instruments so maybe it is a factor. And one thing I didn't really take into account is that maybe the mouthpiece was more suited to me? It wasn't like I was able to just get the high notes out better, I felt like I had better tone throughout the register as well as more endurance.

    I currently play through a bobby shew jazz mouthpiece. I'm considering going to a store and trying out some different horns/mouthpieces and see how consistent the changes are. But would they even let me try out mouthpieces without buying them? Do they have 'store model' mouthpieces? lol
     
  9. VetPsychWars

    VetPsychWars Fortissimo User

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    Many places, do, yes, have mouthpieces that are set aside for people to try.

    But you should try to buy something if you can even if it's not a mouthpiece.

    Tom
     
  10. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

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    Yes they should, and depending on how sensitive you are you might want to bring some antiseptic wipes or similar with you to use before and after on the pieces you try. I've seen some in shops which have bits of food or dried saliva in the bowl or on the rim from previous customers, or perhaps the staff.

    --bumblebee
     

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