How can I alter my diet/lifestyle to get a better embouchure...

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by trumpet_man, Sep 29, 2008.

  1. trumpet_man

    trumpet_man Piano User

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    Jan 17, 2008
    Wyoming
    Alright, I have an All-Northwest Audition this Friday (I hane today and it didn't go very well). And I was wonder if I didn't eat right or if I didn't drink enough water before playing, or if I ate too much or drank too much. I had eaten a normal sized lunch for me and auditioned at 4pm and had a horrible lip. (I usually just eat twice a day, a small lunch and a ENORMOUS dinner). I was wondering if it was better to play on an emply stomach or full stomach (I think it can affect your breathing, but I'm not sure which is better). I'm very flexible about how much I eat, what I eat, and when I eat.

    Also, I was wondering if hot sauce would be good before I play, since I had allergies and it would clear the sinuses, but I'm not sure if it does anything to your lip as a side affect. I know that eating salt is BAD before playing. I've heard that if you take tylenol (sorry, my spelling is bad today) that if will reduce the swelling of your lips and they will last longer, and I tried that during all state when I practiced 6 hours a day and it worked, but I don't know if it just makes it last longer or if it helps.

    My audition is in the morning this time, about 7am (I usually get up at about 4:30 to 5:00 on weekdays, but I usually in bed by 10pm). So I was wondering if the morning would make things different. I'm a decent trumpeter (I was 6th in Wyoming last year and have came a long long way since then) but Northwest is different and I doubt I'll make it. But I just want a good audition, I'm not concerned about making it. My audition today was far from my best and I don't want that to happen again.

    Am I blowing things WAY out of proportion with these things, or are they actually valid things to consider? Thanks.
     
  2. derekkress

    derekkress Pianissimo User

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    Oct 8, 2007
    Montreal Qc Canada
    Youth!! Relax!! Your making me nervous just reading your post. Proper preparation is key to a good performance. Take things in stride. Of course being healthy helps and drinking fluids is a good idea but in the end it is really how well prepared we are for "game time" that matters. You'll be fine! Think Big!!! Be positive and go for it!
     
  3. omelet

    omelet Pianissimo User

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    Oct 13, 2007
    charleston, sc
    this is borderline neurotic
    Thinking that these things matter in any great proportion can have psychosomatic effect and either help you or totally jack you up--they have very little effect except within your own mind. I know no amount of saying 'don't worry about it so much' will help, but don't create an imaginary scapegoat that you can blame if you mess up and will rob you of credit for your own hard work. Try to feel confidence in your ability and your adequate preparation.
     
  4. trumpet_man

    trumpet_man Piano User

    Age:
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    Jan 17, 2008
    Wyoming
    Hmmm.. I guess what then would be the reason for such a bad embouchure? Maybe since I spent the whole day trying to preserve it by not playing made it happen? I don't know. Thanks.
     
  5. nickpasternack

    nickpasternack Pianissimo User

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    Aug 21, 2008
    Rochester, NY
    its the nature of the beast. The trumpet is a fickle instrument. If you have been playing a lot lately then you are going to have a dead lip for a couple of days. It just happens. We all get off days. Long tones for a couple days played softly, no over zealous range extending excercises and you'll be good as new in a couple days. I get like that once every three to four weeks. I just have a set of days where i feel like crap. Just an off day. Don't worry.
     
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    If you want to change your life, then get rid of all of that trash in your head about eating, hydration and the THOUSANDS of other things that you don't need to worry about. They are only excuses.

    IF you prepare properly over a reasonably long period of time, you know what to do. If you think that a couple of weeks is enough preparation, then learn to simply accept defeat.

    Success is based on sound HABITS. That means your daily playing is good enough for competition - no special diets, exercizes or anything else.

    Common sense should tell you that your body has to work VERY hard to digest food, so mega amounts before anything requiring concentration and power is not smart.

    If your audition is at 7AM practice at that time EVERY DAY. Get used to it, make it a habit!!!!!

    Resorting to any type of pill makes me sick. I won't get on to a rant, but it is VERY tempting. There is NO reason for a properly prepared, intelligent trumpet player to do stupid things. Swelling is kept in tow by adequate, dedicated practice.
     
    MJ likes this.
  7. Bloomin Untidy Musician

    Bloomin Untidy Musician Piano User

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    Jan 14, 2008
    Staffordshire
    People like Bobby Shew and Maynard Ferguson were/are hardly the definition of physical fitness nourished by the latest detox fads. These are working musicians who quite often had to eat at the most convenient places on the road. Just a couple of many i suppose.
     
  8. R.A.S.

    R.A.S. Pianissimo User

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    Oct 13, 2004
    Woodbury, Minnesota
    Only two thoughts:

    1. You should eat three well-balanced meals each day, consisisting of foods that are good for you.

    2. Take in water little-by-little throughout the day.
     
    et_mike likes this.
  9. et_mike

    et_mike Mezzo Forte User

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    Oct 16, 2007
    Chesapeake, VA
    This is sound advice for living a healthy lifestyle... but will do little in the ways of creating a better embouchure. As usual, Rowuk has hit the nail on the head... proper practice to create habits is the only way to avoid "the jitters". And it sounds like that is exactly what you had. Remember, amatures practice until they get it right, professionals practice until they can't get it wrong. A very profound statement. Which side of the fence do you stand on? ;-) And if you are still reading this, :-P, studies have shown it takes a minimum of 27 days of repeating the same thing, everyday before it becomes habitual... just some food for thought... :play:
     
  10. R.A.S.

    R.A.S. Pianissimo User

    Age:
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    Oct 13, 2004
    Woodbury, Minnesota
    The original question was about diet and lifestyle, not practice diligence.
    BTW, you could use to get more sleep every night at your age.
    The tylenol solution worked for O.J. and the gloves - his hands swelled up predictably.
    Oh, and don't forget to practice every day in an intelligent way, appropriate to your level of playing and the time you have to devote to it.
    The three hours a day that I put in as a senior in high school helped me a lot (combined with a good teacher). It was much harder as an undergrad and as a graduate student to find much more than two hours (of individual practice, not time spent in rehearsals and performances).
    OK, guys - fire away!
     

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