How do you get to play so well?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by bumblebee, Jan 19, 2011.

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  1. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I think that we are off track! Consider that for some, even thousands of hours is not the "right solution". Recreational drugs NEVER are. Let's keep this thread going in a useful direction. Although listening to the sax that closely for that many hours would need some external pain relief...................

    If we listen to the jazz greats, we hear immediately the vast amount of time invested - all of those scales alone take a lifetime (and a half). There is no being world class without continued hard work.
     
  2. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

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    Wow - quite a lot of opinions, and some nuggets in there too!

    Patrick - I have been playing for about 30 years since I was 11, but by the time I was about 24 I got really busy and worked all the hours that existed through my 20's to my upper mid 30's, and moved to Australia, got married etc in that time and found only enough time to keep my lip in, but not very well. I have never had any formal training, except from a few lessons when I was first starting, and never heard anything about embouchure or lip-trilling, or books like the Arban (I had a book called "A Tune A Day" and another book of Etudes), and "top C" was as high as the trumpet could play I thought, and until I started working I never had any money for new gear (my horn was a Boosey and Hawkes Lafleur marked "Foreign" on the bell). But nonetheless I was hooked on nice tone and by the time I was 20 I thought I was getting somewhere with it all. I picked up a low-cost Amati cornet while trekking through Czechoslovakia, as it was then, and played with a british brass band for a couple of years. They played to a much higher standard than my old village band did, and instead of playing 1st trumpet I was put into the 3rd trumpet position (3rd cornet, that is).

    A few years ago I got myself better organised, was able to push back on work better, and I think managed to recover to the skill level I had when I was younger. Over the lean years I still was able to play along with a brass band and amateur orchestra from time to time. Even then, I did not reach out for any extra information or help, and it's really only been since I bought my Strad that I've discovered a lot of material on the internet (believe it or not I never considered the internet for this before about 2009).

    So this is probably a long winded way of saying "yes I've played for 30 years, but not really" -- or another way of saying I actually can't say for sure that I don't have the innate ability to play as well as the really good guys out there.

    I've got new gear now, I think my tone is great, I can play some pretty tricky stuff, and I have a great band to play with (albeit mostly not brass players - I'm the sole trumpet). But I'm still working on improving just about everything - tone, range, fingering speed&accuracy...

    And then I come across guys like Mnozil Brass and my jaw drops and I re-evaluate my position and wonder how I can improve what I'm doing to get closer to that.

    So that was all about me -- and maybe I'm a lost cause (or maybe not!!!) but my original question is more about how any player (if they aren't held back by innate inability) would proceed to develop the skills needed to play this stuff confidently.

    Thanks,
    --bumblebee
     
  3. Mark4008

    Mark4008 New Friend

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    Bumblebee, my experience is pretty much like yours, my first trumpet at 14, 40 years ago a B&M Champion, then a few lessons at school, youth orchestra, a bit of jazz orchestra, by the time I was 16-17 I thought I was pretty good, but I had nothing to compare myself to, years went by and trumpet playing got lost in the search for a job and girls and messing around, I picked up from time to time but never really had the time to practice.
    Now I no longer work shifts , I have joined a couple of local bands, I play flugel in a brass band and first trumpet in a concert band, I up graded to a bach strad about 10 years ago, and If I can fit 1 or 2 hours practice around work, family, shopping etc then I'm lucky.
    I still have deluded dreams of owning a full set of Eclipse or Taylor Horns and playing like Wynton, but then a guys got to have dreams, right?
    1 hour a day for 300 days a year (time out for sickness and holidays) =300 hours . 30 years = 9000 hours so if I start now I should get there when I'm 74, If I've still got my teeth by then its move over Wynton I'm coming through!!
     
  4. turtlejimmy

    turtlejimmy Utimate User

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    I agree. Besides, you're all wrong anyway. He did that while living at his parent's home.

    Turtle
     
  5. turtlejimmy

    turtlejimmy Utimate User

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    :lol: I can vouch for that. Around 9 months of sax playing was all I could handle. No matter what, you can't get away from your own practice.

    Turtle
     
  6. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    I think the point about 10,000 hours is not the number, but the dedication it involves to get there. When I was learning to ski, the instructor gave us the usual advice for stopping ,turns, and skiing in control. When he got to the end of the lesson, someone in the group asked how long will it take to get good? His response was 10,000 steps without falling! As we skied away after the lesson, you could here people counting (most fell before reaching 10!). The instructor smiled!
     
  7. Markie

    Markie Forte User

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    ----
    Drugs was an ugly but very real part of the jazz scene during that time. To try and separate Parker from his demons as it pertains to his work ethic is like trying to separate Micky Mouse from Disney World.
     
  8. TrentAustin

    TrentAustin Fortissimo User

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    Thank you! that's exactly my point. No horn has missed a note by itself. You wanna get great? Practice great. Listen more... attend live concerts, seek out private instruction... and repeat!!!
     
  9. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    It was a part of Charlie's life and a few others. Most all the pros my father knows (he knows a lot) never used drugs. Parker's best work arguably was when he was clean.
     
  10. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

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    I suppose so -- now to be able to sound like me, but with greater dexterity - to develop greater virtuosity...

    --bumblebee
     

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