How do you "half-valve" on the trumpet?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Advertise, Jun 11, 2009.

  1. Advertise

    Advertise New Friend

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    I can't seem to find any information about this, probably because "half-vavling" isn't the proper term.

    The effect I'm talking about is when you do not depress a valve completely and play into your horn. To create this effect properly, do you hold down all 3 valves? How do you control what pitch you create? If I wanted to half valve a G (in the key of Bb) how would I do it? What about half valving an A?

    Thanks.
     
  2. rbdeli

    rbdeli Mezzo Piano User

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    I think this is an excellent question. I've never been able to make half-valving sound very musical. Some guys seem to do it so naturally.
    Look forward to hearing some answers on this trumpet topic.
     
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Half valving just means pushing the valve down a bit (not half way) to make the sound fuzzy and less centered. What valve we use depends on the lick and the key that it is in. a half valved G in the staff can be played with 2, 1, 23, 3, 13. For the A, I would use 12 or 3.

    Less is more. That is why some players have problems - they try to use too much. Just like perfume, too much means headaches.
     
  4. rettepnoj

    rettepnoj Fortissimo User

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    And it will not work on all horns! It's impossible on my Selmer 80J!
     
  5. Advertise

    Advertise New Friend

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    How do you know which valves to use? Trial and error?
     
  6. Brekelefuw

    Brekelefuw Fortissimo User

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    I usually press down the valve needed to make the note I want, but not all the way. If it is an open fingering I will use and alternate fingering of that pitch.
     
  7. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I never asked that question. I just used something near to the note that I was playing. There is no set fingerings. Sometimes I don't even use the valves, I just lip down a bit to get a similar effect.
     
  8. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

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    I also just use what ever feels comfortable for the lick I'm playing. I really don't think about it. just play around with it. You'll come up with your own way of doing it.
     
  9. Bay Area Brass

    Bay Area Brass Piano User

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    Jon Lindberg is right in his earlier post. In my experience, this technique doesn't work on all horns. On my present horn it works well, but other horns I've played haven't been as effective doing this. You can half valve on every horn, but the tone of the effect seems to work better on some trumpets due to physical design. Every horn has it's own character.
     
  10. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

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    I work the valve that represents the next semitone, so if I wish to descend from a G on the stave I "partial valve" the second valve. I use the term partial valve because - as has been pointed out here - all trumpets are not the same. My student B&H is a true half valve, my Getzen Eterna is a touch over a third, my Getzen 700SP is spot on one third otherwise I lose tone.
     

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