I want a gadget that will let me hear myself better in bands

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by mike ansberry, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. gchun

    gchun Piano User

    Dec 10, 2003
    How about trying to reduce the louder sounds that interfere with how we hear ourselves? I've talked to symphony players that have plexiglas shields (much like police motorcycle windshields) mounted to the back of their chairs. I know that only takes care of sound from the back, and it's probably more gear to lug around than desired....but just a thought. Perhaps combined with the other suggestions, we could achieve the desired results.

    For acoustic situations, I prefer acoustic solutions. For amplified situations, I prefer electronic solutions.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012
  2. dangeorges

    dangeorges Pianissimo User

    Oct 20, 2010
    Two issues I hear going on here:

    1. Intonation
    2. Being able to hear yourself

    For intonation - if you don't have a good ear, you can try putting a tuner on your stand. That way, you can check your pitch while you play.
    For being able to hear yourself - when I play with a large group of trumpeters (e.g., band situation), I can feel the horn's pitch both with my ear and with my hands (holding the trumpet). If you can't hear yourself, you're playing the perfect dynamic. If you can hear yourself over the others, you're playing too loud.

    For me, blending is very important. Therefore I always try to hear the others around me more than myself. I rely on what little I CAN hear, along with how the trumpet is reacting, to make sure I'm in tune.

    Just my two cents.
  3. mike ansberry

    mike ansberry Forte User

    Dec 30, 2003
    Clarksville, Tennessee, U
    I am also very aware of blending with the different sections I play with. That is why I need to hear myself. I personally think putting a tuner on the stand is a bad idea. Tuners are very useful training devices. But not every group (hardly any?) play right at 440. If I'm with the tuner, I am not necessarily with the section. I tried this when I was playing in the pits at Opryland. It drove me and everyone around me crazy. Had to stop doing that. Gotta rely on your ears in performance situations.
  4. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    My quintet (not a concert band issue) just finished a gig this weekend in Pittsburgh, that we rented the new Bose system to see how we liked it (more for portability than for monitor concerns); however, wow, can you hear every thing just as the audience hears it as the column, which is all this system is, puts out such a cone of sound that to me, it was better than any monitor system we had ever used. AND IT IS PORTABLE. Here is a link to the Bose system as it describes the arrangement much better than I could in this post:

    Bose | L1® portable loudspeaker systems for live sound | Speakers and Speaker Systems
  5. dangeorges

    dangeorges Pianissimo User

    Oct 20, 2010

    Adjust the tuner when you first tune.
    Or note the pitch offset when you tune up.
  6. J. Jericho

    J. Jericho Fortissimo User

    Mar 16, 2011
    My two cents' worth - Have confidence in your playing. If you're not getting it right, the director will let you know.
  7. nieuwguyski

    nieuwguyski Forte User

    Aug 9, 2004
    Santa Cruz County, CA
    In many ensemble situations the pitch moves around a bit during a performance. I always wince when I see a player slavishly following a tuner during a rehearsal or performance -- they'll probably be out of tune to the group most of the time. It makes as much sense as setting a metronome to the tempo marking on the music and ignoring the conductor.
  8. gglassmeyer

    gglassmeyer Piano User

    Apr 28, 2006
    Cincinnati, OH
    often it's easy to hear the low frequency of the tuba and you can try to make sure you match to the tuba. Of course if you can't hear yourself, then that is a problem. Hopefully your tuba(s) are good at playing in tune.

    I would wonder about how loudly your group is playing if you can't hear yourself. Perhaps the whole group is playing too loud. I've been in situations where folks can't hear themselves so they play louder, which then causes others to play louder and so on. If the director isn't careful, things can get out of hand.
    I would not like to have any kind of earbuds in while playing in a concert band.

    If I were to play in a large rock band with amps that go to 11, that would be a different story. I would love to have in ear monitors for that situation.
  9. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    the director??? --- I have been at the band for almost a year -- and played both the trumpet and trombone --- and I am still not sure the director even knows my name, let alone if I can play or not!!! --- I show up, I smile and help people --- everyone likes me ----- and nobody complains!!!!!!!!! so if I went by that -- THEN I AM PERFECT!!!! ROFL ROFL ROFL
  10. J. Jericho

    J. Jericho Fortissimo User

    Mar 16, 2011
    Once again the ugly truth about directors/conductors comes out.... And it looks like you have achieved your goal of perfection.... Congratulations!! BTW - Guess who's running the show? That's right - the director. And if you're not getting negative feedback, relax and play that axe!
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2012

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