I'm going to play in a band soon!

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by snazzypadgett, May 3, 2010.

  1. snazzypadgett

    snazzypadgett New Friend

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    Oct 13, 2009
    I've been playing for about 4 months now, and my teacher (i'm taking trumpet as secondary instrument at university) has urged me to join a community band over the summer! I'm excited!

    My range is basically the low (concert) E to F, which I think is good enough for some second trumpet parts. What do you guys think it'll be like playing in a group for the first time?
     
  2. mchs3d

    mchs3d Mezzo Forte User

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    Well, it should be a new experience. I think you'll have lots of fun. However, do listen to all of your classmates and do your best to fit in. Playing in an ensemble is about as good as group activities get.
     
  3. snazzypadgett

    snazzypadgett New Friend

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    Oct 13, 2009
    Well, I would have made a topic about this, but that'd be two in one day, so here's another question I'm having:

    -When I play, I'm noticing that my throat feels a little strained, i think. The feeling is similar to when you get water up your nose and you push air into your soft palate to make a snorty sound. Is this pressure normal or not? It can sometimes make a little noise that is undesirable.

    Also, I make vocalizations while I play. My voice goes "uhh' in short, quiet bursts in certain playing ranges. My teacher pointed it out and said to try and get rid of it, just make a conscious effort. But I don't know if I can, I can't seem to play without it. Anyone ever had this problem?
     
  4. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    I had that issue at one point - it just sounds to me like you are trying too hard, which is what usually causes constriction in the throat and pushes the air up through your nasal passage, which is what I'm guessing is the source of the sound. Just do a lot of lower, really relaxed long tones and be aware of whether or not you are making the noise - that should help.

    Back to playing in the ensemble, just pay attention to what's going on around you. At first you're probably going to feel pretty conspicuous and you might not be real confident in what you are doing. Just listen in, focus, and in no time you'll be part of the whole. Key in to others when it comes to other ensemble types of things such as note length, how notes are attacked and cut, blend, volume, dynamics, etc. There is a lot to pay attention to, but in no time you should be fitting in just fine, and it's a community band - in my experience community bands are fairly low pressure so relax and have fun! :-)
     
  5. larry tscharner

    larry tscharner Forte User

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    as far as the band question goes, dont stress about what i think will be a realy fun experience for you. after the first session you might feel intimidated but hang in there it only gets better and better. the question about vocalizing when playing may be simple to fix if you think about the difference in your normal breathing and talking. you change the configuration of your throat to move your vocal cords into the air stream. when you play you may be inadvertantly using your talking throat instead of your open breathing throat. experiment with trying to open your throat more and visualising breathing or at least exhaling through the mouthpiece. hope this helps, good luck & have FUN in community band. if they werent fun no one would join.
     
  6. guyclark

    guyclark Piano User

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    There is nothing as good for your playing is playing in groups. Not only are you going to play more than you're likely to do on your own at home, but you'll have other players around you from which to ask help or advise if you need it.

    I credit my joining adult community orchestras in high-school with much of my trumpet playing ability. I didn't go to music school, but I sat next to (and usually ahead of) players who did, and I sponged their music school knowledge of of them for free!!! ;-).

    It helped that I developed as a player in and around Chicago, near Northwestern University, so those with whom I played were students or had been students there, and had some of the best brass training available anywhere.

    Join a band/orchestra and be willing to take criticism and advise. Listen to the good players around you and try to emulate what they're doing. You'll improve a lot in a short period of time, if you do this!

    It's also a great way to make friends! I married my stand partner in Brass Band! ;-)

    Guy Clark
     
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  7. Seaaggie

    Seaaggie New Friend

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    May 3, 2010
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    Good luck with the Band! I am geting back inot playing and am thinking about joing the community band around me as well. I don't think I am ready yet but I will get there soon. :-)
     
  8. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    Nice post Guy. I've been trying to get that concept through the thick skull of my 15 y/o son, who has become a pretty taleneted electric guitar player. I play drums for a worship band and he has the potential to bring a lot to it if he'd put in the effort, and I know that the experience would be great for him when it comes to playing in bands and ensembles. He has played with the worship band a few times and he's barely scratching the surface of what he could potentially bring to it, simply because he's not yet to a point where he can transfer what he can do with the guitar in the practice room to playing with a live band. Of course it's a different thing with him - he's not really reading charts, but rather he's reading chord sheets, so he has to come up with a part kind of on the fly, based in part on recordings of the songs we cover, but the ensemble concepts are the same. It's one thing playing along to a recording that is exactly the same every time and a different animal altogether when you play with an esemble of volunteer players of ranging skills and abilities.

    The point is, playing in an ensemble is good experience, even if the ensemble isn't great. There is much to be learned, both from the better players and the folks who struggle with their instruments - sometimes finding out what to play is to discover specifically what NOT to play.
     
  9. gbdeamer

    gbdeamer Forte User

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    Slow and steady.

    Have fun with the band. Playing in a group setting is a fantastic boost to your learning.

    Be wary of advice from the internet.
     
  10. guyclark

    guyclark Piano User

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    Thanx, Pat!

    I currently play in two community concert bands and a brass band, in addition to my orchestras and brass ensembles. It's busy, but mostly fun, and I get to do most of it WITH my wife. If nothing else, it helps keep my chops up!

    Guy
     

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