I'm really at the end of my rope. Should I just quit trumpet?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Octiceps, Aug 20, 2010.

  1. mitzidemarco

    mitzidemarco New Friend

    Apr 4, 2012
    I know how you feel. I have been playing for 26 years and still sound like a beginner. I am tired of putting hard work and my life breath into something that isn't working for me and it is heartbreaking because I love the trumpet and jazz music but it doesn't love me back. Hours, Days, and Years wasted on playing and hoping I get better. My friends say I have talent but I don't. I have a real hard time reading and understanding some sheet music. I wanna write my own jazz song and was only successful at one recently but there's so much in music and trumpet I just cannot understand. I might just quit too. I'm not really good at anything else to be honest.
  2. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

    Jan 30, 2009
    Melbourne Australia
    Well Firstly Welcome, mitzidemarco.

    Raising a thread that is 5 years old is a good start, and based on what you have to say, you will only be with us perhaps a very short time. It appears that it has taken you 3 years for you to build the courage to make your first post. (Joined Apr 2012)

    I SINCERELY do hope you can Enjoy your time here, and remember life goes on.
  3. mitzidemarco

    mitzidemarco New Friend

    Apr 4, 2012
    I forgot I had joined to be honest. I don't frequent message boards unless there is a topic I can relate to and this one I found on Google because I was thinking about quitting the trumpet. I didn't realize it was an old topic. I am not sure if your post was to be mean or sarcastic, because it is hard to tell on the internet but I do not need comments like that. I was looking for some advice not sarcasm.
  4. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

    Jan 30, 2009
    Melbourne Australia
    Sorry, it was a genuine Welcome.

    We cannot stop you from playing the trumpet. After 26 years of playing, you should know.

    Genuinely a Big Welcome, if we can help we will. If you have made your mind up to quit, I cannot change that, can I.
  5. mitzidemarco

    mitzidemarco New Friend

    Apr 4, 2012
    Well I do apologize for jumping to conclusions and thank you for the welcome. I am still just thinking about it. I haven't made up my mind yet.
  6. Tomaso

    Tomaso Pianissimo User

    Oct 2, 2014
    New York City
    Well, I waded through about half of all these posts and I didn't hear anybody say it. So I will.
    Analysis paralysis! Analysis paralysis! It is crippling!
    Start playing long tones. And ballads. Shenandoah, Amazing Grace, Old Man River, Danny Boy - anything with long tones in it. Forget meter and make them even longer. Strive for beauty. Strive for a beautiful sound in every note. Make every note a performance. Play like your playing on the stage of Carnegie Hall. Play long tones every day, all day if needs be, with appropriate rests.
    Stop worrying about which way the air is going in the bowl of the mouthpiece! That's the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. Blow the air into the horn but don't think about it. Think about purity of tone. Play LOUD once in a while. Blow the sound across the room. Think about whether the tone is beautiful or not. If it's not, listen harder and give your brain and body some room to make it beautiful. Playing an instrument is not about analyzing your mechanics to death, music is about emotion, and how best to get it across.
    In truth, if you are not thrilled every day to be able to play your trumpet and thinking about it gleefully before you get out of bed in the morning, perhaps you should take a sabbatical.

  7. JackTheMusician

    JackTheMusician Pianissimo User

    Aug 14, 2013
    Just to let you know I''m 17 and in the exact same position, my embouchure randomly changed (3 days before a recital), I went from up to downstream playing and practising has become more of a task ;/ So you're not on your own! I plan and trying to stop playing for a bit and see if I will "heal" and then get playing with as many new people and get as much feedback as I can!
    Good luck :)
  8. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008
    Umm, your embouchure just doesn't randomly change. You did something to change your mpc position and your lips. Get help from a teacher.
  9. dcpritchett

    dcpritchett Pianissimo User

    Jan 20, 2015
    Central FL
    I have read all the gobbidilly gook and don't know what to say except quit trying to analyze the thing to death. Put the mouthpiece on your face in a comfortable position and buzz. If you get a sound, it is not all bad. I used too much pressure for years. Now I am at the point of a light tap on the bell while playing will cause an air leak at the mouthpiece. This works up to high c at the moment. You want more, there will be some pressure involved. I used to have a high f and sometimes a g. Still have an e. The rest will come. I am blowing a Bach 2 and am six months into a comeback after 40 years of not touching the horn. The takeaway is, chill out. Play long tones correctly, pedals correctly and Clark exercises. Arpeggios will help the range and, if you can't blow the note with a clean tone, you can't blow it, ease off. What mouthpiece are you using? I hope it is not one of those holes drilled in a quarter types. I would like to see no student using smaller or shallower than a 5B. Tone counts.
  10. redintheface

    redintheface Pianissimo User

    Nov 8, 2010
    Bath, UK
    I feel your pain too, Mitzidemarco, and I have been through a protracted period of time when it just didn't seem to come together. I still have days when it doesn't seem to work well, but I continue anyway. I got to the age of 21 on huge pressure technique, and then tried to change it all, and started by hanging my trumpet up to the ceiling and putting my hands behind my back to see if I could get a note out of it without pressure. I remember being utterly destroyed when I could get only C below the stave, if I screwed my face up and tried my hardest.

    Since then, lots and lots and lots of careful practice later, listening to my sound, adjusting, allowing, relaxing, hearing, lessons, different ensemble types, different mouthpieces, different trumpets, RELAXING (haha!), being patient with myself, allowing my lips to do what they need to do without trying to interfere too much, and above all, knowing that my lips can produce a professional, clear, clean sound, even if it isn't happening today, and slowly working towards that sound in my head.

    One thing you will find on the forum here is people who have been through what you are going through, and can give you very good advice about how to get the result you are after.

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