Is my mouthpiece cheating on me?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by crowmadic, Aug 29, 2009.

  1. crowmadic

    crowmadic Mezzo Piano User

    Oct 3, 2006
    I use a Mega 3C mouthpiece because I like the feel of the rim, and the toneality I can get. But recently I've been playing a piece out of Effective Etudes for Jazz called "Isle Of Melon" on an Olds Ambassador, and i'm encountering two challanges. One is that I'm not seasoned in playing that "Rock" feel, and two, I think I could be getting to the notes above the staff easier. The highest note in this piece is the first B above the staff. I don't usually have problems in this range. How can I reconcile with my mouthpiece and get the best of all worlds, rim comfort, fat tone, and ease in the high range? Arturo Sandoval doesn't seem to have a problem playing a 3C. Can I play my 3C and be like him? JUST KIDDING...JUST KIDDING................kinda.

  2. rettepnoj

    rettepnoj Fortissimo User

    Feb 22, 2009
    Look at Arturo when he plays, check out the insane muscles in his face!! Do you have such muscles?? Hahah, just kiding.....kinda..:-)
  3. dhbailey

    dhbailey Piano User

    Jul 28, 2009
    New Hampshire
    Arturo is an excellent example to prove that whatever anybody says about how it is proper to play, there are professionals doing the exact opposite and making far more money at it than the person telling you not to do something.

    "Don't squeeze the mouthpiece into the lips" is something we constantly read and hear people saying, yet watching Arturo play denies that squeezing the mouthpiece into the lips is a bad thing.

    So take all trumpet playing advice, including this, with a few grains of salt.
  4. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    Uhh, practice?
    trumpetnick likes this.
  5. Ed Kennedy

    Ed Kennedy Forte User

    Nov 18, 2006
    Try a standard 3C. The Mega has a larger throat and backbore which is probably making you work harder for those notes. The comments about practice apply as well. Get into some flexibilities like Walter Smith or Chas. Colin.
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I recently mentioned on another post that when the music is in your HEAD instead of just on the page on the music stand, stuff like this becomes easier.

    Memorize the passage slowly and then go for it.

    A mega mouthpiece CAN help get a darker sound, but can also steal the sizzle that makes a sound like Arturos so exciting.

    To sort your priorities out:
    The mouthpiece is responsible for the rim comfort. Fat tone and high range are YOU and your practice habits. There is no reconciliation with a mouthpiece. They are brass and stubborn.

    Fat tone is not measured in darkness, it is measured in mega breath support. High chops are measured in effortlessness that comes through countless sensible repetitions.

    You will never be able to play "like him". You can be brilliant in your own way however!
  7. crowmadic

    crowmadic Mezzo Piano User

    Oct 3, 2006
    I thank everyone that gave constructive comments. However, I must note that one must walk on eggs when mentioning a famous trumpet player. It is assumed by many on TM that the person mentioned is aspired after. Unless the person says, "I want to play, or be like him/her," why is it assumed. I mentioned Arturo Sandoval because he is one of many that is known to play, or has played, a 3C. I'm too old to aspire to be anyone other than myself. However, I will share, and admit, that those high notes were hit easier when I executed the note with a thought of Arturo.

    thanks........... crow
  8. NickD

    NickD Forte User

    I would add that simply because Arturo plays a mouthpiece close to a 3C in size doesn't mean that YOU should! If Arturo wore a size 10 shoe and you wore a size 11, would you switch to a size 10? Of course not. If this were the way of things mouthpiece manufacturers would have a much easier time of things! ;-)

    You have started with a good middle of the road mouthpiece (though I agree that the megatone might not be the way to go - use a standard 3C, too). Now through years of practice, study and experimentation, you'll sort out the best fit for you.


  9. crowmadic

    crowmadic Mezzo Piano User

    Oct 3, 2006
    I tryed my Conn 3C, and although it was a brief try-out I've decided to stick with the Mega 3C. I just didn't like the feel or tone difference. I'll just have to learn how to get high on the Mega 3C.

  10. trumpetnick

    trumpetnick Fortissimo User

    Nov 16, 2005
    Vidin, Bulgaria
    ROFL You sound like a drug dealer :twisted:

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