Jaw placement

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Brasshole, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. Brasshole

    Brasshole New Friend

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    Hey guys, I'm a trumpet player still in highschool and planning to go to university next year for the trumpet. I am having trouble maintaing a steady tone while playing longer notes in the lower register (low c to middle c). I noticed that my jaw trembles when playing and that I am protruding it quite a bit. My teacher said this should not be so. I am having a hard time trying to readjust it and my emboucher just does not form well to the new way. If continuing to play with a stuck out jaw is there any way to stop it from shaking? Is it bad to play that way?
     
  2. Phil986

    Phil986 Forte User

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    If you're shaking and it can't be controlled, something is wrong. It seems your teacher is not giving you guidance beyond saying you're doing something wrong. Ask for more guidance, if you don't get it from your current teacher, seek it somewhere else, but preferably not on the internet. My 2 cents.
     
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Changing ANYTHING with the body, especially after it has become habit is a major task involving MONTHS not days. This time should be closely monitored by a teacher in the know. That does NOT happen on the internet.

    For the record, there are so many players that play with a forward jaw, that I would not start there for less stable players. You would be at the beginning of a process that could take up to two years.

    I would question the sense of majoring trumpet when the established base is so questionable. It isn't like there is no competition out there and many players have 10 years of SOLID playing without handicaps before starting their studies.
     
  4. 7cjbill2

    7cjbill2 Pianissimo User

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    By no means am I trying or even qualified to give embouchure advice, but when I get a shaky tone it has been an aperture problem in my case. The "blow" wasn't directed into the center of the pipe, so-to-speak.
     
  5. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't believe this one bit. Shaky is a mechanical problem or crappy breathing. The aperature causes air in our sound or becomes an issue once we get tired. Many players claiming a too big aperature simply do not practice correctly. They try to build embouchures with a big stick instead of a feather.
     
  6. 7cjbill2

    7cjbill2 Pianissimo User

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    It depends...is the tonal problem like a "vibrato" or is he having trouble pin-pointing/holding the tone steady and it waivers? I took it as the latter, so I still say it _COULD_ be aperture....I don't think it's a far reach that if you change your aperture while you play it can and WILL affect your tone. Not trying to be argumentative, just describing my experiences.
     
  7. acarcido

    acarcido Forte User

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    To me, it sounds like it could be a breathing and control issue. I think that you are stressing your emboucher when in fact you should be very relaxed. It takes lots and lots and still more practice to master those super long notes and sustain them perfectly in tune. Being in High School I assume you are in good shape and breathing techniques can help you build a stronger and more controlled emboucher. I've see some kids that are more out of shape than my 39 y/o self that are huffing and puffin after playing some easy passages. When playing your trumpet, you should feel as if you are breathing normal. Especially at your level in HS. Once you get into circular breathing techniques and extending your lung capacity, then you will get the blue faced blues. Good luck, seek advice from an accomplished horn player. Rowuk is on the money again.
     
  8. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    CJ,
    the whole discussion of aperature is major BS. Look at these videos on how the embouchure really works:

    IWK Brass Research

    The lips open and close like a valve. There is no set aperature. Not trying to be argumentative, just describing the truth.

    The visualization of an aperature helps some players in using their face muscles in a more favorable way. Had the teacher known the truth, they would have addressed the muscles instead of prolonging the myth. In fact the lips and the hole that is blown open between them is related to pitch and volume. Higher pitch, softer volume=less lip motion / lower and louder=more lip motion. Breath control is THE MAJOR FACTOR. Nothing else opens the lips when we play. We can not make the lips open and close at speeds to recreate the trumpet frequencies through muscle action alone. Air blows it open, the embouchure strength and action of the standing wave in the trumpet closes them again. The balance of those 3 things determines pitch, loudness, and quality of sound.
     
  9. hhsTrumpet

    hhsTrumpet Piano User

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