"Leaky" lips?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by musicguyguy, Nov 21, 2010.

  1. musicguyguy

    musicguyguy New Friend

    Oct 5, 2009
    Fremont, CA
    I've noticed recently that when I play (and especially when I tongue) air leaks through my nose and the sides of my lips. The nose problem isn't as significant because I can consciously stop that, but I've been having trouble blocking air through my lips.

    It happens less on a larger mouthpiece (Bach 1 1/2C vs my Yamaha 11B4) probably because of the larger rim, but there's still a really obvious pff pff pfft sound when I tongue.

    I've been told I can save a lot of strength if I stop letting air leak through... any tips?
  2. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

    Jan 21, 2010
    Great Southern Land
    Are your lips parted or together, when you place the mouthpiece? Do you curl your lips in, out, or neither? Do you eat spicy or salty food prior to playing? Do you apply pressure or try to reduce it on your lips?

    You say recently - have you changed something in the embouchure you use?

    As far as tips go, I can give no embouchure advice (I know what works for me) but I find I cannot play as well after a spicy curry or eating salty chips - so my tip might be to avoid them before playing.
  3. s.coomer

    s.coomer Forte User

    Mar 25, 2005
    Indianapolis, In
    Sounds like your corners are not tight enough. However, for best results and answers to your problem get a good teacher who will work with you. No one on the internet can advise you properly without seeing or hearing you play.
  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
  5. musicguyguy

    musicguyguy New Friend

    Oct 5, 2009
    Fremont, CA
    Thanks for the responses.

    The pencil exercise looks like it'll work, so I'm giving it a go. It makes me do a really terrible scowl though... which I hope doesn't stick.
  6. Big Country

    Big Country New Friend

    Nov 13, 2010
    Smithfield, VA
    Rowuk, this is awesome!
  7. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    nope, players that "get it" are awesome. Sometimes we just lead them to water. If they drink, then everything is cool. If they only start to discuss, then, well - they are not awesome............
  8. JonathanPhillips

    JonathanPhillips Pianissimo User

    Oct 14, 2010
    Cincinnati, Ohio USA
    Just what I've been looking for!! Now maybe Largo will sound a bit sweeter!
  9. Haste2

    Haste2 Piano User

    Jun 16, 2010
    This video may be more useful than the other. I was never able to figure out how to hold the end of my pencil with just my lips....well, for certain, anyway. I was always worried my lips were curled in too far or not enough, so I just gave up with it in a short time.

    With my teeth, however, it's much easier to figure out and it builds the muscles just the same, I believe. It's a video by George Rawlin.

    YouTube - Pencil exercise
  10. fraserhutch

    fraserhutch Mezzo Piano User

    Jan 23, 2004
    Novato, CA, USA
    Eric Bolvin also has an excellent method if anyone is interested - his Tongue Level and Air.
    I guarantee that if you follow this method, in a month, you will no longer have weak corners :)

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