Learning how to play without pressure

Discussion in 'Trumpet Pedagogy' started by rviser, Jun 29, 2009.

  1. rviser

    rviser Pianissimo User

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    Dec 26, 2008
    Hey Brian, what a coincidence. I just purchased the new Cat Anderson book from Geoff and really feel like it will help in this department. It's just hard for me to really spend 2 hours practicing (about what a full lesson takes in that book) then go play a gig that night and still be worth much. The main problem I'm having with that book right now is being able to play with my teeth together. It is proving to be quite an ordeal, I sound like a complete beginner on day 1 when I try it.....
     
  2. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    A good exercise from John Glasel:

    Play a long tone, and while doing so reduce pressure; it will start to sound "bad." With this same pressure, do whatever it takes with the chops to make it sound "better" (not perfect or normal). In a short time you should notice some muscles being worked (a big ring or circle around the mouth.)

    This will allow us to train some muscles that don't normally get worked; when somewhat in shape it should require somewhat less pressure to play.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Uhh, why in the world, when there are so many individual jaw and teeth formations, should we play with the teeth together? Could that be why you sound like a beginner?:cool:
     
  4. rviser

    rviser Pianissimo User

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    Dec 26, 2008
    Hahahaha, well that's what the Cat Anderson book tells you to do on the exercises. To bring the jaw forward and play with the teeth together. It's incredibly difficult to do even with only playing a second line g. It becomes impossible when it has you slurring and trying to play notes above the staff. So much so that I almost want to abandon that aspect of it and just run through it with my normal embouchure.
     
  5. Brian H. Smout

    Brian H. Smout Piano User

    Hi rviser,

    Straight up,I have no financial interest in the book. I play with a receded jaw setup and have worked for years to get a usable range to F above the staff. The Cat Anderson's requirement for the teeth together really moves the jaw forward and the exercise really require a wholesale reduction in left arm pressure. I posted on the other forum how bad my sound was while doing the exercises. I checked with Geoff as to thinking about these exercises compared to doing the long tone Caruso method which are physical calisthenics for muscular development only. The crappy sound is frustrating at first but when you return to your "normal" embouchure you will find yourself playing with less pressure and finding the extreme registers, pedal and above the staff to be improving.
    I am still working on Lesson 1 so this is a method that takes some time! Good luck with it. For me, I think it is worth the effort.

    Cheers,

    Brian
     
  6. jazztrumpeter3

    jazztrumpeter3 New Friend

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    Jul 2, 2009
    Maine
    Something I learned a year ago, and still use a couple of times a week, is the tennis ball method. If you place the tennis ball under your chin, and hold it between your chest and chin, and play trying to keep the ball under your chin... it takes a lot of the pressure away, and strengthens your embouchure and the amount of air you have to use.
     

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