Learning trumpet in two months

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by duckwheaat, Jun 8, 2013.

  1. ultratrumpet

    ultratrumpet Piano User

    Jul 10, 2009
    Old Lyme, Connecticut
    Learning how to play the trumpet takes a few hours (reading "Brass Playing Is No Harder Than Deep Breathing" CG) and the like. Developing to play the trumpet correctly (easily) takes many years.
    It took the greatest player of all time, H.L. Clarke 5 years.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2013
  2. DaveH

    DaveH Piano User

    Nov 27, 2003
    Two Months??? Becoming "proficient?"

    Not a chance.

    How about a lifetime?

    The suggestion that such a thing could be accomplished in a mere two months is almost offensive to all those who have spent their entire lives working to play and master the instrument.

    Ever listened to a beginning band in an elementary school? Students who may be in 5th or 6th grade and have just started on an instrument? That's what it sounds like after two months...about the same even after the end of a year.

    It takes years of time, patience, and proper practice, and usually private lessons, to get to the point where anyone can realistically call themselves "proficient" on trumpet.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2013
  3. Conntribution

    Conntribution Fortissimo User

    Dec 25, 2010
    Lloyd Harbor NY.
    Ummm, all the above and more.
  4. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    Assuming rhythm is already learned, with a 24/7 great teacher it might be possible to make enormous strides in two months. Without a teacher, as a DIY project armed with nothing more than a couple of manuals, uhh, I don't think so. The potential to learn bad habits seeking short-term benefits is way too big. Theoretically, it is possible for all the oxygen in a room to move to a corner and suffocate us. Very unlikely, but having that happen is indeed one of the possibilities inherent in Brownian Motion. Learning to play well enough in two months DIY to perform in a high-school jazz band is, in my opinion, just about as likely.
  5. -C-

    -C- Pianissimo User

    Jul 13, 2011
    When I got serious about my comeback last summer, it took me over a month of playing every day just to get back some semblance of pitch control. And I had over 10 years prior playing experience.

    So much of playing the trumpet is muscle tone and control, not just your face but also your diaphram. That takes time to develop, even for the folks with the most musical talent.
  6. rankamateur

    rankamateur Mezzo Forte User

    May 1, 2013
    Merry Ol' England
    Exactly. Couldn't have said it better. And I agree with everything the other posters have said too.

    Playing a trumpet, or any brass instrument, for that matter, may look easy. After all, it looks like you're just blowing into a metal tube and pressing three buttons, but as you say, the music is all to do with the strength, control and flexibility of the embouchure and the control of air - and both interlinked...and even then you've just got the notes. It takes even more to refine those notes and shape them to the tone and sound you want. For jazz work, that embouchure needs to be well trained and very flexible to hit those high notes without destroying the lips with pressure.

    I'm just sorry we can't be more encouraging to the OP, but from nothing to 'proficient' in two months on a trumpet is a very tall order. I imagine it might be possible if moving from another brass instrument, say a trombone, in that time, but the trombone player would have an understanding of breath control and an already-developed embouchure to work with.

    Having said that, I don't want to put the OP off, even though the time-frame is unrealistic, I'm taking to heart what TrumpetMD is saying about providing possible solutions. So...it's a long-shot but, duckwheaat, you could try something called an 'Immersion Protocol' sequence I once heard about on an information tape by a guy called Dan Lee Dimke. It doesn't sound pleasant, but if it is to be believed, it basically involves constant focus and input of the thing you want to learn until you simply break down any resistance to it, and progress becomes effortless. I haven't tried it, but it sounds oddly plausible. If you try it let me know how you do.

    You can learn a lot these days from Youtube videos and the such-like, and there are DVDs and instruction manuals available. But playing a trumpet, I think you need a mentor of some sort, even if you don't want a teacher. It's difficult to teach yourself a brass instrument on your own, but I suppose, not entirely impossible.

    JNINWI Piano User

    Apr 26, 2011
    Wow, you’ve taken on quite a challenge there ! Don’t be discouraged, hang in there and stick with it. Everyone is being honest with you here, and there are reasons for this:
    Trumpet is the most physically demanding instrument there is, It has the highest maintenance of any instrument, (meaning that it takes daily, devoted practice to maintain a good sound), and it takes the longest to learn. Not everyone has what it takes to play trumpet. Those of us that have find that we are in an elite group of people. So what your looking at is years of dedication to become “Proficient”. To play the third part in your Jazz band, well if you are dedicated for the time period you speak of, then I think your goal is a good one and if you practice as you say, you just might make this happen, and it would be a great goal for you to achieve ! And yes a teacher will help you not make the mistakes that you will make, (that we all have made ! ). Good luck and let us know how you are doing, we all here want to see you do this, we all realize you have bitten off a big chunk of meat !!!
  8. kehaulani

    kehaulani Fortissimo User

    May 14, 2011
    Hawaian homey
    FWIW, I was moved to the 1st part in a fairly intermediate Jr HS/HS concert band after about three months of playing and never played anything but the 1st part from that point on until graduation (7th grade - 12th grade and in three different schools), so I guess one could say that I had an aptitude. Perhaps you have the same, one never knows. Please note, though, that I had a hard-nosed and very good teacher from the get-go.
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2013
  9. Stefen

    Stefen Pianissimo User

    Apr 1, 2013
    Sutton Bridge, LINCS. UK
    I suppose it all depends on the what you mean by proficient! If we put it in Martial arts terms "proficient means Black Belt, all others belts lead unto the 1st Dan (Black Belt) then you really start learning the art. so could a novice become a black belt in 2 months. could maybe learn a few impressive moves but will get caught out with the first incident outside the box. like me I can play a lot of clips on the piano to demonstrate stuff to my pupils and some of those clips are a high level. but can I play the piano? NO! give me something of the same standard or even a lower standard and I am completely broadsided, my head know what is expected and my inner ear can hear what is expected but I do not have the physical ability to play it. (by tried to learn piano for a year and could never really get to grips with it, could never cut the string between my left and right hand, but was a natural on the trumpet, but still around a year to get Proficient enough on the horn to play on the 1st stand of count wind band).
    So what do you mean by proficient? have a realistic goal or you will just dissolution yourself and feel you're getting nowhere.
    Once again, best of luck.

    ps. If I might suggest you work on tone production through air supply to (through) the horn and lip flexibility to stabilise your chops so you have some sort of control over them without abusing them to get the notes.
    I would be great to know how you are progressing, so maybe a regular progress report for all us old doubters :)
  10. mattiasc

    mattiasc Piano User

    Jan 14, 2013
    Hi i didn't want to comment his chance of success. But learning yourself al the physics of trumpet playing without a teacher. Seems hard to me. I hope everything goes well for the OP and he gets into the band.
    The only tip i can give is get a teacher. Like a said you can teach yourself so many things the wrong way spending a lot of time undoing them.


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