Lip Trills

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Flugellover, Apr 28, 2012.

  1. Flugellover

    Flugellover New Friend

    Dec 20, 2011
    Hey all,
    I have never learned how to lip trill, and have a few questions about them.
    1)How long will it take to develop a good lip trill
    2)What should I practice to learn how to lip trill (Keeping in mind I have never done anything before to help lip trills)
    3)Are they easier to do on high notes
  2. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    How long does it take you to relax? This is an important early first step.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2012
  3. coolerdave

    coolerdave Utimate User

    Nov 7, 2009
    San Pedro
    How long does it take?
    Tough to answer .. how much do you practice each day and how do you practice long have you been playing ... how natural is playing the trumpet for you ( you playing ability ..some cats can practice something and get it in an afternoon while us mere mortals might need months) .. are you playing properly .. set up,breathing etc... How is your range..
    What should you practice? What method books do you currently work out of?
    If you have the range, in theory, higher notes are easier to lip trill because the notes are closer together.
    I would start of with a metronome and find lip slur exercises. They really wear you out so don't over do it and be patient.
    Do you currently recieve private instructions?
  4. jiarby

    jiarby Fortissimo User

    May 7, 2011
    They get easier as you play higher notes... up to a point.
    the higher you play then the less distance there is between the two partials.

    Example: On a middle C the adjacent two partials are G below, and E above. You have to trill a 3rd or a 4th.
    On a High C then you can trill down to an open Bb, or up to a D. Only a whole step. So, it takes less manipulation to make the jump.

    What should you practice??
    The back half of the "Colin Advanced Lip Flexibilities" has great exercises for developing this effect.

    Keep in mind that there are lots of different things that people call trills. You can do them by manipulating your chops, or by moving your tongue. Practice them both!

    Then practice wider intervals, especially on higher notes.. High C to D, but also, C to E, C to F, C to G. Do alternate fingerings to catch different partials... like 1-3 for a G (top of staff) or a high D, or 2-3 for the high C. Try the A's with 3rd valve versus 1-2 and see how they feel/sound.
  5. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Some students need 2 weeks, others 2 years. They only work when your sound floats on air. If you have to "muscle" around to play lipslurs, you aren't ready yet.
  6. Satchmo Brecker

    Satchmo Brecker Piano User

    Jul 19, 2010
    I would add that you DO in fact already play lip trills, you just don't realize it. Everytime you play Bb-D with 1 or A-C# with 1-2, for example, you're doing lip trills. It's just that you haven't systematized and focused on them using specific exercises.
  7. ultratrumpet

    ultratrumpet Piano User

    Jul 10, 2009
    Old Lyme, Connecticut
    Claude Gordon told me the following story: He said..." When I was young man, every time a band would come through town I made it a point to try and talk to the lead trumpet player after the show." He would ask questions like ... How do you do the lip trill ? Invariably the player would say..." Oh, that's easy...and pick up his horn and play a lip trill ... Mr. Gordon said ..." I knew he could do it ... I wanted to know how to do it !!! "

    Here is what I believe contributes to doing fine lip trills:

    1. A flexible lip ( practice lots of lip slurs )
    2. Keep the wind constant
    3. Rely on the tongue level by thinking " Ta - ee "
    4. " Kick " the top note when practicing slowly


    Turn to Arban page 42. number 18. Start with all three valves, and treat each measure as a separate exercise. Resting appropriately, practice each measure over and over again.
    Using a metronome, start slowly, and speed up over time.

    Page 44, number 22 is an absolutely wonderful exercise to master !

    William Knevitt
    coolerdave likes this.
  8. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

    May 4, 2007
    Greensboro, NC
    Those are not lip trill. They are lips slurs. A trill is a rapid alteration between two usually adjacent notes. Though larger intervals are use but they resemble a tremelo more than a trill.
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  9. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

    May 4, 2007
    Greensboro, NC
    Page 42 in the Aran book is a good place to start. But you need to be able to slur smoothly like the exercises starting on page 39 starting with # 3.

    On page 42 I like to start a student on #17. Slowly at first, resting as needed until they can play it all the way through without stopping at the marked tempo. If one masters these exercises in order at the markes top tempo, by the time you master # 21 you can lip trill
  10. bach37

    bach37 Pianissimo User

    Dec 1, 2011
    +1 on arban page 42 I do those everyday. When you first start out doing them you find that you had muscles in your face you never knew you had.

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