Long Tones

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Smcquaid, Aug 24, 2011.

  1. Smcquaid

    Smcquaid Pianissimo User

    Aug 8, 2010
    I am currently in the middle of an embouchure change and I've just started doing long tones (better late then never) and I've noticed immediate improvement in my embouchure. However, I have started getting into the upper register with them and I was wondering how I should approach them. Should I use a breath attack or tongue each long tone?
  2. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    I would tongue at first. A great exercise for learning control is to practice what my professor, Gerald Webster called "Ghost Tones." Take a note (say, for example, g in the staff) and without tonguing, play it so softly that the sound really doesn't leave the bell--it will get trapped inside and not project.

    This is really hard to do!

    To learn the feeling, practice decrescendos with the sound going down to nothing. If the note stops, keep trying until you get it down to next to nothing. When you get this down, try the original exercise and expand chromatically upwards. This will improve sound as well as range.

    Not to worry--soft playing requires more embouchure strength than playing loudly.

    Have fun!
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I teach just exhaling long tones through the horn - no articulation. This is part of my "circle of breath" concept - inhale/exhale as a continuous motion, no holding the air back, very relaxed.

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