Mark B's Comeback Thread

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Mark B, Sep 23, 2010.

  1. Mark B

    Mark B Pianissimo User

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    Aug 20, 2010
    Redlands, CA
    Bob,

    Thanks for the kind words. My teacher does write things down in a notebook for me. I just have a hard time deciphering what it means sometimes. I missed something this week, too, but was able to find that part of the recording and knew what his scratching meant.

    I'm surprised at how much of the playing is coming back. It has to be an awful lot like recovering from amnesia. Something triggers a memory and I just know how to finger a note, or attack, or something else I just randomly start doing. I'm hoping that the light will come on real soon with my control. I think it will.

    Mark
     
  2. Mark B

    Mark B Pianissimo User

    214
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    Aug 20, 2010
    Redlands, CA
    Life gets in the way sometimes, but good for you getting right back into it. I think it's good for the soul.

    I get the feeling my teacher is going to use play-along books and CDs. Right now, he's got me playing out of a book of Disney tunes.:dontknow: I agree that it's fun playing along with the music.

    Mark
     
  3. wolfmann

    wolfmann Pianissimo User

    167
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    Aug 19, 2010
    I found a site that has transcriptions and audio downloads for Jazz solos by some of the best you ever heard.It even had a download to print staff paper!
    I got a Clark Terry solo from it
    And BEST of ALL it was FREE!


    And now I CANT find it again!!!!!!




    I SOOOOO suck



    I really should use the bookmark thing more often ROFL
     
  4. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    Oct 26, 2003
    Baltimore/DC
    From the sounds of things I think it's going swimmingly - trumpet is one of those instruments that can take a while to develop, and it can also take a while to bring it back after an extended layoff, so patience is key, as is the understanding that Rome wasn't built in a day, so it might take a couple of months to overcome some of the basic chops issues you might be dealing with now. The good news is that you were pretty solid back in the day, so there is going to be some muscle memory that can be triggered and you'll be right back in the thick of it before you know it. Even better is the fact that you have discipline and drive that you probably didn't have when you were 17-18 years old, and you can use that to be focused and committed to your end goals as a player.

    I think you'll be knocking the walls down soon enough, and I think that getting involved in something where a public performance is in the works is essential to keeping things progressing and keeping you motivated.

    Good job my friend - keep up the great work!
     
  5. Mark B

    Mark B Pianissimo User

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    Aug 20, 2010
    Redlands, CA
    It’s kind of hard to believe I just finished my fifth lesson of my comeback. All in all, it’s going pretty well, I think. My progress isn’t as fast as I would like it, of course, but my teacher seems to be genuinely happy with how it’s going. He’s pretty adept, I think, at determining where I’m at with the work he assigns from week to week. When I turn in a pretty good week of progress, he tends to load me up with more work. If I have an off week, then he tends to not give me so much.

    This week was a really good week for me. I was able to practice every day and the extra time made a pretty big difference. It seems like I always miss one day of practice for various reasons, but this week was better. I felt, as my teacher did, that I made a pretty significant advance this week. This was due to not only the extra day of practice, but also his observation last week that I was over blowing. He had me back my volume down and the sound came around a lot, but it was a battle for me to tone it down. The one thing he’s on me for and I have yet to get my focus on is keeping my embouchure still. I tend to adjust my embouchure to change octaves instead of pushing it from the gut like he wants me to. That’s going to be a toughie for me to break, I’m afraid. Still, the assignments given last week were performed to satisfaction and the workload adjusted accordingly.

    While my warm up changed only a little, the technical work changed quite a bit. He threw in some long tones, which I had already been working on based on the suggestion of Patrick (trickg) and more tonguing/slurring combos up and down the scale, only higher than what I had been doing the previous five weeks. Then, instead of just one song to work on this week, I have four! I didn’t bother telling him I had already been working on long tones, or he would have loaded me up some more. For once, I was glad to have kept my mouth shut!

    I’m growing increasingly fond of the play along music. I totally underestimated the value of this wonderful tool. They sure didn’t have that when I was in high school! Not that I remember, anyway. I never used a metronome before my comeback, either, but kind of like it, too. I definitely prefer the play along music to the metronome, though.

    I really appreciate this forum, too. I have learned so much from all of you…. Sometimes you guys and gals are talking about things way over my head, but I still enjoy figuring out just what you are talking about. One thing I learned was about Arban. I understand this is the Bible among trumpet players and I had never heard of it. It’s now on my growing list of trumpet stuff on my birthday and Christmas list.

    Thanks again to all of you!

    Mark
     
  6. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

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    Baltimore/DC
    It sounds like things are really going well.

    I had an interesting thought in regard to your teacher telling you that you were over-blowing. I've volunteered at several schools working with the high brass, and one thing that I rarely saw was any trumpet player trying to play too loud. To the contrary, I had to beg, cajole and almost bribe the kids to put forth any kind of real volume. I don't know if it's because we were a product of the IGS/CCHS band system (before it slid into the dumps) or what it was, but I've never heard a school trumpet section put out the kind of sound we did. I remember going to high school band concerts during the era you were in it (before I was in band, going to my sisters' concerts - I used to sit up on the announcer's stand clear up at the top of the bleachers! :D) and it seemed like the volume of the band in the gym during the louds, or at the end of a big crescendo, seemed like it was going to take the roof off!

    I think that you and I approached the trumpet from a louder point of view because of that, hence the overblowing now. I think that we were simply expected to put out some volume, so it was never questioned - we just did it. Not that volume in itself is a bad thing - there are times when you really have to crank it up - but blowing that hard when your chops aren't quite ready for it is probably what your teacher was trying to prevent.

    I do a lot of playing to music that is either recorded with a click, or with the party band, is on a click track. I agree that it's a lot more fun that just working with a metronome, although that has its place too.
     
  7. SCV81

    SCV81 Pianissimo User

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    Sep 10, 2010
    Bay Area, Northern Calif.
    thanks for your post, Mark. I truly enjoyed reading it. Are you taking lessons continuously or will there be an end after a few weeks or so?
     
  8. Mark B

    Mark B Pianissimo User

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    Aug 20, 2010
    Redlands, CA
    That's a really good question. My original intent was to take a couple months of lessons, then a break of a couple months where I just do my own thing, then pick up another couple months. Since that time and based on advice I've gotten here, I've decided to stick with lessons for six months. After that, I'll take a look at where I am and what I want to do from there.

    Mark
     
  9. SCV81

    SCV81 Pianissimo User

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    Sep 10, 2010
    Bay Area, Northern Calif.
    Sounds like you're happy with the instructor if you're taking lessons for six months! For now, I am going by the memories of what my horn instructors taught me when I marched drum & bugle corps back in 1981. I will eventually take lessons too, just waiting for my wife to recover from the price shock of my new horn, lol. I'm thinking of a lesson every two weeks if such a thing exists
     
  10. Mark B

    Mark B Pianissimo User

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    Aug 20, 2010
    Redlands, CA
    I can't speak for all instructors, but they usually want you to commit to a month.

    Yes, I'm pretty happy with my teacher. I've been reading a lot on here and listening to advice from players. It seems my teacher has me on a good, solid path with the instruction he's given. No reason to not stick with it. If I really wanted to conjure up some buyer's remorse over my teacher, it would be that I settled on the first guy I checked with instead of asking/looking around more. That being said, I often suffer from analysis paralysis, so I am happy I took the step and got started sooner as opposed to later. In the end, I'm happy with my teacher and all is good.

    My teacher has called me out on some bad habits I didn't know I had. That would be my motivation, if I were you, to get a teacher SAP. Buy a block of lessons, then decide if you should continue. I certainly understand your position with your wife, but use the justification that you don't want to waste that beautiful new horn by developing bad habits. I don't know, but it might work.

    Mark
     

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