My Embouchure Change

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Nikv, Jul 10, 2009.

  1. Nikv

    Nikv Pianissimo User

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    Jun 20, 2009
    Santa Barbara, CA
    I was a victim of childish competition and never having a sufficient teacher, until a little more than a year ago.

    Here's what's odd. I found a very large newspaper picture of me when I first started playing trumpet, and I had a normal, standard embouchure.
    I realize now, that it was only after I began to understand and crave high notes, that I began a depressing process of moving the trumpet down on my face, and playing with a small slit of upper lip.

    Sure. After playing incorrectly for about 5 years, I could play a double-high D. But overall, I sounded sub-par. And I realized I was going nowhere. (I'm sure you all know that this was the complete incorrect way to play.)
    A little over a year ago, I began taking lessons from one of the greatest teachers of trumpet I have ever known. And I essentially started over, attempting to make an extremely drastic change to my embouchure.

    I had to begin playing with the mouthpiece on the right part of my face, so I could maybe someday develop into a professional player.
    And now, a little more than a year later. Essentially restarting my trumpet career (although I did of course retain my musical knowledge and phrasing ability), I have made a surprising leap back to the stage I should be at in my life, and am practicing 3.5 hours a day, and sometimes playing an overall of 8 hours every day including rehearsals.

    For some reason, I got this urge to share my story with the world,
    and ask whether anyone else has comments, or has had to go through anything similar to this?

    Thanks,
    Nik
     
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Nik,
    get the urge to learn the names of the notes. You don't have and never had a double D. That is TWO octaves above the staff.

    8 hours a day is the quickest way to the next crisis. The muscles in your face are sensitive to being beaten up.

    You were not a victim. Nobody FORCED you to do anything. If we "enter" competition, WE are responsible for our actions.. It is not useful to feel sorry for ourselves.

    The trumpet is also susceptible to the yoyo effect common when losing weight. Let's check up with you in about a years time. THAT will be a sign of success.

    I am VERY happy that you have a great teacher. THAT is the most significant message that I get from your post.
     
  3. Nikv

    Nikv Pianissimo User

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    Jun 20, 2009
    Santa Barbara, CA
    I really am thanking you for the help you're giving me.
    But I was really being serious. With an incorrect embouchure,
    I could hit Double D's.

    This isn't a joke either. My first teachers thought I was going to be some high-note guy. My new teacher has showed me that actually I was playing so wrong that it made those notes easy.

    Don't worry about the amount of time I'm putting in. A lot of it is orchestral... So I guess a lot of it is sitting. So it's more like 5.5 hours...
    I swear I'm not doing anything incorrect to my lips.
     
  4. Nikv

    Nikv Pianissimo User

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    Jun 20, 2009
    Santa Barbara, CA
    This thread was not supposed to be about what range I had incorrectly,
    I simply want to know whether anyone else has had to fix or is fixing a problem like this.

    Anyone at all? :-)
     
  5. Bachstul

    Bachstul Mezzo Forte User

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    Jan 25, 2009
    I guess we'll need more info. I see in your post childish,. then pro. as many years could have spanned, your teeth got bigger, jaw and face grew, right? Embouchure will change, yes? More info will help.
     
  6. ltg_trumpet

    ltg_trumpet Mezzo Piano User

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    Jan 21, 2009
    oh yes nik, all of us have learned to play DOUBLE D'S and then complained that our embouchure is F***** up... then RESTARTED OUR WHOLE EMBOUCHURE.... I might say that your teacher doesnt know what he is doing if you had a double d... however, i dont know your situation... maybe your intonation sucked so bad that it wasnt worth it... the only people ive heard of switching embouchure are students who play to the side or something that is messed up like that like that... also, your when you first started playing... i dont know why you had a large picture in the newspaper... maybe you were a poor orphan playing trumpet... idk... idc... however, im guessing you werent playing "Double Ds" at that time in your life... if your emboucher sloped down, its probably because IT WORKED... diz played with his cheeks out... it worked... i think you took a horrible step backward... i glad youre back IN THE WORLD... yea sure, what ever... have fun...
     
  7. Pedal C

    Pedal C Mezzo Forte User

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    Jan 24, 2005
    I've seen people who can play ridiculously high (but little else) with very faulty embouchures. Mostly, they aren't willing to take a few steps back before going forward. Good for you for having the determination to follow through with a change and kudos to your teacher for helping you get straightened out. I've had to make some adjustments to my playing over the years, it isn't easy.
     
  8. Nikv

    Nikv Pianissimo User

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    Jun 20, 2009
    Santa Barbara, CA
    \aimed at ltg_trumpet

    That wasn't a very nice thing to say...
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2009
  9. Nikv

    Nikv Pianissimo User

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    Jun 20, 2009
    Santa Barbara, CA
    Thank you so much! :-)
    My teacher actually gave me a 30 minute talk before our first lesson trying to dissuade me from becoming a professional trumpet player, because work is so hard to get, and is so competitive. He said if I still wanted to play trumpet after that talk, then I must really be dedicated, and I have a shot.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2009
  10. Nikv

    Nikv Pianissimo User

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    Jun 20, 2009
    Santa Barbara, CA
    I was playing with a ratio (upper to lower lip) of like 10% to 90%.
    Now I'm playing 75% to 25%.
     

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