New practice technique?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Satchmo Brecker, May 7, 2011.

  1. Satchmo Brecker

    Satchmo Brecker Piano User

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    (Or at least new to me)

    Since I began playing trumpet a year ago I've used a Vincent Bach 5C mp. I felt like a change and tried out a bunch of mps and ended up getting a 1D. I really liked the bright sound. I immediately noticed I had to work much harder to control the sound, especially in the lower register. When I switched back to the 5C, just for yucks, it seemed like my tone improved, and overall I had way more control over notes in all ranges (up to my max A above the staff).

    Did I just hit upon another practice technique? I guess it makes sense, like practicing a difficult passage at a tempo quicker than you'll ever need it in a performance.
     
  2. bagmangood

    bagmangood Forte User

    I think what you've found is that a 5c works pretty well for you, and definitely better than a 1D
    I don't think its a good practice technique unfortunately - for many people switch mouthpieces (without a specific reason) causes problems
     
  3. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

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    In one year, IMO you've not laid a strong enough foundation playing any mpc to make any changes. Too, likewise, play all songs at the prescribed tempo as these lock in your mind and can potentially confuse you if you play them at different tempos. Always use a metronome in practice to secure tempo. It's bad enough to later find that, in some songs, composers take the liberty of changing tempos by one means or another. A 5C is my basic mpc for trumpet ... one is in my pocket all the time, even over the last few years when health and dental issues prevented my playing, which is now about to be behind me by the end of this month.
     
  4. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

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    I wouldn't switch mpc as a practice technique -- personally I find the one I think I like, and then stick with it!!! BUT that is what works for me.
     
  5. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Your "technique" is not new and not recommended.

    Think about it, if you have to make yourself worse to have something to compare to, what have you learned?

    Invest in the mp that works best and mess around as little as possible. IF you need a new MP, you will figure it out in time to avoid desaster.
     
  6. Satchmo Brecker

    Satchmo Brecker Piano User

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    Interesting replies. I was thinking of it more in terms of the physicality of playing. Like if there are any runners out there, you know you sometimes find places to run uphill. You do that to force yourself to work harder than normal, but always keeping good running form. Of course when you first try doing hills it feels as though you're "doing worse" but you're not. You're actually extending your peak performance level.

    Is it normal for accomplished players (not implying I am one...yet :D ) to switch mouthpieces (and trumpets) for different situations? For example one gig playing lead in jazz band, then another gig playing small classical ensemble music?
     
  7. TrumpetMD

    TrumpetMD Fortissimo User

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    It's not really the same thing. With the trumpet, you're not building muscle. Instead, it's more about muscle tone and muscle memory. When you switch mouthpieces, you interfere with this process.

    Yes for some. But not everyone does this.

    Mike
     
  8. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

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    I'll defer to the marathon runners to anwer the first part if your statement, but in general I'd say peak performance is better attained by just a little more accomplished each session over an extended period, such being comparable to recovery from health issues, or to more and more practice on your musical instrument.

    To the second part of your statement, I can tell you there are many who change instruments and mpcs depending on the gig and further on which songs they are to play, but what they do may not be what could be recommended you do ... especially until you've years of playing an extended repertoire of music in many genres. I would add that the jazz genre is liked only by a minority of audiences and your promotion as such a specialist will provide fewer gigs unless you live and want to play in New Orleans LA.
     
  9. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    I agree with TrumpetMD. The analogy using runners as related to using trumpet mouthpieces is like this. If you are a runner and you run comfortably in a size 9 shoe, but then decide to run some times in a size 11, you will strain your foot, risk spraining an ankle, not to mention blisters from skin moving too much inside the shoe. This would be a close parallel to switching around on an ill fitting trumpet mouthpiece.

    I would recommend staying with the comfortable fit.
     
  10. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Finding a hill to run up is as easy as opening the Arban book up towards the end. For most trumpeters it is like gravel: three steps forward, slip back two.

    Superior playing is actually synchronizing body, mind, ears and soul. The fewer variables, the better.

    Switching mouthpieces can be used to change tone or match an instrument. Proportionately more practice time is required when doing this.
     

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