Playing in the morning

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by GordonH, Sep 6, 2005.

  1. GordonH

    GordonH Mezzo Forte User

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    May 15, 2005
    Scotland
    Manny,
    Do you have problems playing in the morning?

    This may sound like an odd question, but I have never been much use in the morning.
    Arturo Sandoval once told me not to bother playing before 2pm as no one can play the trumpet properly before 2pm.

    If I do play early it sounds rough regardless of warm up and my stamina is not as good.
    Normally this is not a problem as I play at night or in the afternoon but I have a lesson this morning at 10:30.

    (Yes, I finally found a trumpet teacher to help me with some of the more advanced issues. He is principal trumpet with one of the Scottish orchestras and happens to live very near me so i think this will work out well.
    I may finally be able to play sforzandos properly....)
     
  2. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    Sep 29, 2004
    USA
    Gordon,

    Curiously, you ask a question I PMed someone about yesterday!

    I'll expand my answer as I've had even more time to think about it since yeasterday. The communal phenomenon of the crappy morning sound is an interesting one because it is physically based yet mentally solved through a shift of attitude and musical thinking.

    The short answer is that we have to exert the ability to hear a clear trumpet sound before we play. While that sounds obvious, it's rarely done because we have myriad messages sent back to our brains about how we're feeling and few, if any, going to the lips to create a proper sound.

    My recommendation is that in the time you have available before you play, you develop the ability to hear a great trumpet sound in your head. You can do mental long tones while you shower, shave, have morning tea...whatever. Have that sound that is inspirational to you warming up in your head way before you even pick up the horn. As you pick up the horn to play, that sound should be ringing in your ears so loudly that it almost becomes a nuisance.

    When you go to play, you will have a basis of comparison that allows you to supercede the messages talking back to you and you will flood your mind with a sound that you can produce right off the bat. Also, allow yourself frequent breaks in the morning warm up. The incessant gluing of the mouthpiece to the lips during the warm up is wholly unnecessary.

    It's truly that easy, I kid you not.

    ML
     
  3. BigBadWolf

    BigBadWolf Piano User

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    Nov 30, 2004
    Los Angeles, CA
    That is ridiculous. Don't you ever have 10 am rehearsals? I wish I never had to play before 2 pm, but that is not going to happen. If you can't play well before then, you need to wake up earlier.
     
  4. GordonH

    GordonH Mezzo Forte User

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    May 15, 2005
    Scotland
    Thank you both.
    I will give the visualisation thing a go tommorrow.
    I did sound very rough this morning

    I asked the teacher this morning.
    He says he rarely has to play in the morning either because his orchestra tends to rehearse in the afternoon break for tea and then do the performance.

    I think UK orchestras do less rehearsing for historical reasons connected with money!
     
  5. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    G,

    Rather than visualisation there's actually a bonafide term that is more apropos to us musicians and it's called "mentalization". It pertains more to our aural skills rather than visual, altough I know you mean the same thing as what I was saying.

    ML
     
  6. dizforprez

    dizforprez Forte User

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    Nov 2, 2003
    My trumpet teacher in college started his practice day at 630 am, as a band director I am playing as early as 7:30 every morning. I think it comes down to what you are used to. Now of course most people are going to have a rough morning if they pushed things to far the day before, but on average it shouldn’t be a big deal to play first thing.

    Follow Manny’s advice for a while and I bet you will have no problems playing at the start of the day. ;-)
     
  7. bigaggietrumpet

    bigaggietrumpet Mezzo Forte User

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    Jan 23, 2004
    Nazareth, PA
    Would mentalization work for someone like me, who sometimes in the morning, puts the the horn to the lips and then it's as if I've never even buzzed before? Sometimes I have to try at least 2 more times before it seems that I can keep my embrochure correctly. After playing about 5 minutes, I'm good, but that first bit, whew, it ain't pretty.
     
  8. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    I'm saying yes, Michael. What you're doing is all about the meat not music. The worst thing we can do before we play is wonder what it's going to sound like rather than have a clear ringing sound already in place. Your mind is confused by mesages like that and the musculature doesn't have a chance that way. Be clear about what you want and give that sound vitality and vibrancy. Like an electric current from the brain to the lips and beyond

    ML
     
  9. davidquinlan

    davidquinlan Pianissimo User

    I've been doing early morning practice before work on and off for a number of years now (depending on work situation).
    I found that the deep breathing first thing in the morning was a great wake up.. 5 minutes etc of long notes.. short break then into warm up routine.

    Don't have any problem with playing in the mornings! or to rephrase that, I don't have any more problems early morning than I do at any other times.

    Also, being a memeber of a brass band, on contest days.. 7:30AM rehearsals on the morning of contests etc when we're waiting for our draw to be made. (i.e. the contests aren't usually pre-drawn, everyone finds out when they play at the same time....! :shock: )
     
  10. fundenlight

    fundenlight New Friend

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    Aug 2, 2005
    Great comment David. I have problems in the morning, but there are there in the afternoon as well so I don't make a big deal about it. I know a lot of people that have made reference to having trouble playing in the morning. When I first got to college I told myself that I would be the first one in the building and the last one out. Mornings no longer bother me. Like Manny said, just got to get your head into it.
     

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