Practicing Scales WITHOUT trumpet

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by jellesmiecht, Jul 24, 2012.

  1. jellesmiecht

    jellesmiecht New Friend

    Jun 1, 2012

    Got a question,

    How can I practice scales without playing the trumpet?

    Why? Because I need to learn the scales, but my neighbors don't want to hear me play scales the whole time and my embouchure won't let me practice longer than a few sessions I have to find a way to practice them without those 2 factors.
    Any one got idea's ?
    I like the idea of singing while hitting the valves but are there other methods tips or tricks to do this?
  2. mgcoleman

    mgcoleman Mezzo Forte User

    Jun 22, 2010
    I bet someone will provide some Zen-trumpet ideas. All I can offer to you is to consider a practice mute (even a harmon mute). As for developing the endurance to practice scales longer during a practice session, long tones and lip slurs will help build endurance.
  3. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

    Aug 16, 2009
    Jackson NC
    Move to an unihabited island and practice WITH OPEN TRUMPET or as others do USE a silencing practice mute. I use Yamaha Silent Brass, but only when I have to.

    I often finger and hum a song before I buy it. Somtimes I'll whistle it. I only sing a song when there are words to sing, but second tenor - baritones don't often sing the words, thus my voice isn't in the trumpet range.
  4. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008
    You can just use the mpc or add a B.E.R.P. to it for some resistance. It will be quieter than your trumpet but can still be annoying if heard (think one GIGANTIC mosquito!)! :D

    I actually use this "playing" method when driving and can't play the horn (steering wheel gets in the way ;-)).
  5. kctrumpeteer

    kctrumpeteer Piano User

    Dec 23, 2009
    I would second the motion of the B.E.R.P as I have one (rarely use it) but it would be a great way to buzz on your mouthpiece while fingering the notes on the trumpet. Hey you could always learn the scales on the piano as well, which is often recommended and that shouldn't be as loud as your trumpet. Otherwise a practice mute or playing very softly which could be a skill in itself.
  6. TrumpetMD

    TrumpetMD Fortissimo User

    Oct 22, 2008
    I feel the OP's pain. You don't want angry neighbors.

    I agree with mgcoleman. Play with a practice mute, play in the closet, play in your car, etc.

    The last 2 times I was on travel in a hotel, I used a Harmon mute with the TV on (for background noise). No one complained.

  7. kehaulani

    kehaulani Fortissimo User

    May 14, 2011
    Hawaian homey
    Sit calmly and focus on what you are doing. Finger on your trumpet your scales. Make sure that you do them perfectly and with no mistakes. Muscle memory is just that - it doesn't discriminate what it memorises, good or bad. Give it only the good to remember. Give it the bad at your peril. Remember - "garbage in, garbage out". I know it may seem counter-intuitive, but you can actually learn to play something faster, quicker, if you practice it slower.

    Regarding the BERP, I'm not sure that even after all this time, the jury isn't still out of those. If I were to use one, I would use it sparingly. More so for buzzing.

    Back to scales. When you finger your scales, be very aware of what fingers are coming up slower or quicker than others in relation to each other. Isolate that pattern. For example, low D to first-space F# just above it - are they all landing on the down stroke simultaneously? If not isolate just these two notes, and practice them slowly, and patiently and perfectly. I'm sure that, as you finger your scales, you'll find other combinations that aren't well coordinated.

    This should keep you busy for a while. BTW - no TV. ;-)
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2012
  8. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008
    Ditto! It will not, should not, cannot take the place of face time on your horn! I only use it in the truck and if I am going to need playing extra time, I have a pocket trumpet for rain delays or a hose trumpet (really!) while in motion.
  9. duanemassey

    duanemassey Piano User

    Jul 14, 2009
    I have nearly always fingered notes as I sing them, often subconsciously. Quite simple, really, sing or think the scale and move your fingers. No tricks, no mental gymnastics, just move the fingers.
  10. -C-

    -C- Pianissimo User

    Jul 13, 2011
    Yamaha Silent Brass system.

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