Problem with face muscles

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by garmeth, Jan 21, 2012.

  1. garmeth

    garmeth New Friend

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    So I've had on and off private lessons for my trumpet career and around the time I was in 6th grade before I had lessons I managed playing with 99% of my top lip out of the trumpet ( I can't even make a sound like this anymore at all or buzz) and transitioning in to about my freshman year in high school probably with marching band my embouchure slid a little bit to the left after I fixed my top lip from being out of the trumpet. Now I mostly centered the embouchure but I just realized recently that my left side is like 3x stronger than the right, if I play any note in front of the mirror my left side looks far more flexed than the right and I also realized that VERY soon in to practicing my right side starts to leak air when I play moderately loud or moderately high ( F on the top of the staff and up). I've been listening intently and I realized also that when my air starts to leak from the right side my tone suffers and becomes brighter/ less pure. Is there anything I can due to help the right side get up to par with the left? This also probably hurts my range from improving.
     
  2. Local 357

    Local 357 Banned

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    All interesting points. These always put me in a quandry: On one hand I feel that I know a whole ton about the embouchure and its characteristics. Then on the other i realize that by telling the average cat to

    "Just tongue and BLOW"

    You can fix up to 90% of them. Quickly too. That as serious brass players we tend take a very cerebral approach to the matter which in a few cases might even be helpful. And of those people who make overly complicated diagnoses I can at times be among the worst offenders. This doesn't make my ideas any less useful but is a problem when the analysis becomes paralysis.

    Just in a general sense I would suggest that you find a very comfortable mouthpiece. One that does a fair amount of the work for you. then get in a community or other band and just blow like hell. Try and maintain at least TWO PLAYING COMMITMENTS PER WEEK MINIMUM.

    Play AGGRESSIVELY! This aggression eventually yields a positive attitude behind the horn. Removing the fear that grips a poor cat and makes him EVEN MORE CEREBRAL in his approach.

    There are other ideas but with what I've described above you ought to substantially improve within just a few weeks. Supposing of course that you do not put your chops into that abyss of over training.

    A mouthpiece that does a whole bunch of the work for you can mitigate even some of the most serious embouchure flaws. taking that whole complicated theory right out of the equation. Simplicity. or as my Algebra teacher once told me "Simplify before you multiply" A great piece of advice for brass playing too.

    SO "JUST TONGUE AND BLOW"
     
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    There are two methods to do just about everything in life: evolution and revolution. Barring serious medical conditions, I don't teach much in the way of specific embouchure except keep the red inside. I do teach evolution and if you feel that there is an imbalance with your face (that does not have to be caused by muscle strength), I simply recommend an overdose of lipslurs. I use the Earl Irons book, but Arban and Schlossberg are equally good. Lipslurs well done help everything to gravitate to a logical point of highest efficiency. We need to keep the pressure off of the upper lip, we need to BLOW, we need to keep our body tension down. Google my "Circle of Breath" here at TM. It is free and should get you on your way.
     
  4. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

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    just tongue and blow ---------------- hey, that beats switching mpc's all the time, trying to find a mpc, that eliminates the need to put into practice the fundamentals of the horn. If everyone looks at the post surrounding the mpc's --- most people don't want to make changes - like the OP above ---but serious players will evaluate their embouchure, and playing deficiencies.
    I suggest to the OP to move the mpc in the center --- where the vibrating part of the lip is --YES YOU WILL SUFFER LOSS OF RANGE AND TONE --- I did a similiar shift from the side to the center --in my jr. sr. year in high schoool ---- had to sit the sr. year out of band ---------BUT THE END RESULT WAS WORTH the difficulty of switching to the center --------------------------lots of frustration, hard work, and self doubt in that change ---- but when you get over that, and put in the time -----------------------that will be a beautiful thing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IMHO
     
  5. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

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    You say you've had lessons on and off. what have your teachers said about this. And is this hurting your playing in any way? Air escaping can be an easy fix. How do the different sides of your face "FEEL". Not how they look.
     
  6. garmeth

    garmeth New Friend

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    Dec 4, 2010
    This is just recently discovered by my newest teacher, who is still far form a seasoned veteran on trumpet.. But is probably the best I can have right now, I think he just thinks it will go away with time as my right side strengthens. Yes it hurts my tone is all I can know for sure, whenever its not leaking I Sound better. The right side definitely feels a ton weaker, if I play purposely far off to the right its miles behind if I played on the left.


    Also ty for the replies everyone. I will increase my amount of lip slurs as well.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2012
  7. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

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    Lip slurs if done properly will strengthen the corner muscles. If you don't see any improvement in say two weeks contact me.
     

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