First, some background: I've been playing for a little over a year and a half. I'm a university student and music major who started my program as a guitarist, but when I fell in love with jazz I also fell out of love with guitar and madly in it with trumpet. In June of '08 I decided to pick up a trumpet and loved it instantly. I decided shortly thereafter to make it my main instrument and devote all of my time and musical energy to it. I love playing it. I love the instrument. I love the sounds it makes and the amount of passion, energy, and shaping you can do with the instrument. My favourite jazz artists are trumpeters. I've been practicing a ton almost every day, as well as 3 hour rehearsals twice a week and private lessons. I try to do 2-3 hours a day, and I admit they're not always extremely structured practice sessions, but I do a reasonable amount of work on long tones, lip slurs, scales, etcetera. I've seen a marked improvement in almost every area since I started. Tone production, intonation, finger accuracy, the whole shebang. But one thing that has barely improved at all is my range. I'm not talking real "range" here - I mean basic, above-the-staff stuff. My usable range is basically low F# to F above the staff, and even that one's tough after 2 hours of playing. Sure, I can grasp at Gs, Ab/G#s, As, but to say that I've really "hit" them would be a lie. It's been getting monumentally frustrating. Certain heads and transcribed solos are out of reach because they contain Gs and above. I've gotten to the point where Fs are pretty consistent. For some reason, however, after that, it becomes extremely iffy. Even F# is often absent, and Gs are 50/50 at best. Whenever I try to get up to a G and hold it for long tone work, there's a lot of what I describe as "crap" in the sound - it seems like there's a lower fundamental pitch as well as some strange air sounds. It's not a "pure" sound and I definitely don't "own" it like I want to. I don't understand why these magically begin at about F-G. I don't care about screams or hitting high Cs every bar (though it's a future goal) - my intent is to have a decent USABLE, dependable range. I'd settle for an A/Bb right now, and I want to HAVE the note instead of HIT the note. I'm getting so utterly frustrated with it that it's really affecting my practice sessions and my motivation. I take lessons through school with an excellent trumpet player, and while he's given me some pointers, I'm wondering if there's any advice, exercises, routines, tips or potions that will open up the range. I'm NOT searching for instant fix-its - just ideas that will hopefully help me work towards opening up things up there. I've focused on not clenching my lips to compress the aperture and instead trying to push extra air from my lower abdomen, trying to metaphorically create "faster air". Is this correct? Also, sometimes I can blast F#/Gs if I really focus, but they sound out of character with the rest of my playing, and I want the ability to use dynamics and keep my lines at an even keel without having to shove tons of energy into high notes. I'm really sorry for the novel I wrote. If you can imagine each word as one practice-room F-word every time I cracked an F# or G, you'd be about there.