Rebuilding chops after a vacation

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Ursa, May 26, 2009.

  1. Ursa

    Ursa Piano User

    306
    16
    Jan 17, 2009
    Northern Michigan
    I just took about 10 days off of playing while away on vacation. I did my normal practice routine yesterday and all went well. At rehearsal tonight, however, my chops were gone after just 20 minutes. Rarely in my lengthy musical career have I felt so inept at the business end of a horn.

    So, the question is: After taking some time off of playing, have any of you found it helpful to vary your practice and/or warm-up routines to help rebuild what may have gone away during your time off the horn?
     
  2. bagmangood

    bagmangood Forte User

    I find that legato/slurring exercises help (a-la first couple of pages of schlossberg) at a mp/mf volume and maybe some Pedal tones
    but these only seem to work if I have at least a day or two before really playing
     
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Age:
    61
    16,613
    7,957
    Jun 18, 2006
    Germany
    I find it useful to think about what my schedule has to say and then at least starting with the mouthpiece while on vacation if necessary.

    I never alter my daily routine. I may just chop it into smaller pieces if I haven't played for a while. Not beating the face up is ALWAYS the #1 rule.
     
  4. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Age:
    60
    12,459
    7,036
    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    I too, go back to my basic routine and while my playing sucks for a few days, my head is in a much nicer place after vacations.

    Have fun!
     
  5. Al Innella

    Al Innella Forte User

    1,189
    84
    Aug 9, 2007
    Levittown , NY
    After a lengthy lay off, the first thing to go is usually your endurance, I know it is for me, my range is the same ,I just can't play as long, soft long-tones, lip-slurs, Clarke's Technical Studies, and some light tonguing exercises for about 30 to 45 minutes ,if you start to feel tired sooner ,then stop, don't over do it the first couple days back.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2009
  6. NickD

    NickD Forte User

    FWIIW coming from me...

    I don't see myself as need to rebuild endurance after a vacation. I see myself as needing to regain my form and focus. With that mentality, all I need is an hour or so when I get back to the horn to do my long tones and singing exercises quite softly. I also work on some Clark studies - slurred, single tongued, k tongued and then double and or triple tongued - pretty softly. Then I run some of my jazz scale routines - yes you guessed it, softly. Finally, I'll sit and run tunes, mostly ballads on flugel horn. I take ample rest time throughout this 1 to 2 hour session. By then, it usually feels like I haven't had any time off. My biggest problem might be some sloppy reading and some scale/chord gaffs.

    I believe anyone can cultivate this way of thinking - getting away from the idea that this is exclusively a physical thing (trumpet playing). If you can get your form back in place, you'll be fine. I see endurance problems when my form gets sloppy. As soon as I "get my swing back" I'm hittin' just fine.

    Nick
     
  7. Ursa

    Ursa Piano User

    306
    16
    Jan 17, 2009
    Northern Michigan
    Thanks for the insights...one thing I'm going to do right now is put a "beater" mouthpiece in my truck for buzzing exercises as I travel about. That way I won't be tempted to remove it from the truck and tuck it back into a horn case.

    I was analyzing what went wrong yesterday and it came down to this: I needed to put out a edgy commercial sound to blend in with my bandmates; we were also short on trumpeters on the 2nd part, which I cover. With six guys reading 1st charts and just two on 2nd, I simply blew out my chops trying to keep up.
     
  8. bagmangood

    bagmangood Forte User

    :shock:
     
  9. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Age:
    60
    12,459
    7,036
    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    That is hard on chops even without a vacation! There does come a time as a section player when it is appropriate to play your part and let the first player(s) fail. It can even be an evil sort of fun, with no one getting hurt! :evil:
     
  10. Ursa

    Ursa Piano User

    306
    16
    Jan 17, 2009
    Northern Michigan
    It has happened, and yes, it is fun! :evil:

    I should mention that the ensemble here is the Scottville Clown Band. Having fun is just as important as making good music. There's one guy in the band who probably uses beer to oil his valves...

    But, seriously, with myself also being a composer and arranger of music as well as a performer--there are no unimportant parts!. Second trumpet parts deserve the same finely crafted presentation as any other part. I didn't quite git 'er done last night.
     

Share This Page