Self practice

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by hichez, May 26, 2011.

  1. hichez

    hichez Pianissimo User

    Jul 13, 2009
    I took lessons in high school for about 3 1/2 years and had to stop since I don't plan on majoring in music in college. But I do plan on still playing in college in concert bands and I already got accepted in the marching band and would like to remain semi-competitive.

    It seems that many people discourage the use of some book without a teacher. Is there a certain way I should approach my practice now without professional instruction?

    My teacher made a it a point to go through most arban excersies to make sure I know what to do. I have plenty of other books such as clarke and a number of random etude books. Any thing else I should invest in?
  2. johnny ray

    johnny ray Pianissimo User

    May 17, 2010
    I think your biggest problem might be that once you start college, you will have a hard time finding enough time to practice. If you are not majoring in music, most of your time will be filled with studying for whatever classes you are taking. Without a teacher, I would probably just continue and build on whatever you have been doing that seemed to help you improve. Good luck with playing and good luck with will be very busy.

  3. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    I like to make the claim that I'm "self-taught" because I've had very little formal instruction and it hasn't been a major hindrance to me in terms of being able to play well and to gig regularly. My personal approach to practice is to work on my deficiencies and to work to keep things going well, and often I don't use anything out of a method or book. It depends though - sometimes I use stuff out of Arbans and sometimes I work Clarke Technical and Characteristic studies. I find that I do better if I constantly mix it up. Sometimes I work on classically oriented music and exercises, and sometimes I just work the stuff out the book I gig.
  4. veery715

    veery715 Utimate User

    Mar 6, 2007
    Ithaca NY
    Is taking lessons inconsistent with not majoring in music? If continuing to play is what you want to do, then why not seek a student who is majoring in music on trumpet to give you lessons at college. This will provide a service and some small compensation for whoever teaches you, while taking lessons will give you the added structure you need as well as provide more initiative for you to find time to practice. And the networking can get you more opportunities to play.

    We do get busy in college, but I believe that when we really want to do something, especially if it connects with the creative push within, that we can find time for it.
  5. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    a few things I would do -- set realistic goals for your progress on trumpet (jazz, orchestra, blues -- where do you want to be in 4 yrs with the trumpet???), set a specific minimum practice regimen to achieve that goal (meaning scales, exercises, lip slurs, long tones, and a minimum amount of time 1 hr, 1.5 hr.).
    discipline yourself to stay with the trumpet and practice.
    learn all you can through books, other people, and listen to music. We all have to learn somehow -- in college you will find that you go to class to learn some things -- and the rest of the stuff you have to teach yourself out of a book!!!!!!!!! and that is life -- continual learning and memorization!!!!!!
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    I am in my mid 50's. When I look back on my experiences with teachers (I still have one today!), I have to say that they did as much for me as a person than they did for me with the trumpet. We discovered so many wonderful things together. I was able to talk to them about things that I couldn't even talk to my parents about. They understood my ambition, blindness to obstacles, stubbornness. They were not happy with just "decent". They were in tune with "my best". They were closer to my heart than any girlfriend ever was.

    It really makes me wonder why so much emphasis is placed on going it alone.
  7. AKtrumpet

    AKtrumpet Piano User

    Jun 4, 2010
    As a high school student coming from a fairly remote, isolated area I would absolutely jump at the chance to get a lesson. On occasion I've gotten to study with the UAA trumpet professor Linn Weeda, and Tim Warner but besides that I've got no way to learn from someone better than myself. Which is unfortunate. :dontknow:

    Please don't take for granted the opportunity to study and glean insight from someone more experienced at the art of trumpet playing.
    Every lesson I've had has impacted my playing significantly.

    That being said, if you intend on not pursuing trumpet playing as a career but rather as a musical hobby, you've set a noble goal for yourself and I wish you well! :play:

    EDIT: When I say every lesson I've had has impacted my playing significantly what I mean is that it has impacted the mentality of how I practice, and approach the trumpet.
    Last edited: May 27, 2011
  8. coolerdave

    coolerdave Utimate User

    Nov 7, 2009
    San Pedro
    AKtrumpet ... I know the weather can be brutal up there... dep[endng on where you are living... I bet you could find a quality instructor/friend who could work with you via web cams... I know the tone would suffer but it sure is something to consider.
  9. Myszolow

    Myszolow Pianissimo User

    Apr 23, 2011
    I had three trumpet teachers in childhood. None of them were as good as that. There are teachers who go through the motions and there are teachers with passion and enthusiasm. Teacher #3 was the best by far. #1 was OK. #2 was frankly a chap I didn't like at all. He even threw me out of the lesson once (individual lesson at school). Thankfully, he left. :thumbsup:

    Cost, travel distance, time, challenge?

    Without doubt, having a person with you is the easiest (and best?) way to learn. But you have to understand that not everybody's experience of teachers is as good as yours Robin. I suspect you yourself are a very good teacher - it exudes from your postings on here. But unfortunately, they don't all share your passion.

    (I'm still going to be looking around for someone to get some lessons from though. Perhaps #4 will be "the one" after 30 years off?)
  10. turtlejimmy

    turtlejimmy Utimate User

    Jun 6, 2010

    Great post! We sometimes forget how great a high quality teacher can be in our life, for more than just music. My voice coach was like this .... Lessons were a mix of music, psychology, and humor. He told me that every singer has emotional things to work through to find their true voice. Sometimes students would come to him loaded with talent but crippled with shyness, and his job would be 20% technique and 80% psychology. I miss those lessons. They changed my voice, both singing and speaking, and my life, all for the better.

    Truly great teachers are among our best natural resources. They should always be supported.

    Last edited: May 28, 2011

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