Should I stop playing trumpet after high school?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Vstern, Nov 12, 2011.

  1. Vstern

    Vstern New Friend

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    I want to be a professional musician or a physician/dentist. I realize that these things don't go together, and that attempting to enter the medical field would leave little time for music. I don't want to minor in music because that would seem like a waste with all the effort I'm giving now, and I probably won't practice much at that point since my major would have most of the attention. I have no strong preference for one over the other. The medical field seems more reliable and steadier, but music is more expressive at least. I could save myself a lot of work if I already knew what I want to do.
     
  2. Vstern

    Vstern New Friend

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    I don't want to be a comeback player down the road; based on what I've read here, it's more difficult than starting in your youth.
     
  3. codyb226

    codyb226 Banned

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    Never give up. I want to be a professional trumpet player in a Military band or a Police Officer. I will most likely become a Officer. But I will stay with my community band. This was probably not a good idea to post this, you are going to get chewed out my the other members saying that they gave it up once and regret doing so.
     
  4. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    Honestly, that's what parents, guidance counselors, ministers, etc., are for. Without personally knowing you, the best we can do is project our own desires/wishes on you. There are several physicians that post here who can give you some relevant insight as to what you face. My advice is to go with your heart.
     
  5. Vstern

    Vstern New Friend

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    My heart is indifferent to both possibilities. I don't want to waste time & effort carrying both only to drop one eventually.
     
  6. codyb226

    codyb226 Banned

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    I think you should go with the money safe job where you do not have to hope you will get another gig. Then pick it up again when you have time, I think that it would be fun. Learn it again and try to get back to the level that were originally. I personally do not want to give it up, but it seems like it would be kinda fun.
     
  7. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    The hardest thing about being a "comeback" player is finding time to practice. The second hardest thing is to get over the "stigma" some have with the term "comeback" player. If you don't have a burning desire to be a professional musician, then you won't make it. I personally know some excellent players who could have sacrificed their families for a life on the road but didn't. Most guys that I have talked to that travel hated it, which is why they quit after several tours. Moving to another traveling band didn't make it better, only the faces in the band changed. It's fine if your single, but is hard on families.
    Back to being a "comeback" player, I learned and developed my basic skills as a youth. I didn't have to learn to play the horn or read music again. I just had to knock the rust off. Actually, for me, I am a much better player now than in my youth. I attribute it to a sense of diligence that most young men do not possess at 18-20 yrs of age. I also have to say that my playing has a sense of purpose now since I use my gift in my church's Praise & Worship band. I am not doing it for money, fame or glory. I do it to bring glory to Jesus ( thus I have to practice;-)). If you've read through the posts on this forum, then you realize the ridiculously small percentage of trumpeters that can support a family on playing alone. Pragmatism says be a doctor/dentist and play recreationly. You can make money on the side, some of it very good.
     
  8. harleyt26

    harleyt26 Mezzo Forte User

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    Don't put all your eggs in one basket. Doctors have hobbies too. Cody, don't forget one of the first chair trumpet players in our commmunity band is also a doctor and he plays with the jazz band at UF too.
     
  9. jiarby

    jiarby Fortissimo User

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    I'd say you need to examine a bit more about each one of your choices...

    WHY do you want to be a professional musician... and what exactly does that mean to you?? If you could trade places with someone that is already a professional musician which one would you choose?? Then go find out what that guy did to get where he is. I think one of the hardest ways to make a living is to me a professional musician. Especially on something like a trumpet. It is so hard to get good enough to be a pro-caliber player and then so hard to STAY that good... then you end up losing your gig to a guy with a computer, a keyboard, and a multi track recorder. It is easier to become a pro football player than a pro trumpet player. There are lots of rich doctors!

    When I was in college, as a music major, one of the best lead players in town (a busy pro) decided to quit and go back to school and get a degree in computer science. He was the guy I wanted to be, but he wanted to be something else. This was shocking to me.

    I ended up leaving music and became an IT computer weenie... I missed music, but liked having a full wallet. I own a house on a golf course, paid for vehicles, no credit card debt, no student loans. After 20ish years now I run into my former trumpet friends from college. Most have ended up in music education... band directors. Only one went on to become sorta famous as a trumpet player, but just for a few years.... when the road gig dried up he was at home hustling trumpet students and church gigs. Most of the guys do something else professionally but enjoy playing in various rehearsal bands, community bands, church orchestras, etc...


    A sorta funny side story...

    Earlier this year I came across a craigslist ad for an "Old Conn Trumpet"... I went and looked at it and eventually determined it was a 1911 .485 Bore trumpet. BUT... It was not in the original case and was missing the extra slides to change it from high to low pitch. Someone soldered on the HIGH PITCH main tuning slide, but married it with the LOW PITCH valve slides. Then the mouthpiece that was with it didn't fit the receiver, and it had at least a 1/4" gap. Let's just be kind and say that it played HORRIBLY out of tune, and with a nasty nasaly sound. It was BAD!

    The guy I bought the horn from snagged it at an estate sale. Inside the case was the beginner band music from the kid that last played the horn. It was all dated from the late 1950's. It was all "3rd Cornet" parts. There was a method book (also 3rd cornet) with the kids name hand written in it. Also a price sticker showing the music store it came from.

    For some reason I googled the kid's name. I felt like I wanted to call him up and say "Dude... it wasn't your fault... that horn they made you play SUCKED... it wasn't you!!". I found the guy... but was disappointed to learn that he had passed away a couple years ago. He ended up getting interested in math and science. He went to medical school and became a famous cancer researcher and helped develop treatments for a specific type of cancer. He won all kinds of medals and medical awards for his research. He helped save, or improve the lives of tons of folks.

    If he would have had a better horn in beginner band he might have taken a different path. I think he ended up where he needed to be.
     
    mgcoleman and tobylou8 like this.
  10. ExtraTeeth

    ExtraTeeth Pianissimo User

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