slipping mouthpiece? help please.

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by eoinwalsh, Jun 8, 2008.

  1. eoinwalsh

    eoinwalsh New Friend

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    Jun 8, 2008
    my trumpet teacher thinks i need to move my mouthpiece up cos its too low. but no matter what i do it always comes down after about 20 seconds of playing. i cant get it to stay in the higher position. theres no friction between the mouthpiece and my lips.

    i dont understand it at all.


    any advice?
     
  2. screamingmorris

    screamingmorris Mezzo Forte User

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    Different players need different mouthpiece positions due to the fact that they are born with different embouchure types and with different dental structure.

    Every trumpet player needs to find a stable "anchor" spot on his embouchure (lip formation during playing), a place where the mouthpiece will just naturally stay put.

    Go to
    An Introduction to Donald S. Reinhardt's Pivot System
    then scroll down to the middle of the very long Web page to the section entitled "Reinhardt's Embouchure Types".

    Look at the photos there and see if the way that *you* want place the mouthpiece resembles any of the photos there, especially the photos for the various versions of Type III (Type 3) and of Type IV (Type 4).

    People who have Type IV (Type 4) embouchures, for example, tend to play higher on the mouthpiece, using more lower lip than upper lip, and they tend to point the trumpet slightly upward when playing higher notes.
    I was born Type 4.

    Is your teacher a private teacher or one at school?

    How long have you been playing?

    What is your present range, can you play notes above the staff?

    - Morris
     
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    eoin,
    breaking any habit requires diligence. I will not assume that I can diagnose your chops over the internet, but getting the mouthpiece up requires nothing more than a mirror for your practice sessions. Play more (memorized) long tones and slurs for a while and keep an eye on your face. This switch yould take several months. Friction should not hold your mouthpiece or horn in place, your body use dictates that and you have some work to do. Simply paying extra attention will solve this - no additional exercizes required!
     
  4. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Welcome to TM, eoinwalsh!

    I've known a couple of players with this problem--one was a student of mine, and we tried everything, to no avail--changing mouthpieces, angle, using a mirror...

    The other is a fine player and instrument builder in Germany, who, through his work with Stomvi, got to know Maurice Andre, who suggested a mouthpiece with a wider top part of the rim. Being an instrument builder, whose father was a cabinent maker, he spliced in some more rim on a wooden mouthpiece, and, ta-da!! the problem was solved!

    He was also a fully trained trumpeter already, with a couple of CD's under his belt even when playing wrong.

    My advice would be to practice like crazy, get real good, and then start looking for an equipment solution.

    Have fun, and good luck!
     
  5. eoinwalsh

    eoinwalsh New Friend

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    Jun 8, 2008
    i have a private teacher. i have been playing just over 2 years now.

    my range.......well, i can reach high G (the one just above the staff) quite comfortably when i have the mouthpiece low and over to my right hand side of my mouth. but in this new higher and more centered position, getting up to even just the second C is difficult.

    no matter what i do or how i play, somehow the mouthpiece always ends up moving around when i play.

    its very frustrating.
     
  6. note360

    note360 Piano User

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    OOOH. This could help

    My private teacher told me about an exercises called rabbit punches he had to go through in college because his embrochure was to low and to the side, much like yours. These are very good just for practicing and confidence in your notes.

    Try this. I have no idea if will help and its very hard he said it took him a year or so of 1,000 or more rabbit punches a night to fix his problem.

    The basic idea is this. Start off by placing your mouthpeice (and your trumpet on your upper lip. DOnt have it touching the lips just on the area between yoru upper lip and nose. Centerize it and then slide it down and play a note. It shouldnt sound good. Do this a couple of times, until you get used to sliding it into hte same place every time.

    Now hold your trumpet in resting position, bring it up place it, and BLAST the hell out of a note. (lets say G). Now go from G to C playing each one like this 10 times each. THen go back down. THen mix it up. Play whatever notes you want. JUST REMEMBER..... TAKE YOUR TRUMPET OFF YOUR LIPS AFTER EACH RABBIT PUNCH.

    Try this. I dont knwo if it works, but my private teacher is one hell of a teacher even if hes to modest to admit it.
     
  7. eoinwalsh

    eoinwalsh New Friend

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    ok. thanks for all the advice.

    but is it ok for me play in my current position when i am playing just for fun? if i am playing for enjoyment or practising improvising i cant have the mouthpiece in the new position. i wont be able to get anything done. the way i'm doing it at the moment is i do a few very tiring and painful excercises to help with moving the mouthpiece over and up. and for the rest of my days practice (which is usually improv and solos and sight reading) i keep the mouthpiece in my current position.

    is this ok?
     
  8. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    If your embouchure is messed up (I can't judge that from here!) every minute that you don't pay attention is helping the bad habit become even harder to break. If you don't believe your teacher, find another one. DIY embouchure has a very low success rate!
     
  9. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Uhh, it's not really ok.

    Let's say a professional football running back fumbles a lot in games because he doesn't hold on to the ball with both hands in traffic. The coach suggests holding the ball with both hands, which the player does in practice, but come game time, the running back goes back to holding the ball the old way. Such a player would be benched!
    • Tiring exercises are the best kind, because we will get stronger.
    • It takes around three weeks to establish a new habit.
    • It takes much longer to break an old habit--and if we keep doing it, even some of the time it remains a bad habit and will never, ever become a former bad habit!
    You might want to take another look at what you mean by playing for "enjoyment." Your definition seems a lot like instant gratification/fun. The enjoyment found by high level players is the enjoyment that comes from really playing the heck out of our instrument and/or a piece. The price we pay for that kind of enjoyment is a lot of hard work, that includes tiring, "boring" exercises.

    If you just want to goof around on trumpet, fine--no hard feelings on anybody's part. If you want to be a good trumpet player, have faith in your future, practice (we call this paying our dues), and wait for the miracle to happen.

    It is worth the time and the wait!

    Have fun!
     
  10. screamingmorris

    screamingmorris Mezzo Forte User

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    ...
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2008

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