smile embouchure

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by chet fan, Sep 23, 2010.

  1. chet fan

    chet fan Piano User

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    Jul 3, 2009
    Hi,

    recently I have read here that smile embouchure is dangerous.
    So can somebody explain me why. It is not that I use that embouchure, I never did, but I am just interested in finding out.



    thank you
     
  2. Moshe Mizrachi

    Moshe Mizrachi Pianissimo User

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    Feb 17, 2010
    “The Smile Embouchure - A faulty embouchure type that was once taught and advocated even into the middle of the twentieth century…”
    Page 56, “Trumpet Technique” By Frank Gabriel Campos

    http://books.google.com/books?id=16...6AEwBjgK#v=onepage&q=smile embouchure&f=false

    You will have scroll down one paragraph to see the beginning of that section.
    That section about the Smile Embouchure is 3 paragraphs long.

    Also allegedly available in PDF format at
    http://202.202.12.56:81/daty/N/Y001562.pdf.
    but I cannot get that Web page to load.

    The book is apparently still in print and is available from many Internet stores.

    .
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2010
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    I am not sure that "dangerous" is correct. Many players in the past used it VERY successfully. Granted, the concept of sound may have been different back then. It is not commonly accepted procedure these days. That has less to do with any real objective data than criticism from some well accepted teachers that was passed down without further research.

    The common charge is that a stretched muscle can be injured more easily. This is most likely true for beginners using extreme pressure, but much less likely for developed embouchures. This would also apply to embouchures where the corners are pulled down (check Sergei Nakariakovs embouchure out).

    Another argument is that by the compression of the lips to play higher, we make them "harder" which also reduces the strain. This could also be a factor for extremely high and hard playing.

    I have had students with both types of embouchures. Both types gave good and comparable results. I think that a bigger deal is made out of it than it really is.

    Throughout history we have been told by zealots that there is only one true direction for any number of things, including trumpet. History has proved them all wrong.

    If I have a student with a smile embouchure, they like every other student get a steady diet of breathing, long tones and lipslurs. Their embouchures generally gravitate to a very functional state within a short time. It is amazing how little actual brute strength is necessary to play when the breathing and brains finally work together.

    Nope, I will not damn smiles: before, during or after playing.
     
  4. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

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    Chet Fan,
    I am not sure the smile embouchure is dangerous. 30 some years ago, that was taught in my school system (rather rigidly - I might add), and it was effective to produce decent players in a high school setting with appropriate ranges of music. (all brass instruments were taught the "smile"). I take issue with it -- because I found (decades later) the "pucker" embouchure as some call it - to be more effective and easier for my playing.
    I suspect -- like rowuk -- that the key fundamental in success - is practice, practice, practice --- and finding which embouchure fits you.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2010
  5. Moshe Mizrachi

    Moshe Mizrachi Pianissimo User

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    The professional who wrote the book I cited
    pointed out that the smile embouchure causes
    less flexibility,
    less endurance,
    and poor tone.

    http://books.google.com/books?id=16...6AEwBjgK#v=onepage&q=smile embouchure&f=false

    And all other teachers I have ever read agree.

    Those who recommend the smile embouchure,
    or who do not object to the smile embouchure,
    should point out even one professional brass player
    who successfully uses the smile embouchure.

    .
     
  6. Brekelefuw

    Brekelefuw Fortissimo User

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    [​IMG]

    Horrible range, technique, flexibilities, endurance and tone.
    Clearly this setup works for no one.

    Play whatever is comfortable for you. Forget about all these fancy classifications. Paralysis by analysis.
     
    Schwab likes this.
  7. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

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    Try this link for info on different embouchure s and theories.

    Embouchure change

    Dangerous is too strong a word. I prefer the "rubber faced" embouchure. None of it matters if you are not willing to practice though.
     
  8. Phil986

    Phil986 Forte User

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    Near Portland, OR.
    Maurice Andre is often thought to have a "smile" embouchure. Successful enough for me.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2010
  9. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    Maurice André is not the only one. Moshe/Morris is hung up on Reinhardt and has been for years. There are fundementalists that really forget that humans are human and therefore infinitely different. The urge to reglement was something the founding fathers of America suffered with in good old Europe. That is why the constitution expounds freedom, choice and liberty - not Reinhardt.

    If one method really was so superior, everyone would use it and have beautiful double Cs with great endurance. Last time that I looked (weekly, when I give lessons), I realize that ALL trumpet players go through similar stages and have similar issues.

    I do not "teach" smile, but if a student comes to me, plays well and works hard, I have no reason to mess with success - even if one book exists that criticizes this situation. Dangerous does not apply.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2010
  10. chet fan

    chet fan Piano User

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    clifford brown wasnt using smile - that is pucker embouchure

    I cannot see stretched lips on that photograph
     

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