Something I've noticed...

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by silverstar, Jul 3, 2005.

  1. silverstar

    silverstar Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 6, 2005
    Mr. Laureano,

    I would like your take on's something I've noticed.

    I've noticed lately that since I've been listening to more rock music and 'pop' music than my trumpet CDs and jazz Cds, my musicality and feeling when I play my trumpet have diminished considerably.

    Is this just coincidence, or is there a reason that listening to (bad) other music is causing my musicality to die? Have you noticed anything like that with your playing ever?

    I realize this is a rather strange question, but I can't help but notice the difference in my playing since I started to listen to more of the 'mainstreamed' music. (I don't like a lot of's just mindless stuff I can listen to while I'm filling out applications for jobs and college....)

  2. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

    Sep 29, 2004
    Dear Lara,

    Since I've not encountered it a problem to listen to other music other than what I play professionally, let me offer this:

    When I listen to other music by myself, I usually sing along. If it's just mindless background music, as you say, music can tend to go to the background when you're playing! If you develop the "talent' of thinking about other stuff while music becomes background material, I wouldn't be surpirised if you find your mind drifting off while you have your horn to your face. You may have the danger of turning the trumpet into an afterthought!

    My suggestion is, therefore, that if you're going to have music on... listen! I don't care what it is. Otherwise, turn it off and put your mind to whatever else it is you're doing. Sing along, dance to it... I don't care, just, please, recognize that you're a developing artist and that music should not be background stuff for you. If you have to have noise, put your tuner in between stations and quietly have the white noise of static in place of music. You'll be better off.

    Stay in touch,

  3. Mikey

    Mikey Forte User

    Oct 24, 2003
    I would like to add my .0000000000001 to this, as I ran into the same problem awhile back.

    I was going through a playing slump of sorts (a mental slump, of course.)
    Over the past year, a friend of mine has been sending me video tapes of Doc; mostly old Tonight Show clips (on the rare chance Johnny would feature the band). Also, I have a PBS video of Doc with the Milwaukee Symphony doing "Doc with a Latin Beat." Also, I have been watching a PBS special of "Lawrence Welk: Precious Memories". (This same friend is playing lead on this particular video). My thinking was that if I heard Doc's sound while I was practicing, it might help me to sound more like him.......(I know....... :roll:

    But what happened over the long term is that the part of my brain that I use for my own playing was literally shutting down. I would be listening and watching the videos while practicing, and be making clams in the simplest places. It got to the point where my concentration was shot.......

    So now I keep the TV off when practicing, and it is amazing the difference!
  4. trumpetmike

    trumpetmike Forte User

    Oct 11, 2004
    Farnham (a place too smal
    Every couple of weeks I have a listening cleansing session - Beethoven for a few hours helps me refocus and I am once again ready to play classically.
    Not the greatest trumpet writing, but the music is fantastic - after a couple of hours of Beethoven I am ready for anything musical.

    I do find that if I am listening to a lot of flashy trumpet playing (Vizzutti, Jens etc) I have this strange urge to end every piece up an octave.
    Likewise, if I spend a moment listening to Philip Smith (or Jens playing the slower numbers - such beautiful phrasing and tone) I think more about the sound I am making when I play.

    What you listen to does, in my opinion, have an effect upon not just how you are going to play, but also on how you act in your daily routine. If I know I am going to be having a really stressful day, I like to start the day with choral music, preferably Zadok the Priest - it seems to start everything off with a relaxed attitude.
  5. silverstar

    silverstar Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 6, 2005
    Darn, so I can't blame the terrible pop music for this? :lol: ;-)

    I hum along and stuff...actually, I sing pretty dern loud too when my radio's on and I'm cleaning my's pretty embarrassing.

    I'll try the noise idea...

  6. Heavens2kadonka

    Heavens2kadonka Forte User

    Jun 17, 2004
    Lebanon, TN
    I truthfully have never noticed a change in my playing due to the music I expose myself to!

    Then again, I could listen to Metallica or System of a Down as easily as I could listen to my Big Band collection, or my Boston Pops or even Dropkick Murphy's.

    I think all music has its reason to be CALLED music. It all conveys emotion. I feel the reason music exists is to communicate feelings or emotions to the listener. Thats it.

    Most pop isn't music. Most mainstream rap isn't music.

  7. Heavens2kadonka

    Heavens2kadonka Forte User

    Jun 17, 2004
    Lebanon, TN
    I can see why you may develop a habit of playing music like you listen to it, though. We are creatures of habit, so we must always be aware of what habits we might be developing.

    I truthfully cant passively listen to music. I always try to count the tempo, try and guess the melodic line. If I listen too hard, I end up at the piano later, figuring out the most interesting passage on piano!!! :oops:

  8. FlugelFlyer

    FlugelFlyer Piano User

    Dec 15, 2003
    Palos Park, IL
    Van, you echo my thoughts greatly! For a long time, I knew of Doc Severinsen, Maynard Ferguson, CSO, Boston Pops, Tower of Power, Chicago, and all the others. For some time, my creativity plateaued and I had nowhere to go. One day I flipped on the radio and then heard guys like Billy Idol, Judas Priest, Eddie Van Halen, Ozzy Osbourne (golly, he is more than Sharon's hubby!), and later became thoroughly familiar with Metallica, Slipknot (how'd that happen again?), Megadeth, and even later some of the nastiest bands you've ever heard. Some of it like Slipknot may merely sound like hate for money music, but if you listen closely to Corey Taylor's vocals, you realize he's not a homocidal maniac but is conveying deep emotions through his aggressive style of singing, lyrics that I can empathize with greatly having been there. Involving myself in these genres has not only actually broadened my horizons but has put a fresh new perspective on the jazz and legit worlds of playing. If you listen to me improvise, I sound very much like a guitar hero these days compared to the traditional bebop styles of others.

    As for where I've ended up, look at my avatar. :noway:
  9. Billy B

    Billy B Pianissimo User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Des Moines, IA
    You are what you eat. Listening and assimilation is the greatest influence in a musician's life whether that be recorded or live music. Like Manny said, their are different levels of listening. Active or passive, it does affect how you play to different degrees.
  10. Jerry Freedman

    Jerry Freedman Piano User

    Mar 4, 2005
    In Stravinsky's Autobiography ( or at least the one I read) he talks about the ubiquity of music. With the advent of recorded music, jukeboxes and radio music retreats into the background and becomes audio wallpaper for our lives. The only way for it to break through into our conscious ness is to be loud and repetitive. He was remarkably prescient. I can't have music on when I drive or do classwork or even read since its far too distracting.

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