Squeezing vs pushing on high notes

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by taylordiving, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. taylordiving

    taylordiving Pianissimo User

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    Jan 27, 2013
    Melbourne, Australia
    That does it! After todays practise session I had to get some back up on what I think I'm discovering. I know that some of the literature I've read alludes to this but I want to share and find out what all the "experts" say.

    I'm a comeback player after along layoff and when I played before I played lead in high school. I know that's nowhere near where many of all you were/are but for me it was pretty good. Anyway, I got myself a Jet-Tone Al Hirt mp back then and blew as hard as I could to get the range. I did ok but could tell it wasn't quite right. Now with the advantage of age, the internet and information access I've discovered the concept of squeezing together to go high rather than pushing hard. I still need pressure but not like before (I remember reading about this on the John Lynch website regarding the wedge mp's). I like to refer to it as "embrochure" range (as I'm still able to maintain a decent embrochure while playing high) as opposed to a "blow" range (where all bets are off and if I'm not careful I can end up looking a little too much like Dizzy). The one caveat is that I can't get as high by squeezing but my blow range also improves as my squeeze range does.

    Am I on the right track in my observations here? Will my squeeze range improve significantly if I stay on this track? I'm only 2 months back into my comeback but never having been very patient I don't want to waste any time. I'll continue to go with what I feel and try to eliminate the need to blow provided I can get a reasonable range doing so. My goal is consiostent clean G's with the occasional audible double C.
     
  2. chenzo

    chenzo Piano User

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    Jul 18, 2008
    Aust
    There is no short cuts it will take years of diligent practice to be able to play in the stratosphere musically with a decent tone.
    All I would say is that if you are squeezing to play high the notes most properly your sound will sound pinched.. ie thin , I am not to sure by what you mean Blow range.
    I think its all to do with air support and air speed with the tongue controlling the pitch, but hey I am no screamer just have a playing range to high C any higher at the moment is not played with any confidence .
    I would say the best bet is go see a professional teacher who would guide you on the correct path with the appropriate exercises.
    Good luck on the comeback
     
  3. keigoh

    keigoh Pianissimo User

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    Oct 24, 2012
    Tokyo
    Mmm...I'm a middle school player, but I deny that pinching your embouchure would help. I think it's all about fast air and abdominal support, and it requires MINIMAL muscle support on the embouchure.
     
  4. fredthewhale

    fredthewhale Pianissimo User

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    Jun 12, 2011
    New Jersey
    i agree with chenzo, it's about having your throat relaxed and open, and controlling the air speed and support... well, at least, that's my approach and what works for me -- ymmv.

    the way that i think about it is like whistling. when you whistle, you don't have any pressure on your embouchure. the notes are made with your lips, tongue position, air speed, and throat.

    i don't subscribe to a single method of playing as being right for everyone, but this is what works for me.
     
  5. Dean_0

    Dean_0 Piano User

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    Jan 21, 2013
    NE
    I am far from an expert here (or on the trumpet) ,but as a player with the same experience as you i think i can shed a little light on your (my ) dilemma ?

    I too used force to get up high way back then ,it was very taxing on the chops ,even back when i was young ,it's more so now!
    So i did some research online ,and asked around and found the idea of not forcing (my word) ,the high stuff,some call it pinching ,what iv'e learned is i can play high without all the straining = force =prematurely worn out chops ,now it hasn't come fast ,in fact i'm about 3 months into my comeback and still have to hear a double high C but i can say i have more range and that range sounds more open ,less screachy :shock: than it did.

    Not sure what you mean by squeezing ,im assuming you mean making the hole in your lips smaller?,tighter? and i think your on the right track there ,as far as your blow getting higher ,it will because as your chops(muscles in your lips) get stronger your orafice (hole) is able to take more pressure .

    Patience needs to be a big factor here, i like to think of it as reaching a goal ,how long it takes depends on how much i practice and what i practice ,slurs are chop ,brain builders ,in other words getting your brain to agree with what your chops have to do to make the sound ,high or low? all the while keeping in mind its not how high you can play but how full,open (musical) the sound is when you get there .

    Also .......wow this is getting pretty long for a non-expert............:roll:............. many pro players say that trying to get higher must be tried less than you would think ,one guy says too try a high note 3 times if you miss it stop (this is while doing slurs,scales) . Your right consistency is more important than getting higher ,because when you do get higher then you will be solid ,if you get higher just to get there it will take forever to get consistent.

    Hope this helps and Good Luck!

    Check out this guy's instructional videos Tons of stuff there .
    Range High Note Development Part 1.mpg - YouTube
     
  6. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Jan 28, 2011
    Dayton, Ohio
    Don't squeeze (unless it's the blonde flute player in the first row... she would be squeezable not doubt). Otherwise, squeezing, like many above is a sign of excessive force. If you need to use excessive force, something is very wrong. Perhaps that Al Hirt Jettone. I tried that mouthpiece once and it was a lot of work to get a full sound out. I believe steaming are into the backbore is very difficult with that mouthpiece.

    As people above said, relax the upper airway, especially with an open throat. If you are squeezing, you are likely doing a valsalva and closing off some airway at the neck. If you want to generate a tight energy focus, do so under the diaphragm (this spring loads the larges muscle in the body by push'n you chitlins up against it such that when you relax a nice sustained intra thorax pressure will flow into the RELAXED upper airway. So here it is in steps.

    1. Open mouth, with dropped tongue and jaw.
    2. Lift up both of your shoulders
    3. Inhale
    4. Tighten your upper abdomen (stomach muscle)
    5. Then let 'er blow...
    6. Oh... Yes... while let 'n 'er blow... visualize a ray of energy shooting in the other direction... I believe its the Vulgano Brother Ray of Power... or some Zen like thing.

    I find that if it's Kingtrumpet doing number 6... directing him to the nearest bathroom may be in order as for him... it ain't a ray of power that is shooting out.
     
  7. keigoh

    keigoh Pianissimo User

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    Oct 24, 2012
    Tokyo
    Wait, wouldn't raising your shoulders give you too much tension on your upper body?
     
  8. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Dayton, Ohio
    It would if you let them raise up there...

    Physiology of inhalation is to get in as much air as possible. So raising the shoulder will give more upper lung capacity to fill. Once you fill the upper lungs, they are inflated, than you drop your shoulders into a relaxed state. At that point is where you focus tightening the upper abdomen (or squeezing the chitlins as another way to call it... and get ready to release and visualize that Ray of Power)...
     
  9. keigoh

    keigoh Pianissimo User

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    Oct 24, 2012
    Tokyo
    Thank you for the tip! :)
     
  10. gmonady

    gmonady Utimate User

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    Dayton, Ohio
    Thank you for requesting the clarifying comment. Sometime it may not be obvious, and getting your feedback is just what we need. Sounds like you are right on track... Give this a try and let me know what you think.
     

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