Starting my son in music

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by neal085, May 18, 2015.

  1. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    Dude, relax. I'm merely adding food for thought to the discussion.

    Personally, I think that piano is pretty tedious for a kid that age - trumpet might actually be a better first choice. It has fewer buttons and is pretty easy to get a sound out of so getting to a point where the kid can play something recognizable would probably come a little quicker.
  2. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

    Aug 7, 2013
    Lagos, Nigeria
    A point in passing.

    It's really rather difficult to make good progress on the piano unless your hands can span at least an octave. I'd pretty large hands even as a 13 year-old when I started piano lessons (comfortable 10th on right, 11th on left) so it wasn't an issue. But an octave can be a challenge even for some adult women, never mind young children.

    And while I'm here....

    The two-stave thing isn't the challenge people imagine. The brain very quickly learns to see the multiple notes as a single picture of how to position your hands for the chord. Not saying that that's all there is to it, but trumpeters don't get anything like that kind of help - it's a much more abstract set of calculations for us. And our brains have to synchronise many more different actions (right hand fingering, left-hand tuning, lung, lip and tongue adjustments). When you think of it, it's a wonder how we manage :-)
  3. SteveRicks

    SteveRicks Fortissimo User

    Aug 15, 2009
    Why am I just now thinking of this. Drums! Get a trap set. Rhythm.
  4. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

    Jan 21, 2010
    Great Southern Land
    Speak for yourself boyo! I tried piano before I started on the trumpet and found I had a lead left hand... am sadly still rather unambidextrous[SUP]*[/SUP] in this respect. I have trouble playing guitar too.


    [SUP]*[/SUP]or whatever the correct antonym for ambidextrous is
  5. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    And kids love banging around on things.

    I was always enamored with drums due to watching the jazz band when I'd go to my older sisters' band concerts. The guy drumming for the jazz band was really really good - even thinking back on it, he was easily pro level by today's standards. He ended up going into the family business of journalism and running several small town newspapers, but he was one heck of a drummer.

    Of course being a kid, and having the short attention span of a kid and fickleness of a kid, I ended up starting on alto saxophone due to an older cousin of mine whom I kind of idolized. He was a stellar sax player. (and still plays, but ended up going into recording engineering where he had a pretty solid career, working with folks such as John Denver and Maynard Ferguson at various points) But, as fate would have it, my older sister, a talented player in her own right, threatened to quit band unless my folks got her a new instrument - she was playing a beat up King cornet.

    We didn't have a lot of money at that time, so we traded my sax for her trumpet, (there was virtually no trade in value for her horn) and I took on her cornet, which was ok by me - I wasn't exactly excelling at the sax, but I quickly picked things up on that cornet. Sitting in the back of the station wagon driving back from a neighboring town where we got her new trumpet, I learned how to play a full Bb concert scale from low C to tuning C, and "Mary Had a Little Lamb" under my sister's tutelage - it took about 45 minutes.

    But, I always had a thing for drums. I'd mess around on the kit in the band room when no one else was up there, and I learned how to play rudimental snare with a traditional grip when I was at the Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, but I was 33 years old before I got my own kit and started really working on becoming a drummer.

    Playing drums is a rush unlike anything I've ever gotten playing trumpet. When things are really rocking and I'm not limited in how loud I can play, it's an unreal feeling when the whole band is grooving along with you.
  6. barliman2001

    barliman2001 Fortissimo User

    Jul 5, 2010
    Vienna, Austria, Europe
    I know all these arguments. But... I was a kid desperately wanting to learn trumpet, and I was forced onto the piano.

    My parents gave several reasons:
    1) Piano is something you can always play on your own, you don't need a band for it.
    2) Trumpet is such a low-caste instrument (all they knew about brass were drunken oompah bands)
    3) We've got a piano, but we don't have a trumpet - so there!

    They did not even give me any other option, such as the violin (my grandpa and grandma both were renowned violin players; but tuition with them might have meant that I was out of their control temporarily which was inacceptable to them -total control freaks). And so for seven long years I was carted to piano lessons twice a week, with an old dragon of a piano teacher that still used a wooden ruler to whack my fingers when I went wrong. I didn't even have the comfort of group lessons with the local music school because that would have meant meeting other kids from possibly socially inferior families (they were incredible snobs - perhaps that's why I still enjoy playing with oompah bands from time to time).

    Seven long years of misery, pain, tears. It only ended because I was thrown out by the piano teacher when I finally got desperate and kicked her in the shin when she wanted to whack me again. To this day, I can't play a single simple piece on the piano. And despite the best efforts of that dragon, I did not learn reading music, either. So the end result was: success nil, expenditure around $ 20,000.

    And a few years later, I took up trumpet by myself (some of you know the story) and within two years of starting, had my own brass quintet performing public recitals in Munich...

    That is what inspiration and keenness can do, as opposed to "the best pedagogic ways".

    Start the guy on trumpet -a plastic one first, as it is so much more lightweight, and much funnier looking. And then, when he has progressed a bit, you might suggest the piano as a second instrument. But let him live his dream first - it's his childhood, and childhood wishes should come true. They usually don't in later life.
  7. barliman2001

    barliman2001 Fortissimo User

    Jul 5, 2010
    Vienna, Austria, Europe
    I would go for "monodextrous" or simply "clumsy". I'm the same myself -such an extremely right-handed guy that when I damaged my medianus nerve in my right hand and could not pick up small objects the normal way any more (not between index and thumb, but between index and middle fingers), my undamaged left hand followed suit...
  8. Furcifer

    Furcifer Pianissimo User

    Jul 26, 2010
    LOL, nope, not until I'm good enough to have roadies! I do most everything for just me, for my home-built recording studio, thus far. Now that I'm retiring from the Navy, maybe I'll get to do some more regular playing of ALL my various axes and turn up a gig for one or two of them (I also dabble with guitar and bass) eventually. Right now I'm just working on plans for a house to hold all this crap, LOL!




  9. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    Like like like like like like like like like..........
  10. gunshowtickets

    gunshowtickets Forte User

    Mar 11, 2015
    Tidewater, VA
    My vote is for piano, he can branch out from there.

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