Strict practice routine?

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by jcstites, May 21, 2006.

  1. jcstites

    jcstites Mezzo Forte User

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    Jun 1, 2005
    Tallahassee, FL
    Manny,

    I am thinking about laying out an entire practice routine by the week for myself and assign specific etudes. Since I am back home with no ensemble to play in for a month I find that my practice sessions become obsessive face beatings on very specific tasks. I feel that I could accomplish much more with a plan.

    I have always felt that my fundamentals are not as solid as I would like although I never feel that there is much that I cant do, just a lot that I cant do as well as I would like (if that makes any sense, lol).


    A simplified version of my routine -
    25 min warm-up
    Break
    40 min fundamentals, articulation
    Break
    20 min lyrical etudes
    Break
    45 min etudes like Goldman, various Arban.
    Break
    30 min excerpts
    Break
    Solos and whatever else


    I guess what I am asking is - Should I get really into this and lay it out in detail and adjust it as I go along?

    Can you suggest some things that you think should be done everyday?

    -Jonathan
     
  2. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    Sep 29, 2004
    USA
    I think your plan is terrific and I wholeheartedly agree with the breaks that are built in. Some people rest as much as they play, others need less or more.

    Somewhere in there, work in lip trills, (not shakes, lip trills) and try to go as high as you can with a proper-sounding, coloratura-style trill. Listen to the Minuet in G Major as recorded by Mendez for the sound I'm talking about.

    It sounds like you're putting in a lot of articulation. Just wondering if you need that much. You have your warm up, where you would presumably include that. You have time set aside for articulation and then Goldman later on. Seems redundant to me.

    Set one or two days aside where you do everything you've planned at a mezzo forte or softer level.

    Have fun and learn as much as you can about yourself.

    ML
     
  3. jcstites

    jcstites Mezzo Forte User

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    Jun 1, 2005
    Tallahassee, FL
    I have always felt like articulation is what holds me back. So I thought that if I devoted alot of time to that it should improve (should, heh).

    Is this too much on just articulation? I was planning on incorporating more than just goldman and arbans into that 45 min block.

    -jonathan
     
  4. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    I dunno... without hearing what you do, it's hard to tell what kind of balance you need and for what reasons. Usually, people who have problems articulating have their tongues blocking a nice, full airstream and generally benefit from tonguing with a lower vowel sound like tOH. You understand that no one actually tongues with the very tip of the tongue, right? If you GENTLY place your tongue's tip at the ridge between the bottom of your bottom teeth and the gumline (or even a tad lower if you like) you can speak quite normally. Say "Time To Talk Turkey To Turtles in Tutus", it's not terribly difficult, if it at all, to say.

    You might benefit from this approach if tonguing has you bound up in a bit of a knot.

    ML
     
  5. gms979

    gms979 New Friend

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    Jun 3, 2005
    This is a great point...keeping the tip down by the bottom teeth/gumline, while doing the actual articulating with the middle, more meaty area of the tongue. Some people call this anchor tonguing...Claude Gordon called it KTM (for K Tongue Modified). If you read the text at the beginning of Clarke's Characteristic Studies, you'll find that he used this method as well.

    I began tonguing this way a month ago, and it has far and away been the biggest breakthrough I've ever had in my trumpet playing. Everything has been positively impacted - tone, range, flexibilities, and increasingly articulation. Articulation was all over the place for a week or two, but getting used to it has been very rapid and relatively stress free.

    Most importantly, I feel that my tongue is no longer too big for my mouth. Keeping the tip down helps keep the tongue out of the way of the airstream; it only arches as I begin to ascend. Before, with the tip behind my top teeth, I was always hyper-arched, which really cut off a healthy and efficient airflow and caused a perfect storm of playing difficulties. These days, air and tongue has taken on huge new relevance, and I'm really focusing on them for the first time...also, for the first time, my trusty embouchure mirror has sat dormant on the floor!

    I'm looking very much forward to working on this in the future. I'll be doing an MM in jazz piano (something which flourished the years I was fighting my trumpet) at Maryland in the fall, but I am psyched about taking in as much as possible from the flourishing trumpet scene down there.

    Anyway, sorry for the lengthy reply, but this whole anchor tongue/KTM thing has worked wonders for me. Something to experiment with, if nothing else...

    Mr. Laureano, just curious, who do you know of who tongues like this?

    Thanks,
    Greg
     
  6. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

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    Sep 29, 2004
    USA
    Well, I guess my point was that pretty much everyone does TO ONE DEGREE OR ANOTHER but the perception of releasing the tone with the "tip" of the tongue persists.

    I've always disliked the term "anchor tonguing". The immediate thought conjured up is of making the tongue do something immobile which, to me, is counterintuitive. It's why I highlighted the word "Gently" in my original post. The tongue needs to be used in a flexible, easy-going way not cemented to any part of the mouth.

    I don't generally keep track of who uses what techniques today. I only know that Herbert L. Clarke was the first famous soloist and instructor to make note of this technique in writing and referred to it as being a unique method. I understand that Armando Ghitalla used to teach this as well. I'm sure someone will come up with a list they keep in their wallet for just such occasions of current players who use this technique.

    ML
     
  7. Derek Reaban

    Derek Reaban Mezzo Piano User

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    Jun 16, 2005
    Tempe, Arizona
    Greg,

    Jens Lindemann commented that he articulates like this in his recent Arizona masterclass. He demonstrated both styles of tonguing in the upper register, and while he sounded great either way, there was definitely more clarity in the "anchor tongue" approach.

    Thanks for sharing your comments on this topic!
     
  8. John Mohan

    John Mohan Pianissimo User

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    Aug 11, 2004
    Chicago
    Yes, this method of tonguing is what I believe most (if not all) the great players employ. I learned it from Claude Gordon and he learned it from Herbert L. Clarke. Clarke describes it in his book "Characteristic Studies for the Cornet."

    Claude Gordon coined the term “K-Tongue Modified†or “KTM†to describe this (correct) method of tonguing. The reason is because in the normal (wrong) method of tonguing, the player tongues with his or her tongue tip, where as in K-Tonguing, it is the rear portion of the tongue that performs the articulation. With KTM, it is the front-middle portion of the tongue that performs the articulation, placing it somewhere between T-Tonguing and K-Tonguing, hence the term “K-Tongue Modified.â€

    When the player tongues using the KTM method, the tongue has to move only a very short distance between the articulation and where it must be during the sustaining of the tone. This makes for far greater range, both when single and when multiple tonguing styles are being employed. It also makes for far greater accuracy (less missed notes). When using the KTM way of tonguing, the tongue is also allowed to be all the way forward in the mouth, and this is very important.

    When tonguing in the typical (wrong) way using the tip of the tongue, the tongue is forced back farther in the mouth which can cause a “choking†or “throat constriction†feeling as the player tries to hit high notes. And when the note is articulated with the tongue tip up high behind the top teeth, the tongue must travel a long way down to the “ahh†position for lower notes or the “eee†(like when saying “seaâ€) position for higher notes. In essence, for a brief moment, the tip of the tongue is literally in the way of the airstream, and this is what causes rough sounding attacks, especially in the upper register.

    When KTM tonguing ability is developed, incredible gains in accuracy occur throughout the range of the instrument.

    For more information about KTM, read the wealth of information available at the following Websites:

    http://mattgraves.netfirms.com/k_tongue_modified.htm

    http://www.purtle.com/jeff_articles.html

    http://www.trumpetguild.org//itgyouth/masterclass/Purtle.htm

    http://mattgraves.netfirms.com/john_mohan.htm

    Sincerely,

    John Mohan
     
  9. Bennem

    Bennem New Friend

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    May 6, 2005
    UK
    Only been playing the "barking iron" on and off for about 20 years and this is the first time I have heard of this........
    I'm going to have some fun trying this KTM stuff over the next few weeks. Time to put away Schlossberg and do some of the easy stuff at the front of Arban.
     
  10. B15M

    B15M Forte User

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    Dec 30, 2003
    Monroe Ct.
    I am going to change today. I always use the tip. I will post what happens.

    I have never been a great triple tonguer so this will be a great test for me
     

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