Tone Quality

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by jazztrpt006, Jul 16, 2008.

  1. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    WHO SAID that you need to reposition? Have they seen or heard you play? Are they monitoring your progress.

    Whether or not you NEED to do anything (except practice more - we all need that) cannot be read in an internet forum - or anywhere else.
    Changing habits only works when you know WHAT is wrong, WHY it is wrong, WHAT is better and WHY it is better.

    Do not frustrate yourself with DIY embouchure. Believe me, it is just not worth it! Get professional help, it's worth it!
     
  2. trumpetnick

    trumpetnick Fortissimo User

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    I will second that. Example: Tom Stevens, one of the top american players has a very low embouchure ( I have seen him playing on a concert) and his results are excellent! Don't get too frustrated by numbers, percentages and position...as Rowuk said, getting a professional help is worthed the price!
     
  3. Bloomin Untidy Musician

    Bloomin Untidy Musician Piano User

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    One of the Berlin Philharmonic trumpeters plays with quite an extreme side embouchure and he would crazy to change for the sake of fulfilling some author's embouchure definition.
    Opening the aperture can help to improve your tone. Practising bending notes and playing pedal tones are superb for getting it open and getting the air moving.
     
  4. gregtrum84

    gregtrum84 New Friend

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    hello,

    I'll echo Rowuk's advice for playing softly...I find that taking a good amount of time everyday to play things softly and easily focusing on purity of sound and quality of resonance does wonders for my tone quality. I like using Phil Smith's recording of Schumann 2 on his Orchestral Excerpts CD as an example to follow if I fall off track. His recording of the Ewazen Trio is also quite exceptional and has some beautiful moments you might find are a valuable example.

    Another thought...as you work on your sound you need to start in a place where you can find success. Instead of trying to improve your sound quality across the board right away, pick one note that you feel extremely comfortable with (low C, middle G, middle C...for me it's the E at the top of the staff) and just try and make that one note sing. Once you are happy with your sound on that note you have a model to find success on other notes. Simplify, Simplify.

    Also, record yourself and listen back. I have a feeling that your concept of how you sound will differ from what you are actually sounding like. Before making judgments about your sound quality you need to get realistic input from an unbiased voice like a microphone.

    After you record yourself, compare your recording to one of a trumpet player whose sound you admire and try to wrap your head around the differences in your sounds. Now, hear in your mind the sound you want and go for it!

    Good luck!

    Greg
     
  5. jazztrpt006

    jazztrpt006 New Friend

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    I am getting professional help (and should have said that) about re-adjusting my embrochure...and they've known me for quite somtime and know how i play/sound and what needs to be fixed...., i needed a second opnion on how to go about this and the whole changing my tone when not with an instrustor, ect..

    I definatley think that takening my tone quality and focusing it on one note at a time is a great way to start
     
  6. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    jazztrpt006, I've tried to sound like a bunch of different folk in my life (and I usually end up sounding like Herb when I want to sound like Herseth) and after a zillion hours of practice I always end up sounding like me! I've been lucky enough that most folk have been happy with that me coming out the bell. Why not take all those guys inside your head to the next level, and sound like you, influenced by all those fine players? Less stress, and perhaps even more money down the road!
     
  7. jazztrpt006

    jazztrpt006 New Friend

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    Well okay, i've been trying out different m/p positions, higher than i have been using and i find taht there's only a few places where i am able to make a sound without it sounding like a beginner playing for the first time.......ANYWAYS, it's not showing any automatic results.....obivously but i did notice that my range went down dramtically when i tried this new position......i have been told that i i think that im not using the "proper" muscles when playing b/c when i get fatigue it's my lips taht are sore and never has it been teh muscles around my mouth. I really want to fix this so that when i do play my tone brings out some warmth, color,softness, and effortless. Ayone have a "practice" routine taht can help in aiding this......i am impaitnet and i know with playing the trumpet you need a huge amount of paitience but any other help would really be appreciated!!!!
     
  8. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm going to take a huge risk here, ok? There is a sound we hear in our heads, and despite equipment or anything else, we can get that out the bell someday. That is the cool amazing thing about being human.

    There is then too, the sound that comes out my bell when I just play, and most of the time, it is just as amazing as the sound I hear in my head!

    I am so bold as to suggest that you might best forget all the stuff about muscles for a while. Just play, but play everything--Arbans, for sure, but Bach and Be-bop and (here is the really weird thing!) if we try to play the heck out of the horn--we will!

    I can, and do, as a teacher, pretty much have the ability to put into words what my body does when it makes amazing music. It is so much more fun just to play however!

    Have fun!
     
  9. trumpetlore

    trumpetlore Pianissimo User

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    at the risk of saying something akin to heresy, Listen to singers. Male, female, Jazz, classical, whatever. Just listen to lots of singers. If you really want to find a sound, I think that's a great way of developing your own sound.

    "it's [insert almost any playing problem] nothing 4 hours a day for 6 years won't fix"
    -Ed Carroll
     
  10. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Gerald Webster sang all the time to us, and sometimes we would laugh--well I did once, he wasn't amused, but it was really bad, and yeah, I think trumpet playing is more like bad loud singing than a bel canto voice.

    I survived my lesson, and can still imitate his singing. Ugly, ugly stuff.

    I frightened some of my students in Germany, and even invented some Teutonic lyrics, emulating my teacher, however.

    I think that lyric playing is important, and that made me most of my money in Germany, but we need to be able to bang out some fanfare stuff too.

    (The real fun thing is that Bach has both, and pays really good!)
     

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