Tone Quality

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by Trumpet Dreamer, Aug 24, 2010.

  1. Markie

    Markie Forte User

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    Tone is still a function of you, not the horn or the mouthpiece.
    I think this might help:
    One of the things to do to get the sound you want is, to listen to people playing in the upper register in a beautiful way. Sometimes its just a matter of getting that particular sound in the head. Generally, if we know how it should sound, we can then work on emulating it. I would recommend listening to a lot of Alison Balsom. If you Youtube her, notice that when she plays, the music is not forced. It is controlled. There's not a lot of visual physicality to her playing. Especially notice her face. Do you see a lot of straining? No.
    You want to work on this type of sound and look when you play.
    To support this "emotionless look", there are others that do this. Watch Tine Helseth and Rafael Mendez on Youtube. You'll see the same look on their faces too.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2010
  2. Josh

    Josh New Friend

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    Might I cite, as an example, Bobby Shew? He plays on a lot of shallow mouthpieces (like a Marcinkiewicz 10.3), but he has one of the nicest tones I've heard.

    It doesn't matter if you have a $500 Monette mouthpiece- if you don't focus on improving your tone production, you'll still sound terrible. It's the power of willpower, baby.
     
  3. Moshe Mizrachi

    Moshe Mizrachi Pianissimo User

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    Feb 17, 2010
    Then why do British Bands and Salvation army tend to use extremely deep Wick mouthpieces rather than a Bach 3C?

    And why is the tone different between a .485 bore Conn 28B trumpet and a .438 bore Conn 22B trumpet, if trumpet doesn't affect tone?

    According to you, British Bands and Salvation Army should be able to get the same beatiful tone using Bill Chase' Schilke 6A4A mouthpiece on a 1930's "pea-shooter" trumpet.

    The OP said that his tone considerably brightens in the upper register,
    so the OP was complaining about bright tone, not bad tone.

    And the OP said that he uses a Bach 3C, which is the shallowest C cup that Bach makes, very similar in depth to the Bach 7E piccolo mouthpiece.
    There is a reason that Bach makes 3B and 3A mouthpieces, to provide a darker tone than the tone of the rather shallow Bach 3C.

    If the OP wants a tone that is less bright, he can simply try a Bach 3B mouthpiece.

    And the OP asked if it is normal for the tone to brighten as one approaches the upper register.
    Yes, that is normal, not a sign of a problem.
     
  4. fraserhutch

    fraserhutch Mezzo Piano User

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    +1 - good players will still sound huge on what some consider smaller equipment.
     
  5. Markie

    Markie Forte User

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    Hi Moshe
    You stated:
    The OP said that his tone considerably brightens in the upper register,
    so the OP was complaining about bright tone, not bad tone.
    --------
    Trumpet Dreamer said:
    Let me elaborate just a little...my tone is not what I would consider "bad", just as stated previously in that it gets quite bright as you go up the register. The notes from G to high C and above are laser bright.
    -------
    A beautiful tone in the low register but as they go up, the tone is too bright.
    You have to remember, TD is taking about a phenomenon that happens within just one song.
    Yes what you are saying isn't untrue about equipment. My Martin Committee sounds different that my Bach or my MF Horn.
    However, I doubt that the Salvation Army switches mouthpieces as they go up the register while playing a song. They all play the same size equipment.
    I still stand by my recommendation that TD needs to work on his sound in the upper register. One of the best ways to begin to do this is to first have a firm idea of what it should sound like and look like.
    If TD doesn't have a grasp of what it should sound like, how can they ever do it?
     
  6. Moshe Mizrachi

    Moshe Mizrachi Pianissimo User

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    It is common both in my experience and in the experience of others on all wind instruments.

    “You will probably notice that your tone brightens a bit in the upper register.”
    http://en.allexperts.com/q/Tuba-2287/Bell-diameter-question.htm

    It brightens up for me when I go into the upper register”
    http://www.zacharymusic.com/Zachary_Music/ZTR900_Testimonials.htm

    Flute
    The flute has a three-octave range, beginning at middle C. Each octave may be viewed as a register.
    Tones in the lowest half-octave have a sound like no other in music: dark and heavy, but warm and mellifluous. The next half-octave gradually brightens.
    In the middle octave, or register, flute tones are at their most characteristic: clear and bright.
    The third octave is brilliant. Tones have great carrying power and can be piercing without being shrill up to the highest A or B-flat.”

    http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/2427414/flute_oboe_clarinet_bassoon_registers.html

    Doesn't every trumpet player have his tone significantly increase in brightness as he ascends the scale from Low C to High C?
    The OP's tone is just brightening at a lower level than High C because he has less range than us at this point in his development.
    His tone on a top-line F will open up and be less bright as his range slowly increases over the years.

    I get the feeling that you and I really agree,
    but how we are wording it gives the false impression that we disagree.

    Anyway, even if we do disagree,
    friends are allowed to disagree,
    so I have nothing more to say on the subject.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2010
  7. keehun

    keehun Piano User

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    Minnesota
    I so agree. Listening and learning what it's supposed to sound like is a key, I believe. That's why I said this at the end of my original reply 2nd post:

     
  8. fraserhutch

    fraserhutch Mezzo Piano User

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    Might be a problem in sentence construction - I think you want to say "by listening to great players you will lean things that otherwise cannot be taught"
     
  9. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

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    It is AMAZING how quickly the myths can pop up in a thread like this one.

    First of all, there is no rule that says that you play brighter up higher. Players without well developed chops/breathing/musical sense will pinch off the tone making it scrawnier, which sounds brighter.

    A player that gets along with a 6A4A CAN blend just fine in spite of the shallow mouthpiece - not everyone gets along with that mouthpiece. A cornet or flugelhorn mouthpiece is not necessarily "deeper" than a trumpet mouthpiece. It depends on the player.

    There is also a HUGE problem when talking about YOUR sound. You never really hear it. What we perceive behind the mouthpiece is a combination of what vibrations are transported though the skull, the vibration through the metal of the trumpet and what gets reflected back from the room. A really dark sound is often just mud in an ensemble. No contours or definition to the sound. The player may never even notice......

    I maintain, the secret is elegance, not hardware. The rest sorts itself out in the ensembles that you play with. Only in high school are bigger mouthpieces used to limit "OBNOXIOUS"!
     
  10. Moshe Mizrachi

    Moshe Mizrachi Pianissimo User

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    Feb 17, 2010
    "[FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Filters:[/FONT]
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Now that you know what's making the sound, let's talk about changing a sound (which is really what everything but the oscillators do). How filters work is that they are assigned a certain frequency (which can be modulated by various sources, but more on that later) and, depending on the type of filter, remove all frequencies above (lowpass), below (highpass), not close to (bandpass), or close to (band reject). A lowpass filter makes a tone seem "darker", a highpass filter makes a tone seem "brighter""[/FONT]
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]DarkSonus: Introduction to Subtractive Synthesis[/FONT]

    When a trumpet player plays a Low C, that note and all higher harmonics are present.
    When a trumpet player plays a High C, the lower harmonics associated with the Low C are absent, only the higher harmonics are present, leading to a brighter tone.


    Then it would be interesting to find even 1 player who uses a Schilke 6A4A in a Bristish Band or in Salvation Army Band.

    If you want the cornet or flugelhorn to sound more like a trumpet, then use a shallow trumpet mouthpiece.

    But if you want the traditional cornet or flugel sound, then you will indeed use a deeper mouthpiece that gives that richer tone.

    Cornet and flugel players who use deep cups are not just delusional people who are following some myth.
     

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