Tonguing Speed

Discussion in 'Trumpet Pedagogy' started by Trumpet1705x, Jul 3, 2018.

  1. Trumpet1705x

    Trumpet1705x New Friend

    Dec 16, 2017
    Wildwood Missouri
    I am a comeback player. At my last lesson, my instructor timed me tonguing using sixteenth notes with a quarter note to a beat at a metronome speed of 126. When I single tongue a Clark Study (#2), I struggle at a metronome speed of 100. Is this normal?
  2. GeorgeB

    GeorgeB Forte User

    Apr 13, 2016
    New Glasgow, N.S. Canada
    After 28 months I am still in comeback mode and at my age ( 82 as of this month ) doing anything fast is anything but easy. A lot of members here know their stuff, but they are probably going to need more information such as your age, length of hiatus, previous experience, etc. Good luck on the comeback.
  3. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    That is perfectly normal. Even experienced players lose speed when they do not train it daily. It is easier to learn how to doubletongue slowly than single tongue quickly...
    tobylou8 and Lukarino like this.
  4. Lukarino

    Lukarino Pianissimo User

    Dec 8, 2015
    San Diego, CA
    I also struggle with single tonguing speed, and I have been working on it for months with marginal increase. I have brought my speed up to 100 bpm on the Clarke 2 when single tonguing, but cannot go any faster either. I think that is normal (or rather, is not abnormal), though many are able to go faster in part due to natural ability. I discussed this with a respectable trumpet professor who said that both he and a top orchestral player both have very slow single tongue speeds (and compete with each other about who is slower), and compensate with a great double tongue. That said, a great exercise to help is single tonguing sixteenth notes on a G in the staff for 1 minute straight with a relaxed sound. Maybe start at 95 bpm for now, and push through even if your tongue fails to keep a steady rhythm. The tongue will tire very quickly but that strength will build. The Clarkes are also great for single tonguing, as are the tonguing exercises from the first Vizzuti book.
  5. adc

    adc Mezzo Forte User

    Jan 12, 2017
    Elizabethtown, Pa.
    Is it reasonable for someone who has 10 years or so experience to concentrate more on slower double tonguing rather than fast single tonguing?
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    What we practice is a function of our goals and ambitions. If we have playing opportunities that require fast tonguing, we need to be able to do it. A proper double tongue is not less worthy, and for many far easier to tune in.

    Personally, I have never been one of the incredibly fast articulators, but still manage to get the job done. Last year I performed Scheherezade from Rimsky Korsakov. There the challenge was my upper limit. 6 months of dedicated practice insured that by rehearsal time, I was able to deliver. The performance went well and I would have to start specific practicing again to get back to that level.
  7. Mellophone Man

    Mellophone Man Pianissimo User

    Mar 31, 2010
    Scottsdale AZ
    I just put the metronome on and played several measures single tounged of sixteenth notes at 100 bpm without a problem.

    That is the good news.

    The bad news is that I cannot double tongue worth a $%^& despite my best efforts. This is one area of my playing that I wish I could find a way to improve.
    GeorgeB likes this.
  8. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Heart of Dixie
    I've never had a particularly fast single tongue, and I've been playing since 1963. I can increase it (temporarily) if I really work on it, but my double tongueing is so well-developed, I don't see the need to spend time working on single tounge speed. I know when to switch from one to the other, and I don't feel my playing suffers from it.
  9. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

    Jan 30, 2009
    Melbourne Australia
    I single tongue at my best at 120 bpm 16ths (4 per beat).

    I would normally start back at around 100 to bring it back to speed. I was just demonstrating last week with a mate, and I could not get the 120. It is like all technical skills, you need to spend time on each to maintain, and invest time to improve. If it is not needed, then it is easy to slip back.

    At the moment, If I was going to do anything above 100, then I would double tongue it.
  10. Ljazztrm

    Ljazztrm Mezzo Piano User

    Nov 15, 2003
    Queens, NY

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