Trouble with range

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by scrap, Jun 21, 2011.

  1. trickg

    trickg Utimate User

    Oct 26, 2003
    Yep - I was in my mid to late 20s before I had any kind of success playing anything above high C in either the practice room or the gig. In the practice room I'm up to a G, but I'm still, 30 years in to playing trumpet, working to put it together a bit better to where I can actually use it with any kind of consistency on a job.

    This doesn't really address the issue you are having - how can we know what's going on without actually seeing or hearing you play? What it does do is to illustrate that you likely won't gain much more usable range in the short term of a few weeks - it's going to take months and maybe even years, just like Rowuk said.
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2011
  2. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    I would suggest as I often do to look up Keith Fiala on the web/youtube.
    He has many helpful videos on the subject of AIR and High Range. Those tips have helped me enormously in my comeback -- and high range does take effort and time -- but I am convinced that within 30 months of a comeback -- A NORMAL trumpet player, conscientously practicing for many hours a day, and learning all (he/she) can, putting in the arduous time can reasonably and consistently play scales in 3 octaves (that includes the D scale with the 7th ledger line D above the staff. (OK problems with the E and F scale up there - but hey that is life)
    ****disclaimer - I said consistently play the scales and hit/play/sound all the notes -- AND musicality, tone, in tune - endurance, and of course playing a 4 minute song is something else to talk about*********
    &&&&to add to my disclaimer - I am talking about somewhere around 2500 to 3000 hours of playing/practice time&&&&&&

    nonetheless -- it don't happen overnight -- hope this guy can help you -- mostly to get the right mindset, some information -- and the rest is pretty much up to you.

    YouTube - ‪Trumpet High Notes By Former Maynard Ferguson Player‬‏
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2011
  3. BrotherBACH

    BrotherBACH Piano User

    Oct 5, 2010
    I was lucky to have a master class with a trumpet great, long retired. We had so much that it went on for several hours. He said that there are "almost" no big problems in trumpet. Most arise from not doing something really basic. I would urge you to read Claude Gordon's "Systematic Approach to Daily Practice" pages 5 to 10 which very clearly outlines the basics. Also, all of his "Brass Playing is No Harder than Deep Breathing".

    I was having trouble with my range on harmonic slurs and was getting stuck. Then I went back to basics and realized that I was using too much pressure and "pinning the vibrator", as Don E. Johnson would say. Using too much pressure prevented me from drawing my lips towards the mouthpiece to decrease my aperature. Once I remembered to do this, things started improving again.

    But, hey, everything is different and has different challenges. Read all these suggestions and then see what best applies to you. Good Luck! I think we all understand your frustration.

  4. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Every time that I read stuffy, I know that the necessary processes are not trained very well. Why? if we have practiced enough, we have trained our exhale to match what the horn will pass. Most players that I have worked with that insist on "free blowing" have other issues that could use some optimizing. I am not saying that freeblowing is wrong, rather that it is OFTEN used as an excuse and that adjusting hardware before knowing what the deal is sacrifices efficiency.
  5. Bob Grier

    Bob Grier Forte User

    May 4, 2007
    Greensboro, NC
    I agree. And your 3C mpc is not the problem. I play a 3C rim. Sounds like you just haven't "learned" how to play in the upper register. Sounds like you are overblowing and trying to "muscle" you way up there. Doesn't work. Also reading about it anywhere has hit or miss value. You really need lessons in basic embouchure development. BY teaching and training them in the basics and fundamentals in playing my students don't have any range isuues anywhere on the horn. It's a very natural process. There isn't any "special" or "secret" methods.
  6. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    but I am betting it takes some time - and doesn't happen overnight:dontknow:
  7. schleiman

    schleiman Piano User

    May 12, 2010
    Austin, TX
    I'll second this recommendation I take lessons with Keith and he is a great teacher. He really knows his stuff. And those weekly tips aren't too shabby either at 10 bucks a month.

  8. tptshark

    tptshark Pianissimo User

    Jun 4, 2005
    Hong Kong
    A couple of suggestions for you:
    Try playing your flow studies using a decrescendo as you go higher and a crescendo as you descend again. Aim for the top note to be crystal clear, but very soft. Then add vibrato to the top note to encourage your lip to relax and open up. Don't try and go higher than you can play clearly. Concentrate on the sound not how high you are playing.
    All the best,
  9. kingtrumpet

    kingtrumpet Utimate User

    Sep 20, 2009
    New York State USA
    very cool -- say Hey to Keith for me:thumbsup:

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