Two completly different views on buzzing

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by daveythewavey19, Oct 12, 2007.

  1. Veldkamp

    Veldkamp Piano User

    Mar 29, 2004
    the Netherlands
    Lots of people don't buzz and also play beautifully every day. If it works for you and you start to get a better sound keep doing it. I never buzzed my whole life and never had any problems with my playing. The same goes for many pro leadplayers I know.

    Our real instrument is our mind. Music is in the head, not in the flesh.
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Erik has a good point here: "I never buzzed my whole life and never had any problems with my playing. The same goes for many pro leadplayers I know."

    There are many players that have embouchures that never needed remedial help. They just needed to practice enough and the rest fell into place. Because it all worked well at an early state, there was never reason to change (or even to take a chance on changing anything!).

    Many of us aren't quite so lucky. I would venture to say THEY would benefit from proper buzzing (in addition to other necessities). The problem is always the same: if you do not make a COMMITMENT to one way or the other, you will never be able to reap the benefits. If you do not have natural chops, it makes sense to do what your prof says - especially because he is in more touch with YOUR playing than we are!
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2007
  3. Veldkamp

    Veldkamp Piano User

    Mar 29, 2004
    the Netherlands
    It seem to me daveythewavey19's 1st teacher was a Bill Adam follower. I'm also a big Bill Adam fan and believe most problems are created in the head, not in the embouchure. A bad sound isn't the result of a bad embouchure, a bad embouchure is a result of not having a great sound in the head. The mind isn't sending musical messages to the lips. One of Adam's most famous students was Chris Botti, he also had many chops problems but which Adam fixed without mpc buzzing.

    If you are buzzing melodies you're also sending musical messsages to the lips. That's why Herseth said “Practice on the mouthpiece every day before your regular session. Walk around and play anything musical (no drills) from excerpts to pop tunes. Concentrate on being very musical on these pieces, and most important, on a very LARGE SOUND on the mouthpiece.â€

    If you can send those same musical messages to the lips when you're playing the trumpet you can probably skip the buzzing part. If you can't do that because you're to tied up with your chops or the trumpet, buzzing can be a tool to help you fixing problems without the distraction of the trumpet. That's also why Arnold Jacobs had breathing exercises without the trumpet.
  4. Sophar

    Sophar New Friend

    Jan 30, 2005
    Mr Herseth continues to plays at the highest level for over 50 years. What he says means somthing. My teachers says if is does not sound like Mager, Herseth, Leonard Smith, Clark, James, Gazzo, then it is not the right sound. The sound concept you have in your head is very important to your deveolpment playing the trumpet.
  5. wiseone2

    wiseone2 Artitst in Residence Staff Member

    Nov 19, 2003
    Vizzutti is not a buzzing guy, nor was one of my teachers, Sam Krauss. Sam would demonstrate this by playing a middle G and slowly taking the mouthpiece out of the horn while playing. The result was air, not a buzz. Sam did not buzz, nor did he even mention buzzing.
  6. slixk

    slixk New Friend

    Jan 13, 2006
    One of my teacher always said. This is what works for ME. It may not work for you, but give it a try.
  7. Billy B

    Billy B Pianissimo User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Des Moines, IA
    If I were you I would get out of that place ASAP.
  8. RG111

    RG111 Piano User

    Nov 12, 2003
    I have always used the following as a guide to my own practice and approach to trumpet. What do the guys I most respect do? What do they practice, and what techniques do they use? FWIW

    Roy Griffin
  9. mrtrpt

    mrtrpt New Friend

    Sep 23, 2007
    In my studies and practice with "buzzing" I have found it very helpful to think of mouthpiece playing not as "buzzing".

    If I approach playing the mouthpiece with the concept of just blowing into it, with all the same concepts as with the leadpipe 'ala' Adams, I find that I get a nice full sounding note on the mouthpiece (this is usally called a "buzz"). But I am in no way thinking of buzzing... this just happens to be the termanology that we use to call the sound that is coming out of the mouthpiece. Which can be confusing because that is what we also call producing a sound with the lips alone..."buzzing" your lips.

    However, playing a note on the mouthpiece does not require that you do any buzzing... The reason that doing this on the mouthpiece is "harder" than on the whole leadpipe is because of the length of the tube. The mouthpiece is shorter so it takes more "coordination" if you will, to make the sound. But still the concept is the same, you just blow... Now sometimes at first this will produce nothing but air coming out...that's fine. If you don't "force" the buzz to come out and take sort of a "effortless mastery" approach eventually some noise starts to come out... and after a while it sounds really good...

    So why practice on the mouthpiece at all then...?? Well, it's an "easy" way to strip playing down to it's most basic elements. Breathe in, breathe out, create a sound. It takes the instrument out of the equation so you can really see what you are putting into it. If you can play the pitch on the mouthpiece in a very relaxed easy way then this will translate into a good sound on the trumpet. Just being able to play the mouthpiece with this concept and get a good sound will reveal it's benefits to you.

    Most people are either "for" or "against" mouthpiece practice like it's "all or nothing". You don't have to spend a ton of time each day on the mouthpiece to get benefits from practicing on it. It is much more about your conceptual approach to how and why you are practicing on the mouthpiece in the first place. If you are just doing mouthpiece drills for 45 mins a day without a real clear understanding of why you are doing it and what you are really trying to improve by doing the drills then they will probably not be of much value and could even send you backwards.

    So in a nut shell I think the real secret is not to "buzz" the mouthpiece... just blow...

    Last edited: Oct 15, 2007
  10. pops

    pops Pianissimo User

    Mar 17, 2004
    45 minutes a day for a NEW buzzer would more than likely be a disaster. 2 minute sessions 3-4 times a day would be much better.

    It takes time to break out of the TENSION mindset and learn to be completely RELAXED when you buzz the mouthpiece.

    I have seen hundreds of players who say they don't buzz but they actually do at a loud volume level. When you ask most of them to blow more air a buzz starts. That is how close correct buzzing is to relaxed playing.

    Now take those same players and have them play soft ppp and then pull them horn away sometimes they buzz. Sometimes asking for a little more air then they buzz pp.

    It is usually a very small threshold there. IN fact often their buzz comes and goes it is so close. If they simply think soft the buzz often happens. However; since it is loose, relaxed and an octave under pitch (If lip buzzed only) they don't CALL it a buzz. It is vibrations. (The lip buzz/vibrations are an octave under pitch because the pressure and seal made by the mouthpiece raise the pitch.

    Another BIG problem is that someone who plays 4-8 hours a day 7 days a week CAN play with a slightly larger aperture. A hobby player or student can't get the support, range, endurance with an aperture that big. (They don't have the strength to pull it off.) They are trying to imitate a result by adopting someone else’s' look. They have to get there through a process.

    This same problem happens when an open aperture player tries to buzz. Instead of allowing time and patience to get things to happen they TRY to MAKE it and the results are not good. The easiest way here is to do lots of Clarke Technical Studies at the written dynamics of pp>ppp.

    Learning to play is a time consuming PROCESS. Don't have the time or patience and you won't get good results.

    The REASON teachers who buzz teach buzzing is to learn to be RELAXED and in pitch center on every note.

    This can be learned in other ways but the coloration that the trumpet adds confuses some players and they can only hear they are off pitch center when they mouthpiece buzz. Everybody in the room can hear it when they play but they can't separate it out and hear it until you get them to mouthpiece buzz and they see that they can't even do a C scale on pitch. Once they can mouthpiece buzz on pitch they can ALWAYS play in pitch center.

    When I get people that are really tight I start them on a Tuba mouthpiece then a TB mouthpiece so that they relax their face. Finally relaxed on the trumpet mpc.

Share This Page