under perform under pressure

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by brem, Jun 23, 2009.

  1. brem

    brem Mezzo Forte User

    Sep 13, 2007
    Quebec City, QC, Canada
    Al: I should also add I've been playing trumpet for almost 20 years LOL

    But I guess I'm taking it more seriously now... hence...
  2. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    when you were about 11 months old, you tried to stand up and walk. You fell down, not because you were nervous or underperforming. You fell down because you did not have "balance". When you went to drivers ed to learn how to drive a car, you had some embarrassing situations for the same reason.

    It is no different here. The only way that you are going to win, is to play live more often.

    This is the problem with learning this type of stuff as adults. We try and intellectualize success. Life doesn't work that way. We can't enter the music world perfect, regardless of how much we practice. You simply need more routine.

    Don't get into this end of the world, I suck mode. At least you have some idea what you did wrong (actually I think I can help - next time you look in the mirror, check your testostearone levels). Stand back up and go for it again. No whining permitted.
  3. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

    Mar 23, 2006
    Parts Unknown
    Most of my quick, cheap ideas involve highly addictive and sometimes illegal substances, but fortunately, you've already done the slow, costly route. You've practiced your fanny off, learned the tunes, have the passion....

    Maybe it is time to realize you are a grown-up, and a trumpeter in your own right.

    You are, really.
  4. ComeBackKid

    ComeBackKid Fortissimo User

    May 11, 2009
    Yorba Linda, CA
    I agree - and would add that calmness is really a state of mind which is what I think VB was saying. If you can put yourself in that state of mind by not allowing your expectation for perfection to take over, you can be calm as you are gaining experience. I know...easier said than done but at this point, it can only help to try that.

    Good luck.

    P.S. I haven't tried it for nearly 30 years so lets see if I can do it when the time comes.
  5. brem

    brem Mezzo Forte User

    Sep 13, 2007
    Quebec City, QC, Canada
    - alcool doesn't really help since you play sloppy + all the sugar makes your valve stick
    - weed makes you forget your cues and makes your mouth dry anyway, so no... I play sober thank you very much!!!

    But see, I thought bi-weekly rehearsals was all about "owning" the tunes so that you coud just enjoy playing them at gigs...

    When the adrenaline kicks in, it's just like I'm on steroids... pp and ff are about the same to me :D

    And I realise the more I do it, the better I'll be able to cope with that. I guess this week-end was just a realisation of work to do. Thing is, I can't really work on it outside of a gig context, can I?

    Comeback Kid: The thing is, I don't expect perfection, but I expect a performance on par with what I can do during rehearsals... You know you've done something wrong, when you play a tune and your chops are shut and have to play one octave lower after missing the note...

    Rowuk: I'm kind of in a negative mode right now in my life so music is no exception to that state of mind. But talking about that is cathartic. I guess I can't sound as good as a 10y experienced musician when I've only started playing again 18 months ago...
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2009
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    If you jumped into the deep end of a pool "shortly" after learning how to swim, you struggle to get back to the edge of the pool. Generally you rejoice in having made it.

    As an adult you are getting depressed about something no different. Rejoice, you got through the evening. Jump in the pool again and again. You will get the hang of it!

    p.s. every other post of mine says the same thing: slurs, long tones played at pianissimo. Once you are 100% secure at lower volumes, you will not try to compensate nervousnes with volume. How about a whole week of JUST pianissimo?
  7. tedh1951

    tedh1951 Utimate User

    Oct 18, 2007
    The Wide Brown Land
    Brem, there will always be better (and less accomplished) players than ourselves, our problem is learning to recognise that we fit in there somewhere. That we are not professionals means that we have more ups and downs than the pros, not necesarilly that we are any less of a player (in context) than those who do it for a living. If you beat yourself up over this, then it becomes self-fullfilling, go now and find thoughts, photos, recordings, Youtube of Brem when he was firing and concentrate on that particular now - find something to inspire you again.

    Search for the positives, abandon the negatives if you can. What part of the performance was good? Find that and focus - or you will go on "hurting" and then that negativity will become the learned experience, find good stuff - quickly, especially now that you have dumped the bad vibes on us, (thanks for that BTW;-)) let them baddies go.
  8. chetlives

    chetlives Pianissimo User

    Apr 18, 2009
    Van Nuys, CA
    You'll do better next time. I can tell you're well rehearsed.
  9. B15M

    B15M Forte User

    Dec 30, 2003
    Monroe Ct.
    You know, it's hard (I think) for the professional players on here to relate to people like us. Part time players that could be good if we had time to practice. We all play ok but lack consistency. We don't have time to perfect our (second) job.

    I have the same trouble as you. Sometimes I go out and can't believe how good I sound and some times I suck. It's a part of life as a part time trumpet player. I would bet that your problem was 90% physical.

    For me, I try to just have fun. It's hard when things don't work but the only alternative is to play every day and there just isn't time.

    Relax and enjoy the music! Even with a missed note here and there, it's still music.

  10. Al Innella

    Al Innella Forte User

    Aug 9, 2007
    Levittown , NY
    Once you reach a certain level of proficiency and know what you can do , then even when you have an off night the only one who will notice will be you.

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