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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by surfingmusicman, Dec 28, 2011.
Here's something special:
Maynard Ferguson "Great Guns" 1959 - YouTube
Thanks for the two links Peter. I sometimes get a hankering for my middle-brass days.
Yes but Maynard almost always played the slide too. At least from 1974 on and probably a lot sooner.
Thing is Maynard was an outstanding, well recognized musician. A cat like that will be respected even if he plays an accordion. And low and behold? He realized that the valve bone was a joke. More than anything else he kind of proves the point:
Serious low brass players play the slide.
Last try from me....
This is just wonderful music. For those that can put aside their bias.
Jim Hall and Bob Brookmeyer (1987) - YouTube
He's certainly doing a good job and it is musical. However what i'm trying to do is help adjust the O/P's thoughts: The slide isn't that difficult. He should not rule out the slide due to a few temporary obstacles.
The idea that "playing slide is difficult" is merely a boogie man.
You will note that the valve trombonist largely stays out of the upper register. There's a reason for this: very difficult to pick off upper register notes on valved low brass instruments. In fact about the highest note the artist plays is a concert A Flat. Your third line B Flat on the trumpet. OK plenty of range for musicality. Agreed. But it is a very limiting instrument. I'd say that the technique this valve trombonist is displaying is not something he acquired quickly. And that had he learned the slide earlier his playing would have been even better. But granted it is plenty good.
Another thing: Bob Brookmeyer was better known as an ARRANGER/COMPOSER. In other words he could sell his valve trombone playing only because he wrote tunes for the bands he blew in. This is analogous to Maynard's use of the valve bone: A secondary element of his musicianship.
This from wiki:
But he was best known for his writing, especially his arrangements for big bands, which at their best captured the spirit of past masters like Duke Ellington and Count Basie while remaining thoroughly contemporary. His charts in the 1960s for Mulligan’s Concert Jazz Band and the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra helped invigorate the big-band genre at a time when many critics considered it moribund. He later expanded his palette to include ideas from modern classical music.
I agree the Slide is easy to play. I also think that a Bass Trumpet or Valve Trom will allow a trumpet player to develop the sound he wants quickly. The slide adds a dimension, but to dismiss the valve as a waste or not a serious instrument is to under-rate it as an instrument IMO.
For ease of playing and developing a good sound, I would go Bass trumpet. I also own/play Slide and Superbone, so am happy to switch as required. I have had slide trombone players trying to convert the 7 positions with the valve sequences, now that is harder IMO. Trumpet to Valve trom/Bass Trumpet, then Slide is a lot easier to develop the sound, and get the sequence. NOW reading the Bass Clef with Slide trom is more difficult for me.
In any case, there's a place for all the Bones - even Soprano Slide Trombone. Just think of a Valve Trom as a Tenor Trumpet.
And I only knew Bob Brookmeyer as a Valve Trombone player - not an arranger/composer. I wonder how many people know the arrangers/composers of music they listen to... I do recognise the player and the tune, rarely the arranger.
I agree. A slide trombone is the classic way to go. But a bass trumpet or valve trombone can work, too, depending on your goals. Kiku Collins (Kiku Collins - Trumpet, Flugelhorn, Valve Trombone, Vocals, Actor!) plays a Getzen valve trombone, and sounds pretty good on it. I'm sure there are others out there.
Back to the OP's original question ... maybe a used Kanstul, Conn, or Getzen valve trombone is the way to go. I purchased a used Getzen bass trumpet (pre-1963) last year, which for me, worked out good.
LOL. Let's talk about how I learned the slide: Like most of us I broke in with the euphonium, ninth grade. Then later my parents bought me a valve trombone (instead of a class ring in High School and it was a far better investment). Then later still I bought a slide to fit my trombone. Then with a little practice?
Viola! I'm a FIRST CALL jazz trombonist sub in three local college rehearsal bands. OK it ain't often professional but still they call me. Generally i blow them off. This makes them want to call me even more. Go figure?
So I suppose the argument for hypocrisy is there and feel free to accuse me of such. But then again i also know the fondness of playing a REAL trombone. Am using it more and more in my R & B band. Every rehearsal from now on just to make sure I stay in shape on it.
The warmth of the true slide trombone makes it a true friend. "She" is like the fairly pretty girlfriend i had in high school. The not so bright one with the big hooters. And EASY too (why did i give her up?).
Meanwhile the trumpet is like her stuck up big sister: Plays very hard to get. Though stunningly beautiful she requires high maintenance. You can date her for fifty years and not truly own her. You just kind of break even...
Footnote: Doubling is practice dependent. I can lay off the trombone for five years (and I'v done this too) and still blow a pretty mean lead in jazz band. However without a fairly regular diet of trombone I can not switch back "on the fly".
So be careful! You must slowly build up your doubling chops by gradual introduction of trombone playing. play lightly the t-bone Mon am and not again til Wednesday and only light then too. After a few weeks you'll be able to switch back and forth well. the two will then actually compliment each other. Breathing is improved by T-bone playing. helps your trumpet but TAKE IT EASY!!!
So I will line up to give you the first razzing:
Of course from Down-under. So you are more evidence of using the valves in Lower Brass before progressing to slide.... I do agree with you though.
Peter, thanks for the info and support. I do practice with it for about 30 minutes to an hour a day with long rest periods. I downloaded some music, "Song of Storms, which has three parts, trumpet, trombone and tuba. I wanted to do each part and record them and put it all together. You wouldn't happen to know the fingering for the low D on the bass clef? My fingering chart goes down to low E with three pistons down. I need that to do the tuba part.
Surfingmusician, if you still are looking for a valve trombone, Weril produces one that was going for about $750.00 new.