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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by rowuk, May 10, 2011.
I think that must be my flute player!
Sounds like you need to work with better singers .....Or give them better stage sound. Don't forget that singers don't get the benefit of any "slots" and always have to create their own intonation from scratch, like a fretless bass. Imagine how much more difficult the trumpet would be if it had no slots. More often than not, singers have trouble being on key because they can't hear well enough on stage (that's been my experience). Put the same singer next to a piano (or guitar) without anything else and they will usually be on. If not, well, don't quit the day job.
Playing in tune is a widely varying thing depending on what the instrumentation is around you and how many other instruments are playing. I think that the most difficult place to get intonation right is in the practice room, a capella, without any other instruments. The first time my trumpet teacher asked me to do a piece from a book, I asked, "With no accompaniment???"
Having most of the sound go forward, away from your ears, doesn't help either.
It's a church setting so the singers have monitors. And, since they are church singers, talent is not the first priority. I don't know what the criteria really is outside of nepotism!
At one time I was going to do the voice thing also. I would audition on my horn and voice. I agree about the on stage hearing issues. In my high school choir, I sang the starting note on our accapella songs because I have perfect pitch. If the other side of the choir didn't hear it, whew!
Right. Church is another thing altogether.
And dude, if you have perfect pitch, the last thing you want to be is a singer. THAT would be enough to drive anyone nuts. Better to stick with the horns .... I can only imagine how helpful that would be (perfect pitch) in playing the trumpet. It's pretty rare, according to my ex the violin teacher. And there's controversy about whether it can be taught or not (most say no).
Personally I conclude intonation to consist of 10% of what you think you've got and 90% of what your audience thinks.
That's a good point. Sometimes I will think I/the band stunk it up bad and my wife will say, "Ya'll sounded awesome this morning"! There's a guy in our congregation that was a drummer for Huey Lewis and he will say something similar. I told him he needed to turn his hearing aid up! He said if we really practiced, our band could tour. My wife would "love" that!
That is a scary thought, considering some of the drunken audiences I've played to.
Wow, Huey Lewis was considered the best club band in SF for many years ..... that guy probably knows what he's talking about, even if he is just a drummer.
Yeah, I've heard it was rare also (perfect pitch). The only people that I've heard who say it can be learned are the one's selling product to enhance your abilities. I don't know if it can be taught or not. That's a thread for the experts! Sorry for the slow responses this a.m., I'm play testing a '53 Martin Committee large bore. I mention that because I always "heard" they had intonation problems. This one does not. What an awesome horn (Chris Botti watch out)!
I joke with him about his hearing cuz they didn't wear hearing protection back then! He's a great guy. He sits to my right and this Sunday, even I knew we were smokin' hot! I glanced to my right and he's giving us both thumbs up! I had to try not to smile (bad embouchure) while playing!