Why can't I play any higher? advice

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by kcr09, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. Markie

    Markie Forte User

    Jan 4, 2009
    Clarksburg, WV
    Pops Clinton has a neat site on how to play high.
    good luck
  2. SpiritDCI08

    SpiritDCI08 Piano User

    Feb 11, 2009
    Fort Campbell, KY
    Long tones, Lip Slurs, and over all Playing. Practice is the only way to achieve high notes. The trumpet players who exced are the ones who take their horn home and practice. Google Lips Slurs and you can find some very good exercises. But remember, you chops are like any other muscle in your body. The more you work them out, the stronger they will be. They'll also need rest, so pick a day when you do only long tones and slurs for an hour and no more.

    Hope you get to that C (or higher :))

  3. wiseone2

    wiseone2 Artitst in Residence Staff Member

    Nov 19, 2003
    You must work on basics. I began playing trumpet using a Conn 22B and the mouthpiece that came with the horn, a Conn 4. It is not the horn or the mouthpiece.
    Get the basic trumpet literature.....Arban, Clarke and maybe some of the Sigmund Hering books.
    Be prepared to not play well.
    Work slowly using the Clarke Technical Studies. Play them quietly, they will not hurt you if you play them correctly. Be very patient, it is a slow process.
    Any suggestion that sounds crazy usually is.
    Ask your band director to play duets. Watch videos of great players, they will give you hints.
    You don't need a new horn or mouthpiece.
  4. gbdeamer

    gbdeamer Forte User

    Oct 16, 2008
    I know you probably don't want to hear that you need to work with a trumpet teacher, but that's the best solution for you. ALL of the advice about exercises is good, but if you're doing something fundamentally wrong, none of it will help. Your equipment is fine (I had a Conn 22B and 7C mouthpiece in high school and had no issues with range or endurance) so save enough for ONE lession with a good teacher to start you in the right direction...
  5. oldenick

    oldenick Pianissimo User

    Apr 10, 2007
  6. rowuk

    rowuk Moderator Staff Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Forget about hardware!
    You don't need have to have a private teacher to get qualified help. Your band teacher can help you put together a decent daily routine to help your playing.

    Picking a solo with a C when you only have an A available only makes sense when you only use it to push yourself. If it is for a live performance, you have assumed that getting your act together means instant better (bad assumption). Quite often things get worse before they get better - especially as you have invested 8 years in the way you play now! Habits are VERY hard to break.

    I would pick a different solo. Making music gets you further than focussing only on one aspect of your playing!!!!!!!
  7. Artemisia

    Artemisia Pianissimo User

    Jan 24, 2009
    Practise the higher notes and, if you don't get any better after a while, change the mouthpiece. Try many different mouthpieces from different producers until you get the one that suits your mouth/your lips the best.
  8. gbdeamer

    gbdeamer Forte User

    Oct 16, 2008
    I'm not sure I agree with this thought. If we were talking about someone who was loking to play double C's as the lead player of a big band, then maybe an equipment change would do the trick, but for a high school player looking to play high C? A 7C isn't a big mouthpiece, so I would recommend building the chops on that first and then switch as needed.

    You have to crawl before you walk and putting fancy shoes on a toddler won't help the situation. Same here IMO...
  9. Artemisia

    Artemisia Pianissimo User

    Jan 24, 2009
    That's what I wanted to say: First he/she ought to practise a lot. If it really doesn't get any better, he/she should think of using another mouthpiece - but he/she should try his/her best to play well with the mouthpiece he/she's currently using.

    There're so many different mouthpieces, there'll always be the right one for you - you just have to find it. So watch out.

    But first of all, practise.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 24, 2009
  10. Labidochromis

    Labidochromis Pianissimo User

    Jan 7, 2009
    Armstrong BC.
    Forget about the hardware.

    Check out this video

    YouTube - At the Monette factory 2

    Adam Rapa can switch between mouthpieces and play beautifully, it does not affect his range at all, just the tone or timber of the trumpet and possibly comfort and endurance.

    The reason for this is that he has an incredibly strong and flexible embouchure that only comes with hard work and practice. The practice builds range and endurance along with technical ability. The hardware changes the tone.

    In the video you will see him change between large mouthpieces, small mouthpieces, deep and shallow cup mouthpieces. The only thing that changes is his tone not his range.

    If you need to play better practice more and practice under proper guidance from a teacher.


    Last edited: Feb 24, 2009

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