Young Man's Trumpet Blues

Discussion in 'Wise Talk!' started by JimmyH, Sep 13, 2005.

  1. JimmyH

    JimmyH New Friend

    Mar 1, 2005
    My son is in his 4th year of playing trumpet. Seems to do all of the right things - professional lessons, honest practice sessions, etc. Along with symphonic band, he elected to join the marching band this (his Freshman)year. Anyway, here's where he needs help: for the last month his endurance, range & articulation has regressed something fierce. The guy he takes lessons from suggested that it could be all of the loud, low notes that he plays (Freshman play 3rd line). My son is getting a bit discouraged, since his level seems to deteriorate as the weeks go by. He continues to practice, but his endurance and articulation/range is so poor, he hasn't been having productive sessions. This all came out of the blue. Do trumpet players hit slumps along the way? Can anyone provide recommendations/suggestions? Many thanks in advance.

  2. wiseone2

    wiseone2 Artitst in Residence Staff Member

    Nov 19, 2003
    Younger players sometimes think that they must play at a high volume level at all times. WRONG! I am willing to bet the farm that his band's only dynamic is loud. He need to work on his playing concepts, chops are the easy part :cool:
    Almost from the very beginning of my trumpet life I played duets. Playing duets will put your playing under a microscope. It will show any weakness, and it can build a sense of pitch,articulation and style.
    Play smart. Don't blast. Think ensemble. Your playing will improve by simply turning down the volume.
  3. JimmyH

    JimmyH New Friend

    Mar 1, 2005
    Many thanks.
  4. bigtiny

    bigtiny Mezzo Forte User

    Aug 14, 2005
    As Wilmer points out playing LOUD all of the time can have this effect. If he's doing that (and if he's new to a screaming marching band, he probably is...) he's just shocking his chops to death. Tell him to back off. Also, if he's playing a lot more everyday than before this can have the effect you describe (though usually it's temporary). I remember when I went to Berklee, I was playing auditions, 8 ensembles, plus practice. By the end of the first week I could hardly play a note. My teacher, Jeff Stout told me that it's a common thing because most students are suddenly playing more every day than they (and their chops) are used to. It went away after a week or so...


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