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Trumpet Discussion Discuss Beginner Questions in the General forums; dpa10, that video helped me greatly thoughout this week. My embouchure was a little more 'outward' than the Military Man's ...
  1. #21
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    Oct 2009

    Re: Beginner Questions

    dpa10, that video helped me greatly thoughout this week. My embouchure was a little more 'outward' than the Military Man's embouchure in the video, and correcting it (more inward lips) is proving effective. Not to mention all of the breathing concepts are helping me play much longer without wasting a ton of air!

  2. #22
    New Friend
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    Sep 2009

    Re: Beginner Questions

    I found the lessons helpful also.
    There are a whole series of them on Youtube.

  3. #23
    Forte User B15M's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Monroe Ct.

    Re: Beginner Questions

    Please see below for the answers:

    Quote Originally Posted by snazzypadgett View Post
    I'll just cut to the chase!

    1) How often should I empty the spit valve? I am getting sort of compulsive about it, emptying it almost every minute, hahaha. But the thing is, it's always got a fair amount of spit in it. Is this because I'm a beginner? Will I use less spit for my notes as I develop better embouchure? I don't think the amount of water has anything to do with your playing. Empty often, I do it before I play or in a band every time before I come in.

    2) Is it okay to oil my valves only when I feel them beginning to stick? So far that's been only once. My trumpet isn't worth a Strad, of course, so is it okay to not oil it every day I play like I've read in some places?

    Use a lot of oil often. It can only help. If it goes dry, you have metal on metal and will get wear. Oil is cheap, I do it every day.

    3) Breathing question: What is the principle of 'stale air?' Should I empty out all of the air in my lungs before I inhale more? Or should I just breathe in more on top of what has already been in there? It's not like the breathing times are always perfectly in time with when I am completely out of breath. It just feels bad to inhale air when I still have air in me--I've been taught to exhale everything before inhaling in choir anyway.

    I like to take in a big breath and re-fill when I'm about half empty. Each time I re-fill, I keep some stale air in there. It doesn't matter for playing the trumpet. If you keep doing this for a long time, you will need to exhale and get fresh air. I think it happens about 1% of the time for me. Almost never!

    4) Tuning slide. How do I use it? I don't understand, because I don't understand where the 'center' of the open C is. I can bend it to almost an A under the C, and can only go just barely sharp over the C. Should I move the slide so that I can bend equally in both directions from the C? With the slide all the way in, it still is much easier to be under the pitch than over.

    Trumpets for the most part are all made to the same size. Use the main slide to get in the ball park. Use your lip or the other slides to get small adjustments. I wouldn't worry too much about the best place for the slide for now. Just try to play as "in tune" as possible.

    Get a tuning fork and put it to your ear while at the same time playing the same note. I like that to work on tuning way more than a tuner.

    Thanks everyone!
    I ask a lot of questions. Don't be afraid to ask or analyze your playing. That's how you get better.
    Last edited by B15M; 10-24-2009 at 10:48 AM.

  4. #24
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    Join Date
    Dec 2009

    Re: Beginner Questions

    I suppose I just want general help about progress. I've been playing since August of this year (my first brass instrument). What should be the normal playing range and sight reading ability?

  5. #25
    Piano User
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    New York

    Re: Beginner Questions


    What kind of musical training did you have before? Did you already know how to read music? How much time are you playing each day? Too many variables to be able to answer such a vague question - tell us more about yourself.
    Last edited by Khora; 12-14-2009 at 10:33 PM. Reason: clarity

    "Conventional Wisdom" should not be applied to unconventional thinking.

  6. #26
    Fortissimo User
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Yorba Linda, CA

    Re: Beginner Questions

    Deathyman - you really need to start your own thread for this question. It is not likely any of the regulars will see it here on the third page stuck at the end of a thread which everyone has already read. Also, you could go to the 'Introductions and Greetings' section and post some background about yourself. We all like to know the new members better. And, Welcome to TrumpetMaster. I think you will find a lot of useful information here but we need more to work with to give you some specific help.
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  7. #27
    Piano User
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    New Hampshire

    Re: Beginner Questions

    And you need to remember that there is no "normal." There is no timetable to which everybody should expect to adhere. Your range will expand as you practice, and only your body will do it at your schedule. Even another person of the same age, relative body build and facial build and musical background (or lack thereof) won't expand their range at the same time. As for music reading skills, it's like a foreign language -- and everybody has their own language-learning abilities. For some it's easy, for others it's harder.

    I tell my beginning students (young and old alike) that learning to play an instrument is the same as learning to read and speak a foreign language while using a mechanical voice box. All three of which capabilities takes time to become fluent at doing.

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