I can barely to it once on one breath! ;)
I can barely to it once on one breath! ;)
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These exercises have probably done more for my speed and coordination than any other.I usually warm up with one of the first five studies sluring and double tounging them.
I have played through most of the book several times.
The exercises get everything moving together.
When I'm playing and just come to a simple run, sometimes it doesn't come out even. When that happens I go back to Clark. It's kind of like running for a football player or working out with weights. You have to do it to stay in shape.
I shouldn't wait until the run comes out uneven but I'm apart time player just trying to hold it together for as long as I can.
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That book should be in everybodies daily routine!
My personal take:
Speed is a function of precision so practice ONLY with a metronome and at a speed where it is rhythmically perfect. If you practice these things at moderate tempos until they are memorized, you will be able to play them faster than if you try to build up speed gradually. The issue is the precision at which we are pushing the valves down and the patterns burned into our brain. Burning the pattern in at a moderate tempo burns precision too. I advocate picking a metronome speed and sticking with it for a couple of weeks(even if you can get through at higher speeds!), then increasing the speed substantially in one shot and sticking with that for a couple of weeks. Play all the keys at the exact same tempo, don't play the easy ones faster. Discipline and precision are the keys to success here!
Your body and breathing should be completely relaxed - also something better trained at moderate tempos!
Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.
I do some alterations on some of the exercises. For example, the first study I do through the octave. ie. start on C, play down to F#, up to F# and back to C (and variants for many different keys daily). Of course, varying articulation can also make this more interesting.
Study #2 can be altered in, literally, dozens of ways. All major keys is a given, but I am currently working on dorian. Up next will be chromatic, diminished, whole tone.......and upside down, too (I'm not kidding). I use the second study to go along with whatever scales and arpeggios I am working on, and will alter it accordingly.
For the rest of the book, I'm still working on what's printed.
While I thank everyone for the aforementioned advice, I think I need to further clarify my question. I think jjt hit closest to the mark. I'm asking this question while keeping in mind that beautiful sound, finger accuracy and appropriate dynamics are a given.
What I'm looking for is what kind of articulation patterns have you used, and what keys/interval variations do you use when practicing the clarke studies. At the moment I am concentrating on the second study. I currently practice it in minor 2nds, major 2nds, minor 3rds and in the Ionian mode.
By the way thanks jjt, you gave me a bit of a brainstorm with your upside down idea. I've ended up with somewhere around eight basic combinations and twenty-four extended variations!
So I hope this clears up what I'm after, any kinds of variations you folks could come up with would be appreciated!
I have a collection of players/teachers here and how they use/used Clarke's Tech book:
Herbert L. Clarke: Technical Studies
If you google in "Chris Gekker Summer Practice " you will get a lot of good info about the Clarke Tech studies and also the Schlossberg and Arban. He lays aout a very effective practice routine using the above mentioned books. Basically Gekker says to practice one study a day
leaving out the "etudes" at first. Resting often
Gekker allowed me to use his essay on my website:
Summer Practice, 2002
I now have added him to my "Clarke/Tech list".
I do #s 1,2,3,4,5,7 weekly. I don't even own the book anymore as they were memorized long ago. I never intended to memorize them, but it happened through repetition. I also tongue them and multiple tongue them. They are a part of my daily routine.
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