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Trumpet Discussion Discuss On edge with this trumpet in the General forums; Hello everyone, my name is David. I am currently a senior at my high school. I have always been towards ...
  1. #1
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    Sep 2007

    On edge with this trumpet

    Hello everyone, my name is David. I am currently a senior at my high school. I have always been towards the top in my class, but have never felt like I have the skills to keep me going post high school.

    I don't know why, but no matter how much I play my mouthpiece wont stay on my mouth. It feels like I have no control in my top lip, or just that all my muscles or missing. It just keeps slipping off! Hand positioning is definitely not the problem. I have come to face the fact that maybe I'm not physically able to play, and to put away the 8 years I've been playing...but I can't.

    More in depth with the problem though...when I play it feels like I am hardly buzzing. I put on one of the "mouthpiece simulators" (where they can see the other side of your mouth) and showed it to two different teachers whose response was surprisingly the same. (Here, let me take a few pictures and show it to my friend.) They also say that my buzz is so weak to the point where it's hardly even a buzz. My airstream while free buzzing is right down my chin and hits my chest. Attempting to bring out my lower jaw to send the airstream right down the middle of the horn just results in my original top lip slipping right off with no control.

    I understand that the middle should be loose, with the sides tightened. I think my middle may be a little too tight, but without the extra tightness in there, my top lips falls right off once again. I understand all the proper breathing after my two teachers who insist on hitting that point before anything else and it all works PERFECT until my lips hit the horn. Occasionally my bottom lip will even flutter against the bottom of my mouthpiece completely shutting down my sound.

    I am pretty flexible with my playing, but have no volume, endurance, or precision. This isn't because of lack of practice either. Maybe though, it's lack of GOOD practice. If I'm practicing with a terrible embouchure, then it is useless right?

    SORRY if this seems like nothing but a mindless rant, and I thank all these who have read. After 3 years of troubles (this started upon entering high school) it's just too much to handle alone.



  2. #2
    Piano User Annie's Avatar
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    Nov 2003

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    First off - relax a bit. At least from what you wrote, it sounds like you might have not have enough pressure between your chops and the mouthpiece. Don't forget that too much pressure is bad - but it is just as bad as too little pressure!

    Try just plain lip buzzing, and then bring the mouthpiece to your chops - just the mouthpiece, no horn, and then buzz on the mouthpiece for a bit. Experiment with the pressure - and then try adding the horn. Play long tones, focus on getting a nice, solid tone. If the mouthpiece keeps slipping off, try putting just a touch more pressure...

    This is at least what I'd do with my own practicing. If it isn't a pressure thing, maybe you need to change the way you hold your horn, and without a picture, it's hard to make a recommendation.

    *I may not be great yet, but I'm working hard on it and one day I'm gonna be there.*

  3. #3
    Moderator Utimate User rowuk's Avatar
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    Jun 2006

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    Although I generally always have something to say, this could be so many different things that I think you need a teacher with chop experience - at least to get started. What city are you from, maybe we can suggest somebody appropriate?
    After 3 years of trying, you have proven to me that you WANT to succeed. I do not think that internet advice can get you on the right track.
    edfitzvb likes this.
    Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.

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    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    Yeah, I figured inetrnet was a long shot, but at least I figured I could get comfort :)

    Thanks for all the replies! I am always willing to take suggestions and put them to hard work.

    As for my area, I live in northern Florida, right on the Alabama line. Currently I am taking lessons in downtown Pensacola. There is this guy though, named Scotty Barnhart. He has offered to give me lessons upon traveling to Tallahassee in a week or two. I feel like I may be looking for a miracle drug in this guy, but eitehr way he knows his stuff, and can give me a solid answer atleast.

  5. #5
    Forte User stchasking's Avatar
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    Jun 2006

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    Find this lady and arrange a meeting with her. She is in Boston, Mass

    Jeanne Pocius

    She has a book you may want to read.

    Where are you located? (Trumpeting by Nature by Jeanne Pocius - a review)

    Jeanne G. Pocius

    Trumpeter Jeanne Pocius
    Last edited by stchasking; 09-04-2007 at 11:12 PM.
    "I was performing professionally at age 17 and have never had a real job." Allen Vizzutti

  6. #6
    Pianissimo User trptchopdoc's Avatar
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    Jan 2005
    Port-au-Prince, Haiti

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    David, first off, a couple of questions:

    1. Do you have a moustache? Believe it or not, hair can be slippery and can affect how well your mouthpiece seals, or if it slips.

    2. Do you sweat a lot when you play? That can also have an effect upon your mouthpiece set.

    3. What size and type of mouthpiece are you using?

    4. Where are you locating the mouthpiece when you start to play?

    If you can answer these questions, we can start to get to the root of your problems. Also, do you have SKYPE on your computer? (that might be the fastest way to get responses for you).

    Talk to you soon,

  7. #7
    Piano User PINCHUNO's Avatar
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    Apr 2005

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    scotty is a famous jazz musician and trumpet soloist with the basie big band. I think he knows what he's talking about!

  8. #8
    Utimate User tobylou8's Avatar
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    Dec 2008

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    Zombie thread!!!
    Knowledge is freedom, and ignorance is slavery - Miles Davis

    The difference between a beginner and pro mouthpiece is practice - tobylou8

    Nobody has learned how to play the trumpet. It's endless. - Maynard Ferguson

    Don't be afraid to try something different. The Ark was built by an amateur and the Titanic was built by a group of experienced engineers.

    By the inch it's a cinch, by the yard, it's hard!

  9. #9
    Forte User Chuck Cox's Avatar
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    Oct 2008
    Cary NC

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    By the time you read this, 4 long years will have past. He got married. The first baby is on the way. And......he solved his problem by switching to clarinet. Anyone else have an alternate ending to this story ?
    operagost likes this.
    Chuck Cox
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  10. #10
    Utimate User kingtrumpet's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
    New York State USA

    Re: On edge with this trumpet

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck Cox View Post
    By the time you read this, 4 long years will have past. He got married. The first baby is on the way. And......he solved his problem by switching to clarinet. Anyone else have an alternate ending to this story ?
    YES - the OP probably switched to the clarinet, and forgot about all you TM'rs -- now that his email is getting hits from this post, so many years later -- he decides to ignore all of us -- because he is posting on "Clarinet forum" how wildly successful he has been at the clarinet, and how trumpet players suck. How trumpet playing almost ruined his good sense of music -- BUT in the end the frustration of the trumpet drove him to play clarinet --- were success was available. By the way in his new woodwind section of the orchestra in his local community -- he is now dating a Saxaphone player ---- and they plan on being married next year!!!!!!!!!!!!! ps. they vow to never buy any of their children a trumpet, and plan on steering them into playing a woodwind..................and they live somewhat happily forever after!!!!!!
    1991 King Silver Flair
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