As you may have guessed by now some trumpet players have a very easy time playing in the extreme upper register. Never really encountering those obstacles that haunt and stymie the progress the majority of us find. Most trumpet players do not have an extreme upper register. Many very good ones don't even have an upper register at all. Some may doubt this concept. Thinking that all is required is hard work, patience and perseverance to be able to scream Double C's. And no doubt every trumpet player could benefit from those three attributes.
That said let their be no doubt that cats like Mark Zauss, and Lyn Nicholson are naturally blessed with certain physical properties that do not exist within the mouths of the great majority of us. The average trumpet player is probably not going to find the ability to smear a musical sounding High C to an E above DHC (Double High C) at a volume that would clear the house of all company. But Zauss and Nicholson can do this. At least the average cat will not get these results from within the confines of his most comfortable embouchure setting. A harsh reality but believe me it's true.
The goal for the rest of us probably is to develop what we have, play musically and try to at least be able to play a solid musical High F as needed for several Stan Kenton type big band charts. An ability that is not so common actually. However these kind of chops probably are within the reality of those of us less fortunate. And when you think of it we can take more pride than the gifted players. Unlike the gifted we REALLY worked for it.
Doubt me? Here's the proof. This is not a recommended embouchure change. Not unless you can swiftly put the system together*. If so? Then sure. Run with it. This is however just an experiment. For you to prove to yourself that by putting your chops in a specific position fairly easy high notes will emanate. You probably will never be able to use this trick successfully. Just an experiment to prove a point to yourself.
Put together these items:
1. Small mirror to fit on music stand.
2. A medium size to small mouthpiece. For extra credit get something weird like the Lynch Assymetric piece. The Lynch piece will help partially incapacitate the lower lip. Allowing it to merely guide the dominant upper lip in the freak chop setting described below. Freeing the upper lip to allow unlimited range.
Or maybe even get one of Trumpetmaster's brilliant Dr. Dave's pieces. I can't quite explain why Dave's pieces can work so well in the upper register. At least not within a short forum post anyway. But they often do allow a favorable embouchure contact position for high notes.
While looking in mirror throw your jaw out until the lower teeth extend past your uppers. Leave a gap between the lower and uppers of something near a quarter of an inch.
Next pull down and completely roll your lower lip with your index finger while holding steady the forward jaw setting. Expose the inner gum of your lower lip.
Place mouthpiece connected to trumpet on your chops while maintaining the forward jaw and pooched out lower lip. Put the mouthpiece right on the inner gum of your lower lip. This will feel silly but do it anyway. Point the horn our slightly up or above a perpendicular to your face. Your forward jaw will require this anyway. Experiment with other horn angles too just for kicks. Whatever works...
Keep the flesh on the mouthpiece soft and supple but firm up your corners.
Take a medium deep breath and blow lightly upwards into the mouthpiece. Again, keep the mouth corners firm and with mouthpiece set on the inner gum of your lower lip. Strive for something at or around a High C. Then with firm mouth corners push more air pressure into the horn until notes in excess of High G squeak out. Keep your jaw/teeth position at least a little open. You may at first get only fart sounds or hissing static. However when it starts to sound like a tree branch breaking? Or the static from a short wave radio? You're getting close. Some have compared the precursor tones to sounding like the old test pattern of a non cable TV set...
With practice you can very easily blow Triple C's this way. With even more practice you may open up the register above High G so loudly that everyone will need to leave the house in order to avoid ear drum damage. Playing in this "wigged" out setting I can sometimes blow a G above DHC so loudly that it hurts my own ears. With hardly more effort than if I were to play a High C on my regular chops.
However i kind of doubt that you'll be able to connect this trick down into the lower register and make some kind of professional and durable chop technique out of it. Some cats will but unless you're willing to put five to ten years into it? Probably not going to work. Maybe not even then. Yet it might work though. The concern is that by fooling around with this idea you may be chasing rainbows. Allowing your regular chops to waste away while fiddling with some speculative investment in questionable/valuable practice time.
I point out this idea merely to help you gain an understanding that certain gifted trumpet players have the parameters in their chops similar to what you just now temporarily rigged your own chops for. But with a difference: These lucky cats find this or another favorable upper register condition within their lips, jaw and mouth in their natural position. They do not need to trick or wig their chops out for extreme high notes because the physical properties necessary to blow easy high notes exist within their mouth, lips and dental condition since their birth.
With all these coordinates naturally in place these fortunate few just blow and everything works fairly easily. Sure they need time to develop but practicing and performing for them is fun and easy. No carved up lips, fewer cracked notes and far less stress. Of course if they really put their system to the test, like playing the lead book for Maynard's old band they might well be advised to use specialty equipment like shallow scream pieces. However they will never encounter the rough road most of us travel. And despite the inspiration of their amazing abilities they tend to make the worst teachers. With a few notable exceptions. Maynard having been one of these unique sorts.
For the rest of us? Well lucky for us a solid High G is well within our eventual capability. Although we may need to use some specialty equipment. A good understanding of the physical properties (so rarely discussed) of the blow and embouchure also necessary. But we can do it. Also most of us over train our chops. Or we cut off the air. So a crash course in breathing, air support and avoidance of over training is a true "must".
You can fix at least half of all brass players by getting them to breath and blow effectively and aggressively. Using their whole body to feed air support. Maynard knew this. Certainly he was gifted but by virtue of his decades of contact with struggling brass players both from his own band and students he knew how to get the kids to blow.
See about 2:10 here: Maynard Ferguson 1977 clinic - YouTube
Air isn't the only answer but it's a necessity. And one only seldom talked about.
* No matter how many times I write this disclaimer:
"This is not a recommended embouchure change. Not unless you can swiftly put the system together".
No doubt some idiot will still accuse me of promoting embouchure changes. Watch for it! Right here and in spite of my words otherwise. They always do this... The main reason I post anonymously these days. The fools will always prejudge and say stupid things. I refuse to debate mental midgets.