The following is subjective in the extreme and I'll not seek to defend myself if anyone thinks differently.
First of all, back in the day, a player usually had one trumpet, a Bb, that would be used for all styles. Then too, back in the day, the best teachers were seldom American. Germans had a very meat and potatoes approach, and French were heavily into solfege. Our modern American orchestral sound is based on a synthesis of the two. Without high fidelity recordings, cities developed their own sound, and time was one could make a pretty good guess which orchestra was playing. Philadelphia was famous for their strings, Cleveland for their winds and Chicago for its brass. Boston and New York, as a whole, had their own little niche in the orchestral culture.
As recording techniques developed more and more close miking was used and the orchestral sound followed the recordings. Now it is hard to hear the difference between Berlin and Chicago. Few orchestras have held to their distinctive sounds the way Vienna has.
Intonation was taught by ear and not by a machine; wind-up metronomes were the norm and conductors were dictators.
"A tool good enough to be so used and not too good"C.S. Lewis That Hideous Strength
And there were less distractions in life. I sometimes wonder how much better a player I would be had I not received a computer when I was in middle school. Technology, while useful, is the great time-sucker of the 20th and 21st centuries.
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