We do NOT damage our embouchure by switching between 20 mouthpieces! The mouthpieces are metal and have no evil spirit inside them.
WE DAMAGE OURSELVES WHEN WE DO NOT PRACTICE ENOUGH FOR THE EQUIPMENT THAT WE CHOOSE.
As far as picking a mouthpiece goes, take them all to a really nice sounding hall and play to a second set of ears that you trust. Let them tell you what sounds good 100 feet out. Then LISTEN to THEM.
I have previously recommended putting all other mouthpieces in a tupperware box, filling it with water and then deep freezing them. That prevents impulsive lack of control.
All that being said, I have different mouthpieces for different playing situations and use the one (or more) that are coming up next when I practice:
Symphony: big deep mouthpiece
Commericial/BigBand non lead: smaller shallower mouthpiece
Lead: specialty mouthpiece
Natural trumpet: specialty mouthpiece
Cornetto: specialty mouthpiece
Flugel/Cornet: deep vee mouthpiece
The practice time per day increases linearly with the quantity of mouthpieces used: 1+n=T*(1+n)
Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.
I've played for 20+ years on the same mouthpieces--different cup depths, different cup designs, different throats, different backbores. Each matched to a particular horn. Each sharing a common denominator, rim diameter and profile. I recently bought a Wick 3FL when I got my new flugel--needed a different shank. When I can afford it I'll be having a mouthpiece made with the 3FL cup and throat and a Schilke 13A4a rim. I also bought a Wcik 3 for cornet--wrecked the intonation--I'll be sticking with what I have. Loved what the Curry 5FL did for my C-Trumpet--yep, another custom mouthpiece with a 5FL cup and a 13A4a rim. After that the Wicks and the Curry will be for sale--let someone else try them for less than new prices.
Anyway, my philosophy of mouthpiece selection is find what works and use it till it doesn't. If changing cup, throat, backbore will get you where you need to go, that's what you do--no safari necessary. But if you do have to make a complete change--it needs to be organized and purposed, and it may take a while. It really took me a couple of months to figure out the Wick 3 for my cornet wasn't going to work--fell in love with the sound so it took me a couple of months to begin to hear exactly how bad the intonation issues were. So take your time and don't just hazardously jump around between 20 miscellaneous mouthpieces.
Last edited by amzi; 07-23-2011 at 03:16 AM.
but I just cannot pick one and stick with it. I have Yamaha 11c4 that I lets say prefer -but it seems a bit too tihgt. Than I have yahama 16c4 but it is maybe a bit too big. Than I have Gewa 7c but it feels just the same as Yamaha 11c4, Than I have no name Bach 1C copy but it feels a bit big. Than I have no name Bach 7C copy that feels nice much like Yamha 11c4 and it is also a megatone. Than I have bunch of other, I have one vintage holton that I havent properly cleaned yet therefore not tested properly
Also one member here from TM recently sold me Al Hirt D mpc -and that mpc is just awfull and I will throw it or sell it-so it is probably 19 left to pick from
Sometimes multiple types work well.
The decision isn't finding the perfect mouthpiece, because it depends on what you want.... what aspects do you want MOST? Good tone? Endurance? Flexibility? Piercing lead playing? There is no mouthpiece that optimizes all of those, but maybe you can focus on one or two aspects. I would focus on a certain kind of mouthpiece first, and if you want mouthpieces for other styles, put those decisions on hold for a while.
A pre-requisite for a mouthpiece you want is that it should feel good (maybe not necessarily the BEST always, but at least "good"). Listen to your body and take some time with trying out the mouthpieces.
Last edited by Haste2; 07-23-2011 at 04:19 PM.
Have someone bore the throat one drill size on your Yamaha 11C4 or the Gewa 7C which you say feels the same. Thiis will open it up a teeny bit so it shouldn't feel as stuffy. Put the others away (or sell or trade them) and play that piece for 6 months. Find a piece of music you like to play which has challenges both for flexibility, sound, and range, and after you have practiced it for 6 months decide what part of the music is giving you the most trouble.
If you have good flexibility but want a bigger broader sound, go a bit deeper. If you like the sound, but need more flexibility, get a less V-shape or go a bit shallower. Taking all of this to your teacher is a good idea. Staying with one piece (and one horn) for 6 months will take your mind of mouthpieces (and equipment in general) and allow you to focus on playing music.
Nothing is more contagious or tenacious than music. Once you are exposed it gets inside you and you can never get rid of it. It is also non-discriminating. It can be Ride of the Valkyries, In a Gadda da Vida, the Jeopardy 15 second thinking tune, your most disliked commercial jingle - it doesn't matter. Once triggered, off you go, like it or not.
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