So, here's an update:
I'm playing in a church orchestra now that I thought, at first, wasn't going to challenge me much, and I wasn't too excited after my first visit. I have since returned for another practice and service, and wow this week was great!!! They actually do have some pretty demanding charts! One tune we did starts off in D maj, and the best way for me to describe the chart is that it's sort of an "Earth Wind and Fire" type of tune. The first note for 1st trumpet is a high D. So, for about 64 bars or more you're playing up around high D, and then it modulates up a half step! So then you play up around high Eb for awhile, but wait... it gets better! It modulates again up another half step to have you play high Es for awhile and through to the end. The last note being, of course, a high E. I couldn't keep up with it, but was playing a good bit of the high notes when I felt like I could. One of the other charts we did is written in B maj 7 (not dominant 7th), and at the chorus there are two eighth note "pops" written as A# and B *doo dah!*. So, I was consistently playing the thirds on top as C# and D#, and it felt like I could have played the fifth easily, but that's a theoretical "no no" right? Anyway, so what I'm finding is that I will relapse into my old tendency to "overblow" the upper register occassionally (like when I see high Ds, Ebs and Es written all over the place), but when I just relax and blow freely things come out great! I was pretty worn out after the service this weekend, but suprisingly I woke up yesterday morning feeling just fine. I had a little swelling from playing pretty hard, but my lips weren't sore or anything. I took a light day yesterday anyway, and today I feel great. So, I'm going to start a new post about "Building Strength" to talk about an approach for playing in that type of group, and I'll ask some questions that you guys might be able to answer. See you over there hopefully!!!
I have tryed this soft playing but let it slide,
I'm encouraged by this forum and will include it in my practice
The softest I can go is pp.
How do you get softer?
Usually,after pp,I try to get softer but my air just stops and I stop playing.
In my practice routine, this is a soft playing is relative dynamic. For example I find it much easier to play "pppp" in the lower register as opposed to the higher register. So, as I ascend I continue to play as softly as possible, but the volume seems to go up a little bit. What I've been doing is similar to the material on Bob Odneal's "Casual Double High C" which I'm implementing into my daily practice. Have a great one.
Why are we so obsessed with bore size? Are we trying to compensate for something?
When I get so soft, and I can play pretty soft. My lips just stop vibrating. My air stream continues. I used to add air to get my sound back, but have learned to finesse it with my lips.
I have been working on Clarkes, etc. and my range is building. I like the Arban studies on slurring, especially page 44, exercises 22 & 23. Holding the the whole note out at the end of each line and fading to the most quiet sound possible. Nice firm corners and as little pressure as possible. Thinking CONTROL.
Also great are the Interval exercises on page 125. I feel they are excellent for your corners. I try for accurate intervals, clear and with out pressure. I try for control with tongue level and breath support.
Building strength just takes time and work. No shortcuts available. I seem to advance to a level that surprises me, and invariably I fall back to a spot that seems to last for several months. And once again I'll make a little progress.
You have to add a little intensity to your workouts. Playing soft with control helps. Hard sessions help, with good rest between. I like to do Etudes, perhaps 5 or 6 in a row, with 30 sec. to a min. of rest between. You must get plenty of recovery time. For me, if I do to much, and this tends to creep up on me. My progress really slows. If I don't recognize I am overworking, my progress stops.
I'm getting off the point. Soft is good. At least in trumpet playing.
"You will gain endurance by playing more." As you know, there are many ways to get there: soft playing, loud playing, extended long tones, but the best way is playing correctly for long periods of time (with the proper rest of course).
The best I ever played was during a summer in the late 70's when ALL I did was play in a funk band and practice. There's just no substitute.
MySpace.com - Ed - 51 - Male - LA, California - www.myspace.com/jazzlips
By air attacks you just mean attacking with no tounge right... just start blowing until you create a tone and go with that?
- Bach Omega
- Bach 3C
- Bach 3c Megatone
- Berkley Cornet
- Bach Cornet 3C
- Arbans book, Clarke Studies Book.
- Nick Drozdoff's online lessons and words of wisdom through email.
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