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Trumpet Discussion Discuss Leadpipe Buzzing in the General forums; Manny, What exacty is leadpipe buzzing, is it just playing on the leadpipe like you see young kids do? I ...
  1. #1
    Pianissimo User Principaltrumpet's Avatar
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    Nov 2006
    north texas

    Leadpipe Buzzing

    What exacty is leadpipe buzzing, is it just playing on the leadpipe like you see young kids do? I have Lip and MP buzzed throughout the years but leadpipe buzzing isnt anything that I have been introduced to. What are the benifits of it? Can it harm your playing?
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  2. #2
    Mezzo Piano User Derek Reaban's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
    Tempe, Arizona

    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing


    There is a web site that Mark Minasian has created with details about The Adam Routine.

    I really like this quote from Bill Adam concerning playing the mouthpiece / leadpipe combination.

    "I know there has to be a certain amount of mouthpiece buzzing to warm up the resilience that we have to have here. But if we can set the mouthpiece and tube in vibration, the embouchure is much more relaxed. What we're trying to do is to get the air through that horn with the least amount of tension and the least amount of muscle."
    I’ve found that playing on the mouthpiece / leadpipe combination is also extremely beneficial to immediacy of response when beginning the sound without using the tongue. When you can transfer this feel to the horn, there is more vibrancy and resonance in your sound. Breathe deep, release the air, and allow the pipe to play your lips. When you do this, there is no tension in your sound production!

    PH (Pat Harbison) has written in great detail on this topic. It’s worth finding and reading his ideas.
    Derek Reaban
    Tempe, Arizona

  3. #3
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    Yee HAW!

    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    Stepping in before Manny has a chance, I'll just add one more thing: leadpipe buzzing is quite different on an Eclipse!

  4. #4
    Pianissimo User S-Money's Avatar
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    Mechanicsburg, PA

    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    I use this method every few days or so... its a great tool...

    But, for me its a bit different... i can do this, or (because I play an Edwards trumpet), i can take out the tuning slide and use the casing for it... and it works even better! So cool... give it a try if you have the equipment.
    Blow your life through your horn

  5. #5
    Forte User
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    Atlanta, GA

    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    Quote Originally Posted by Tootsall View Post
    Stepping in before Manny has a chance, I'll just add one more thing: leadpipe buzzing is quite different on an Eclipse!
    Hey Toots, you might want to hit up an instrument repair guy for a lead pipe. I am sure you can find one cheap. Pat and I had Leigh make us lead pipes so we could do this exercise. (They are 'blinged-out' in gold too. ) I might even have an old Yamaha C trumpet lead pipe laying around. If I locate it, I would be happy to send it to you.
    Last edited by Alex Yates; 04-09-2007 at 09:04 PM.

  6. #6
    Utimate User
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    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    Some folks swear by it. I've gotten along for 39 years without doing it.


  7. #7
    Moderator Utimate User rowuk's Avatar
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    Jun 2006

    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    I have never used it for myself or my students either. It is just time away from the horn.
    If we look at what happens when we play: we blow against our lips, that would normally push them into the mouthpiece cup BUT the mouthpiece throat AND the resistance of the horn make the air "back up" some, thus supporting the lips. When I buzz the mouthpiece, I have less support on the front side of the lips and can compensate by tightening the corners. This is why "buzzing" can be good for someone trying to build strength. The problem is that we are building raw strength and not dexterity. My experience is that too much buzzing kills flexibility very quickly.
    When I attach a leadpipe to the mouthpiece, I still am playing way below the resonant pitch of the pipe, therefore have no acoustical advantage over a mouthpiece alone - the spit is just 8-10" further away and not on my hand. There is a difference in tone produced however, and that is easier for some people to hear.
    It doesn't matter if you have a leadpipe or an 8-12" length of plastic hosing. The function is identical.
    I never buzz more than a minute at a time, play my horn some and then buzz again. Players in great shape can do many things before side effects pop up, so we need to be careful when explaining this to people without "iron chops"!
    Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.

  8. #8
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    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    Really, I have never actually tried either. I really don't know anyone that really has. It's just best not to.
    Last edited by Manny Laureano; 04-11-2007 at 08:11 AM.
    God gives the sound I just play it

  9. #9
    Moderator Utimate User Vulgano Brother's Avatar
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    Mar 2006
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    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    One of the fun things about trumpet and trumpet pedagogy is the huge number of lenses we have to look at our instrument. One such view emphasizes the trumpet as a megaphone, and the Stamp method, note bending and the like teaches us to control the instrument from the source.

    Pipe buzzing can teach us valuable lessons in playing the trumpet as a trumpet. One most effective way is to leave the tuning slide in, adding some length to the leadpipe.

    The first thing to learn is that we tend to play below the fundamental. Blowing faster will raise it up to pitch, and we can learn the "feel" of a well supported tone, and the "feeling" of foucus. We can learn the "feel" of playing other notes in the harmonic series.

    Try pressing some valves down. Often the pitch will go down, even though we are not lengthening the air-column. (Weird voodoo here!)

    I find pipe-buzzing less valuable as a training device than as a learning experience. Have fun!
    "A tool good enough to be so used and not too good"
    C.S. Lewis That Hideous Strength

  10. #10
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    Re: Leadpipe Buzzing

    I do like the reinforcing of Stamp's idea that as you add more metal, the lips must relax (i.e. lip buzz alone = lots of firmness, mouthpiece alone = somewhat less, mpc and pipe = much less, complete instrument = least amount) - For me, it helps bridge the gap between the feel of lip or mpc buzzing and the more open feel of the instrument - if you're either too loose or too tight, you can hear it easily on the pipe - for me, it's a good way to start the day and make sure that I'm not fighting the horn from the get-go - YMMV. For me, if I feel too tight I'll focus a bit longer on the pipe to loosen up and relax down to the center - if I feel too open, I'll spend some time with the mouthpiece matching pitch with the piano or doing soft breath attacks on the pipe - it's also good to check out the top of staff G on the pipe and high D to make sure that you're not fighting the horn as your day progresses.

    BTW, the more metal=less tension thing is explained pretty well in Roy Poper's book about Stamp's teaching - there's also a video on Stars Teach Music with Jon Lewis demoing some of these thoughts with respect to mpc buzzing IIRC - TC
    Last edited by timcates; 04-10-2007 at 01:12 PM.

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