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Trumpet Discussion Discuss Mute story in the General forums; Since we've moved over to slides...this was about a year and a half ago... I was standing, blowing a plunger ...
  1. #21
    Piano User krossum's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    New York, NY, USA
    Since we've moved over to slides...this was about a year and a half ago...

    I was standing, blowing a plunger solo, my 3rd slide was secured, and I went for the effect of a fully closed horn. This is similar to the stopped technique that french horn players use, it gives a great buzzing sound about a half step higher than the fingered note.

    Anyway, this effect works best when you blow really hard...

    Yep, you guessed it. The first slide blew out of my horn... and landed in my front left shirt pocket! I stopped playing and started to laugh; so did the audience.

    All is well that ends well. Now, I wrap a hair elastic around both slides everytime I even think of picking up that $2.50 piece of rubber.

    “This art is acquired only by laborious studies, for the rebellious nature of the instrument demands a great aptitude coupled with a persevering willingness to become a master of it.” – F.G.A. Dauverné (1857)

  2. #22
    Mezzo Piano User Derek Reaban's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Tempe, Arizona
    Yep...I've got several.

    I purchased a Tom Crown Straight copper bottom mute at Interlochen in 1983. This was my only straight mute (my Vacchiano was either lost or stolen - can't remember). After many years with this mute (and dropping it several times along the way), I was using in with my Quintet in Phoenix during a recital. There was a long duet part with the other trumpet player, and at random times, my mute bottom deciced to buzz. VERY LOUDLY! I thought the other trumpet player was going to lose it. This was the first time that it ever happened.

    The trombone player in my group (John Lofton), would always tease me about that incident when we had jobs in the future. "I see you're not using your Buzzwell anymore!"

    Next story is with my Wind Ensemble. Like everyone else, my mute let's go during a very quiet entrance and crashes on the riser. We have tiered risers in this ensemble and the trombones sit in front of us, with their risers being about 6-9 inches lower than ours. After it crashed on my riser, it rolled onto their riser, and then rolled back and fell under my riser! I had to get up and crawl under the riser to retrieve my mute. Talk about feeling like an idiot!

    And the final story is not my own, but I laugh everytime that I think about it. One of my friend's was in Chicago for his first audition with the CSO. He had just finished a muted excerpt and taken his mute out. Everything had been going great up to this point. He started the opening of Mahler 5 and was EXTREMELY flat. He stopped playing. From behind the screen he heard Mr. Herseth say, "Push In!".

    Great thread!
    Derek Reaban
    Tempe, Arizona

  3. #23
    Mezzo Forte User cornetguy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Saint Paul, MN
    Quote Originally Posted by tpter1
    Hey Cornetguy...ya know what this means? The piece must be cursed! Were you doing the old version, too?
    no I was doing the new version. haven't done the piece since though
    Per aspera ad astra

  4. #24
    Piano User
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    I have two, one about a friend, and one for me

    The friend first, a friend of mine was annoyed with our drummer not being able to keep time well one day, he took his old Humes and Berg Straight he uses for practice sessions and threw it at him, smacking him in the head and giving him a black eye, all in all the mute was fine, and our drummer has been at his best since the incident.

    Second Story, Mine
    I had a Tom Crown cup mute in(well, not exactly as I found out later) and when i brought my horn up it our director in the back of the head(he was turned around grabbing his score). I quickly grabbed my Humes and Berg Cup(the back up I carried) and put it in so i wouldnt get blamed. Thank God We graduated Jr. High the week after. And he never found out who did it.
    Side Note- I never got that mute back and had to buy a new one

  5. #25
    Forte User
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Farnham (a place too smal
    Jo Ral Copper Bubble, during a section passage (with Surrey Brass - all sitting down), a nice clunk as it hit the floor (a nice dent as a result) and the sight of it rolling across the floor to the trombone section, who kindly kicked it back (adding another dent ).

    I have had my slide fly out as well - playing a concert of Gabrieli (nothing taxing). We were split into two choirs, with me leading Choir II. The piece was going well, choir answering choir, ornamentation being added - all very stylish. Then I felt something touch my right hand. I didn't think anything of it, until I had to play an A and had the peculiar experience of not hearing an A come out of the end of the bell, but an airy sound come out of where my 2nd valve slide used to be
    A sudden panic gripped me as I tried to cover the rest of the piece using alternative fingering - which is quite a challenge when you are still supposed to be adding in ornamentation as well
    I knew there was a reason why I spent so much time learning all the alternatives.

    And finally, a trombone slide story (I'm sure we all have a few of those as well). The organisation I do most of my teaching for puts on concerts designed for children each year. The orchestra is comprised of the teachers (well, those of us who keep our playing at a decent level) and can be quite reasonable at times. We were playing Elgar's Wand of Youth Suite No.2, one movement of which is The Tame Bear. As this name suggests, it is not a fast piece. The principal trombone was my boss (and ex principal trombone of the RAF Central Band - in his day he was an awesome player). Suddenly his trombone was found without the slide. He had let go and the slide had shot off his trombone and into the bassoon section - reducing the trumpets, trombones and bassoons to hysterical laughter.
    We never let him forget it

  6. #26
    Pianissimo User Mzony's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    Copland's Music For The Theatre. We all know the fast harmon mute change right?
    So, I have an old EMO mute that I love, it is light, and it projects pretty loudly. However, it does not have the most bichin High C...So off to the music store I go.
    I bought an all copper Jo Ral based entirely on the High C without the realization of the extra weight of the mute etc.
    No real problems in the rehearsals, but I was very aware of the added weight of the Jo Ral...So opening night I quickly put the mute in the bell at one point...its in there securely...I'm sure it is...I let my hand off the bell... You guessed it. Boom, Boom, Boom, Rolllll, Boom roolllllll, rollllllll, rollllllllllll...shame.
    It stopped at the foot of a viola player. End of story. Beginning of much anger, and an extremely ackward performance from there on out.
    Oh, and the mute...very dented and never again to be used.


  7. #27
    Forte User
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Slide story - I have a K. Allmen that plays great [for me] and the 3rd valve slide rod comes out and I have to glue it back in on occasion. I did not know the rod would come out until one church service that I was playing [the only trumpet that day] and the rod and slide had come off landing on the carpet with out a sound. I had no idea the slide wasn't there until I had a high Ab in a praise tune, that really got their attention. One other story - Years ago playing in a big band for a wedding reception the bride asked for Some One To Watch Over Me so she could sing it to the groom. Well I had a very nice solo about mid way through the piece and about 4 or 5 measures into the solo one valve stuck half way and I literally had to take the horn down and pull my valve up. Needless to say the band had a field day with that one. The horn was sold the next week. Dave
    formerly known as old geezer Dave
    Chicago Benge 33XX
    Blessing 1580 [ Powell modified ]
    Getzen 800s ml Cornet P02819
    Yam. 231 Fl. 15383
    King Master Cornet 295628
    assorted other horns

  8. #28
    Fortissimo User
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Yee HAW!
    Quote Originally Posted by trumpetmike
    I have had my slide fly out Then I felt something touch my right hand.
    Much better than having your fly slide out though! As far as something touching your right hand... best left unsaid.

  9. #29
    Utimate User
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Those are the dangers of an unzipped slide fly.


  10. #30
    Fortissimo User gzent's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Rochester, MN
    That's about the funniest set of stories I've ever read!

    Why is it we take so much delight in seeing another player lose his mute - especially if its the top dog?!

    I would have PAID big money to see Manny lose his mute in person! I guess we know he is human after all!

    Just a question - doesn't everyone breath into their bell before cramming the mute in? I've never seen anyone lose a mute who uses this technique.

    Keep the stories coming, I need the laughs.

    Stop acting like someone shot your dog.

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