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Trumpet Discussion Discuss Some pitching tips by my conductor in the General forums; I rarely or almost never heard this being mentioned in any forum about this way of pitching. May be due ...
  1. #1
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    Nov 2007

    Some pitching tips by my conductor

    I rarely or almost never heard this being mentioned in any forum about this way of pitching. May be due to my ignorant, so please forgive me. But, it does work and it works well. It does no harm and why not give a try. This is what told to me:

    When pitching low notes try to adjust your air stream such that it aims at the centre of the the mp where the 'hole' is located.
    When pitch is getting higher, adjust your air stream lower and lower, such that when you reach your 'highest' note(usually octave G or higher), you should be aiming near the lower part of the mp near to the rim.


    <----- :Air Stream

    ......... : Lols. dont bother about this, just to make the mp look in shape
    __ /
    <---- 'Hole' : Mouthpiece
    ....\ __

    Low notes:

    __ /
    ....\ __

    High Notes
    __ /
    ( or lower but obviously not straight, the air stream should be tilted but
    __ <-------- hard to be drawn)
    ....\ __

  2. #2
    Moderator Utimate User rowuk's Avatar
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    Jun 2006

    Re: Some pitching tips by my conductor

    ask the person that told you that what to do when playing music that jumps around - like the Carnival of Venice by Arban. You would be so busy pointing your air around that probably nothing would work.

    The description is also exactly the opposite of an older method called the pivot system. When using this, you change the angle of the horn depending on how high you are playing. You would point the bell of the trumpet down the higher you go. This took pressure OFF of the upper lip. It had nothing to do with pointing the airstream! Modern mouthpiece design makes this no longer necessary.

    Looking at the geometry of the mouth, the air is guided between the tongue and the roof of your mouth (no direct shot to the horn possible), then has to hang a sharp curve around your teeth and then get the lips moving. There is a certain amount of turbulence in the mouthpiece cup (which is good, it supports the lips with an air cushion). Then the air gets into your horn - much more slowly than one would care to believe! If we add tonguing into the equation, the airflow is even more "disturbed"!
    There is no advantage in trying to blow into the hole. Tone production on a trumpet works much differently!
    In fact, if we could get the lips to vibrate by themselves, we would need no air at all (except to stay alive). I glued a small loudspeaker to a mouthpiece once and ran some waveforms through the horn. It is amazing what results you can get! You can measure the impedance, efficiency and intonation of the horn! Unfortunately, this does not tell you anything musical............
    Last edited by rowuk; 11-26-2007 at 09:44 AM.
    Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.

  3. #3
    Pianissimo User BobList's Avatar
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    Nov 2003
    Baltimore, Md.

    Re: Some pitching tips by my conductor

    It FEELS like you are blowing to the center to play's just a good way to describe jaw/lip position while playing. If that feel works for you, you are playing correctly.

    Selmer Claude Gordon Bb
    Greg Black JB-10 mouthpiece
    (designed by John Blount)

  4. #4
    Pianissimo User confuoco's Avatar
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    Nov 2007

    Re: Some pitching tips by my conductor

    I would get away from this line of thinking. If something clicks in your mind and it works ok but this is not the way to go about playing trumpet. IMHO

  5. #5
    Mezzo Forte User brem's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
    Quebec City, QC, Canada

    Re: Some pitching tips by my conductor

    My airflow is actually going higher when I play high.... I think.
    NYTC Stage 1 California Light - Wedge 3C cup w/ Warburton 7 backbore mpc
    Bach Stradivarius Bb Model 37 * #124xxx (circa 1975) - Schilke 15B mpc
    Yamaha YFH-731 Flugelhorn #000xxx - Yamaha 14F4-GP mpc
    Conn Connquest 20A Cornet 1954

  6. #6
    Moderator Utimate User Vulgano Brother's Avatar
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    Mar 2006
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    Re: Some pitching tips by my conductor

    The use of imaging is a great technique; I love to use metaphor and analogies when teaching. If this kind of aiming works for you, great! The next step is to let it evolve to a natural "feel" for you--the less concentration involved with the mechanics of playing, the more we free up for musical considerations. Have fun!
    "A tool good enough to be so used and not too good"
    C.S. Lewis That Hideous Strength

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