Trumpet Discussion Discuss Warmups in the General forums; I am fascinated by them. There are so many way to warm up. A friend, a French Horn player in ...
I am fascinated by them. There are so many way to warm up. A friend, a French Horn player in a major orchestra, plays a short forte high C to warm up. I play a couple scales and I am ready for anything. Others must slowly ease into their playing days.
I warm up quickly, I practice slowly. If you work early morning gigs you had better get an efficient warm up. Imagine playing Parsifal at 9AM
Do you tailor your warm up to the hour and requirements of the gig?
Be sure Brain is engaged before putting Mouthpiece in gear.
Okay, so try to follow this logic because I'm not so sure it's going to make sense...
Through my life the warm up has changed, not just structure but meaning as well. That is, the purpose of the warm up has changed several times.
When I was a junior high kid it really was a physical activity that was surrounded by scales with my peers as it would only happen in a group. Later it became a bit more purposeful and more flexibility based. After that it became more specific ( was it before a general practice session or a concert? Was it before a lesson or a concert that featured only piccolo?).
After I turned pro and I started to teach more it was an opportunity to try things that I heard from other pros and even students. Therefore, there was a lot of experimentation and trying of new things. Now, it's purposeful and methodic but not because I'm warming up. Rather, I'm practicing immediately. There is no question about what I want to sound like. There is no question about how to use my body. There is no question about whether something is going to go well; I don't have a choice. It HAS to go well. So, it's almost fair to say that I don't warm up. I go to the hall early to practice instead. If something doesn't sound great off the bat, I don't worry. I know that eventually it will because that's why I'm being paid. That mental attitude has been a great source of peace for me but it doesn't come overnight. It's taken many years to find that groove and I hope I can stay in it for a good, long time.
Yes, I have found that when you start helping students with their basics, you begin to pay more attention to the basics. I find myself spending a *WHOLE* lot more time working out of the earlier Arban studies than I did before....
Mezzo Piano User
So many times we Warm-Up....to Practice....to Perform!
I try to go right to...Performing!
My first notes (to my last notes) I try to imagine my self on stage, the long tone/flow study I might use for my initial tones are from Mozart. Play as if I could play like Ray Mase, or Phil Smith, or Manny or Wilmer. The closer I come, the better I play all day long.
Go right to performing, and if you khack a note, forget it right away. Just play the next note great, then go back and re-do the khacked phrase without the khack!!
Sometimes a KHACK can be a beautiful thing. I played next to Al Porcino on a gig years ago and he KHACKED part of a shout chorus big time. The leader said, "What the h$LL was that?" Al said, "Music, man, music!!"
More GOLD from ML! This really hit home with me Manny... especially the line: "It HAS to go well." Instead of getting all freaked out by that pressure you've figured out a way to turn it into something peaceful and positive. Something to strive for as a professional performer and teacher for that matter.
Originally Posted by Manny Laureano
The thing I struggle wtih the most lately is picking up my horn cold to demonstrate something to a student. Some of those times nothing works and I sound horrible. I am usually able to get my point across, but its frustrating to not be able to sound "sterling" at those times. Often I will have already practiced/played for a couple hours that day working on my own stuff but the horn and chops are a little cold from not playing during certain parts of the lessons. Also your focus and concentration are in a different place than when you are sitting on stage. Any suggestions?
I'm going to make a guess based on a hunch:
I'm betting that when you start off the day, you're not getting the sound that is ideal after just a few seconds. I'm betting that it takes a while for you to get to that sound you really like when you're warming up. Therefore, next time you start playing, think of the FAT Doc sound, vibrato and all on a low C and let the sound roll out like you're doing the best imitation of Doc anybody's ever heard, even if it's 7:30 in the morning. Let it roll and do an expanding scale in that style, free as you can. Think Doc, Doc, Doc.
You don't have to hit high Cs right off the bat. The idea is free blowing fat sound right off the bat. In a while you'll think nothing of playing cold because it won't be you playing: it'll be Doc no matter what the thing you're going to demo is.
Bottom line: if you're used to producing a quality sound off of a quantity breath in the morning, you'll do the same every time you play the horn, no matter how "cold". Promise.
I was just doing some playing and thinking about your post about playing cold and the subsequent advice I gave you.
I wrote a post about melodic warmups in the 911 section. Check it out. I think there were two of them. About jeopardy, ms. pac man and pirates of penzance. I think you'll have fun with it. Again, the idea being that the ability to play "cold" comes from how you approach your early day warm up.
Mezzo Forte User
My first note of the day has changed a lot. It used to be bottom C - I was afraid of the noise I was going to make. Then it was G, and now it's a tuning C - making the sound I want from the first note.
Great post Manny.
Thanks Manny. I have read those posts. I never had this warmup issue until I moved to the Prana mouthpieces. It takes me much longer to warm up on them than before. I think its getting progressively better, so perhaps its just going to take more time.
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