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Trumpet Discussion Discuss what do you do after long hard gigs in the General forums; what do you to to help your chops recover after a long hard gig..... besides a good warm down and ...
  1. #1
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    Nov 2003

    what do you do after long hard gigs

    what do you to to help your chops recover after a long hard gig..... besides a good warm down and rest?

    some kind of medication to reduce swelling? lip balms.

  2. #2
    Fortissimo User gzent's Avatar
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    Nov 2003
    Rochester, MN
    Gently massage the upper lip and drink a tall glass of ice water, slowly.
    Stop acting like someone shot your dog.

  3. #3
    Moderator Utimate User rowuk's Avatar
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    Jun 2006

    what do you do after long hard gigs

    Lip balm for sure. I generally eat after gigs and salt burns the hell out of my chops if they are not protected. Cold water(or beer) as gzent says reduces the swelling. If I had lead gig, I will also buzz on the mouthpiece onthe way home
    Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.

  4. #4
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    Jun 2006
    Baltimore, MD
    LipMedx.... that is the stuff!!! Also Chopsaver is good for soothing the chops. But Lipmedx (it's made by the blistex company and comes in a little blue container about the size of a quarter)

    It has methol and campor in it to cool and dull the nerves in your lip as well as restore blood circulation to it. Works wonders right before a marching band competition. :)

  5. #5
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    DCT. A non medicated product. it smells good. I always find it helps me after long gigs

  6. #6
    Forte User NickD's Avatar
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    Feb 2004
    Chicago northern suburbs

    A different point of view..

    I would just rest and quit thinking about my chops. I am NOT trying to be glib or a smart alec. I'm just offereing a different point of view based on a lot of experience playing everything from the circuis to long rehearsals followed by shows or multiple gigs. Just last Sunday I played two outdoor big band gigs - one on lead, the other on the jazz chair, followed by sitting in on the lead book with a third big band followed by going down to a local jazz club and sitting in for two hours. I had to pace myself, but one can get through stuff like this.

    I would suggest getting away from using balms, creams or artificial means of "soothing chops." The cold water thng can feel pretty good, but that's as far as I'd go.

    Don't be afraid of long or difficult gigs. Now don't get me wrong. I'm not saying you're a scardey cat or something like that. It's just that many of us (me included earlier in my career) have an almost subconscious fear of getting through tough gigs with long difficult charts. That fear can literally manifest itself with fatigued chops. Stay cool mentally in the heat of battle and make sure you are keeping your form straight as the gig wears on. Do start trying to force things out by mashing or twisting your chops around as you get a little tired. Remember, most of your skill is mental and that doesn't get tired.

    Pace yourself. If you're on lead, lay out on unison passages if you can get away with it. Don't take the last note up an ocatave. Bring the dynamics back one notch. Take the mouthpiece off of your chops on rests. That last partr may seem simple enough, but I have seen so many players keep the mouthpiece on their chops during three and four bar rests, as if they're afraid they'll forget the set.

    Warming down can be nice, I suppose. My warm down is putting the horn in the case. You could flutter your chops Shew style a bit. IMHO, warming down involves putting the mpce back up there, and if your feeling sore, that doesn't seem the thing to do.

    Always remember, there is the next day. You're going to be fine. Keep anxiety out of the picture and you've won half the battle!

    FWIIW coming from me.


  7. #7
    Mezzo Forte User ROGERIO's Avatar
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    Sep 2004

    Re: A different point of view..

    Quote Originally Posted by NickD
    I would just rest and quit thinking about my chops. I am NOT trying to be glib or a smart alec.
    I would agree. I'm not a professional player, so I'm on the very opposite end of the scale from Nick. But you know what, I still have to recover. Even from level 2...

    Let it happen naturaly. Don't depend on anything but rest.
    Can you imagine having forgotten something and needing to recover? Now you have something else to worry about... and blame!

    I believe there is something to be said for over warming-up too... We use the same facial muscles all day, talking and eating. Yes, in a diff way and trpt playing is much more demanding... but still those muscles should already be warm.

    And... the same for recovery... kinda like walking after a run... light demands... chew some gum... seriously... look at how much your face moves when you chew ... or talk.

    Many will disagree, and that's okay... whatever works for them.

  8. #8
    Pianissimo User beartrumpet74's Avatar
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    Jan 2006
    I usually play some severly quiet long tones for about five minutes...put the horn in the case...go home...make a sandwich....see how the Red Sox did...kiss my girlfriend....and then...and this is really important.....
    GO TO BED!

    In all seriousness, warming down is a great thing. I just wouldn't make it a federal case. This whole long tones/sandwich/bedtime method has worked for me for years...

    AND, if it was a really really hard gig, and I can afford to take the next day off...I do...

    Hope that helps

  9. #9
    Pianissimo User Kenzo's Avatar
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    Nov 2003
    Bristol, Connecticut
    I'll have to agree with Matt in all but a few things.

    1. Put horn in case.

    2. Go home.

    3. Make sandwich or other easy snack type food.

    4. Get adult beverage.

    5. Kiss my wife (if she's still awake).

    6. Check the Yankees score and check out the internet/email, etc.

    7. Go to bed and deal with the horn in the morning.

    I find that it is better for me to do a thorough warmup the next day after a tough day of playing. This is what I found works for me. I think we all have to find our own routine.
    Kenny Roe

  10. #10
    Banned Pianissimo User
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    May 2006
    outside of Philadelphia
    I cringe at the thought of what sounds like "chops abuse".

    I occassionly play these great Italian festivals in NY and NJ. All the music is from Italy, and hand written with the stems on the wrong side of the notes. Like reading hyroglyphics. Lots of demanding upper register playing and not a lot of 8 bar rests. Nothing higher than an E, but lots of hard blowing in the range of G to E above staff with multiple tonguing.

    The day after I play these gigs I am ready to play anything in the normal register of the horn with increased stamina. I have never had to massage my lips, takes meds or do anything other than warm down a bit after these gigs. I play on a New York Vincent Bach 7C and a Bach Strad 37 trumpet. I have never walked into a gig with sore chops. I guess I had a great teacher!

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