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Orchestral players using GR mouthpieces?


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LSOfanboy
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:14 am    Post subject: Orchestral players using GR mouthpieces? Reply with quote

Hi!

As a matter of curiosity; do people know of any professional Orchestral players currently using GR mouthpieces?

In the UK (I can’t speak for the rest of the world) there are now a great many commercial players using GR mouthpieces. However, with the exception of one (an incredibly highly regarded ex-principal trumpet and now successful freelancer and teacher), I haven’t seen the same trend within Orchestral circles and was interested to know if people are aware of other (professional Orchestral) players using them?

I would also like to clarify that my question is not ‘are GR mouthpieces good for Orchestral playing?’’ That is completely subjective and everyone can have their own opinion. I am only interested in whether people are able to name some current players who have chosen to use GR equipment in Orchestral settings.

Thanks very much
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jaysonr
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Charles Lazarus, Minnesota Orchestra

Jon Lewis, Santa Barbara Symphony and over 800 movies and 1,000 television shows.

Also, Chris Martin had some pieces made for him; they are models CM-C1 and CM-C2, but I'm not sure if he still plays them.

Ben Wright in the Boston Symphony played a custom GR for a long time.

Mike Zonshine played his Zony GR pieces in the Honolulu Symphony Orchestra.

Steve Haefner (the designer of the Haefner pieces made by GR) plays GR pieces in an orchestral setting.

There may be some others I think of later...if I do, I'll update the post.
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B. Scriver
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 7:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are many many players all over the world using GR Mouthpieces in an orchestral setting, way too many to name as I know I will forget a lot of players. The GR Playing Tests are based on orchestral etudes. Steve Haefner has sold over a thousand of his orchestral line as well.

A few notable players:
Chris Still LA Philharmonic.
Chuck Lazarus
Dennis Najoom
Rob Freer
Marty Freer
Steve Emery

Today many players must cover more styles. There are less players with more demands.

Most of the early GR players were symphonic players. We worked with many and the data base is full of them. GR help many finish out their careers and correct mis-match issues.

The Studio 1 was from a Mold Jon Lewis took of Malcom McNabb's mouthpiece and GR took the wrinkles out.

Brian Scriver
www.grmouthpieces.com
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LSOfanboy
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Amazing information. Thanks guys!
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O00Joe
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I'd really like to know is which GR cup they use. I used a GR 65VC for a while.
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Tpt_Guy
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

O00Joe wrote:
What I'd really like to know is which GR cup they use. I used a GR 65VC for a while.


I imagine some of them are pretty custom. For example, taking a mold of Malcolm's mouthpiece and using it as a starting point; it's highly likely it doesn't match any other specific GR cup, but there are probably some in the ballpark.

I have the one Jon Lewis currently uses. I know what he used to use, what it's based on (and that it went through several versions), and what it can be roughly compared to (he told me through email correspondence). It doesn't have a cup designation on it and I believe it's because the design is, like the Studio 1, based on and refining a piece already in use. What I can tell you with any certainty is that it is a fantastic mouthpiece.
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B. Scriver
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 11, 2018 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our orchestral players use various cups, depending on the player, horn, and situation. Some of our most polular cups for orchestral situations are C*, C**, C, L, LX, CX.

We don't just scan a line and call it ours. This is something a monkey would do.

"I imagine some of them are pretty custom."

They are all based off the same math, “pretty custom” doesn’t mean anything. All the mouthpieces are built off of the GR parameters and GR system. Parameters matter, they all have a meaning and a purpose. Believe it or not, by just hearing you play, GR can tell what parameters may be areas of concern. When doing counterpoint for four part harmony with figured base he hears these parameters in his head. Some music majors would pound them on the keyboard for hours only to have hidden or parallel 5th/8va. This is a conversion that GR does in his head with the sound and numbers.

"What is normal?"

GR used statics to design his mouthpiece line. Breaking down the mouthpiece to parameters and then doing a bell curve for each one. How can that work? It has been tested and proofed that in 75% to 80% of players preferred the GR Standard rim. 10% to 15%, another GR rim and 5 to 10% for one of the most popular rims ever. This was the Red, Yellow, Blue test that was done over 1000 times and the results were crunched.

If you study how the bell curve works you will see that most fall somewhere in the middle one side or the other of mean. There are people that are way out on either side of the curve. There is a mean for each parameter of the mouthpiece. Like diameter, to be general 64, 65, 66 might be mean in the USA, some will play 67 and 63. Some use 72 and 58 these would be on the outside edges of the population. In Europe and other areas this changes.

Is there a Holy Grail?

The Holy Grail of mpcs is specific, to a specific player, and a specific horn. If one is changed you may have issues. If the average of certain players fall within the mean for a certain model horn it becomes a match and may be considered the Holy Grail for a larger population of players in that specific set. So there can be a holy grail for a specific type of player and set up.

GR has the analytical mind so you don’t need to worry about the math, just the music.

For example, taking a mold of Malcolm's mouthpiece and using it as a starting point; it's highly likely it doesn't match any other specific GR cup, but there are probably some in the ballpark.

It was about 10 years ago and Jon Lewis wanted to know what is was. I broke it down to parameters because that is the only way it can be compared and defined. In this example some parameters were in that “ballpark” and others were on the outside edges.

I have the one Jon Lewis currently uses. I know what he used to use, what it's based on (and that it went through several versions), and what it can be roughly compared to (he told me through email correspondence). It doesn't have a cup designation on it and I believe it's because the design is, like the Studio 1, based on and refining a piece already in use. What I can tell you with any certainty is that it is a fantastic mouthpiece.

Jon Lewis was a mouthpiece maker and highly motivated to get a copy of the mouthpiece he made for himself. He made several 100 and had tried to get it copied if anything happened to it. GR said he didn’t want to copy it be make it better. According to Jon, nobody could copy it right yet alone make it better and Jon wondered if GR was on crack or something. They sat up well into the night while GR showed Jon how his program worked. Long story, GR made 13 or 14 designs and called them a color so Jon didn’t know what they were. GR knew before Jon played them what was going to work best.
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kevin_soda
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jaysonr wrote:

Also, Chris Martin had some pieces made for him; they are models CM-C1 and CM-C2, but I'm not sure if he still plays them.


He said in the last interview I saw that he uses a few Park pieces that are in the neighborhood of 1 1/4C but also he has over 300 mouthpieces...
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TMT
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 11:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="B. Scriver"]
For example, taking a mold of Malcolm's mouthpiece and using it as a starting point; it's highly likely it doesn't match any other specific GR cup, but there are probably some in the ballpark.

It was about 10 years ago and Jon Lewis wanted to know what is was. I broke it down to parameters because that is the only way it can be compared and defined. In this example some parameters were in that “ballpark” and others were on the outside edges. [/quote]

I'm REALLY curious about Malcolm's original mouthpiece, can you share any of what it was similar to with us? I've read it's a 1C rim on a 1.5C cup, was it blended or was there a ledge? Was the rim diameter on the wider or narrower side of 1C rims? Was the mold able to capture what the throat size was? Yes, he'd be a damn good player on ANY mouthpiece and there's no REASON to know, but that doesn't change I'm powerful curious about what equipment facilitated his playing on so many of my favorite scores...Any chance you can shed some light?! Thanks!


Last edited by TMT on Thu Jul 12, 2018 6:36 pm; edited 3 times in total
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rockford
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My understanding is Jon’s mouthpiece is similar to a Bach 1 1/2C. The mouthpiece he plays on says 68C because it was the closest GR size they could modify to copy his personal mouthpiece. There’s a 4 digit number that defines the copy he plays on. Not sure if GR will make it for you but this should get you close.
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Tpt_Guy
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rockford wrote:
My understanding is Jon’s mouthpiece is similar to a Bach 1 1/2C. The mouthpiece he plays on says 68C because it was the closest GR size they could modify to copy his personal mouthpiece. There’s a 4 digit number that defines the copy he plays on. Not sure if GR will make it for you but this should get you close.


I have a mouthpiece Jon made himself. It is marked "1-1/2•15". I asked him what the markings on it mean. He said it was his version of a 1-1/2 rim on a Schilke 15 cup. The rim does not feel like any other 1-1/2 rim I've played. It's better (for me) than any of them. It is a ridiculously easy mouthpiece for me to play - resonant, in tune, crisp articulations, flexible and responsive. The backbore was not cut using one specific reamer, but whatever tools he had on hand, so Marcinkiewicz has no reamer for it. It's the only one like it in existence that I know of and I can't order copies. It is my favorite all-around mouthpiece out of my entire collection.

I know which GR model you're talking about and it and can be special ordered. I have one. It does not say "68C" on it. He told me it has a cup that is more like a 3C cup than the other piece I have. He recommended I give it a try when I asked him about the 1-1/2•15. It is a fantastic mouthpiece, and that is a gross understatement.
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B. Scriver
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2018 4:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Marketing or not, that's the truth.

More info from GR regarding McNab's Mouthpiece:

"I'm REALLY curious about this, can you share any of what it was similar to with us?"

It was not like a 1C or 1.5C. The inside diameter was a .66 or about. The 1 and 1 1/2C are in the .667 to .675 range depending on the year. The old 1 1/2C were smaller. The R02 had a little more meat than the 1 1/2 rim and it was a few .001" wider and they could be from hand work, it also had a funky area that might have been done by hand. If anything someone might have used a 1 1/2 profile tool and just got close on the outside.

"I've read it's a 1C rim on a 1.5C cup, was it blended or was there a ledge?"

The rim had some a profile that may have had a lot of handwork, it was not a clean mathematical shape. The bite was more like a 1X only .01 smaller, the bite was very sharp like a 1X parameter. Please forget all the talk of a 1 1/2 or 1C or 1X. It's parameters. It would impinge someone expecting it to feel like a 67, sharp bite makes it feel smaller.

"Was the rim on the wider or narrower side of 1C rims?"

It was more like a 1 1/2 C, yet there are many rim parameters and it is different.

"Was the mold able to capture what the throat size was?"

Yes, .15476" at the true bottom, this area was out of round and that was the greatest difference. There were some strange areas that were not concentric going into the throat area. Many mouthpieces have an oblong throat, the backbore reamer and cup tool or drill were not on the same plane. If you take a gauge pin and put it in the hole and look at a light you can see this and a bore gauge will find it. It can vary .004" or .005" with some mouthpieces. So you might put a .144 or .145 pin (27 hole) and it goes, a .146 doesn't yet the largest difference in the bore might be .154" .005" on the radius and .01 on the diameter.

The alpha angle was very low. Not in the mean for most people. I do know a few symphonic guys that use something like this, they are very few. Your chops need to be thicker and fleshy so you don't impinge the vibrating surface, that rim works great for a few. Most would be able to make it work for long with that low alpha. The sharp bite kept the lips out, supple fleshy lips are able to vibrate well. It will stop or impinge vibration on certain types of chops.

They tried to blend the rim/cup area. The rim was smaller than the cup, therefore, it had a long L1 and there was a significant speed bump where the rim met the cup. The cup had less volume than the 1 1/2C maybe about .0106" less deep and with less volume in the bottom of the cup, yet more volume in the top due to the low alpha angle.

Some people can play this mouthpiece. Jon wanted to have GR compare it to his. I would have to say Jon's is closer to a true 67 and the alpha is more in the "mean" so I would say that would be more playable for most people. Jon's works for Jon and Malcolm's for Malcolm. There is no magic in those mouthpieces, it's the guys that are playing it.

"Yes, he'd be a damn good player on ANY mouthpiece and there's no REASON to know, but that doesn't change I'm powerful curious about what equipment facilitated his playing on so many of my favorite scores...Any chance you can shed some light?! Thanks!"

He had abilities that worked for him, his horn, and that mouthpiece. He played the Eb horn a lot too and I think this may have had an influence on the match. He played specific horns for specific scores.

Both Jon and Malcolm mouthpieces have a bit less volume than a standard (if there is such a thing) 1 1/2C. Malcolm has more volume in the top and Jon in the bottom. The real key is how much lip goes in the mpc? You minus the volume of lip from the volume of the cup. I'd say they would have a similar volume left and the 1st natural harmonic would be close. The so called 1 1/2C has a little more volume, it also lets more lip enter the cup and that extra volume would be decreased from the added lip in the cup, it would be similar once lips were engaged.

GR's understanding of the mouthpiece parameters are his secret key to breaking down a mouthpiece design. You can't use your eye or a cad program to see this. GR takes the numbers and converts them to his mouthpiece design program where the formulas can be cleaned up, saved if they match a certain make horn or bell, and used in other creative ways. He doesn't look at the shape, the parameters define the mouthpieces.

Note, because most mpcs have inconsistency in the manufacturing, machining, polishing, plating, hand work, or wear an tear inside and out. Even red rot in the throat, throat hole, and backbore GR feels it's useless to try and copy a mouthpiece. There too many wrinkles that might destroy the sound wave equation, therefore, grabbing parameters, compu- balancing the math works best. That program he writes from the math is a master and can be duplicated over and over.

www.grmouthpieces.com
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trumpetman.rob
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2018 5:50 am    Post subject: RE: McNab Reply with quote

Are you all talking about some old mouthpiece?

McNab plays a 1-1/2C. I've asked him via e-mail at the address listed on his website.

Me:
Quote:
Hi Mr. McNab,

Do you use the same setup on all your horns, or do you have different cup/throat/backbore combos for each horn.

In either case, what would be a common setup for Bb, C and Eb?

Thanks so much for your time.
Best,
Rob


Malcom:
Quote:
I play a Bach 1 1/2 c. I don't switch much. Cut the variables-that's a corner stone of my teaching.


Me:
Quote:
Thanks for the reply!
So, just standard 27 throat, etc. for everything?


Malcom:
Quote:
I think so. I had a Reeves sleeve put on sometime in the seventies, don't remember why. Haven't switched it since.
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rockford
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2018 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[quote="B. Scriver]

There is no magic in those mouthpieces, it's the guys that are playing it.

www.grmouthpieces.com [/quote]

This is really the most important point. Find a good, time tested mouthpiece and get to work.
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B. Scriver
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2018 8:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We are talking about Malcom's actual mouthpiece. We digitized his actual piece so call it as you will!

Bri
www.grmouthpieces.com
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TMT
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2018 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the response, very cool!!
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CJceltics33
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2018 10:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How much is a GR consultation?
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B. Scriver
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Each consultant runs their own business so charges may vary. You would have to contact them individually. We can do a video consultation if you can not see a consultant in person but you need a GR Mouthpiece to make it really effective.

So, email me for our questionnaire. I email it, you answer it and return it to me. I make some suggestions for mouthpieces to try based on your answers. You try through a dealer and at that time if you wish, we can do the consultation via Skype or some other video chat app. Based on your playing of the GR Play Tests, I can make suggestions on what to try next if necessary.

Or better yet, see a GR consultant in person. Thanks!

Brian Scriver
www.grmouthpieces.com
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trumpetman.rob
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2018 5:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

B. Scriver wrote:
We are talking about Malcom's actual mouthpiece. We digitized his actual piece so call it as you will!

Bri
www.grmouthpieces.com


Was it the one he actually plays, stamped Vincent Bach Corp. 1-1/2C with a Reeves Sleeve?

Malcom doesn't play anything special--he plays a 1-1/2C.
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B. Scriver
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Was it the one he actually plays, stamped Vincent Bach Corp. 1-1/2C with a Reeves Sleeve?

Malcom doesn't play anything special--he plays a 1-1/2C.


GR:
Jon Lewis took a mold of Malcolm's actual mouthpiece he was playing, between sessions right in the studio. He was in a panic to get the material out of the mold just before a cue. With GR's help over the phone,.he got it out. On that day, it was the one Malcom was playing. Might have a reeves sleeve and a screw rim with some alterations, yet stamped 1 1/2C. It really doesn't matter, nobody is Malcolm and he is totally unique.

For reference, never go by what you see stamped on an older mpc. You don't really know what it is until it is measured. As a funny aside, we have seen so called "copies" of our own mouthpieces by other manufaturers. Upon measuring them, we have found that none are even close.

Gary Radtke
www.grmouthpieces.com
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