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JayKosta
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 12, 2020 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The info in this article about embouchure, lips, jaw, etc. seems to be a good example of topics that we've been discussing.

https://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=5030&context=etd

especially pages numbered 8-12 in the 'printed document',
which are the 'pdf pages' 15-19

One quibble that I have is saying the jaw is 'thrust forward', I prefer saying that the lower jaw/teeth/lip pressure on the rim is used to accomplish the jaw positioning. I think the word 'thurst' might suggest an overly aggressive jaw usage - it must be a finely controlled action.

Perhaps the article will provide a useful 'source document' for individual comments and perspectives about embouchure.

Jay
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Lionel
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just wanted to reply to E_Smith,. As always, apologies in advance for the lack of brevity.

There has long been what I see as a counter-productive tendency in teaching trumpet. This has resulted in the tendency of most teachers to advocate or (often!) to insist that their students use a mouthpiece which I usually consider too large for their own good.

It isn't that "all beginners use too large of a mouthpiece" Rather that there is a wide variation in what trumpet players discover is the best mouthpiece for their purposes. I'm pretty darned certain that 99% of trumpet players would find my current mouthpiece way too large. That said I'm similarly convinced that "shallower and softer" is the better choice in MOST developing trumpet players. Always with some exceptions.

{Incidentally since I'm going through a major embouchure change? I actually consider myself a "developing player". With the caveat that prior to tooth loss I really was once a fairly decent lead player. Indeed I AM the exception to my own "rule" above}.

It isn't that playing a large sharp edged mouthpiece is necessarily "right" or "wrong". Rather it is the insistence that say,

"The 7C is the best mouthpiece for beginners"

Or rather the dogma of this insistence that is wrong. In a perfect world our young students would be exposed to a plethora of differing mouthpieces. Each to be tried in a patient and rational plan. Not a constant "safari" nor a rigid insistence of just one choice. For me to insist that everyone should blow a shallower piece than average is nearly as incorrect as advocating the current large, sharp mouthpiece "curriculum". For want of a better term. Allow me to explain the current tendency going on in teaching trumpet.

You start out on a Bach 7C. Compared to the mouthpieces real lead players tend to use this is a very derp, and sharp edged piece. It does however sound pretty. Young students are advised to proceed with a program of low, full bodied long tones. I think that the first note I learned was E natural, first/second valves. Of course that was over 55 years ago. It might have been a second line G natural. I then started practicing low tones at home and joined in on 2nd Cornet parts in the band. While the older boys played the 1st chair. Just as an aside I swiftly learned to dislike being stuck in the 2nd trumpet parts.

Now had I not changed school systems my instructors probably would have shifted me over to a Bach 3C sometime before the end of my high school years. Instead however I was fortunate to move to another state where I became well acquainted with shallower, more commercial type lead trp mouthpieces. I then swiftly developed a dandy High G. Lucky me as this opened many doors. Opportunities that I found gone after recent tooth loss. It was however a damned good ride while it lasted.

Meanwhile my peers (from other school systems) tended to have poor upper registers. In large part this was due to them

A. Beginning on the deep, sharp edged 7C. Then,
B. Soon shifting over to the even bigger but still sharp edged 3C.

I had a really powerful High G in high school. One that I could usually play at will! This was due in large part to my personal motivation but still due in no small part to my access to better equipment.

I can't convince everyone to follow my suggestions. Not any more than I can convince a given person to see my way on religion or political views. Wouldn't bother to even try but I can urge others to be open minded. Remember, I'm actually suggesting a concept contrary to my own mouthpiece choice. I think that this says something.

If we look at the mouthpieces our real professional lead players use it's generally a shallower piece. Except Arturo and a few others. Most use a piece relatively close to the quite shallow Schilke 6a4a. Somewhere on the Net exists a statement in the equipment these famous cats use. With only a minority of exceptions they're around a 6a in rim dimension and depth. When they want a bigger tone they often open up the back bore and throat. Throats around 22 to 24 are common. While Maynard "The Man" was noted for using a 15 or 16 drill bit on his mouthpiece throat. All fitted on a fairly shallow convex cup. Granted "most players couldn't use it". That is a HUGE throat!! Flugel horn type territory... According to Giardinelli who cut the Boss's pieces during the 1960s. But shallower is and was the way MOST of the most powerful lead players went. And this tells me something. Speaks volumes in fact. Here's what I infer,

"If the most powerful trumpet players in the world TEND to use shallower pieces then it certainly follows that the weaker trumpet players would be strongly advised to check out similar pieces themselves".

If your teacher insists or strongly recommends otherwise? Find out if he's a strong lead player himself. Because chances are that he isn't. Indeed the likelihood is that (assuming he's even a trumpet player at all) he's simply regurgitating the conventional thinking he grew up on. Always with some exceptions of course. Speaking of notable exceptions?

My college applied trumpet prof played a bloody Schilke 22! It probably the largest and deepest piece regularly found in stock. That said? He could freakin TRIPLE TONGUE G's ABOVE High C!!! And THAT said?

He wasn't a real lead player. Not in the commercial type sense. I don't think that he ever played the lead chair in an advanced kind of big band. Where a sizzling big sound is usually needed to succeed. Instead he was a noted piccolo trumpet, Baroque cat.

As usual I've strayed and gone on too long. Whatever you do? Please remain open-minded. And if you're the average trumpet? Try a few pieces on the shallow side. Ask me my opinion anytime. I have a cool "break-in period" plan for switching into the shallower pieces. It works! It really does. At least for those who fit the bill. I expect that a number will. Again, apologies in advance for long post. If I had time I'd go back and edit out at least 50% of it.
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cheiden
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my experience developing players that start on or transition too early to very small or shallow lead-type mouthpieces usually have poor tone and technique and often do not become better players or wind up with better range.
Personally, I went from a 7C to a JetTone MF in high school and it was probably the worst thing I ever did.
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HERMOKIWI
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lionel wrote:


Meanwhile my peers (from other school systems) tended to have poor upper registers. In large part this was due to them

A. Beginning on the deep, sharp edged 7C. Then,
B. Soon shifting over to the even bigger but still sharp edged 3C.


Your peers didn't have poor upper registers because of the mouthpieces they play. They had poor upper registers because they didn't sufficiently develop themselves or employ the technique consistent with producing an easy and consistent high register.

Double C's can be played on any mouthpiece. Bill Watrous could play the equivalent of a double C on his trombone.

I know this may come as a shock, but not everyone cares about becoming a "lead player." Even though I can play the lead book I don't want to get anywhere near it because it's not fun for me.

I played in big bands for many years, until it stopped being fun. I'm now strictly a jazz improvisation player. To me, jazz improvisation is far more creative, far more artistic, far more impressive and far more fun than playing the lead book in any band.

And just for the record, I'm as impressed with Maynard as anyone is impressed with Maynard. What a great player! It's just that I have no interest in doing what Maynard did. I'm more impressed with the likes of Clifford Brown, Clark Terry and Wynton. I want to be able to play like them.

I think the primary aspiration of most trumpet students during their formative years is simply to become a great all around player. I think it's natural for players to want to be the best in their peer group but there's a big difference between, on the one hand, wanting to sit first chair in an ensemble and, on the other hand, wanting to be a lead player the way we think of lead players in big-time professional big bands.

The students I know aren't even thinking about emulating Maynard. They don't care about playing a pro level big band lead book. They're trying to become accomplished on the Haydn Trumpet Concerto rather than trying to cover Maynard's part on Give It One. They don't think that's a failure or even a deficiency on their part and I completely agree.
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JayKosta
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is important to differentiate between a true 'lead player in a professional commercial setting', and the requirements of a typical '1st part player in a high school or college setting'.

For mouthpiece choice, the setting is an important consideration - and the sound quality that is needed there.

Jay
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Robert P
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 8:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JayKosta wrote:
One quibble that I have is saying the jaw is 'thrust forward', I prefer saying that the lower jaw/teeth/lip pressure on the rim is used to accomplish the jaw positioning.

Watch Maynard set up - you can see his forward thrust very clearly. I know my jaw moves down - i.e. the teeth open - and forward a bit.

It's more than pressure, it also has to do with the alignment of the buzzing surfaces of the upper and lower lip.

How much "thrust" is a matter of degree. It's fractions of an inch but it's real.
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Heim
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HERMOKIWI wrote:
Double C's can be played on any mouthpiece. Bill Watrous could play the equivalent of a double C on his trombone.


Don't let anyone fool you. This equivalent that you talk about between bone and trumpet is not so. It is an octave lower. It is a different ballgame.

I agree that Double C can be played on any mouthpiece but some make it a lot easier.
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Brassnose
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Hermowiki - I am not sure. While I cannot comment about the specific problem at hand because I can only play up E above high C reproducibly, I can reach that very same note on my bass trumpet (ignore the fact that it sounds thin, of course).
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HERMOKIWI
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 2:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heim wrote:
HERMOKIWI wrote:
Double C's can be played on any mouthpiece. Bill Watrous could play the equivalent of a double C on his trombone.


Don't let anyone fool you. This equivalent that you talk about between bone and trumpet is not so. It is an octave lower. It is a different ballgame.

I agree that Double C can be played on any mouthpiece but some make it a lot easier.


Sorry to have to correct you. It's the same pitch. Listen to the beginning of the cadenza in the recording of Fourth Floor Walk-Up. The pitch there is our high F (4th space above the staff) and Bill could play a lot higher than that. I brought him in for concerts and clinics at least a half dozen times, performed with him and am well familiar with what he could do.
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Beyond16
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HERMOKIWI wrote:
Quote:
Listen to the beginning of the cadenza in the recording of Fourth Floor Walk-Up. The pitch there is our high F (4th space above the staff)


This part? https://youtu.be/eDVOgwbp_3c?t=211

1246Hz, so concert D♯6 or F6 for the Bb trumpet. He's hitting it right on the money too.
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HERMOKIWI
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PostPosted: Fri Feb 14, 2020 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Beyond16 wrote:
HERMOKIWI wrote:
Quote:
Listen to the beginning of the cadenza in the recording of Fourth Floor Walk-Up. The pitch there is our high F (4th space above the staff)


This part? https://youtu.be/eDVOgwbp_3c?t=211

1246Hz, so concert D♯6 or F6 for the Bb trumpet. He's hitting it right on the money too.


I was referring to the Manhattan Wildlife Refuge recording but your youtube link of a live performance shows the same thing. He picks our high F (4th space above the staff) right out of the air. Boom!! I worked with Bill many times and he could go above this easily.

He was, in my opinion, the greatest jazz trombonist of all time. He had unbelievable technique, seemingly unlimited range, unsurpassed breath control and a sense of the melodic line that was as perfect as anyone I've ever heard. He was a lot of fun to be around, too. Lots of experiences and lots of stories.
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delano
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

HERMOKIWI wrote:

He was, in my opinion, the greatest jazz trombonist of all time. He had unbelievable technique, seemingly unlimited range, unsurpassed breath control and a sense of the melodic line that was as perfect as anyone I've ever heard. He was a lot of fun to be around, too. Lots of experiences and lots of stories.


hmmm, being a trombone player for about 28 years myself, maybe the main prize could also be for mr. Urbie Green.
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HERMOKIWI
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

delano wrote:
HERMOKIWI wrote:

He was, in my opinion, the greatest jazz trombonist of all time. He had unbelievable technique, seemingly unlimited range, unsurpassed breath control and a sense of the melodic line that was as perfect as anyone I've ever heard. He was a lot of fun to be around, too. Lots of experiences and lots of stories.


hmmm, being a trombone player for about 28 years myself, maybe the main prize could also be for mr. Urbie Green.


I think Bill was very influenced by Urbie Green and did perform with him. There was a lot of respect there.
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