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Claude Gordon Breathing Exercises



 
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Blue Devil
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Joined: 04 Jan 2002
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2002 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have read the "Brass Playing Is No Harder Than Deep Breathing" book, and have been doing the breathing exercises that Claude explains. I also recently bought Claude's "Seven Natural Elements of Brass Playing" video tape, in which he demonstartes the exercises.

It looked from the tape that while doing the "walking/jogging exercises", you are supposed to take short breaths in/out for the amount of footsteps required (i.e. if you are on 5 steps, you should take five short breaths in during the steps - then hold, five short breaths out, then rest, all while keeping your chest up, of course).

I'm wondering if that in fact is correct - are you supposed to take short quick breaths for each cycle, or are you supposed to breathe in continuously until full for the required amount of steps? Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Mike Trzesniak

P.S. For anyone who hasn't seen the video, it is pretty amazing to see Claude demonstarte Clarke's ninth exercise - the one that goes from a low g below the staff chromatically up to g above second ledger line c and back down, four complete times, in one breath!! All of this completely at ease, without straining or blasting, having only taken a big breath to start - never mind the fact that he was 68 years old (I believe) in the tape, and said that he was able to do it 6, 7, or more times in one breath when he was younger!!
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Bill Hicks
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2002 6:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That is correct.
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Claude Gordon student 1970-1987
Harry James Orchestra 1976-1979
American Music Theatre 1997-2008
Big Band Nostalgia 1990-2010
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Quadruple C
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 13, 2002 7:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[ This Message was edited by: Quadruple C on 2003-09-20 23:05 ]
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EBjazz
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2002 12:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Mike! Didn't know you were into Claude and stuff.
As far as the breathing ex goes, I continually breath in for the X steps. I did study with Claude for six years. I don't recall what he 'said' to do, but this is the way I've always done them and he was there. And I think it's better that way.
I've also expanded on the breathing exercises. When you are "holding in", compress the air upward using your abs. This is what's called "the wedge" and the Tasteebros talk about it. It really works well in conjunction with Claude's breathing ex.
Of course you should be comfortable doing the CG ex without the added compression up to 10 steps WALKING. It's much harder than just walking in place.
Work your way up to 10 steps and be sure to do sets of ten reps.

Later

Eb

PS. Is my link active?
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Blue Devil
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 17, 2002 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Eric,

Didn't know that you were a Claude Gordon student! From everything I've read and also seen on the videotape, he seems like he was an incredible teacher and player. Did he ever demonstarte his 8 octave range that he talks about in the book for you?

I've been playing out of Claude's Systematic Approach book for the last four months (along with the breathing exercises) - the results have been great. It's a lot of work, but it totally has been worth it.

Thanks for the tip on the breathing exercises.

Mike Trzesniak
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