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A few questions about progress



 
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Zed
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Joined: 17 Oct 2019
Posts: 12
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Sun May 24, 2020 7:44 pm    Post subject: A few questions about progress Reply with quote

I'm a comeback player aged 49 and been back practising regularly since about December last year. I've found the Caruso exercises immensely beneficial. Although I only usually get up to G-A-G on the regular 2nds first time, the second is usually to b-c-b and sometimes c-d-c and my playing up to D during my other practise and is much stronger and my chops generally feel more secure.

I'm still at the stage of adding exercises. I spend at least 2 weeks on each stage, more if I have had to miss a day of practice during that time or am not feeling I am strong enough. My schedule as of today is

six notes
regular intervals (schedule)
SLS 5ths
LSL 2nds
harmonics.

Up until now I always had the regular 2nds as the first thing after the 6 notes but now as the regular intervals have gone on a schedule I was unsure as to what order to do the intervals in. Should it always be

Regular
SLS
LSL?

or should it go smaller interval to larger interval?

Also - with the SLS and LSL do you still do the second setting (I haven't been to date)?

Finally - with the harmonics, I have never really been able to get above D (never really did it prior to comeback either) The schedule seems to say add a note a week but that is just not happening. Should I be concerned?

Thanks

Zed.
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tomba51
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Location: Hilton Head, SC

PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 5:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

At the top of this Caruso forum, there is a topic called "Getting Started 1" by Bugle Boy. It is an invaluable resource and will answer most of your questions. You can also check out "Getting Started 2", and "Getting Started 3".

Tom
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pepperdean
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Joined: 10 Mar 2004
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Location: Johnson City, Texas

PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always played regular interval - SLS - LSL but that's was only because Carmine assigned them in that order. Actually, for the same reason, I always play harmonics immediately after the regular interval.

It doesn't matter where your breaks are when you're playing the intervals. You do not measure progress by the results with the calisthenic exercises any more than a professional athlete would score more or less points by evaluating how they look when they do their warmups. Carmine's regime will create progress in your playing. "Just Do It."

I'm not sure why you seem stuck on the harmonics. However, general directions may say add a note weekly but, if you were taking lessons from Carmine, you'd add a note when you were ready. I only traveled to NY every other week or sometimes monthly so that's when I added notes.

It's all about readiness and comfort. Don't feel you need to keep up with a schedule that is, by necessity, generic.

You're on a good path. Keep with the exercises.

Alan
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Zed
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Joined: 17 Oct 2019
Posts: 12
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 2:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tom - thanks. I'm going through those threads as per the program but i did't see answers to those specific questions. I may have missed them.

Alan - thanks. Good to know there is no specific order for the interval exercises. I'll keep plugging away with it all.

Cheers

Zed.
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gstump
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Joined: 14 Nov 2006
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PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Adding 1 note a week to the harmonica and I would be playing like a dog whistle by now!! Seriously, getting to that next note will happen when it happens.

I used a few techniques with my students to ease the movement from note to note on the harmonics. Think and actually play an eighth note pickup to the next note. Swell up the sound on the up beat and use it as a spring board to the next note. After a few weeks do the same thing with the 16th note before the next note. This is more than the Caruso subdivision. It is a physical audible 16th note pick up but without articulating the note.

The up beat 1/8 note or 1/16 "spring board" of air and volume works. Do not tell anybody, but psychologically the mind gets away from smash mouth on the downbeats and thinks more about something else!

Schlossberg, according to my teachers, wrote his book based on this.

Best of luck.
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TrpPro
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Joined: 12 Jan 2006
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Location: Las Vegas

PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The calisthenic approach can be very unnerving especially if you have always
practiced the traditional way of seeking a good tone and in general being musical. The CC approach is the exact opposite of this, so try not to be result conscious in your practice. Focus on the 4 Rules and just do it.

You seem to be doing well at this stage. In the beginning, it’s common for the first blow
to end in the staff. The goal with the intervals is to eventually be on a schedule. How long you spend on a particular interval before advancing doesn’t matter so much. What matters is to give your embouchure muscles a chance to get familiar with each one. When you get on the schedule you’ll be coming back to all of them on a regular basis.

Carmine had me continue to play the Regular 2nds every day even after advancing
To 3rds, 4ths, etc., and even after getting on the schedule. So my daily practice would begin with the Six Notes followed by the Regular 2nds. When I got on the schedule I would be playing the 2nds PLUS another regular interval each day.

You should continue to use a second setting for the SLS and the LSL.

HARMONICS: Play up to the highest note you can play. After a week or so, move that note up one more harmonic where you may just get air on the attempt (or it might just be a squeak). You want to be going for the the next note higher than the one you are able to play. This may mean it could be months before adding another note. That doesn't matter. As you go through the different fingerings during the Harmonic exercise ( 0 – 2 – 1 – 12 – 23 – 13 – 123, the top note should start to respond since it will now be in your range. As outlined in Getting Started, the Harmonics format will change at a certain point.

FYI: The essence of Caruso tone production rests in the effort the muscles of the embouchure make when buzzing the lips.

Lip Buzzing exercise #1

Play 7 notes (half, half, whole in the format of the Six Notes, no repeat) descending from G2 to C#1 and applying the 4 Rules. First free buzz the notes, then on the mouthpiece and finally on the horn. If you can’t free buzz, then start by playing the mouthpiece followed by the horn. Add the free buzz when you are able.
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Zed
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Joined: 17 Oct 2019
Posts: 12
Location: Australia

PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks GStump and TrpPro. much appreciated.

Cheers

Zed
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PH
Bill Adam/Carmine Caruso Forum Moderator


Joined: 26 Nov 2001
Posts: 5592
Location: Bloomington Indiana

PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2020 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just to reinforce.

Yes, do a second setting on all intervals, whether with dynamics or not.

If you have worked through all the regular intervals up to the octave and are now on the review chart, I think it is fine to skip the seconds except on the day they appear in the review rotation.

Only go to the next note on the harmonics excercise when the top notes (and the lowest ones) are responding fairly consistently. There is no hurry to "advance" and no prize for advancing.

The most important thing is to follow the Four Rules meticulously and don't overthink the rest.
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Zed
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Joined: 17 Oct 2019
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Location: Australia

PostPosted: Fri May 29, 2020 8:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks PH.

Cheers

Zed
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