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Seeking Guidance



 
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Strad007
Regular Member


Joined: 17 Aug 2010
Posts: 22

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2021 3:27 pm    Post subject: Seeking Guidance Reply with quote

Hi Trumpet Herald World,

I am back to the horn after a 3.5 year hiatus due to military deployments. I played in middle school and high school non-stop, to include region bands and marching bands, along with many other ensembles, too many to remember. I also played throughout college in church, chamber ensembles, and the local concert band. After finishing my master's and gearing up for some time ashore, I am getting back into it.

I purchased my old go-to books online to include Clarke, Bai Lin's lip studies, Arban's, and am hitting it with scales/Schlossberg/Stamps. I have been at it for a week now and am able to get through the range from low F to high C, but have to push out a little to get above the staff. Trying to keep in mind not to push too hard on the embouchure to get above the staff...tone quality is a little airy but dexterity, range, and musicality seem to still be in tact...

I have been playing my Bach 3C mouthpiece as a start, I can play through some Clark, scales, and lip slurs for about an hour before I am smoked. Goal is to be able to play for 2+ hours like I could in high school, play for an Easter Service, and play through the Hayden concerto Eb by the summer.

Should I continue with the 3C or try to go back to the old days and start with a 7C, 5C, then back to 3C?

What else should I be adding to my routine? What is a good book for sight reading? That has always been my weak point.

Should range up to high C be sufficient? When should I push to get to high F?

My pastor has been kind enough to lend me a key to a practice room, I can fit in practice 3-5 times per week with my current job/routine, is this enough, too much, or not enough practice time?

Are practice mutes a big no-no for playing in my apartment? I bought one despite mixed reviews...I have noticed the octaves are WAY out of tune using it and closer together on the embouchure...
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rmch
Regular Member


Joined: 20 Sep 2012
Posts: 86

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2021 5:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats on picking up the horn again! I'll send you a PM in response to your specific questions.
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gwood66
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Joined: 05 Jan 2016
Posts: 140
Location: South of Chicago

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2021 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good luck with your comeback.

I would stick with the 3C if it works currently. 1 less variable that you have to contend with.

May want to check out Irons 27 Groups of Exercises. The lips slurs are a little less demanding than Bai Lin or Schlossberg.....in my opinion. May want to look at adding some tonguing and lip bends/pedals to what you have listed.

From my experience, here is the the best advice I received shortly after I started my comeback:

1. Rest and much as you play. For example, play a line out of a Clarke study then take the horn off your face for at least as long as you played or longer if necessary.

2. Dont play on tired chops. We can all tell when we are getting tired but some of us keep playing anyway and that lead to slow progress and bad mechanics. When you start to get tired, stop and rest/take a break.

You sound like you have done a lot of playing so you may already know these things. Once again good luck with your comeback.
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khedger
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Joined: 12 Mar 2008
Posts: 680
Location: Cambridge, MA

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2021 8:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would say stick with the 3C. You'll gain longevity as you get stronger, It's not unreasonable for you to get tired after an hour with only a week back on the horn. Just give it time. Also, a little bit of venturing up high is ok, but I'd probably give it a few weeks before I did a lot of high not stuff. Lots of long tones and slow lip slurs to build strength.

keith
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HaveTrumpetWillTravel
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Joined: 30 Jan 2018
Posts: 608
Location: East Asia

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2021 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The difference between 7c and 3c is much less than between a 3c and 1c. I would play whichever mouthpiece in that range is most comfortable and gives you the best sound. If endurance is a problem, some people find a smaller/shallower rim helps. Enjoy the playing!
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trickg
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Joined: 02 Jan 2002
Posts: 4885
Location: Glen Burnie, Maryland

PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2021 10:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gawd. What questions. The mouthpiece questions become almost unbearable.

My thought is that if you are a comebacker after almost 4 years off the horn, does it really matter that much?

A mouthpiece isn't like progressing on weights if you are weight lifting - it needs to fit. The good thing about a 3C is that it's a pretty reasonable, middle-of-the-road size, and as a result it works well for many (most?) male adults.

The truth is, you and your chops probably can't tell much of a difference at this point. Use the 3C and don't stop for a full year. There may come a point where you feel like you could use a tweak or two to maybe gain a few percentage points of edge in terms of sound, accuracy, endurance, or a combination of the three. Right now? You probably aren't yet at a point where it even matters. That's just being honest with you.
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hibidogrulez
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Joined: 25 Jun 2020
Posts: 472
Location: Europe

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2021 1:28 am    Post subject: Re: Seeking Guidance Reply with quote

Strad007 wrote:
Hi Trumpet Herald World, I am back to the horn after a 3.5 year hiatus

Welcome back!


Quote:
Should I continue with the 3C or try to go back to the old days and start with a 7C, 5C, then back to 3C?

3C seems fine for now, you can always switch later if you feel the mouthpiece is holding you back somehow.

Quote:
What is a good book for sight reading? That has always been my weak point.

What really worked for me was learning to play the drums. After a year or 2 you've seen so many rythms that it becomes second nature to read them instantly. Rather than getting a specific book though, I would suggest finding random music every so often and try to play it straight away. It could be anything, ranging from the internet to just picking something from a book borrowed from a friend. You'll want to get out of your comfort zone to really practice it.

Quote:
Should range up to high C be sufficient? When should I push to get to high F?

In my experience, high C can get you through a lot of music (but I'm an amateur player) and it seems it'll certainly be sufficient for classical 2nd/3rd chair. However, if you can play that F, it'll mean the C will be much more stable and easier. As for when to push though, why not you take your own advice and take it easy? High notes aren't important yet.

Quote:
Are practice mutes a big no-no for playing in my apartment? I bought one despite mixed reviews...I have noticed the octaves are WAY out of tune using it and closer together on the embouchure...

For me practicing with mutes doesn't really work. What you can try instead is to practice on playing very softly when you're at home. It can be a good way to train your embouchure if you can play softly without tightening up.
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Dayton
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Joined: 24 Mar 2013
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Location: USA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2021 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome back to trumpet playing! You have some specific goals. I'd urge you to start working with a teacher as soon as possible to discuss them and put together a plan to try to achieve them.

You are practicing from excellent books. A teacher can help you to turn that into a routine: What, how and when to practice, with your goals in mind. A teacher can also help you sort out whether the 3C is a good match for you now or you should give something else a try.

Good luck!
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mafields627
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Joined: 09 Nov 2001
Posts: 3544
Location: AL

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2021 10:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My advice is to remember that the player you WERE and the player you ARE and the player you WILL BE are all different people.

I don't have the time to put in now like I did in college and that's frustrating at times because I remember what I could do. Set small goals that can help propel you into enjoyment.

Also, check out Getchell Book 2. It's easy and it's fun. Right now fun is important.
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wilder
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Joined: 27 Jun 2020
Posts: 205
Location: NYC

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2021 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dayton wrote:
Welcome back to trumpet playing! You have some specific goals. I'd urge you to start working with a teacher as soon as possible to discuss them and put together a plan to try to achieve them.

You are practicing from excellent books. A teacher can help you to turn that into a routine: What, how and when to practice, with your goals in mind. A teacher can also help you sort out whether the 3C is a good match for you now or you should give something else a try.

Good luck!
This is really the answer. I would just add one week is nothing and you are doing great. Figure this is a year and a half project at least. Stick with the 3C, its not the mouthpiece. If you cant practice trumpet at least 2 hours a day you are not going to achieve your goals. Stay away from mutes they will hold you back. Good luck! jw
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JayKosta
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Joined: 24 Dec 2018
Posts: 1350
Location: Endwell NY USA

PostPosted: Mon Jan 11, 2021 2:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wilder wrote:
... If you cant practice trumpet at least 2 hours a day you are not going to achieve your goals. ...

------------------------------
The OP seems experienced enough to judge for himself how to manage daily practice time.

For other comeback, or beginner, players - I think it is a disservice to tell them that less than 2h/day is not sufficient practice for them to achieve a 'decent amateur' level of playing. That amount of practice time might be needed for someone wanting to make rapid progress, but is not necessary for a more moderate pace.

I think the important thing is to actually schedule some achievable amount of practice time - and then DO it regularly. Leaving the practice to a 'when I find time' is not a reliable way for many people.

And I feel that at the end of the practice session, you should start feeling fatigued, and playing ability lessening. If you're still fresh at the end, it likely means you've been resting too much. Yes, some non-playing breaks are needed, but just the time to empty water and arrange the music sheets in an unhurried way can be enough for many people.
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