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Playing flat with slide all the way in


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mike ansberry
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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 8:43 pm    Post subject: Playing flat with slide all the way in Reply with quote

I have been reveling in the improvements in my range and endurance. I posted in another forum that I am having trouble with my Olds Recording playing flat with the slide all the way in. This was a new development for me.

I have been working with tuning drones using Sibelius and ProTools today. Now I notice that it isn't just on the Recording. I am doing the same thing on my Super. I am playing with an embouchure that is relaxed in the center.

I am quite happy with the tone quality, range, and endurance with my new embouchure and accuracy is improving. But having to push up on the pitch constantly is pretty tedious.

Any ideas would be appreciated.
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Lionel
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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is strictly my opinion. Pretty sure that it would work. Hmm I'm wondering if this post belongs somewhere else? I'm not complaining but someone else might. Regardless? Here's my analysis.

We all know that a cornet mouthpiece is shorter than a trumpet piece. we also know that as long as the correct adapter is used, a cornet mouthpiece will work just fine in a trumpet.

So, if you have multiple copies of your trumpet mouthpiece? Cut a half-inch off the end of one. Then turn it on a decent lathe so that it penetrates deep enough into the receiver. If you don't have access to a lathe? You can use a file and various grits of sandpaper.

At this point test the thing. See how it works. If the horn is finally playing high enough in pitch? You may still have some work to do. This is because the inside diameter of your now shortened trumpet mouthpiece has been reduced. Again you can either take to a professional and have it tapered correctly, or fool around with it yourself.

I posted this idea because it seems like the least costly direction for you to go. Another idea would be to have a custom-made tuning slide built. Sorry, you can't just cut the slides inserts shorter. This won't reduce the overall length at all. The actual ''loop'' must be shorter.
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AJCarter
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 5:26 am    Post subject: Re: Playing flat with slide all the way in Reply with quote

mike ansberry wrote:
I have been reveling in the improvements in my range and endurance. I posted in another forum that I am having trouble with my Olds Recording playing flat with the slide all the way in. This was a new development for me.

I have been working with tuning drones using Sibelius and ProTools today. Now I notice that it isn't just on the Recording. I am doing the same thing on my Super. I am playing with an embouchure that is relaxed in the center.

I am quite happy with the tone quality, range, and endurance with my new embouchure and accuracy is improving. But having to push up on the pitch constantly is pretty tedious.

Any ideas would be appreciated.


Now that you've achieved your goal of being nice and relaxed and not sharp, you've gone too far! (there is such a thing.) You can still have an embouchure that is relaxed and pliable at the center, yet engaged enough that you won't sound saggy. Ever so slightly more velocity behind your air may also help. The last "player" solution I would suggest is to make sure that you very strongly have the pitch internalized: sing the pitch and then any exercises you're doing in that key, then play them.

That or you can start hacking tubing off horns and mouthpieces, but imo that would be a very extreme solution.
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mike ansberry
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lionel wrote:
This is strictly my opinion. Pretty sure that it would work. Hmm I'm wondering if this post belongs somewhere else? I'm not complaining but someone else might.


Hey, Lionel. I think you have a point. It might belong in Fundamentals. But since I'm working with BE, I thought I might get more insight here.
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dcstott
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a few thoughts reading your post.
I used to struggle to get pitch up a long time ago. Several things helped bring pitch up for me:
1: My professor, a Stamp oriented pedagogue, had me bend notes down a half step down and then a half step up to identify the center of the sound. When I first did this, the sound seemed really bright at first but after a fair amount of time, the brightness started to sound like brilliance. Perhaps working on an upward bend might pull the pitch up and create a new sense of center.
2. Mouthpiece buzzing, even a little bit, can help the notes sit higher, if you’re using a tuner. Also, do you still play flat on different mouthpieces?
3. It’s possible your sound concept is based off of something else. Are you hearing a cornet type sound in your head? Or even flugelhorn? For me, Hakan Hardenberger recordings helped adjust my ear up. Or Bud Herseth can pull the sound up. With a sparkle. Instead of drones, it might be worth it to buy some things that have play alongs with them and matching that instead. The Chicowicz Flow studies books could be great. The Thompson Buzzing book maybe. Or, just spitballing, try using a different drone sound. On Tonal Energy app, I sometimes do exercises off a saw wave drone or a square wave drone, depending on what tone I’m trying to accentuate.
I hope these thought help at all
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Goby
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 2:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think this is fundamentals. I've had a few Olds Recordings that played flat with the slide all the way in. I have a feeling the bell tail is a little too long relative to the front half of the horn. Wear on the valves compounds the issue, as does the use of a large mouthpiece.
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mike ansberry
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used to do a lot of lip bends. I haven't done them on the new embouchure. I'll give that a try.

Cutting the bell tail is an idea but I would be concerned that shortening it might cause other acoustical problems. I may eventually get to that point. However, I am having the same problem on the Super, which is a horn that used to play in tune with the slide pulled out a little.
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Goby
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 5:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't mean to suggest that you should cut the bell, just that the bell tail is longer than the amount of tubing removed on the front half of the instrument to create the "balanced action" shape. My recommendation is to sell the horn and buy a Fullerton Recording, or try your luck with another LA model. If it's a really nice, early LA model, you could try having the valves rebuilt or send it to a restoration expert and see if they can tweak it to fix the problem. If you were going to cut it down, the best place to do so would be at the tuning slide.
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Billy B
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 5:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you had others play your instrument?
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mike ansberry
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Billy B wrote:
Have you had others play your instrument?


I have not had an opportunity to do that. However, I play exactly the same amount flat on my 1977 Olds Super. I may try it with the drones on my Conn 40b later tonight.
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Billy B
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Are you determining this by ear or with a tuner?
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Last edited by Billy B on Sat May 15, 2021 7:42 pm; edited 1 time in total
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mike ansberry
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mike ansberry wrote:
Lionel wrote:
This is strictly my opinion. Pretty sure that it would work. Hmm I'm wondering if this post belongs somewhere else? I'm not complaining but someone else might.


Hey, Lionel. I think you have a point. It might belong in Fundamentals. But since I'm working with BE, I thought I might get more insight here.


I said this backward. It might belong on the BE forum. I thought it might get a wider group of opinions on the Fundamentals forum.
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mike ansberry
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Billy B wrote:
Are you determining this by ear or with a tuner?


I can tell by listening. I have a set of tuning drone exercises. I used Sibelius to generate them as a sound file. I imported that into ProTools. I play the computer generated sounds in my right ear of the headphones and my sound through the mic in my left ear. I also record me playing along and listen back to it.

In addition to that, I have noticed that playing rehearsals and gigs I have to push up a little on the pitch constantly to play in tune. That can cut down my endurance some. And it isn't as much fun doing that.
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Last edited by mike ansberry on Sat May 15, 2021 7:44 pm; edited 1 time in total
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HaveTrumpetWillTravel
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're adjusting the drones for a Bb instrument, right? Some of the apps let you do this automatically. You're obviously experienced enough, but sometimes we just forget.

+1 to lip bends.

I'd also try matching pitches on a youtube long tone video and/or a piano keyboard. Sometimes the artificiality of the drones throws things off.

On C I was flat on a recording I listened to and my teacher said sometimes going flat is a result of not projecting enough (not enough air).

You're wise to trouble shoot this and the advice here is helpful for us all.
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Billy B
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 7:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mike ansberry wrote:
Billy B wrote:
Are you determining this by ear or with a tuner?


I can tell by listening. I have a set of tuning drone exercises. I used Sibelius to generate them as a sound file. I imported that into ProTools. I play the computer generated sounds in my right ear of the headphones and my sound through the mic in my left ear. I also record me playing along and listen back to it.


There can be a sampling rate problem that will affect the drone pitch.

Use an electronic tuner.

tuner.ninja
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Andy Cooper
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2021 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You might want to post this in the cornet or mouthpiece section.

Just curious - what mouthpiece are you using in your cornets?

You might want to check out the mouthpiece "gap" if your cornets have a visible leadpipe edge when you look down the receiver.
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dr_trumpet
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PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2021 9:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This could be an instance of tongue arch being too flat to the bottom of the mouth, slowing the air and dropping the pitch, in combination with the relaxed embouchure. Relaxed intake, open throat, low or minimal tongue arch, the relaxed center of embouchure with slow but relaxed and steady air....flat pitch with a huge sounds results.
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mike ansberry
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PostPosted: Wed May 19, 2021 5:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you might be onto something here, Doc. With the embouchure the arch part of my tongue is lower. I'll work with that and see.
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JayKosta
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PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2021 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mike ansberry wrote:
I think you might be onto something here, Doc. With the embouchure the arch part of my tongue is lower. I'll work with that and see.

-----------------------------
fwiw - notice what the tongue position DOES to the overall muscle/tissue adjustment of your embouchure.
Control is needed, not maximum relaxation.
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kalijah
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PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2021 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
This could be an instance of tongue arch being too flat to the bottom of the mouth, slowing the air and dropping the pitch


The air flow velocity in the mouth (or anywhere) has NOTHING to do with pitch. The lips determine the pitch. If the lips are too relaxed for the pitch you are attempting to play, then the pitch will be flat.

mike ansberry wrote:
Quote:

I think you might be onto something here, Doc. With the embouchure the arch part of my tongue is lower. I'll work with that and see.


Tongue arch can relate to embouchure effort (as Jay pointed out). It doesn't directly control pitch in ANY way.
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