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How can I stop blurps?


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kalijah
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PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2021 4:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
How do I stop blurps? Been trouble since I started back playing in 2014.


There is ONE cause for this. That is: the embouchure is set for the wrong pitch in the instant or soon after the note sounds. With correct practice you can improve this. One of the best things you can do is to first reduce the effort required to play. Gain control of soft/low tones first in with LOTS of repetition on tongued notes. Use slow tempos and gradually increase.

The required skill is to be able to tongue the note without changing the embouchure posture. Often players slightly open the teeth when releasing the air impulse with the tongue, changing the embouchure and thereby the intended pitch.

Air is NOT the cause of this. Air relates to dynamics, not pitch played.
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TrpPro
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PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2021 8:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The single most helpful thing you can do for split note attacks (especially the first one) and stuttering attacks is to learn how to buzz your lips. And one way of implementing buzzing into your playing is by doing a few Caruso buzzing exercises. These exercises are calisthenic in nature so it needs to be noted that you should not willfully try to implement buzzing into your non-calisthenic playing. You could initiate your regular music by starting with a buzz, but it is unnecessary. The purpose of calisthenic buzzing exercises is to prepare the muscles in your embouchure for regular playing. But you play the way you always play.

Guaranteed this will clean up split notes and stuttering attacks. It's not an over night solution but a few months should show you that you're on the right track.

There are many buzzing approaches. Any of them should all have good results.

Another aid in getting that first note clean is to create a non-distracting timing device just before you play so that you know exactly where the note begins. One such device could be to slightly raise the bell of the horn as an "and" upbeat for the note. A slight inhale could be another way to indicate the upbeat.
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Rickperon
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PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2021 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Vin DiBona wrote:
While it is more likely that some embouchure issue already mentioned is causing the problem, there also is the possibility that your mouthpiece is perhaps too small in diameter or too shallow.
R. Tomasek


And in my case, it's just the opposite. I have pretty fleshy lips, and do a lot of playing on a 1.5, however if I do just about any kind of commercial lead playing, my accuracy is so much better on my personal lead piece, which is quite a bit smaller in diameter (625).... my two front teeth come together towards the front at an angle "^" and probably factors in I'm sure. I don't know exactly what you play on, but I've heard Jens Lindemann say that many players play too large a M.P.... but if you are not the kind to experiment with MP's, then there seems to be some great advice to try out here. Hope it all works out for you....
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Mike Prestage
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PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2021 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kalijah wrote:

The required skill is to be able to tongue the note without changing the embouchure posture.


+1

Working on breath attacks allow you to completely remove this element from the equation. IMO I think you'll get far more out of them if you see them as complimentary to practicing articulating the way you do when you play music.

To produce clean breath attacks, you have to rapidly increase the air pressure in your body to exactly the level you need to sustain the note - no more, no less. This is also crucial for tongued articulation. But, good tonguing also requires non-interference with the embouchure as Kalijah said, and very precise coordination of the air pressure rise with the movement of the tongue.

Many people get good results by conceptualising this as coordination as 'doing both at exactly the same time' but that's never made sense to me. I can accept that the release of the tongue is best conceptualised as instantaneous and, if it takes a perceptible length of time, the player needs to develop the speed and fluidity of their tonguing. However, I believe that the rise in air pressure must always take a non-trivial length of time, however advanced the player. There's therefore a spectrum of possible articulations depending on how you coordinate it with the tongue. If the tongue moves just as the air pressure starts to rise, the result will be more or less identical to a breath attack. If the tongue only moves once the pressure has plateaued, the articulation will sound perfectly crisp and precise.

IMO conceptualisations such as the one in the text jengstrom posted are only helpful if the student doesn't take the instructions completely literally. My guess is that the writer has found it effective in resolving 'blatty' articulations, where the air pressure is reaching a peak at the time of the tongue release is higher and then dropping. As it happens, the referenced video of Rashawn Ross (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yjDz2SvBfZo) gives a really nice demonstration of what actually needs to happen to produce a 'pure' articulation. If you watch on 1/4 speed, you can clearly see his face inflate as the air pressure in his body ramps up. By the time the sound starts, this inflation is finished and his face is completely static for the duration of the note.

I couldn't view the video on Facebook (it looks like it's set as private) but I've had a good listen to the one on Youtube. The cracks aren't frequent enough to stand out as a self-contained problem to me. IMO it would be more helpful to just ignore them and listen to the prevailing quality of articulations. There's lots of room for improvement there but I certainly don't think you should be embarrassed of your playing and wish you the best in taking it further

Mike

(PS I've already written far too much but it's probably worth saying a bit about where I'm coming from. I'm an amateur who used to gig quite a bit in weekend warrior and professional-ish settings but always had underlying playing issues. I was also a major mouthpiece obsessive which certainly didn't help. A few years ago I pretty much gave up gigging and kept playing just enough to not 'lose it' until I was ready to start building a better foundation for my playing, which eventually happened 18 months ago. I'm very open to controversial approaches but the biggest influence on my beliefs about air pressure and articulation was a highly respected 'mainstream' teacher. If anyone's interested and has a Spotify account, here's the most recent recording of me. It's from when I was in trumpet limbo and has its share of cracked notes! https://open.spotify.com/track/5hfl8X9XBFv0edN476SYgX?si=12dfbf5b26654f22
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Mike Prestage
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 2:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If anyone's ploughed through my previous post and was thinking of replying, I should point out that I've just made a couple of edits to correct points that were misleading relative to what I actually believe about how all this works. The altered bits are now in bold.

Mike
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kalijah
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
If the tongue moves just as the air pressure starts to rise, the result will be more or less identical to a breath attack. If the tongue only moves once the pressure has plateaued, the articulation will sound perfectly crisp and precise.


The air pressure change bearing on the aperture due to a tongued release is instantaneous regardless of the air pressure. This air pressure must be bearing on the tongue when the attack is executed, and can so be for ANY amount of time preceding that release.

The player can also then change the pressure applied to the tone for dynamic effect. But this doesn't influence the pitch.

The pressure front that propagates with the instant pressure increase also introduces interesting frequency effects.

Quote:
IMO conceptualisations such as the one in the text jengstrom posted are only helpful if the student doesn't take the instructions completely literally.


His view (and Rowuk’s) is conceptually erroneous because he makes some incorrect assumptions. Namely, that one can not control the air pressure bearing on the tongue and that excessive pressure is the cause of the missed note.

There is NOTHING inherently wrong with a pause between the inhale and exhale as long as the embouchure is set correctly for the pitch and the pressure is set for the desired dynamic. It is EASY to execute a pause of reasonable duration with no adverse effects.
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Mike Prestage
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kalijah wrote:
Quote:
If the tongue moves just as the air pressure starts to rise, the result will be more or less identical to a breath attack. If the tongue only moves once the pressure has plateaued, the articulation will sound perfectly crisp and precise.


The air pressure change bearing on the aperture due to a tongued release is instantaneous regardless of the air pressure. This air pressure must be bearing on the tongue when the attack is executed, and can so be for ANY amount of time preceding that release.

The player can also then change the pressure applied to the tone for dynamic effect. But this doesn't influence the pitch.

The pressure front that propagates with the instant pressure increase also introduces interesting frequency effects.

Whenever I refer to the rising air pressure, I'm talking about what's happening before the tongue moves. I'm treating the tongue release as an instantaneous action that exposes the embouchure to air at 100% of whatever pressure the air inside the body is at that moment. I'm well aware that 'holding' pressurised air is possible, and ideally easy to do, because learning to keep the pressure constant throughout sequences of tongue-stopped staccato notes was the key to my getting this whole thing straightened out. I have also dabbled with incorporating a hold when practicing articulations preceded by a breath and was alluding to this possibility with the term 'plateau'. I can see how this might be a useful development tool but I think if we want the most consistent results when performing music, we should learn to coordinate everything so that the pressure reaches the 'target' at the instant of the tongue release. This is very much a gut-level belief which I can't back up with any solid arguments!

The point I was trying to make about tonguing potentially sounding like a breath attack was that the tongue can release part way through the pressure ramp-up to soften the front of the note, and that if the release is early enough the sound of the result will approach that of a breath attack. However, I appreciate that 'part way through' is ambiguous given that the player should be able to hold the air pressure constant for an indefinite amount of time before the release. So, this sort of articulation could be achieved by raising the pressure to a small fraction of that required for the 'body' of the note, holding it there for however long, then releasing the tongue while simultaneously starting a bigger ramp-up in pressure. And of course, if you're aiming for a dynamic effect in the opposite direction, you have no choice but to conceive of two distinct pressure-change actions - one upwards before the release, and the other downwards after.

I'm sorry, that's an absurd amount of words to say that, as far as I can tell, we're in agreement! I'll just add that the existence of transient effects even in an idealised 'pure' articulation is something I've been curious about for years so if you have any thoughts or references on this, I'd be interested in hearing them via a PM or new thread. And apologies to the OP or any other contributors if these posts seem too pedantic or off-topic.

Mike
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kalijah
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'm sorry, that's an absurd amount of words to say that, as far as I can tell, we're in agreement!


We are. And your word use is efficient and precise. IMO.
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Billy B
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I and my students rarely ever blurp a note and we never think about any of this stuff.
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Mike Prestage
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PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2021 12:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kalijah, that's good to hear.

Billy B, I don't doubt it.

Mike
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Crazy Finn
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PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2021 1:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Billy B wrote:
I and my students rarely ever blurp a note and we never think about any of this stuff.


Yup.

Too much focus on process and you won't get your desired result.

If you focus on the desired result (sound, attack, tone) then usually your process is lined up and working correctly.
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kalijah
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PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2021 5:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
If you focus on the desired result (sound, attack, tone) then usually your process is lined up and working correctly.

No one is suggesting otherwise. But the previous posts are entirely relevant to techniques involved.
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Billy B
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PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2021 6:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kalijah wrote:
Quote:
If you focus on the desired result (sound, attack, tone) then usually your process is lined up and working correctly.

No one is suggesting otherwise. But the previous posts are entirely relevant to techniques involved.


I never talk about any of this with my students and it's never a consideration in my playing.

But if it works for you then do it.
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JayKosta
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PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2021 6:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Billy B wrote:
I never talk about any of this with my students and it's never a consideration in my playing.

But if it works for you then do it.

---------------------------------------
Teaching (and learning) 'the way to do things' can be done in different ways.
Finding the way(s) that give best results is the goal.

A concern for pedagogy is how teaching ability can be transferred from a master to the next generation.
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enviroman22
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2021 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g5_80LRcEa0

Thanks guys. In two weeks you brought back my confidence. Thanks@!@

I've been "blurping" aka "chipping" ever since I came back after 20 years off. Didn't remember much but there was some "chippyness" in the upper register back then that I have minimized recently somewhat though work (and advice!) and practice and perseverence. But I sure appreciate all the tips including Rowak’s breath development excercises.
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Last edited by enviroman22 on Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:02 pm; edited 1 time in total
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SMrtn
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 05, 2021 1:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Billy B wrote:
Antacid


... or stop drinking carbonated mineral water and or beer. Though that would be more trouble than it's worth.
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enviroman22
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 09, 2021 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SMrtn wrote:
Billy B wrote:
Antacid


... or stop drinking carbonated mineral water and or beer. Though that would be more trouble than it's worth.


Wait. I drink beer. And indulge in other things. Maybe Billy B had it right the whole time and I the ostrich with his head in the sand wasn’t willing to look. Well I appreciate all the help because now I know what my problem is; namely “chipping notes” and have now vast wealth of techniques to perfect it Thanks! Rowuk take it easy.
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SMrtn
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2021 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

enviroman22 wrote:
SMrtn wrote:
Billy B wrote:
Antacid


... or stop drinking carbonated mineral water and or beer. Though that would be more trouble than it's worth.


Wait. I drink beer. And indulge in other things. Maybe Billy B had it right the whole time and I the ostrich with his head in the sand wasn’t willing to look. Well I appreciate all the help because now I know what my problem is; namely “chipping notes” and have now vast wealth of techniques to perfect it Thanks! Rowuk take it easy.


Good man
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