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How long to become proficient?

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Jerome Callet Forum Moderator

Joined: 11 Nov 2001
Posts: 3351
Location: Philadelphia, Pa

PostPosted: Wed Dec 03, 2003 8:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Posted - 10/29/2003 : 20:11:18

Regular Member

Joined: Nov 19, 2001
Posts: 16 Posted: 2002-06-12 18:57
I'm beginning my attempt to learn SC, and i'm curious of 2 things:

1.) How long did you have to study/practice the system so that you became as/more profcient on the trumpet and/or where able to use it on gigs?

2.) Is this process expediated by studying with Mr Callet in NYC, and if it did - how many lessons did it take before the concepts took hold?



Heavyweight Member

Joined: Nov 12, 2001
Posts: 556
From: Philadelphia, Pa
Posted: 2002-06-16 22:50
In my experience, personal study with Mr. Callet tremendously expedites the transition. Most importantly, you will avoid much of the misinformation that is rampant on the internet, etc. I'm quite sure that after your very first lesson you will understand the basic principles and direction. And, you will hear the marked improvement in your own sound. Breaking down the old habits and making the new ones second nature can take considerably longer. Periodic checkups with Mr. Callet will keep you going in the right direction. Best regards, Kyle


Regular Member

Joined: Feb 09, 2002
Posts: 23 Posted: 2002-06-19 18:04
I totally dig what tptguy is saying, but can anyone give some kind of figure? I mean how long did it take people to get SC reasonably firmly established? I appreciate that everyone has a different learning curve, but are we talking weeks? a month? 6 months? just a rough idea
thanks, Roo


fzr Phil
Veteran Member

Joined: Nov 07, 2001
Posts: 125
From: Grays, Essex, UK
Posted: 2002-06-19 20:37
i did try to reply to this thread the other day but did'nt get it finished/posted(sorry!)

Personally it has been about a year since i was exposed to SC material and about 18 mnths as a regular reader of the Herald.
my situation is probably quite different from the majority as i am not exactly a comeback player but one who had a very reasonable level of competence on larger instruments (euph 5+yrs, Tenor horn 10+yrs) but decided to try to learn Cornet/Trumpet for the challenge. The Cornet had always eluded me even when i first learned to play.
I have been on the cornet for about 22 months now. i started with a DW3 (cornet and trumpet) and had NO consistency or embouchure, since begining my journy to superchops i have developed mixed -fair consistency and downsized through the range of mp's ( now have GR NB*** for trumpet and GR NB 63***#5 for cornet). aside from all the material i have, advice from internet sites (esp this one) and some personal advice from e.g. Bruce Lee / GR, i have not had any specific 1 to 1 sc lessons or time with a private teacher. this may have been/ may be detrimental to my progress but i do feel that i am just about on the right track.
i am not where i want to be yet, as i still do not have the consistency down the band-room but i am sure i am again on the upward scale of the trough.
i feel that truly developing superchops depends so much on how your present chops work, what has to be changed, use of tongue e.t.c that everyone is different.
my SC embouchure is as good as its weakest component. i am not able to cheat it and as a result have on occasion found it very difficult when i just cannot perform down the band hall. it is demoralising but it is just the way the development goes with its peaks, troughs and plateau's.
I would love to get some proper sc instruction if i can get over to the US then there are certainly a few people i would like to visit!

1. answer. i have just gotten by with gigs( band jobs) for better or worse. i do play/practice most every day. (probably a practic-aholic and over-do it).

2. can't answer
Phil Martin
-dedication, thats what you need....

Besson 600 trumpet - GR NB63***
Besson 928 sovereign Cornet - GR NB63*** #7 (also #5 and #8 avail)
besson new standard soprano cornet GR nb63*** cornet #5


The General
Veteran Member

Joined: Nov 07, 2001
Posts: 343
From: Londonderry, NH 603-421-9178
Posted: 2002-06-19 21:12
That was a great Post, Phil! One statement that was made says it all:

"i feel that truly developing superchops depends so much on how your present chops work, what has to be changed"

Like many other schools of thought, it must be adapted to the individual. What works for one may not work for all... in the literal sense of the word.

My personal journey started out with Jerome Callet. With his help and encouragement, along with the help of my friends Kyle AKA tptguy, and Lee Adams I made significant progress within the first year. I came from the "smile-type", flat chin, embouchure.

I'll be the first to admit that after two weeks, I wondered what I had done to myself. At that point, I forged ahead. If you have ever had an injury, and spent time in a cast, there was rehabilitation time involved. I tore ligaments in my knee, and after the cast came off, I had to learn to walk again. I think that this relates directly to what happens in an embouchure change. We must re-train, and strengthen muscle groups to accomplish our goals.

As Phil stated, some may already be fairly close. For others, it will take time, depending upon how much change is necessary, and your ability to make the change, in terms of maintaining a playing schedule.

One thing for sure... build it from the bottom up. Instant success is rare. Persistence will pay off!

Hope this helps!

Bruce Lee - http://www.NorthernBrass.com - (603) 421-9178

... "Dedicated to the Comeback Trumpet Player"
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