• FAQ  • Search  • Memberlist  • Usergroups   • Register   • Profile  • Log in to check your private messages  • Log in 

Caruso Band Method - some questions



 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    trumpetherald.com Forum Index -> Carmine Caruso
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
JOF
New Member


Joined: 05 Aug 2018
Posts: 5
Location: Netherlands

PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:04 am    Post subject: Caruso Band Method - some questions Reply with quote

I studied with Carmine for a number of years in the early 70's before moving to Europe. His calisthenics remain the core of my daily practice. I am interested to use the ideas in the Caruso for Band book with a Fanfare Orkest that I perform with. Unfortunately the original materials are long out of print and while I have tried contacting people who have had an acquaintance or even worked with with this material in the past.
Is there anyone on this forum who has used this material earlier and knows about it?
Since the opportunity to try out Caruso exercises with the group comes at the beginning of a rehearsal and is limited to c. 10 minutes time, I am making the assumption that the four rules, the 6 notes and 2nds are the essentials that would be covered - either in his early portions of the Band Method - or in our rehearsals. Due to differences of instruments - for instance, we have saxophones - harmonics doesn't seem an option. Later on, I propose to introduce <> and >< - even if we can't do the intervals with them.
A practical question arises when doing these with several players a differing instruments with regards to stopping when no sound comes out and then to begin again. Does one go back to the interval that the first to drop out achieved? Carmine always told me that the second and third settings we did different embouchures we had and that, in time, we would play all of the horn with one setting - and on trombone, my instrument, that is certainly what happened. Trying to accommodate several players with different stopping points certainly is a "fly in the ointment"!
Ideas or comments?

Thanks, in advance,
Jim
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
drboogenbroom
Heavyweight Member


Joined: 16 Apr 2004
Posts: 666

PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although the Carmine Band Method was well before my time, I know there are a couple of people on there who taught out of it or had a band director who did.

However, I have been creating my own materials for use with my high school band based on Carmine's principals and exercises and have had very good success with them. If you would like to see what I use specifically I can share that.

In general, based on my experience, you are right on about starting the 6 notes and 2nds. I always introduce the 6 notes and keep the kids just on those until everyone is following the four rules and used to keeping the mouthpiece on their face/breathing through their nose.

For the different instruments, I just have everyone do the intervals the way I was taught to do them as a brass player. Generally, this means my clarinets and saxes play up to the highest pre-altissimo notes on their instruments.

Everyone is instructed to play the interval studies until they 1. Get no sound 2. Don't make the interval 3. Get dizzy 4. Don't know the fingering (pretty much just like the standard Caruso instructions). Once that happens the first time, I instruct the students to rest for a "set" (2 measures) and then pick up where they left off and continue until they have to stop again.

This means the exercise doesn't sound very good towards the end, but that's okay since that isn't the point. The fact that the woodwinds can usually go for a while longer than my brass players means the brass players get a little rest built in as well.

I do use the air speed control exercises, but usually only one version a day, either SLS or LSL. When we do them on intervals, I cap them within the ensembles comfortable range, so we usually only go to a concert F or G. This saves on time and face.

I have tried harmonics with the woodwinds playing scale and arpeggio patterns under the brass harmonics, but the high school students I teach struggled with with unfamiliar keys and the time we were spending on them needed to go someplace else for the time being.

Percussion either do developed scale style exercises based on the interval the band is playing or plays a rudiment pattern on repeat.

What we do to manage the time as we build up to a full routine is we always do a 6 notes (I also use the expanded versions in Laurie Frink's "Flexus".) and then we rotate through the other exercises. IE one day will be Six Notes/regular interval the next day will be 6 notes/SLS interval the next day will be 6 notes-LSL interval then 6 notes/articulation interval etc.

The rule we try to follow is "Today I will do 6 notes and whatever I didn't have time for yesterday." Obviously, it takes a while to get that much material out there. I also use exercises from other methods but modify them so they can be played following the four rules.

I know this isn't an "official" answer, and I hope someone who is familiar with the actual Caruso Band Method will chime in, but I hope this provides some ideas.

Kevin
_________________
By concentrating on precision, one arrives at technique, but by concentrating on technique one does not arrive at precision.

Bruno Walter
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Yahoo Messenger
JOF
New Member


Joined: 05 Aug 2018
Posts: 5
Location: Netherlands

PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:35 am    Post subject: Caruso Band Method Reply with quote

Kevin -

Thanks very much for your fulsome and quick reply. I would very much like to see specifically what you use - perhaps via a pm?

In the interval studies, do I understand correctly that after resting a set (2 measures) they will join in again, therefore playing clusters (2nds against the rest of the group)? I like the idea (being a composer). Does it make it harder for them to hear "their" notes vs. what the rest are playing?

Re: Harmonics - the only sax player I know who really explored harmonics as part of warming up was Steve Lacy. Given the differing acoustics of saxes and brass instruments, one would be looking at a bit of cacophony there as well, yes?
Your ideas for the woodwind and percussion players seems very creative. I would like to see how you did those - even if your woodwind players were stymied by the keys. Do you have them do these 'out of there heads' or did you write out the notes - which still demands that they know their scales and arpeggios.

Thanks very much for your reply! Shall we look at materials via a pm? I doubt that the general reader has this particular interest in Caruso?

Jim
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
drboogenbroom
Heavyweight Member


Joined: 16 Apr 2004
Posts: 666

PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll send a PM, but since you asked a few more questions here I'll answer them here as well, just in case anyone else is interested in the answers.

You do understand correctly that I have the students join in again which creates clusters of 2nds (by the time we are down to our last few brass players we sound very harmonically adventurous.) As with any musicians, and young musicians in particular, there are some who struggle to accurately play their intervals in the clusters, but I find most of them get better at it over time and most of them don't have too much trouble with it once they've done it a few times.

I suppose you could have them skip a 2 measure set and then come back in in unison with the band, or have them stop after the first blow, but, honestly, I haven't found it to pose too much of a problem and I like the fact that the clusters really encourage the members to not worry about how the exercise "sounds" and focus on the 4 rules. The big thing is that a compromise has to be made somewhere to accommodate ensemble usage. I think a case can be made for any of the above options.

Re: Re: Harmonics- I don't have the sax players, or any woodwinds, try to play harmonic studies (flutes could do them as well). Rather, all the woodwinds and percussion had scale patterns to play. It can get a little jumbled, but since the brass harmonics essentially outline a major or dominant 7 chord, the woodwind patterns actually take on a very melodic quality. Well, they would have if my students could play fluently in B major.

I did write out the patterns. With more experienced musicians, I don't see why you couldn't just call out the pattern and have them work it out.

Hope this helps.

Kevin
_________________
By concentrating on precision, one arrives at technique, but by concentrating on technique one does not arrive at precision.

Bruno Walter
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Yahoo Messenger
JOF
New Member


Joined: 05 Aug 2018
Posts: 5
Location: Netherlands

PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:53 pm    Post subject: Caruso Band Method - some questions Reply with quote

Kevin -
I am just leaving southern France to drive back to Amsterdam. Unclear whether they are taking one or two days for this. I'll reply and continue when I am home.
Thanks,
Jim
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
pepperdean
Heavyweight Member


Joined: 10 Mar 2004
Posts: 589
Location: Johnson City, Texas

PostPosted: Wed Aug 29, 2018 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was studying with Carmine when he was working on the Band Method. I bought copies for my school when it came out of loyalty but didn’t really use the book. I did, however, use Carmine’s basic exercises with great success. Here’s what we did:

Organized warmup was the Six Notes. We followed this with Seconds. Each band member ascended and played to failure, as per the rules. Each person was responsible for remembering where they left off. Eventually, all the playing would cease and we would begin again. I’d announce the pitch we were starting on. Each individual would restart when we reached the set of pitches where they had stopped previously. Again, everyone would play to failure. At this point, we were finished and would tune and move on with rehearsal.

During this, the percussion section would play three quarter notes followed by four sixteenths for a pattern. They would be directed to play paradiddles on the sixteenths.

Since I did this with a middle school band, there was a bit of research required for fingerings for the very high notes and harmonics for some of the woodwinds.

The results were wonderful. Rehearsals got off to a very organized start; breathing was improved; tone was very centered which led to excellent pitch control. Due to the age of the students, some became very competitive, really pursued the Caruso exercises, and became very fine musicians.

I hope my description is clear and helpful to you.

Alan
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
JOF
New Member


Joined: 05 Aug 2018
Posts: 5
Location: Netherlands

PostPosted: Fri Aug 31, 2018 2:51 am    Post subject: Caruso Band Method Reply with quote

Well, I'm home and have had a chance to search through my brass materials - and sure enough, I had an original copy of the Clarinet Book from the Band Method - and a partial photocopy of the Trumpet Book. There are some differences between the Trumpet (partial copy) yand the Clarinet Book in that they have the Trumpet do the Harmonics - which they marks (Solo) while the Clarinets (and other woodwinds and ?percussion) clearly do nothing. Like the MCFB book, he clearly sees each lesson as something which is done longer than one week. There are 17 lessons listed in the Table of Contents of the Clarinet Book.
I'll write a more detailed description later today.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    trumpetherald.com Forum Index -> Carmine Caruso All times are GMT - 8 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group