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Playing to falure controversial?



 
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gstump
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 4:56 am    Post subject: Playing to falure controversial? Reply with quote

Occasionally, when mentioning a Caruso style of practicing I get contrary responses. After all these years, is this type of practicing still controversial?

I hear a lot of:

-Stop playing if you get tired.
-Rest as much as you play. (Not sure about this one since we "rest" 20 or more hours a day.
-Never play to failure
-Never "strain" your muscles.

Caruso taught me to play with abandon; shoot for the stars. Is Caruso just for gorilla types?

Just my $.02

Thanks,

Gordon
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TrpPro
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:10 am    Post subject: Re: Playing to falure controversial? Reply with quote

Quote:

-Stop playing if you get tired.
-Rest as much as you play. (Not sure about this one since we "rest" 20 or more hours a day.
-Never play to failure
-Never "strain" your muscles.

Caruso is just for those who follow his 4 rules. You must be using the long setting method for Caruso practice to be meaningful and not something that can cause injury.

What does tired mean? If you have been playing several hours and your chops are whipped then don't do Caruso until you are rested (like over night). If you have just started playing for the day and just finished the Seconds, then it's not the same thing. You've played to total failure, straining the muscles to total exhaustion, but they are rested muscles and can recover quickly. Rest 15 - 20 seconds and continue with the routine.

Everything has a context.

Rest as much as you play? I guess that can work, as in, play an exercise/etude 2-3-4 minutes long and then rest the same. Caruso liked practicing all out for 15 - 20 miinutes (resting 10 - 20 seconds between drills) and then rest 15 - 20 minutes. Then begin again. Just a different take on the "rest as much as you play" idea.
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gstump
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yup.

But to many who do not understand or have concerns about the Caruso method, much of this is taboo. Too bad. The method, if done according to the rules, as you say can really kick start a career. It did mine.
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Brian Moon
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey G man, nice avatar!

Everyone has a different tolerance for strain. I was taught to play Caruso and not worry about the sound or intonation but I think that the system can be very effective even if one is picky about intonation or one stops when they feel or hear more strain than they like to use.
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cheiden
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

While I'm not knowledgeable about Caruso, "playing to failure" usually describes a habit of playing until you can't play anymore due to total lip fatigue. I've never seen this advocated and can't believe that it would ever be beneficial and always results on impaired development or worse. Sufficiently developed players may be able to play until exhausted but that's entirely different.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 11:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I play CC calisthenics to failure the "failure" is never caused by fatigue. It is caused by my chops (and the rest of my physical playing system) being in a position of ineffectiveness and thus the system fails. Caruso exercises are not about fatigue.

Also, Carmine always said repeatedly to never apply these approaches ( the "four rules") to other playing, only to his calisthenics practice.
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TrpPro
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 11:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

cheiden wrote:
While I'm not knowledgeable about Caruso, "playing to failure" usually describes a habit of playing until you can't play anymore due to total lip fatigue. I've never seen this advocated and can't believe that it would ever be beneficial and always results on impaired development or worse. Sufficiently developed players may be able to play until exhausted but that's entirely different.

If you're not informed about the Caruso method, why would you presume to say anything about it?

It is radically different than anyother approach to playing trumpet. What would normally hold true for other systems don't apply to Caruso. And if you try to mix the philosophies of other methods with Caruso you will dilute (if not reverse) the benefits of Caruso. Most, if not all methods (possibly one exception that I'm aware of) approach trumpet playing from a musical perspective. Caruso does not. And that is usually the rub. With Caruso it is just calesthenics. Non musical muscular coordination drills that are needed in the playing of a trumpet.

This is too much to handle for many traditional teachers and players, so they often try to reconcile Caruso and music by tweaking and tinkering with the exercises and instructions. Caruso described his approach as being pre-music: development and conditioning that prepare you to play music.

If you practice Caruso it will make all the other methods work much easier for you if you should choose to pursue any of them, and many Caruso students do. But the reverse doesn't work.
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bagmangood
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 12:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Caruso method is not special. No trumpet method is special. They are all just different paths to get to the same goal (I would hope): good music. It does take a little different mindset than some of the other grand methods - ignoring sound/pitch is difficult and possibly impossible for some.

A lot of people don't like the Caruso ideas, and I don't like the idea of "playing to failure" - I like the idea of "playing until no sound comes out"
The distinction may seem silly, but the connotation of those two phrases is really different. Phrasing matters to people.

Dislike of the ideas may come from the fact that trumpet players tend to be competitive and have VIEWS that are 100% CORRECT. (I would say that playing the horn without a mpc is difficult is probably a truism we all could agree on though).

I guess I could be wrong though
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shofar
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:07 pm    Post subject: Playing to failure Reply with quote

This is an interesting way to say it. Unfortunately I never got to study with Caruso. But I did have the good fortune to learn Caruso from John Harner, just a couple of lessons, so I for sure DO NOT have the experience a lot of you guys have with Caruso. The book, and John, stated on pg. 10 "Play as high as you can go until no sound comes out of the horn, but make sure that you complete the effort to play the particular interval."

The description "playing to failure" is a statement used in the gym when lifting
weights. We say "slow controlled reps"; "only one set to failure, per exercise"; "add weight as often as possible, while keeping perfect form"; "have someone there to push you"; "keep a training journal". I know that you guys say Caruso is not weight lifting, but I relate it to a lot of the workout technique I have used over the years and it has been a great benefit.

So I didn't interpret "Playing to Failure" in a negative way. Actually in a positive way. So I "Play to failure" or "...until no more sound comes out...", whatever you want to call it, on each exercise i.e.: 2nds; SLS; LSL; Developed C Scale; etc.

This is good stuff.

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gstump
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brian Moon wrote:
Hey G man, nice avatar!

Everyone has a different tolerance for strain. I was taught to play Caruso and not worry about the sound or intonation but I think that the system can be very effective even if one is picky about intonation or one stops when they feel or hear more strain than they like to use.


Hey Moonman, Great to hear from you. I don't think you are breaking any Caruso Rules by trying to sound good on the intervals. "Don't worry about tone or intonation" is not the same thing as "Hey, I think I will sound like sh$% today! To be totally honest, after 40 years of Caruso Studies I want to execute a good tone with good intonation. I don't "worry" about sounding bad if bad happens and of course it always does, at least for me.

So, I am totally wired up for Caruso,(don't laugh). Headset, 8 track digital recorder, chromatic tuner bypassed to mike, click track at 60 MM and a taste of myself with re-verb in the headset.
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Last edited by gstump on Tue Jun 18, 2013 4:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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gstump
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cheiden wrote:
While I'm not knowledgeable about Caruso, "playing to failure" usually describes a habit of playing until you can't play anymore due to total lip fatigue. I've never seen this advocated and can't believe that it would ever be beneficial and always results on impaired development or worse. Sufficiently developed players may be able to play until exhausted but that's entirely different.


This is the Caruso Cave so Caruso students, students of Caruso students and most everyone else here is very loyal to this very rule orientated system. Semantics are all over the place. But, rest assured we play the interval studies until we hit a wall and hit it hard.

Bill is correct that hitting the wall after the first setting is not total fatigue or failure. Resting 10-20 seconds and pow everything is back for a few more steps. That immediate recovery is exhilarating and if you have never experienced it you are missing something special. It is truly addictive.

Caruso teaches you to go from one note to the next in a very organized way. The muscles learn quickly and respond quickly on the second set. If you are unfamiliar with this method I am making no sense. However, my original point has been made. This stuff is still controversial!!!
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pepperdean
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 7:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you didn't study with Carmine or one of his students, I think it's very challenging to put the methodology into perspective. The books really can't convey the entire concept and how it works.

Gordon, I think you stirred up a hornets nest with the "failure" phrase. I like Pat's description better.

I think part of the discussion that brings us off track is the 15-20 seconds "rest". I never thought the rest was much more than a chance to reposition the chops and get them into balance for the notes you're about to play. The analogy I use is one of an automobile transmission. As you ascend through the interval exercise, you max out how far you can go with that initial setting. You reach the point where the notes don't play. Remove the mouthpiece, rest briefly and replace the mouthpiece with the chops in the next gear and proceed higher. Repeating the process.

For me, I felt like Carmine's method helped by expanding the range of each of those "gears" and by optimizing the transition from one to the next. This eventually led to the scale exercises playing from the double pedal to the double highs.

Alan
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gstump
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 9:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think your gear analogy makes a lot of sense, particularly for players who need to move around some. But there is the added "calisthenics" factor that is in play when playing long tones with only 4 beats of rest.

I did try to stir the pot some. There is some magic in this stuff!!

Thanks,

Gordon
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LeonJordanJr
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brute strength and stamina chop development go hand and hand. You must endure some strenuous who as well as light work to develop overall stamina. Brute works in loud situations but soft chops must be developed as well.
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gstump
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right on Leon. Welcome to the TH

Gordon Stump
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drncollazo
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah...let's stir the pot some more...try the Caruso, Schlossberg and Gordon exercises all in a five-hr marathon with no 10-15 rest all on one breath...

That'll work!!!
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gstump
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sarcasm? Just being cordial to a new member. Sheez!
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chrisneverve
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 10:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Playing to failure is something that can add endurance to your playing when done correctly. Just like lifting weights, you need to break the muscle down occasionally to build it back stronger. However, doing this too often results in loss insted of gain. All things in moderation...
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gstump
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 6:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yup
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