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Dissecting Stamp - Part 1



 
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janet842
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 9:45 am    Post subject: Dissecting Stamp - Part 1 Reply with quote

Exercise 3, measure 1

1) Playing the first note: C

Start by playing the C as you would a long tone. Hold the note while listening closely for the clarity and resonance that comes when you find the center of the note. This is the place where the tone is warm, projects freely and is full and rich with no stuffiness or muffling of tone quality. Your goal is to produce an absolutely beautiful C that would bring enthusiastic applause from an audience, even if it was the only note played.

2) Playing C - D - C

Play, and hold, the C that you played in 1). Hold that C as if it is the only note you are going to play Ė even though you know the next note is going to be a D. You are the only one who knows what your next note will be and your goal is to let no listener, including yourself, anticipate that there is a note that will follow the C. Do not move even the tiniest muscle of your embouchure. Do not change your breath support or your air flow. You are playing a sustained C and are content to play only the C. Do not anticipate the next note. Your mindset is just as important as the notes you are playing. Now, push the first valve down. (Donít push the valve down slowly! Slow tempo does not mean slow valve action!) You may need to make a very, very slight adjustment to get the D to play. Repeat playing C to D several times until it feels almost as though you have changed nothing at all to play the D. Let the valve on the trumpet do the work for you.

Now, start again. C to D Ė hold the D. As before, do not anticipate a next note. Do not move even the tiniest muscle of your embouchure. Do not change your breath support. You are playing a sustained D and are content to play only the D. Do not anticipate the next note. Now, release the first valve. The C will play with no physical changes to embouchure or air control. This is what Jimmy meant by staying up to play down. The physical change to the length of the trumpet does your work for you. All you had to do is move a valve while playing the D.

Repeat this 3 note exercise according to these directions over and over again until it feels as though you are playing the notes by only moving your valves.

3) Playing C - D - C - G

Many players think that pulling back to play an interval drop will make the lower note easier to hit. This is far from the truth.

When you do Jimmyís exercises correctly, you learn to never, ever back off a note. I like to compare this to snow skiing. Skiers donít lean back or they will lose control of their skis. The skis will shoot right out from under them and theyíll fall. When going downhill a skier actually leans forward -- even though instinct says ďlean backĒ. Leaning back causes loss of control. Leaning forward gives control. The same thing happens in trumpet playing. Trumpet players often want to back off notes rather than power (or lean) right into them. Conversely, when ascending the tendency is to push too hard to hit the notes. Jimmyís exercises train people to get past that -- when you do them right.

Play the C - D - C and hold the C. Do not anticipate the G. Do not begin to relax your embouchure! Do not change your breath support! You are playing a C and are content to play only the C. Do not anticipate the next note! Concentrate on sustaining an even air flow. Now, play the G. Do this as quickly as possible while moving your embouchure muscles the very smallest amount possible. Do not back away from the note! Lean into it. Push a little more air to move to the G because of lesser resistance on lower notes. However, the increase of air must be sustained. Do not add air just to initiate the G. Donít get sloppy when you play the G. It must sound warm and resonant, full and rich with no stuffiness or muffling of tone quality. Donít let it slide flat or sharp. When you move to the G, you need to play it right on itís center.

If you pulled back mentally, or allowed any kind of break in your air stream when moving to the G, do this part of the exercise over and over again until you have broken the habit of pulling back when playing to a lower note. Itís OK to miss the resonant center of your G when first learning this. In fact, it's probably better that you loosen up enough (and relax enough control) to let your notes land where they will -- even missing a few at first. Doing this will help you feel where that G really is on your trumpet and help you minimize the amount of embouchure muscle movement that it takes to move from note to note.

4) Playing C - D - C - G - A

Jimmy designed his exercises with ascending notes following descending notes to help players break the habit (and mindset) of playing down to notes (and up to notes in other exercises). That is why Jimmy inserted the ascending D and A in this exercise Ė those notes halt the downward mindset and prevent players from dropping lower for notes than is necessary.

Play the C - D - C - G. From your good and resonant hold on the G, do not move even the tiniest muscle of your embouchure even though you know an A follows the G. Do not change your breath support. You are playing a G and are content to play only the G. Do not anticipate the next note. Now, push the first and second valves down. The A should come out without your doing anything at all -- no embouchure change, no air support change. Let the valves on the trumpet do the work for you.

5) Playing C - D - C - G - A - G

Start again, playing the C - D - C - G - A and hold the A. As before, do not anticipate the next note. Do not move even the tiniest muscle of your embouchure. Do not change your breath support. You are playing an A and are content to play only the A. Do not anticipate the next note. Now, release the two valves. The G should play with absolutely no change on your part. If you moved or changed any part of your embouchure or breath support, start over and practice it again until it is perfect.

6) Playing C - D - C - G - A - G - C

Play the C - D - C - G - A - G and hold the G. Do not anticipate the low C. Do not begin to relax your embouchure! Do not change your breath support! You are playing a G and are content to play only the G. Do not anticipate the next note! Concentrate on sustaining an even air flow. Now, play the C. Do this as quickly as possible while moving your embouchure muscles the very smallest amount possible. Do not back away from the note! Lean into it. Push a little more air to move to the C because of lesser resistance on lower notes. However, the increase of air must be sustained. Do not add air just to initiate the C. Donít get sloppy when you play the C. It must sound warm and resonant, full and rich with no stuffiness or muffling of tone quality. Donít let it slide flat or sharp. When you move to the C, you need to play it right on itís center. If you pulled back mentally, or allowed any kind of break in your air stream when moving to the C, do this part of the exercise over and over again until you have broken the habit of pulling back when playing to a lower note
____________________

Practice 1) through 6) until you have it down, know it completely from memory and can apply it to the first 12 measures of #3. Why memorize? Your concentration needs to be entirely on how you are playing the exercises, not on reading the notes. Next, record yourself and listen to the recording to see if you are bending notes in anticipation of going up or down. Three things are absolutely forbidden when doing this exercise: anticipation, note bending and glissandos.
____________________

You will need to make one final change to your mindset once you have this exercise down.

7) Phrasing

Rather than viewing the exercise as individual notes, you need to play them as a phrase, playing the first note and the last note and filling the path between those notes in fluid precision with the other notes of the exercise.

Good luck and have fun!

(Please let me know if this helps. If it does, I will try to find time to dissect some more Stamp exercises.)
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Last edited by janet842 on Thu Nov 02, 2006 6:52 am; edited 1 time in total
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EBjazz
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great stuff!! Thanks for posting this.

Eb
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swthiel
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Janet,

Thank you! You've given me a lot to think about and listen for! I'm looking forward to the next installment.
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Roy
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Janet,

Thanks!! A post such as yours makes TH worthwhile! You seem to have a real gift for explaining the concepts!

Roy Griffin
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dbacon
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 2:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fantastic! Stamp has always had a special place in my routine, this helps jog my brain to do it right!!!!!!

Thanks!
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bspickler
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As everyone has said, this is a wonderful description. Now for the practice.

Bill
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janet842
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 02, 2006 7:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have edited my post. There were some words that I used (drop/fall) in the sections where you play to the G and to the C. I was trying to express a rapid change in embouchure to eliminate any glissando, but I think those words may encourage more embouchure movement than is called for to execute this Stamp exercise and they encourage a downward thought process. Jimmy wanted players to "stay up when going down" and I think my terminology wasn't true to his method.

What learning the Stamp method did for me was to take a lot of the work out of playing the trumpet and I'm hoping that what I've posted will help you learn this ease of playing, too. What I find, through Stamp, is that the typically used range of the trumpet (F# below the staff to high C above the staff) feels "compressed". It feels like all the notes have moved closer together and are thereby simpler to play.

Bert Truax did a master class at the Rocky Mountain Trumpet fest where he went a little bit into the Stamp method. Bert said, in that class: "Playing the trumpet is simple, not easy, simple" I like that. It's true.
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radtrumpet.com
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2007 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awsome thread....very helpful.
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gvandyck
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great thread. A great place to restart and not only build from, but build further then I had been before. Thanks for post. I really appreciate it.
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gestrumpet
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 25, 2009 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

THanks! THis is exactly what I needed!
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DR
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 3:24 am    Post subject: Re: Dissecting Stamp - Part 1 Reply with quote

janet842 wrote:
Exercise 3, measure 1

1) Playing the first note: C

Start by playing the C as you would a long tone. Hold the note while listening closely for the clarity and resonance that comes when you find the center of the note. This is the place where the tone is warm, projects freely and is full and rich with no stuffiness or muffling of tone quality. Your goal is to produce an absolutely beautiful C that would bring enthusiastic applause from an audience, even if it was the only note played.

2) Playing C - D - C

Play, and hold, the C that you played in 1). Hold that C as if it is the only note you are going to play Ė even though you know the next note is going to be a D. You are the only one who knows what your next note will be and your goal is to let no listener, including yourself, anticipate that there is a note that will follow the C. Do not move even the tiniest muscle...


when I play like that w/o embouchure change only a valve down, pitch always goes down

for eg. I play C and I press 1st valve pitch goes to bB , not D

I must be doing something wrong
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leadtpt1955
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

DR

It's in the first part of the post:

"You may need to make a very, very slight adjustment to get the D to play. Repeat playing C to D several times until it feels almost as though you have changed nothing at all to play the D. Let the valve on the trumpet do the work for you."

Perhaps jus adding a smidgen of air at first will help you get over the hump (and I do mean just a smidgen) I studied with one of Jimmy's students. He told me that just "thinking" about moving more air would be enough to do the trick rather than "trying" to move more air, which he said would guarantee you would over-do it!

Cheers!
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CalicchioMan
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 17, 2011 12:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great post, Janet! Thanks for sharing...
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Lead4life
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2011 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow! Great post and thanks! I'm just starting the Stamp routine, and the fact that you captured the mindset more than the notes is most helpful.
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cheiden
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2011 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

leadtpt1955 wrote:
DR

It's in the first part of the post:

"You may need to make a very, very slight adjustment to get the D to play. Repeat playing C to D several times until it feels almost as though you have changed nothing at all to play the D. Let the valve on the trumpet do the work for you."

Perhaps jus adding a smidgen of air at first will help you get over the hump (and I do mean just a smidgen) I studied with one of Jimmy's students. He told me that just "thinking" about moving more air would be enough to do the trick rather than "trying" to move more air, which he said would guarantee you would over-do it!

Cheers!

I'm of a slightly different mind on this. It's my sense of it that to make the C go up to D instead of falling to Bb an immature player will likely blow harder, squeeze thier lips, use arm pressure, or some combination of the 3. When the C is produced in the proper way, the blow, lips and hand pressure can (and should) remain largly constant with only a change in tongue position (ah-ee) coupled with the slightest of embochure adjustments. Blowing harder I think is specifically to be avoided.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2011 9:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a lot of detail (and things to think about) in only one exercise. I'm going to hit this tomorrow AM from scratch with Janet's post in mind.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 4:44 pm    Post subject: thank you Reply with quote

I want to take a moment and thank you for the passion, and the care, taken in posting these three..dissections. This is the fundamental, as well as the end, or goal of efficient and profitable brass playing. Reading these through, a few times, remained me of what used to be primary, foremost in my thinking and practicing, a while back. Without ever having studied anything James wrote or taught, I stumbled on the identical truths, and taught them, and lived them. Thank you, for reminding me, and adding some.
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