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A Few Type III/A/B Pitfalls


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healey.cj
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2008 11:48 pm    Post subject: A Few Type III/A/B Pitfalls Reply with quote

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Wilktone
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 8:24 am    Post subject: Re: A Few Type III/A/B Pitfalls Reply with quote

healey.cj wrote:
Well, I know that Dave Sheetz wonderful site has a nice little list of the type IV pitfalls that many fall into, but I though maybe we should make a list of the Downstream pitfalls??? Anyone care to add some for each type?


I don't like to describe things as "pitfalls," as that implies that there's a choice in your embouchure type. Instead, I usually describe them as problems players of a particular type are prone to, or typical issues of a one type or another. It better conveys the idea that one should work with one's own anatomy, not against it.

Type IIIBs often play with an embouchure formation that's too flabby, often in an effort to get a big sound in the lower register. This can limit the upper register.

Type IIIAs often raise the horn when they inhale and then bring it down just as they play.

Those are from Dave Sheetz's site too.


Dave W.
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airdyn
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 10:33 am    Post subject: Re: A Few Type III/A/B Pitfalls Reply with quote

Wilktone wrote:


I don't like to describe things as "pitfalls," as that implies that there's a choice in your embouchure type. Dave W.


How so? The "implication" is yours. Does anyone think that they can be any type they want to be? This point needs to stressed and perhaps in another topic like: "You are the 'type' you were meant to be".
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Wilktone
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 6:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a difference in personal communication style, I guess. I see a pitfall as something that is to be avoided by not going down that path. If you talk about a Type X pitfall it just seems too easy to misunderstand and think you're recommending to not play as a Type X.

When you're there in person to explain things and have an idea about the background of the person on the receiving end of your analogy there's really no problem. On the internet, however, it's another story. We have a tendency to preach to the choir here, instead of being more inclusive. A lot of people have no idea what a Type III is, and they can't put our choice of words into perspective.


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airdyn
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 9:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wilktone wrote:
Just a difference in personal communication style, I guess. I see a pitfall as something that is to be avoided by not going down that path.


Dave W.


Well, if you're on that path, watch for them.
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healey.cj
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Mr.Hollywood
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2008 11:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll try this again.......

Any TRUMPET player who places in the red of the upper lip and also plays with a receded jaw will have a problem with the sharp inner edge of the mouthpiece cutting into the soft red flesh of the upper lip.

This is definately one of the major "pitfalls" of the IVA type.

Because of the low angle the only real way to remedy this is by bringing the lower jaw foward. Even if the player tries to keep the weight on his lower lip he still has the inner edge of the mp resting right on the red. Reinhardt mentioned this to me personally at one of my lessons back in 1980.

This is the reason that Dave Sheetz has called the type IVA the "problem child" and used the word "pitfall". Read his "Quirks of the types" article posted on his web site

If you look at any of the personal papers that Reinhardt handed out at his lessons they were all stamped at the bottom with "For over 50 years the top consultant to the brass world". Reinhardt passed away in 1989, now we have a new "top consultant" in Dave Sheetz. Why anyone would question his choice of words on anything "Reinhardt" is puzzling.

I consider myself to be an expert on Reinhardt and Dave Sheetz is the person that I go to when I'm having a problem.

Those of you who never studied with the man himself should be hanging on every word that Dave posts here.

Chris
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healey.cj
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 4:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Wilktone
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 5:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sheesh, I can't believe we're picking nits on something I mentioned in passing, but since you guys seem to want to continue that part of the conversation...


Quote:
Why anyone would question his choice of words on anything "Reinhardt" is puzzling.


You really think Reinhardt advocates don't have problems communicating his ideas to the rest of the brass playing community? Reinhardt's Types IIIs and IVs are widely understood by most brass players? How many people come here to ask questions that haven't studied with Reinhardt (or with one of his students)? When they do come over to put in their two cents, don't we always have to correct them about what it means to "pivot" and what "upstream" and "downstream" mean? And after we jump down their throat, they never come back again. Just check out the "Your opinion" topic to remind yourself what I mean.

Quote:
To me, I took the use of the term 'pitfalls' to be things problems you may encounter or that you should avoid.


So did I when I read Dave's "Quirks of the Types." But we already understood that before we read the article, we're an informed audience. Skimming Dave's article again (and it's got some great info in there, thanks Dave!), I don't see that he mentioned that embouchure type is determined by anatomy, not choice. Reading that out of context can be misleading if someone doesn't understand that going in.

All I'm trying to do is suggest that the choice of words we use to describe things here is important because that's all the details a lurker will have reading topics here. Discussions that cover typical issues that the different embouchure types are likely to encounter are particularly difficult because while we all know that an embouchure type is determined by the player's anatomy, most people will assume that it is something you choose. If you're careful to cover that at the beginning of your post or topic, then no harm done. Just remember that often people come across new posts without ever reading the beginning of the topic, or they read responses days or weeks after the original post and forget key points.

Quote:
Any TRUMPET player who places in the red of the upper lip and also plays with a receded jaw will have a problem with the sharp inner edge of the mouthpiece cutting into the soft red flesh of the upper lip.


Taken out of context that we all understand, it looks like Chris is suggesting that the embouchure type he's describing above, the Type IVA, is something to be changed. Instead, I would be describing the Type IVA player as needing to be careful to play correctly so as to avoid that problem.

Chris, I know I'm not a trumpet player and so my experience here has a bias, but I suspect that you're too strong here. SOME trumpet players who are Type IVAs will need to be careful. A Type IVA playing CORRECTLY will probably not have those problems you describe, even on trumpet. Isn't this the real point we're trying to make?


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Mr.Hollywood
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 8:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wilktone wrote:
A Type IVA playing CORRECTLY will probably not have those problems you describe, even on trumpet. Dave W.


Please explain to us how a IVA keeps the sharp inner edge of the mouthpiece from making direct contact with the red of the upper lip.........

Chris
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Doug Elliott
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mr.Hollywood wrote:
Please explain to us how a IVA keeps the sharp inner edge of the mouthpiece from making direct contact with the red of the upper lip.........
Chris

Use a different shape rim.
As a mouthpiece maker AND student of Reinhardt, I am well aware that even IIIA's and IIIB's often prefer different rim shapes. Any downward angle player will usually like a rounder inner AND outer edge than a straight-out angle player.
It's finding comfort and good function, not necessarily a "pitfall."
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Mr.Hollywood
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 10:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rounding the rim will help, but if the player is way down in the red hes still going to have all kinds of pinching and swelling problems.

Doug, I'm sure you remember how Reinhardt absolutely LOVED sharp flat rims for trumpet. Even his #5C "legit" mp was pretty sharp. I had a "Tottle" mouthpiece once that he said was too round. He thought the rim on the Schilke 14A4a was too round. Im pretty sure that rim is sharp enough to cut a low placed/low angled IVA.

There are very few players who have to point their horns at the floor. Those who do AND play in the red are not going to be playing the circus or lead on Stan Kenton charts.

This has been my point all along.

Chris
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PivotBone
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
we have a new "top consultant" in Dave Sheetz. Why anyone would question his choice of words on anything "Reinhardt" is puzzling.


As someone who has had many great lessons with Dave Sheetz and knows his genius full-well, as well as someone who got introduced to Reinhardt mainly through this site, I have to say that I agree with Dave Wilken about the words we use. I think there was a misunderstanding between parties involved, that's all. There is much respect for each other among all of us who post here frequently.

I think it is important to remember that Dave Wilken is a college professor who knows only too well the ignorance of many brass players when it comes to these types of issues. Someone who doesn't understand what Reinhardt is all about might very easily assume that one is to pick which embouchure he/she thinks yields the best advantage to consequence ratio. For example, one might think that they would gladly give up the sound of a IIIB in exchange for the range of a IV based on only seeing a list of pros and cons of each type and not doing any more research. The crucial part that they are missing is that you ARE ONLY ONE type and the "pitfalls" are simply something to watch out after the fact.

I don't think thinking about these things discredits Doc or Dave Sheetz in any way.

I hope I've got everyone's side correct and and maybe this even clears things up a little.

Rich Hanks
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airdyn
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 3:05 pm    Post subject: Pitfalls Reply with quote

May I state here that "pitfalls" is not a word I would ordinarily use but have taken it right out of Doc's writings. To quote from the Encyclopedia:
Quote:
104. What are some of the more common pitfalls experienced by the lower mouthpiece placement groups (upstream types) ?..222-224
105. What are some of the more common pitfalls experienced by the higher mouthpiece placement groups (downstream types)?...224-226


My website has only expanded from materials I have collected over the years from Doc in lessons or at his clinics when I speak of "type" pitfalls. I take no credit for using the word "pitfall" as my own. I guess it just another "P" word that some people don't like to use in the brass world. [Pivot being another]
Dave S.
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Wilktone
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
May I state here that "pitfalls" is not a word I would ordinarily use but have taken it right out of Doc's writings.


I don't want to everyone the wrong impression. I'm not trying to be a vocabulary Nazi. The main thing I wanted to do in the first post was to clarify for anyone not familiar with Reinhardt to better understand that you can't choose your type, it's a matter of anatomy. I wasn't trying to start another debate about terms (even though I think it's a good conversation to have).

But I do stand by my thoughts about using the term "pitfall." I like "quirk" better. A pitfall has a negative connotation, whereas a quirk can be lovable or even positive. I've been taught to give instructions using positive terms as much as possible. For example, instead of telling my student, "Don't slouch," I say, "Sit up straight." It's hard to do, and something I have to constantly remind myself to do. It makes a subtle difference, but I think it's an important one.

By all mean, call it a pitfall or whatever you want. Just remember that most people that could potentially be reading your post won't understand the subtleties of embouchure types to begin with. I like the way Rich put it:

Quote:
The crucial part that they are missing is that you ARE ONLY ONE type and the "pitfalls" are simply something to watch out after the fact.


Quote:
Please explain to us how a IVA keeps the sharp inner edge of the mouthpiece from making direct contact with the red of the upper lip.........


I dunno, Chris. It's sort of hard for me to fully appreciate your point. I'm not a trumpet player and for me personally, anything other than playing as a IVA just doesn't work.

My first thought was why would I play on a sharp inner rim? Your expertise with mouthpieces is better than mine, but I'm inclined to agree with Doug here.

Another thought I have has to do with an anatomical feature I have and one that I've noticed in other upstream brass players.



My top lip is sort of curled up. This was, incidentally, one statistically significant feature that I came across when researching my dissertation. The flatter or more curled up the upper lip, the more likely that the player will play on an upstream embouchure. It's not definitive, but it may be one reason why some players play better with a lower mouthpiece placement.

I've taken some better video footage that may show what I'm talking about. If you click on the little arrows in the lower right side of the movie player controls you can view the video in full screen. When I place the mouthpiece, does it look to you as if the inner edge of the rim is digging into my upper lip? If anything, it's the upper edge that I have to be careful about, and that's definitely better for me with a horn angle that's tilted down.

I dunno, I could be wrong. Take a look, though, and tell me if that makes any sense.

Quote:
There are very few players who have to point their horns at the floor. Those who do AND play in the red are not going to be playing the circus or lead on Stan Kenton charts.


Rich Willey and I just played a show last Sunday with a great lead trumpet player who is a IVA. He also played lead trumpet back in December on a big band show playing the Stan Kenton Christmas charts. It's definitely possible, provided the player plays correctly. Gary has agreed to let me video his chops, so eventually I'll get around to it and try to show you.

Honestly, Chris, there are few players of ANY type who can play great lead trumpet on Stan Kenton charts. Don't you think it would be harder to find one who also happens to be one of the rarer embouchure types to start with? You may be right, but you might consider the possibility that it's purely a matter of statistics and not of playing mechanics.

Quote:
To add another question on here, is there anything a type IIIA can do about their sound in the extreme register? As in, make it less squeally?


I'm not entirely certain, Chris. I would think that the flip routine would be helpful, as it is designed to help you open up the tone in the squeaker range. Does anyone else have any ideas?


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healey.cj
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2008 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Mr.Hollywood
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 12:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been a professional trumpet player for 26 years. I've played with many great high note/lead players. With the one exception of Buddy Childers I cannot think of another "world class" IVA lead player. And Buddys angle was pretty high when I played with him on a Sinatra gig. Hes very close to looking like a strait IV.

If I had any students who came to me as IVA's I would tell them to do everything in their power to bring their jaw out and get as close to the IV position as possible.

Unless the player has some sort of mal formed jaw or teeth and absolutely must play as a true IVA than rounding the rim would be a must. Even if this player were to develop double high C compression he would still be plaged by endurance problems.

I think what we have here is a failure to understand what a trumpet player goes through playing a production show, lead trumpet in a LOUD big band, or playing the circus.

I played both trumpet and valve trombone for almost 20 years (until I sold my trombone to Rich willey) I played Latin gigs and record dates on valve trombone. I can tell you that small amount of flesh that you have to work with on trumpet makes for an entirely different set of circumstances. Reinhardt put many trumpet players who had severly damaged their embrouchures on trombone for awhile to "heal". This must tell you something about the difference in the two.

Rich is the only other person here that has played professionally on both instuments. I'd like to hear what he has to say.


Chris
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Wilktone
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 5:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
However, I'm not sure I get what you mean about the lip shape..?


Chris H., I'm just speculating, mind you, so take it with a grain of salt.

Look closely at the video in full screen. Instead of watching it in real time, press "pause" and slide the dot along the timeline to watch me place the mouthpiece on the lips. Look at the flat part of the upper rim and the curve of my upper lip as they first contact. The upper rim approaches and contacts flat against the upper lip, more or less. Because of the curve of the upper lip, the inside of the upper rim doesn't appear to really dig into the upper lip the way Chris L. warned about. In my own case, it would the be the outer edge of the upper rim that I would want to be careful with, and raising the angle to a straight Type IV would only appear to dig into my upper lip more.

If I have time later today, I'll shoot some more footage that will hopefully give you a better view of the inside of the cup. It's a new camera and it's a little tricky to film yourself without someone there to help you. I also need to find a better way to light things so the overhead lights don't produce a glare on the mouthpiece.

Chris L., you raise some interesting points that require some thought. I don't really have enough time right now to devote to this (those pesky private students actually expect me to be present at their lessons). I'll try to maybe start a new topic for that, since we've hijacked this particular one into a couple directions that aren't relevant to the typical issues that the downstream types deal with.


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mulligan stew
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 6:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A couple quick thoughts on issues raised in this thread.

I'm a IIIA. Before I learned to set and breathe properly, I ABSOLUTELY did the "raise the horn high/bring it down hard" thing. Call it a quirk or a pitfall, it's a reality for IIIAs. The cure is to learn to set, corner breathe, and play.

As far as healey.cj's question about sound in the upper register--do the compression drills (ultra-ppp high stuff), do flips, and do the high A drill, working up to double C. These drills have added a fourth or fifth to my range in two years. Also, buzz, walk-in, and don't forget the pencil and jaw retention drill. That non-horn stuff just takes few minutes. I do it in the car.

For me, the single most important thing is buzzing.

And a note on mouthpiece rim: I like a fairly sharp inner rim--or in other terminology, a low alpha angle/steep undercut. I don't know if there's a correlation with type, but I have fairly thick lips and the rounded/soft rims impinge upon my chops.

Lots of good stuff here!
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2008 7:53 am    Post subject: Re: Pitfalls Reply with quote

Mr.Hollywood a.k.a. Chris LaBarbera wrote:
I think what we have here is a failure to understand what a trumpet player goes through playing a production show, lead trumpet in a LOUD big band, or playing the circus.

I played both trumpet and valve trombone for almost 20 years (until I sold my trombone to Rich willey) I played Latin gigs and record dates on valve trombone. I can tell you that small amount of flesh that you have to work with on trumpet makes for an entirely different set of circumstances. Reinhardt put many trumpet players who had severly damaged their embrouchures on trombone for awhile to "heal". This must tell you something about the difference in the two.

Rich is the only other person here that has played professionally on both instuments. I'd like to hear what he has to say.


Yeah, this IS a trumpet forum, right?

Yes, there's a HUGE difference between playing trumpet and trombone, and unless a trombonist has spent the years in the trenches on trumpet that Chris and I have (even vice versa) then they'll always deny that playing trombone is a tiptoe through the tulips, a veritable walk in the park, a piece of cake compared to playing trumpet (particularly in terms of endurance and range development).

I don't have time to wade through all the nit-picking about semantics.

I'm glad Dave Sheetz posted those questions (containing the word "pitfalls"). Who cares if that's not the word WE would use, that's the word Doc chose.

Again:

In the Encyclopedia of the Pivot System, Dr. Donald S. Reinhardt wrote:
104. What are some of the more common pitfalls experienced by the lower mouthpiece placement groups (upstream types) ?..222-224
105. What are some of the more common pitfalls experienced by the higher mouthpiece placement groups (downstream types)?...224-226


Reinhardt wrote it. That's good enough for me.
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