Showing posts with label Brass Instruments. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Brass Instruments. Show all posts

Saturday, August 18, 2018

FLUGELHORN Tips - Make Good Music With a Quality FLUGELHORN

English: Rotary valves in a flugelhorn. EspaƱo...
Rotary valves in a flugelhorn.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Originally used to summon army wings, the flugelhorn is at present an important instrument for creating jazz, popular, and brass band music. This brass wind instrument closely resembles a trumpet and saxophone, but its bore is wider and more conical. Likewise, while it shares the same B-flat pitch of most trumpets, the flugelhorn is more adapted for producing more mellow music as compared to the trumpet's bright and aggressive tone.

Flugelhorn tips for buyers

Depending on your level of expertise, you can choose from different types of flugelhorn of various quality and price ranges. In general, however, flugelhorns are more expensive than trumpets. New students are advised to first buy a trumpet to practice on before switching to a flugelhorn. This switch should be easy given the two instruments' similarities with regards to playing style. If money is not a problem though, beginners can opt for a student grade flugelhorn which can set them back by an average of $700.

Regardless of the type of flugelhorn, you intend to buy, make sure that you try each one before making a purchase. This would help you get a good feel of the horn, especially if you are choosing between horns of different bore sizes. Flugelhorns with small bores play differently from those with larger bores and trying one of each would help you asses which one is better for you.

More flugelhorn tips

Aside from flugelhorn tips on buying a good instrument, it also pays to heed advice on how to play the horn. The best way to learn the instrument is to take classes from a professional player. Likewise, it is advisable to buy some CDs and other audio materials that feature the flugelhorn being played by renowned artists such as Frank Fezishin and Rachel Woolham.

Aside from listening to recorded albums, you must also try to watch live performances where the horn is played. You can attend jazz concerts or brass band recitals. The flugelhorn is also sometimes used for orchestra, so you can likewise check such productions.




Friday, June 8, 2018

Do You Want to Learn the TRUMPET?

English: Trumpet in C, german model by Bernhar...
Trumpet in C, German model by Bernhardt Willenberg Markneukirchen
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The trumpet is a brass instrument with the earliest one found in the tomb of the Egyptian King Tutankhamen. Many people play the trumpet in brass bands, military bands, big bands, orchestras or on their own. You are thinking of learning a musical instrument. Will this instrument be the trumpet? You need information to help your decision?

What is a trumpet?
A trumpet is made from brass and is cylindrical in shape consisting of 4 feet 7 inches of tubing wrapped into the compact shape with a cup shape mouthpiece and a moderate size ball at the end. There is a variety of trumpets in the trumpet family. The modern trumpets we are familiar with today have three valves and were first made in the 1820s. Earlier trumpets did not have valves.

How is the sound produced?
The trumpeter or trumpet player produces the sound by:
1. Pressing the mouthpiece to his or her mouth.
2. Blowing air through closed lips making the lips vibrate.
3. The buzzing sound produced from this action sets the column of air inside the tube of the instrument vibrate.
4. The player regulates the sound produced by altering the tension of the lips.

Low sounds are produced when the player's lips are fairly slack making all the air in the tube vibrate.

Higher sounds are produced when the player tightens his lips thus making only fractions of the air vibrate. These higher sounds are called natural harmonics. Each tube produces a different set of harmonics depending on the length. This produces a limited range of sounds in one or two keys. To get a wider range of sounds the modern trumpet player can press down the three valves in a range of configurations which will open various extra lengths of tubing thus changing the length of tubing.
What does the trumpet sound like?

The trumpet has both a piercing, brassy sound and a soft, muted sound. It is more brilliant and penetrating than the bugle or horn. The tone of the trumpet can be changed when a mute is placed in the bell of the instrument. A mute is a cone made of cardboard, fibre, felt or metal.

The trumpet player reads music using notes placed on the treble clef, plays music faster than other brass instruments and plays notes ranging over two octaves from F-sharp below middle C to C above the treble clef, however, some trumpeters can extend this range.

Example of A Trumpet Piece
The Last Post is a well-known piece of music played by a bugle or trumpet player. It is a bugle call used at Commonwealth military funerals and ceremonies commemorating those who have fallen in war. It is used especially on Remembrance day in Commonwealth Nations and also on Anzac Day in Australia and New Zealand.

A bugle call is a short tune, telling one of scheduled and certain non-scheduled events on a military installation, battlefield, or ship. It consists of notes from a single overtone series and hence no valves need to be moved. One key may be favoured over the others.
Please note that a trumpet can play almost any type of music including classical, jazz, rock, blues, pop, funk.

Example of A Trumpeter
Louise Armstrong also known as Satchmo or Pops was one of the greatest jazz trumpeters of all time is. He was also known for his singing with a raspy singing voice and had a foundational influence on jazz. He was born August 4, 1901, in New Orleans, Louisiana. and died July 6, 1971, from a heart attack.

There are many other well-known trumpet players including Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie and Fats Navarro.

You have now had some basic information on the trumpet including what it is, how a sound is produced, what a trumpet sound is, types of music a trumpeter plays with an example and well-known trumpet players with an example.



Friday, May 11, 2018

Observation Of The TRUMPET

English: Wynton Marsalis at the Oskar Schindle...
Wynton Marsalis Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Trumpets are among the oldest musical instruments...dating back to at least 2000 BC. Notes are played by blowing into a mouthpiece known as a "fipple", which directs air towards a bladed edge, located at the big hole you'll see at the top of most whistles. Trumpet instruments come in a variety of designs.

Trumpet players are able to get an incredible variety of sounds partly due to the various mutes that are available for them. They are the most likely to play music demanding the use of a mute (often indicated by the words con sordini oravec sourdine in the score).

Players know when they've got a horn they like, know when it performs at a high level, and know especially if it has a sound and feels they like. Playing the trumpet is intimate and personal.

Trumpeters with great endurance and/or range are said to have impressive chops. Some believe that Wynton Marsalis has done things with his trumpet that Louis Armstrong couldn't even imagine in his day.

Players can be heard across nearly all genres of music, including classical, jazz, rock, pop, ska, polka, swing, blues, and funk. Trumpet players are popular for wedding ceremonies as well as receptions and they do it with 3 fingers.

Trumpets pitched in the key of low G are also called sopranos, or soprano bugles, after their adaptation from military bugles. Trumpet players are arguably the "state of the art" among brass players.

They are quite in demand even during street festivals, carnivals, marriage celebrations, school band marches and almost everywhere where there's a requirement of a loud and clear musical accompaniment.

Jazz is a symbiotic, synergistic communication medium that expresses the mind, body, and spirit in music through all instruments. Jazz trumpet players have been at the forefront of the evolution of jazz as an art form.

A reviewer wrote this description: Playing the high register playing softly "pp" playing a nice rich tone playing vibrato Double Tonguing between different notes playing Legato (ties) without changing the fingering.

Brass instruments are almost universally made from brass, but a solid gold or silver trumpet might be created for special occasions. Brass horns are properly classified by the means by which they produce sound, not by the materials used in their construction.

Bach used the trumpet for high parts in his festive church music and wrote for trumpet along with recorder, oboe, and violin in Brandenburg Concerto (no. unknown)

Bass trumpet is played with a shallower trombone mouthpiece, and music for it is written in treble clef. Piccolo trumpets in G, F, and even C are also manufactured but are rarer.

Modern trumpets also have three piston valves, each of which increases the length of tubing when engaged, thereby lowering the pitch. Modern trumpets are built in various bores and the so-called "Medium" bore.

Common bad habits include pressing the mouthpiece to the lips, uneven pressure (Double buzz), inflating cheeks when blowing (although this is debatably a bad habit considering jazz trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie was known for it), playing with poor posture, and closing the throat (tensing of the throat) muscles, resulting in partially choking the air flow.

    Jackie Spivey is the Author of this Article. He is an artist who has a very creative, eclectic collection of music that is available for your listening pleasure. You can listen to and/or download songs at JacSan Records. And learn much more about music at JacSanRecords Music Blog.

    Article Directory: Article Dashboard


Friday, April 27, 2018

The Advantage of a Custom Built SCHILKE TRUMPET

English: Schilke trumpet modell X3 in silver. ...
Schilke trumpet model X3 in silver. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Schilke trumpets have a reputation as being "open" horns, which is a quality that many professional horn players prefer. Schilke is known as the custom builder that are among the most reasonably priced on the market. Silver plated and gold plated models are available, and professional trumpet players can be very particular about the exact mouthpiece, mouth pipe, bell, and tubing design. They want to get the best possible sound for their particular likes and playing situations, whether it's a community band or a professional symphonic band or orchestra.

When trumpet enthusiasts talk about Schilke trumpets, they know that they are talking about one of the most respected brands of musical instrument in the world. Not everyone can afford a custom trumpet, but Schilke makes several non-custom models so that those who love playing trumpet, but who don't have the money for a custom built instrument can experience the great Schilke sound first hand.

There are a number of factors that go into getting a great sound from a trumpet. Of course, the particulars of the musician - embouchure, practice habits, venue for playing - definitely have an influence. But the qualities of the trumpet itself makes a difference, too. Silver plated bells are known for their richer sound, and the bore of the tubing has an influence on the sound a musician is able to get from a trumpet. Schilke maximizes the qualities that result in great trumpet sound, and for those who are extra particular and have the means, they make custom trumpets to create the best match between musician and instrument.

Depending on the type of music and the venue in which it is played, different models of the same instrument can make a difference to the sound quality. Schilke trumpets are experts at knowing what goes into getting the right sound for an auditorium, an outdoor setting, or any other arrangement of acoustics. When professional trumpet players feel like they are ready to buy a custom horn, Schilke is the brand they often turn to first.




Saturday, March 3, 2018

The Little Heard Cousin of the Trumpet - CORNET


The cornet is an instrument that is a member of the brass instrument family. Its appearance is close to that of the trumpet in its design. The tubing is wrapped in a clever way that will allow the musician to easily carry and play the instrument, and the tube's diameter increases in size until the end. It is a common mistake for people to believe that the cornet has originated from the medieval cornett, but in truth, there is no relation. In fact, the cornet originated from the simple horn, just as the bugle was. The cornet really developed when the improvements on piston valves were made, which was in the early 1800s.

Today, the cornet is a fairly popular instrument that is used in concert bands and brass bands more than it is used in marching bands and military, though it can sometimes be used in these too. Referring back to the valves of the cornet, they really were the largest part in bringing in the creation of the cornet. In fact, it was in adding these valves to the horn in the early 1800s that the actual cornet was first invented. While the cornet would seem similar to the trumpet, they differed greatly for a while before the trumpet also had the valves added into its design. Today, they are so similar that the coronet and the trumpet can play the same notes and fingerings.

The cornet has not changed too much since it was first invented, and it has only been around for a couple hundred years, but it is a brass instrument that has received a decent amount of interest over the years. One can see it played in a number of different musical genres and people of different ages have given it a try. In fact, a number of young jazz musicians in the 1900s began their careers by learning how to play the cornet.

The cornet has a more mellow and warm tone that is attractive to many people who decide to learn how to play the instrument. It is also an instrument that is recommended for beginners who have never played a brass instrument before. It can be a little challenging at first for someone who is new to playing any kind of wind instrument, but it can be quite rewarding in the end. Learning the sheet music and how to manipulate the keys properly can also take some time, but not as long as it can take to learn other more complex instruments. It is also another instrument that can be offered at some schools that have them.



Overall, the instrument is not too difficult to learn and so is a great instrument to offer in grade school to younger people who would like to try learning a musical instrument. The sheet music for the cornet is also easier to acquire than more expensive sheet music for other instruments. The instrument is even donated to the schools on occasion by people who have no more use for their cornet. Anyone who wishes to try the instrument outside of school can often find used cornets in used instrument stores or pawn shops.

    Victor Epand is an expert consultant for used CDs, autographed CDs, and used musical instruments.   Article Directory: Article Dashboard



Saturday, January 20, 2018

The Melodic Sounds of the TRUMPET

Trumpet player Maynard Ferguson
Trumpet player Maynard Ferguson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The trumpet is an instrument that is a member of the brass family, though it has also been referred to as a wind or an aerophone instrument, and has the highest register among all the brass instruments. The trumpet is made out of brass tubing that is narrowest at the mouthpiece and widest at the end.

This particular instrument, like other brass instruments, is played by blowing into the mouthpiece through closed lips to create a vibration. The instrument as three keys or piston valves that work to alter the sound produced, often creating a lower pitch. Each valve will lower the sound the trumpet makes as it is pressed down by the musician. There are also different kinds of trumpets that are tuned to different notes. The most common trumpet played is known as the B-flat trumpet. Other types of trumpets that are played but are not as common are the C, D, E, F, G, and A.

Surprisingly enough, the trumpet has been around for a very long time, even if the earlier trumpets did not look like the trumpets people are more familiar with today. The earliest proof of the existence of trumpets goes back as far as 1500 BC, though it is believed that trumpets could have easily existed before this as well.

Another interesting note about the trumpet is that it was not originally used for music. Instead, it was used for signaling purposes for religious ceremonies or military use. It really was not until medieval times that the trumpet started to be used more as a musical instrument instead of being limited to previous purposes. In fact, it was even seen as a special talent, which those who played would keep to themselves because it was regarded as a guarded craft. It was after this time that the trumpet really started to change, as improvements and adaptations were made to have the trumpet keep up with its demands. Even with these improvements, the addition of the valves on the trumpet did not occur until the early to mid-1800s.


It appears that few young people will take up the instrument instead of popular instruments like the guitar and the piano. A common misconception is that it is really simple to play, but the truth is that it can be a little complex. One has to have good control of the air that they blow into the trumpet in order to get the right sound. Some will take an interest in the trumpet because they appreciate its bold and bright sound. It is common in marching bands, in the military and is also common in schools.

It is a relatively inexpensive instrument to play in comparison to others, so school bands will sometimes be able to teach students who want to learn it. Its drawback for many people is that it does not have a wide range of sounds and many who want to learn how to play an instrument are looking for something that can create a variety of different sounds.


    Victor Epand is an expert consultant for used CDs, autographed CDs, and used musical instruments. 
     Article Directory: Article Dashboard



Wednesday, January 17, 2018

From Ancient Horns To BRASS ENSEMBLES

Soprano Cornet
Soprano Cornet (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Whether you are watching a parade, listening to an orchestra, or attending a jazz ensemble nothing can capture your attention more than when the brass instruments play. They are bold, rich, exciting, and majestic. They have a certain unique regal tone that commands people to sit up and take notice.

Interestingly though, just because they are called brass instruments does not mean that they are just made of brass. Other materials that have been used in their construction include wood, cane, horn, tusk, clay, and even crystal. In addition, most saxophones and flutes and many clarinets are made of brass but are categorized as woodwind instruments, not brass instruments.

Brass instruments have descended from ancient horns. Their first use was in military, royal, or hunting contexts. Curt Sachs reported that even around 1250BC the si-im was played which is depicted as a short and thick horn played with a large frame drum. There was evidence found that around 1400BC straight trumpets were played by soldiers. A trumpet-shaped music instrument was even found in Tutankhamen's tomb. It was not until the late 1600's that brass instruments acquired a new role as an art instrument. During this time, physical alterations were made to them to allow for improved ease of fingering and made blowing less effortful. These improvements enhanced their artistic role and they became a regular member of the orchestra.

By the 1830's the first brass bands came into existence, most notably in England, Wales, and the United States. The first one in the U.S. was established by Allen Dodworth in 1834 as the Brass Band of New York. Beginning in 1860, mechanical changes were made which gave every instrument a complete scale of notes throughout the range. With these enhancements, brass instruments took on an even stronger, clearer, crisper sound. By 1900 there was an explosion in their popularity. Almost every park built a bandstand gazebo and some brass bands attracted 10-20,000 people. Their popularity declined after World War II but increased again in 1960.

Today, brass bands, or brass ensembles as they are more commonly called, continue to include brass instruments such as French horns, trumpets, euphoniums, tubas, trombones, etc. These groups play classical, Broadway, show tunes, marches, and pop/rock music. Some ensembles are not such brass instrument purists and include other instruments such as woodwind instruments, percussion instruments, bass, guitars, or keyboards. With additional instruments, a wider array of musical mixes can be played, such as Dixieland, jazz, rock, blues, or funk. An advantage of being in a brass ensemble is that the players have the freedom to take on roles usually reserved for other instruments. When in a brass ensemble each player has a responsibility to work as a team so not one person or music instrument dominates the sound. The focus of the group is cohesiveness with one mutual goal and a flexibility to accept other's ideas.


Brass instruments have had a long history since ancient times. They have acquired popularity through their ability to produce a rich, bold, exciting sound and their prevalence in so many musical genres. When we hear brass instruments we tend to pay attention and listen. 

    By Dianna Joseph
    Dianna Joseph is the owner of DJ Music Store. She is a saxophonist, novice pianist, and novice guitarist. In addition, she is an occupational therapist who works with a host of disabilities utilizing sensory integration and neurodevelopmental therapy in combination with music and a variety of other techniques to assist these persons in achieving the highest level of function and quality of life possible.
    Article Source: EzineArticles


Wednesday, November 29, 2017

FLUGELHORN - Music-Instruments of the World

Flugelhorn - Music-Instruments of the World



Friday, October 27, 2017

A Guide to Buying a TRUMPET

English: Trumpet bell
Trumpet bell (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Picking the best trumpet can be a difficult task. Most parents looking for a trumpet have no idea what to buy. I've been a trumpet teacher for twenty years and a band director for the last fifteen. I've played on almost every trumpet available today, and many of them are great instruments while some are far from it.

Trumpets come in different levels. There are the beginning or student trumpets, intermediate trumpets, professional trumpets, and custom trumpets. There are also some instruments that should only be made into lamps or put on walls as decoration because of their inferior quality. The price gives them away. If you buy one of these, you're most likely throwing your money away. Be very careful.

Most students start out at the beginning or student trumpets. Student trumpets are generally built with less hand-fitting and tougher materials. They are usually built to withstand normal student use, and they should last through the first few years of the band. Don't just buy a cheap trumpet. Some of them are so poorly made, they will hold a student back.

Intermediate trumpets come next. These instruments have some of the professional trumpet characteristics, and they do perform a little better than a student trumpet. They are often silver plated. They will always have a first valve slide saddle and third valve slide ring so they can be kicked out. While these trumpets don't cost as much as a professional trumpet, the price can be close. Generally, it's better to go ahead and purchase a professional trumpet when it is time to purchase a "step-up" trumpet.

Professional trumpets are truly fine instruments, and most professional trumpet players perform on them. I received my first professional trumpet when I progressed to high school band, and I believe most students that work hard should move to a professional trumpet at that time. These instruments will have slides that all work well right out of the case. They are hand fitted throughout the instrument, and they play as well as any high school student is able to play. These instruments will last through college, and for players that don't perform for a living, they will probably last the rest of their lives.



Custom trumpets come next. These are the best instruments available today. True custom trumpets are hand-made throughout. While these are truly incredible trumpets, they are not necessary for most high school students. If you want to have the best trumpet available today though, buy one of these.



Friday, October 20, 2017

TRUMPET and TROMBONE High Notes

Enregistrement des cuivres de l'Album des Dood
Photo  by Christophe ALARY 
Are you a brass player that has heard an album or a live performance by one of the giants of our instrument and been totally amazed at how they possess a complete command of the instrument?

Such giants as Maynard Ferguson, Wayne Bergeron, Bill Watrous, Slide Hampton?  It's not that these individuals were born with great skills and never had to practice, yet more over, they were driven by the desire to play.  Along with that desire comes support.  Support from family, friends, peers, and authority figures such as band directors.

What is essential for all beginning players young and old is a strong support system.  Family, friends and teachers must all rally around the student to help them believe in themselves and in what they're doing!  Statements such as... ya, ya, that's good but can you do that somewhere else is not exactly a supportive frame of mind.

If you could go back in time and interview the greatest players, you would find that they were strongly supported by family and cohorts.  Maynard Ferguson is a prime example of this!  His parents were both school principals in Montreal Quebec Canada, and as he and his brother Percy were growing up, they were strongly supported in everything they did.  Whether it was sports or music, they were rallying to their kids support.

As Maynard grew into his early teen years and showed a knack for trumpet playing, his parents nourished this talent by not only buying him the recordings, but taking him to the performances that came through.  From Duke Ellington to Dizzy Gillespie, they were there.

The next thing a young player needs is the right tools.  Teachers who don't really know what they're teaching can be a serious detriment to a young player and his growth.  The right approach and the right books as well as specific instruction on how to perform each exercise is vital!

If you are a player who did not exactly experience either of the above, it's not too late.  Trumpet players are most likely looking for that Maynard type range and power.  The high notes that make the audience just sit back in total amazement and wonder - does that hurt?  Is that some freak trick?

High notes are nothing more than just really fast air being forced through a very small hole.  NOT large volumes of air, but rather extremely compressed air moving rapidly through a small hole between your lips.

Sounds easy, doesn't it?  It is once you gain the right concept.




Thursday, October 12, 2017

TRUMPET, Trumpeter & Warm Up Woes

Are you one of those trumpet players that pulls the horn out of the case, jams the mouthpiece in and just starts playing?  Or are you a trumpeter that carefully plots out the next hour or more for a warm-up routine that requires you to perform something of a circus act musically?

Most players who have been in private trumpet lessons have had an instructor sketch out a warm-up routine for them.  My question is - do you know why you're doing what you're doing?  What is your warm-up supposed to do for you?  It's certainly not supposed to make your lip swell up like a balloon or feel stiff as a board by the time you're done.  In fact, your warm-up routine should help you to relax, breathe deep naturally, and help to center your pitch, sound, control, and ability to play in all registers easily and comfortably.



If you're not already doing so, you should think about what your playing needs and goals are for that day.  It should also be taken into consideration as to what yesterday was like.  Was it strenuous?  Was it light?  Did you play at all?  This all can impact how long it will take you to warm up and what you should be doing for a warm up.  Something again that most players don't consider.

Below is a routine that I use during a typical warm up... most days I play for 4 or more hours and usually push pretty hard... so my warm-up starts VERY easy.

*  I start with long tones very soft... usually starting on a 2nd line G - how long depends on how my face is responding to the horn.  Usually I play this note on / off for about 3 to 4 minutes.  I focus on my breathing during this process to help get my air moving.
*  Once I have the note responding without airing out or sputtering, I will perform Clarke Studies #1... chromatic scale patterns (7 notes up / down).  Again, performing these softly to help relieve tension and not cause any swelling.  This is also performed on / off to allow ample rest during this warm up process.
*  Once I've completed exercise #1 from the Clarke book, I will either play exercise #2 or I will start running jazz patterns that don't take me any higher than a G on top of the staff.  Again, resting every now and again...
*  After resting from my last phase, I will run exercise #9 out of the Clarke book... this is extended chromatic studies.  Once again, I focus on keeping my volume down so I don't add tension to my lips, and I can use my air to reach the upper register notes.  Most players run into big trouble here because they start using lip tension vs. holding the lips close together and pushing the air speed.
Please note that I am allowing for rest in my warm up - just as much as I'm playing.  This is VITAL!  If a trumpeter does not allow for rest during their warm up process, strain and tension can start to hinder their playing.  This causes frustration, which creates a vicious circle.



Thursday, August 3, 2017

How to Play the TRUMPET - 6 Tips For Playing Like a Pro!

The trumpet is a magnificent instrument which produces a beautiful tone. It's versatile and can be played in many different types of bands, including orchestras, pop bands, and big bands.

However, mastering how to play the trumpet is a long process requiring immense dedication and passion, but having played the trumpet for over twenty years, I think it's well worth it!

So, to help you out here are six top tips for propelling your trumpet playing and to help you learn how to play the trumpet like a pro...

trumpet
Photo  by   oddsock 
1. Warm up by buzzing just with your lips and then with your mouthpiece. This really helps build strength without causing lip fatigue which can happen if you just practice on your trumpet.

Do the following just with your lips and just with your mouthpiece:

- Buzz a note for a count of four, and then continue up the scale one tone at a time. You can vary this with different exercises you know or by buzzing louder of softer.

2. Rest for as long you play. This is so simple but players rarely do it. This helps your lip muscles recuperate quicker and means you can play for longer without getting tired.

I would recommend regular mini breaks rather than playing for 10 minutes and resting for 10 minutes. Practice an exercise or a part of your music and rest for as long as you played. While resting you can practice finger patterns on the valves or just stretch out your lips.

3. Practice with a metronome. Again, this is a very simple idea that is rarely adhered to.

Most music you play will require you to play in time and doing this really helps you to regulate your internal metronome. It also helps when practicing exercises or difficult musical passages as you can gradually build up the speed you play them at by increasing the speed of the metronome.

4. Practice your pedal notes. Pedal notes, for the purpose of this exercise, are all the notes below middle C. By playing the low register you build strength and range with less pressure on your lips. This means you can play for longer.

When you play the notes below bottom G you will need to create the notes using your lips and the fingering you would use for the octave above. This is great for improving tone and intonation.

5. Play without taking the trumpet off your lips. This is a fantastic way to build strength and endurance as well as learning how to control your breathing.

To do this, find an exercise that you can play continuously without stopping. Continue playing for 5mins non-stop, then 10minutes then for as long as you can at the end of every other practice session.

When you're gigging, especially in Big Bands, you can be playing for anything up to 2 hours with few breaks so this is a fantastic way to practice for these gigs and build your chops!



6. Plan your practice session. This will make a huge difference in the effectiveness of your practice while learning how to play the trumpet.

First, make a list of every element of playing the trumpet, eg tonguing, breathing, and tone, then before each practice session, list what you will practice during your session. This will always ensure that you regularly practice all the different elements, it will keep you focused and make the most efficient use of your time while practicing.

That's it, obviously, there are many more skills to learning how to play the trumpet but these have made a huge improvement to my playing and I hope they do for you too!

It takes some discipline to integrate these ideas into your practice regime but do it for a month and it will become a great habit that will feel like you've always practiced this way!

    Ingram Sanders is an experienced trumpeter who has played for over 20 years.

     Article Directory: EzineArticles


Thursday, July 20, 2017

TUBA - Music-Instruments of the World

The Tuba



Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Types of TUBAS

As you may or may not know, several types of tubas exist. Each of these has its own tonal properties. Having so many versions of the same instrument can be confusing to anyone. I am writing this guide as a general reference when purchasing or identifying one.

[Man playing the tuba.]
Man playing Tuba - Photo by New York Public Library
Contrabass Tubas
Contrabasses are the most common type of tuba today and are the lowest-pitched. There are two types of Contrabasses, pitched in either Bb or C.

BB-flat Tuba
The BB-flat Tuba is the most common tuba in the U.S. today and are the largest standard tuba. These are used by many school bands because most other brass instruments used by high schools are also keyed in Bb. They are also used by some professional players. BB-flat tubas are often designed to handle the rough treatment of young tubists and sacrifice responsiveness and tone as a result.
BB-flat tubas are the contrabass of choice in German, Austrian, and Russian orchestras. They are the standard for use in concert and symphonic bands.

CC Tuba
CC tubas are build a whole step up from BB-flat models. They lack the lowest notes of a BB-flat tuba, although many add extra valves to make up for this. In the US, most professional tuba players play C-pitched tubas. These tubas are easier to play in the sharp keys, allowing them to work better playing in an orchestra (String parts are often written in the sharp keys to make them easier for them). They are build more for responsiveness and not durability.

These tubas are typically the next step up for advancing tuba players, at least in the US. However; they are not a necessity. A good BB-flat player can play anything written with a CC tuba in mind.

Bass Tubas
Bass tubas are smaller than the Contrabasses and naturally play higher.

E-flat Tuba
Eb Tubas generally play an octave above the contrabasses in a brass band. They are somewhat rare in the US, although in the UK they are the standard orchestral bass. These widely used in bands in the late 1800's and early 1900's. According to one source "nobody remembers why"...

F Tuba
F Tubas are used mainly by professional players for solo works and to play higher parts in some older pieces. They are the standard orchestral tuba in much of Europe, with BB-flat or CC tubas used when additional low end is needed.

Tuba Variations


The Sousaphone
Attributed to and named after John Phillip Sousa, Sousaphones designed for marching. They wrap around the body, resting on the left shoulder and the bell faces forward to project sound into the crowd. They are most commonly pitched in Bb and have just three valves, although some are in Eb. The originals were in C. Just watch out for the wind!



Bell front (recording) tubas
These tubas are upright, but have bells facing forward to project the sound.

Contrabasses (Marching Tubas)
Often seen in DCI competition (Drum Corps. International), these resemble upright tubas but rest on the left or right shoulder, bell pointed to the crowd. These are more awkward than sousaphones and are not common in high school bands. Some upright tubas can be converted to marching tubas with special lead pipes that are interchangeable. This saves bands with low budgets the expense of buying a tuba for each season.

As you can see, many types and variations of tuba exist, each with their own purpose in a band. Hopefully this guide will shed some light on these instruments.



Monday, June 26, 2017

Do You Want to Learn the TROMBONE?

The trombone is a member of the brass family and the horn and come in different sizes. The most common ones are the medium sized or tenor trombone and larger sized or bass trombone which are both pitched in Bb. They produce heavy sounds which are lower than the trumpet and are used when the orchestra is playing loud sections or in harmony with the higher horn and trumpet parts.

Trombones have a cylindrical shaped tube and a cup shaped mouthpiece and are related to the trumpets. But instead of valves which a trumpet has, a trombone has a moveable slide which moves in and out. A player will stop the slide at any of the seven positions to get the range of notes available to produce. At any of the positions a series of notes can be produced by tightening or slackening his lips. The notes produced are a series of natural notes called harmonics. When the slide is pulled out completely, the range of notes which can be produced will extend downwards for six semitones.

Trombone - Photo: Wikimedia CC


Like other brass instruments, the sound of the trombone is produced by blowing air through pursed lips producing a vibration that creates a standing wave in the instrument. When the player moves the slide out it extends the length of the air column and lowers the pitch.

Trombones are played in a variety of situations like orchestras, military bands, jazz bands, dance bands eg the big band.. <br>Orchestras generally have two tenors and one bass trombone. The other groups having varying numbers of trombone players.

Let's take a look at two well known trombone players. <br>1. Slide Hampton (Locksley Wellington "Slide" Hampton ) was a famous American trombonist, composer and arranger who played all around Europe after he was in his dad's band, named Hampton's Band. He toured with them a lot and is probably the best role model for starting trombonists. Slide Hampton was born in 1932.

2.Tommy Dorsey ( Thomas Francis Dorsey ) was a great American jazz trombone player as well as a trumpeter, composer, and bandleader of the Big Band era. He had a smooth-toned trombone playing style and was known as "The Sentimental Gentleman of Swing". He is famous for The Spell of the Blues and The Boogie Woogie. Tommy Dorsey was born <br>November 19, 1905 and died November 26, 1956.

You now know that the trombone is a brass instrument of varying sizes and can be played in a variety of situations. You have been given examples of two well know trombonists which could look up on YouTube and see if the sound tantalises your taste buds. Then you need to make the final decision; Do you want to learn the trombone?



Monday, June 19, 2017

TRUMPET MOUTHPIECES - Always Keep a Spare!

What should be the very first point of order that you think about when getting your trumpet ready to play - most real musicians will tell you to consider trumpet mouthpieces. That's right, you wouldn't be playing your trumpet if the mouthpiece was not in perfect operating order. Your trumpet mouthpiece get lots of abuse, isn't that where all of the sound is formed in the first place? That abuse, or heavy use can translate directly into very heavy wear and possible outright destruction. Always be prepared, and always carry a spare or extra mouthpiece in your trumpet case with you wherever you go - I guarantee that you'll never regret the decision!!

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Trumpet Mouthpiece - Photo  by    cmelnychuk 

It's a fact that these days there are a lot of knock-offs or imitation trumpet parts on the market. They're made in low cost countries where the labor is dirt cheap, and since the manufacturer isn't worried about protecting his or her name brand, substandard materials are often used, in addition to poorly trained employees to form and assemble those materials. What this means to the end user is that a poorly made mouthpiece is bought because of the astonishingly low price - and not the overall value.

Possible your next question might be what trumpet mouthpieces to get, how many should you have and which brand should you choose? Even if you don't know know a single fact about this topic,my advice to you is clear; never buy the absolute cheapest mouthpiece available. As you'll probably discover some time after the purchase, there is most likely a very good reason for the low amount and, aside from obvious motives like product damage or some thing similar, there are things you just can't take into consider, such as inferior materials which don't always make themselves known until further down the road. There may be a case of poor assembly - that always worries me, because I'll never know what the problem might be until I actually utilize the mouthpiece. By then, it's probably too late, and I may end up having to spend more money to get a top-quality mouthpiece, the one I should have bought initially, if I was using my head instead of just trying to be cheap.



There are plenty of great trumpet mouthpieces that you won't have to spend excessively for - for example the Jet-tone DS GOLD RIM or a Schilke Trumpet Mouthpiece, or how about a TRUMPET MENDEZ #2 MOUTHPIECE. Not one of these excellent mouthpieces cost more than $60, they also can be delivered directly to your doorstep in under a week's time! How's that for convenience - and value?

Don't purchase inferior, imitation trumpet mouthpieces, there are tons of top-quality, affordable mouthpieces that can provide you years of service for only a couple of bucks more than those nasty substandard pieces.