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Tips and Hints

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Yeah ! Of course you think that I`m obsessed with Holding the Corners IN. You know what ? Actually I am !

After repeating all over again every lesson to my students I realized that this is one of the most important things in correct playing trumpet. The problem is that you have to FEEL that you are holding them All the Time. This function is often interupted (hard to think of especially but not only for begineer students) during playing from music sheet or just exercises through registers.

Why is interupted and hard to think of ?

Maybe nobody told you that you should hold the corners ?!
So you probably relaxing whole emrochure going down and the sound is losing the power and when you go up you press the mouhpiece to your lips (Totally Prohibited !)
What you should do ? You should start tightening the corners and practice a lot with the mirror to see that you hold them all the time. If you pay attention and break up your practice schedule and use rest as much as you play routine ! then your corners will become stronger with time.

Some Trumpeters have a questions about mouthpiece sizes and
how the size of one Brand responds to the other.

The following list is not a definitive answer. I found five same size mouthpieces and each looked different from the other, but I hope that this list can help you make a right decision :


Brand X <-----------> Brand Y

20 <----------------> 5A4 - smallest rim size

17 <----------------> 7B4 - smaller rim size

11C<----------------> 8A4 - small rim size

10&1/2C <------------> 9C4 (9,10B4) - smaller rim then 7C

7C <----------------> 11,(13B),11C4 - most pop.beginner mouthpiece

7E <----------------> 11A - piccolo trpt or lead playing(for extreme high register, but will cut the deepness of low notes)

6C <----------------> 12 (12B4, 13B)- very slight difference between 5 & 7 sizes.

5C <----------------> 13C4 (14)- 2nd most pop. beginner mouthpiece

3C <----------------> 15 (16C4)- the most pop. all round playing, jazz, classical, salsa ( I use 3CW - the rim is slightly wider then in 3C)

1&1/2C <-------------> 14, 14B4 - great for solo classical or jazz solo playing

1&1/4C <-------------> 17 - great for solo classical or orchestral playing, used for some jazz artists ( I personally think that this size is too big for long jazz soloing and makes impossible to play loud salsa for a long time.

1C <----------------> 18, (18C3d)- big sound - great for orchestra

1 <-----------------> 19 (20)- deeper than 1C also great for orchestra

How Deep it is ?

E <---shallow---> A -> extreme high register
D <-med.shallow-> B -> high register
C <---regular---> C -> all round playing
B <----deeper---> number -> darker sound, harder to play for a long periods of time without rest.
number<-deepest-> number - great big sound, but also bigger cut in endurance then B if playing long period without rest.

Ten Tips from TrumpetTime !


2. Remember ALWAYS take FULL ! DEEP ! RELAXED breaths and STAY RELAXED during playing (breathing OUT !)

3. Don`t Hesitate after taking the Breath IN -> Exhale immediately. (I observed that some of my students have a tendency to take a breath, get tense and try to play). Don`t STOP. Take a BIG Breath and Exhale RIGHT AWAY !

4. Teach Yourself how to take SLOW FULL and FAST FULL Breaths - Before you start playing you can take Slow Full Breath , but when you start playing you don`t have that comfort anymore especially playing something fast.

5. Maintain DEEP FULL BREATHING during long performances when you don`t have a chance to rest (e.g., Salsa Band Gigs !) Remember! Good Breath always PROTECTS your Chops (lips) ,so the better the breathing the longer you can play.

I know this rule since I started playing and it really helped me a lot with building my chops and generally playing. But believe me this is not an easy rule to follow and a lot of brass players broke it up. Why ? Because in our everyday life it is hard to follow. If we do something we want to start and finish in a certain time and that`s it.
Using Rest as ...... rule we stop something in the middle and then sometimes is hard to come back after the rest time.
So we have to do different things. Fortunately our modern world allow us to do it so Practice -> Check that e-mail ->
Practice -> Exercise, maybe run -> Practice -> Make a Juice (don`t know how to do a good juice with your juicer) e-mail TrumpetTime -> Practice -> don`t start to watch TV , cuz switching channels back and forth will not help you to come back to Practice Session.

7. Before Practice make a schedule what you will play this day. Don`t play the same Warm Up Stuff Every Day. Change it. Make practicing interesting and challenging. PRACTICE DIFFERENT THINGS this will make you a complete trumpet player.

8. Concentrate during playing, practicing. If you feel that you are thinking about ice cream or a party then it means it`s time to rest. You have to be focused on what you doing !

9. Don`t spend too much time and money to try new mouthpieces all the time. If something is wrong with your playing it`s probably you, not the mouthpiece. Especially if you are using incorrect technique (pressing, not putting enough air to the trumpet, tensing your throat when going up the register). Remember good equipment only helps. Proper technique is required to play well.

10. Unhappy with your playing? Schedule a lesson with TrumpetTime. I will resolve your problems.