Welcome to Weekly Trumpet Tips:
(2) Building Chops!
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Tip #1 – Smile!
One of the best things we can do as human beings is smile… a simple smile can warm the hearts of others as well as are known to be infectious! But – they can do a lot more than just warm the coddles of the heart… smiling can also be a beneficial tool to build facial muscles. Have you ever taken photos and had to hold a smile for any length of time? As goofy as that may sound, it’s actually a simple FREE tool that you can use at any time! And FREE should bring a smile to your face!
Tip #2 – Building Chops!
If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you’ve heard me say that to build chops you have to take into consideration, endurance over range! I have found for myself, that my range improved (stabilized first and then increased) the more I worked on my endurance side.
If you want to build chops, you have to approach things like a body builder / athlete because after all, you are dealing with muscles. I’ve heard a great many part time players say that they are more successful playing one day, taking a day off and playing the 3rd day. That may be fine for someone who doesn’t play very often, but – if you really want to build some SERIOUS strength, you have to play daily!
To add range – the first thing you have to understand is that there is no set time frame for adding. You can’t say that in 3 weeks I’m going to have a “G” if you can’t already play one. And even if you can, it doesn’t mean that it will become strong enough in 3 weeks to be a dependable (at all times) note. The best advice I can give is to set goals to add notes that are “hittable” but not necessarily “playable” into your practice.
Let’s use “G” above high C as a good example… if this is a note that you can hit, but can’t necessarily play in a line or in a piece of music, then the best thing you can do is keep striving for it. Make 3 attempts and stop. Just like in the gym… if you’re trying to lift a certain amount of weight, trainers will tell you 3 attempts and stop as well. Your muscles start to “feel” tired when lifting… unfortunately, facial muscles won’t necessarily give you the same feedback of being tired. To gain strength you have to have rest and work… one without the other will not achieve your goal!
In time, you’ll start to be able to play your G on a more regular basis…
When you complain, you make yourself a victim. Leave the situation, change the situation, or accept it. All else is madness.
– Eckhart Tolle – Author
Keep adding notes! Have a GREAT week!