Weekly Trumpet Tips 10/31/10

The Shadow

Welcome to Weekly Trumpet Tips!

Please always feel free to respond / comment on any of the tips listed in these weekly posts.  Your input may help clarify details for someone else!

Check out the Chops Rehab and Jazz Improv courses.  These are designed to be 4 weeks worth of lessons to help the student gain insights and skills in each specific area.  We are currently running a “Back To School” promotion on Chops Rehab…

A couple of updates – we’ve selected a name for the book – keep checking back to find out what it is… the book should be finished by October’s end.  A month behind what I wanted, but it was worth the extra time!!!

We now have t-shirts!  Check out our new t-shirt design!  We have the “adult version and the school friendly “student version!”

Here Are your Weekly Tips:

Tip #1 – Be That Consummate Professional!

Whether you’re a weekend warrior, student player, or the die-hard professional, one of the biggest mistakes made by a great many musicians (all instruments / vocalists included) is that they don’t take what they do completely serious!  I see this time and time again as I play with various artists and groups.  Whether it be coming to a rehearsal ill-prepared (no music stand, no staff paper, no PENCIL) or showing up to the actual performance (gig) not ready.

Drinking on the gig in my book is a near no-no!  If you work for a large corporation, I’m pretty sure most (if not all) would not allow you to have an open beer bottle or a glass of wine sitting out on your desk as you work away.  Why is the stage any different?

My best advice for you is as follows!


ALWAYS show up prepared (rehearsed, proper equipment)

ALWAYS put your audience first – THEY should have a good time from YOUR performance!  Check the ego at the door!

Have fun – but be smart!

Tip #2 – Gig Chops / Practice Chops!

There can be a massive difference between practice room chops and “gig ready” chops.  Knowing what the demands of your show will be is one of the biggest clues on what it will take to make sure that you survive to the last call (or end of the show).

Something to consider is how long do you have to play before you get ample rest to recover?  Are the songs demanding?  What is your recovery time?  In other words, can you rest for 16 bars (a typical verse / chorus exchange) and be set for what ever the music may throw at you?  If not, then this is your work!  By practicing with “length” of time in mind, you can increase your endurance relatively quickly so you won’t run into problems ON the gig.

Many times we practice and rest as we need to… gigs don’t work that way!

Our new book is nearly ready to head off to the presses!  We’ll announce the name of the winner of the title in the next week or so!

“All the mistakes I ever made were when I wanted to say ‘no’ and said ‘yes.'”

Moss Hart
1904-1961, Playwright and Theatre Director

Have a GREAT week!