Weekly Trumpet Tips 12/20/11

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 About Face HERE!!!  Check out Secrets to Efficient Brass Playing HERE!!!

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.

Keith is available for clinics!!  Please go to our “Clinics” page for details!

Here Are your Weekly Tips:

Tip #1 – The Practice Process!


Tip #2 – Staying Encouraged and “In Love” With Playing!

I think we ALL have performances, practice sessions, days, weeks, etc. that make us question why we chose to play this infernal instrument known as “TRUMPET!”  I have questioned it enough that I quit for 3 years… But being away from it, felt like a part of me was missing.  That’s all I ever really wanted to do…

I’ve quoted this before, and I believe it’s responsible for me not throwing my horn across the room and into the wall!  While on tour, I was having a REALLY bad run with chops… Maynard pulled me aside and said, “NEVER kick yourself so hard that you break your leg – BUT NEVER pat yourself on the back so hard that you break your arm!” 

In the years since that was uttered to me (at the time that I needed it the most), I’ve been in all types of situations.  I’ve had STELLAR nights, horrid nights that felt like they’d never end, and practice sessions that just seemed to go nowhere.  What keeps me coming back now?  The knowledge that I’ve gained – whether you choose to play trumpet, be a doctor, be a lawyer, or flip burgers, we always learn.  I, like so many of you, developed a passion for trumpet playing when I was very young.  Watching my Uncle on stage just captivated me!  He passed on an appreciation for this craft that has stayed with me my whole life.  Similar to marriage vows, I think we commit ourselves to this instrument for better or for worse.

So to not sound like your marriage counselor (to your instrument – my fees are far too high for any other form of counseling – hahahaha) you really have to find the good in your playing at all times.  Most of us have been taught to focus so strongly on the negative that it’s all that we eventually see.  And I believe THAT was the sole reason that I got out of this so many years ago.  I believed that I wasn’t good enough because all I heard and all I focussed on was how bad I was…

Stay committed, stay focussed, and hear the good in your playing as well!   You’ll come out a far happier trumpeter in the long run!

“Paths clear before those who know where they’re going and are determined to get there.”

Leonard Roy Frank
Editor and Writer

Merry Christmas / Happy New Year / Happy Holidays to all… with the holiday time, I’ll be busy with family and shows… we’ll start the Weekly Trumpet Tips 2012 in January!!!