Weekly Trumpet Tips 12/20/16

Trumpet Shadow

The Shadow

Welcome to Weekly Trumpet Tips:

(1)   Overcoming Bad Days / Gigs

(2) Ron’s Tip – Developing Your Own Style

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Tip #1 – Bad Days / Gigs

Yep… we are ALL subjected to a bad day, bad gig, bad chops day, etc.  You name it – it can happen!  So what can you do to limit the effects of a bad day so that it doesn’t show in your performance?  Simple… keep pushing your limits so that they are beyond what ever the demands of the gig your on is.  For example – if the gig calls for you to play lead and the lead book contains high G’s above High C, you want to be able to play those notes mad, tired, hungry, sick or near death!  How do you accomplish that?  In the practice room!  Utilizing previous tips so that you keep pushing your  useable / playable range to the point that you can eek out what ever needs to be there.  I know this may sound like I’m impugning the journey to play a consistent high G, but it’s not much more overly complicated than this.  It’s frustrating and can be a long journey – and believe me – my journey with this very thing has been long, tiring, hard and frustrating.  But – nonetheless – worthwhile.

The biggest mistakes I made in that journey were over practicing range and not allowing for rest / rebuild time as well as not being too willing to keep pushing for notes that I couldn’t reach.  For instance, when I finally got a solid Double C, I stopped pushing.  I guess I was so happy with myself that I just sat there gloating (to myself) that I could finally “play” one in a line.  BUT – I couldn’t do it tired.  I got fed up with failing to be able to play them at the end of the night and started pushing again.  It’s been nearly a year since that push began and I’m getting there… it could be as much as another year to go before I get full reliability at and above Double C… but without pushing (in a smart manner) daily, you’ll never get there.

Improvisation, reading, rhythm / timing, double tonguing and every other skill necessary on this beast of an instrument is no different!  It’s a daily push so that you can play competently – even on bad days.  And always remember – NO ONE is immune to them… they’ve just worked to push beyond what the demand of the gig is.

Tip #2 – Ron’s Tip – Developing Your Own Style

A short  review and developing your own style… 
Hello  and welcome back to week 14 of our musical voyage. Last week we talked about the use of rhythms and eventually through the process of scales in jazz. As I mentioned last week and also as I defined the word rhythms as  the pattern of regular or irregular pulses caused in music by the occurrence of strong and weak melodic and harmonic beats”
As I want to or would like to start to get right into improvising, we must understand why we spent upto 14 weeks to get to a certain point .That is because the neccessary steps in the previous weeks of my Ron’s tips are so important in the process leading up to improvising.. Also I find it highly effective to go over last weeks lesson on jazz rhythms by doing the actual exercise that has been laid out
Let’s go back a little and talk about reviewing once again so we can re-assure you that by knowing what we are talking about ,that when the time is right with patience and practice everything musically should fall right into place. Now that does not mean that we can snap our fingers and get the results,after a couple of weeks of practice.  This means working hard and concentrating on each note and method that we work on will be vital in the musical development of a jazz or classical musician. In this case we would be talking about jazz improvisational skills.
What we are trying to accomplish here after weeks of preparing from learning our triads, or the 8 chord progressions and scales that we talked about in the past three months, is to improvise on a standard tune. We also asked for you to pick a melody which I highly recommend . To listen to it , and trying to memorize it. Also we talked about finding a jazz solo that would have been played by a legendary trumpeter in jazz like Miles Davis , Freddie Hubbard or Dizzy Gillespie or most most importantly listening to a solo by Louie Armstrong’s hot five group in the swing era ( 1925 -1928) It’s one thing to be able to improvise but it’s another to emulate the artist and swing while improvising. To do this one must be able to build a library of jazz solos, and to be able to know them, sing them then to play them exactly as the artist plays them. This is how you create your own style.  You don’t really want to be that person,. You want to be yourself and have your own trademark or style. I am giving you the tools to becoming a very good or maybe one day future great jazz improvising artist.Now in our 14th weeks of Keith Fiala’s weekly archives site and Ron’s Tips, I strongly urge all my readers to go back and to re-read the Tios so you have the correct understanding of what to do  and how to do it. Please always resort to my previous weekly tips if you need to. Please feel free to leave any questions if you have any. Have a Merry christmas  and keep practicing See you next time on Ron’s tips.
Sincerely Yours
Ron Tenore

“I have learned over the years that when one’s mind is made up, this diminishes fear; knowing what must be done does away with fear.”

Rosa Parks
1913-2005, Civil Rights Activist

Have a GREAT week & Happy Holidays!