Welcome to Weekly Trumpet Tips:
(1) The Luxury of Practice Time
(2) Physicality of Playing!
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Tip #1 – The Luxury of Practice Time!
With playing an extremely physical instrument such as the trumpet, we have to stay in tip top shape which means we have to limit how much we do on gig days, heavy rehearsal days and allow for ample muscle recovery. As gigs and rehearsals increase, practice time is usually the first thing to be sacrificed for the sake of saving “face.”
By concentrating on practicing in other ways, we can continue our growth as musicians while maintaining our trumpet chops. For instance, the Sandovalves is a great practice tool that will allow you to work your fingers, or warm up by buzzing with resistance. Take it a step further and do both at once to help build your ear / feel for each note. Try buzzing the Clarke Studies… you can also get a practice drum pad and work your rhythm while using a metronome…
Practicing is a luxury and should still be done in creative ways daily. Stay creative my friends!
Tip #2 – Physicality of Playing
It’s no secret to anyone that is a practicing trumpet player, what we do is EXTREMELY physical! When you’re feeling tired, sick, or just generally crappy – it complicates matters much more. We have to be very mindful during these times that we’re using the entire body and not just leaning on the chops! The lips are comprised of tiny / delicate muscles that were designed to help you talk and keep soup off your shirt… not play trumpet! So trying to power through a rehearsal or a show solely with the chops is a sure fire way to fatigue them and cause more problems than just feeling sick or tired.
So the next time you’re feeling less than optimum physically and have to go play, remember that you have to really focus on keeping the power coming from your full body – give the chops a break! They create tone… nothing more.
“Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and
– John F. Kennedy
Have a GREAT week!