Weekly Trumpet Tips 5/21/13

The Shadow

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!!!

ReCheck 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 and as a guest artist!! Please go to our “Clinics” page for details!

Keith’s new CD is now available on iTunes! Check it out HERE! (Physical CD’s NOW Available!)


Tip #1 – Practice – If  You’re Sounding “Good” You’re NOT Really Practicing!

This past week has been increasingly frustrating for me personally.  I have embraced my weaknesses and have been chipping away at them with a vengeance!  In the heat of it, it’s important to remember that you’re doing the best work by attacking what you can’t do, and with consistency (and a whole lot of patience) you’ll manage to overcome weaknesses.

The hardest part of working in this manner is that we can tend to forget how far we’ve come!  So at the end of frustrating practice session (or day), give yourself a reminder of what you CAN do.  But just a reminder… all too many musicians dwell in the house of “CAN” and don’t set foot in “CAN’T YET.”  This alone stunts your growth!

Tip #2 – If  You Can’t Play Soft, How Do You Expect To…

If you’ve taken my Chops Rehab course, you know that soft playing is one of the key ingredients to building a wealth of range and control.  I was AMAZED what it did for me as I was a total non-believer beforehand.

To this day, I still warm up very softly after doing loud arpeggio’s down into the pedal range.  If I have a show that I anticipate will take its toll on my chops, I warm up very slowly and methodically for hours before the show!  Lots of breaks, lots of rest, and tons of soft playing.  My favorite pattern early in my warm up is chromatically going between low C and low F#.  I start with JUST air… no tongue starts.  This helps me to observe how things are responding, and what the rest of my warm up will need to consist of.

I’m now (as I’ve grown older and a little more wise) amazed as to how many players are just like I was… they cannot see the connection between soft playing and upper register work.

Playing in the upper register, your aperture needs to be extremely focussed… just as it does in the middle and low register playing very softly.

This will also help you develop a beautiful round tone, and control over your volume ranges as well… many benefits!

Check out Chops Rehab for more information…

“The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it but that it is too low and we reach it.”

1475-1564, Sculptor, Painter, and Architect

Have a GREAT week!