Weekly Trumpet Tips 5/28/13

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! Click on the photo below!(Physical CD’s NOW Available! HERE)


Tip #1 – Major Scales

One aspect of playing that a great many players over look or just plain ignore, is scale knowledge.  Just by not knowing all 12 major scales, you’re complicating things automatically for yourself.  If you play in a cover band that has vocalists, I can tell you that Bb is a VERY RARE key!  In fact, most vocalists put horn players in concerts keys of E, G, A, and B!  For trumpet players – that’s F#, A, B, and C# / Db!  FUN keys to have to look at and read – let alone solo in!

A very quick way to improve your scale knowledge is to work on them each day – a little at a time.  Choose 3 scales that you don’t know / don’t know well, and spend 5 minutes on each one.  Work on ascending as well as descending.  Then work on the corresponding Clarke Study!

Within just a couple weeks, all 12 major scales will have improvement.  Strive for memorization!

Tip #2 – Jack of ALL Trades!

As a player in todays market, it’s important to be able to read, improvise, have good range, and strong endurance.  When a band is looking for a player, you don’t want them to overlook you because they associate you with one or two skills, but no abilities in the other area.  For example, “I’d call so-n-so, but they can only play high notes.”  OR – “Even though so-n-so solos well, his endurance and range aren’t what we need for this show!”

When you are setting up your ideas for practicing, keep this in mind.  Working on ALL aspects of playing is extremely important!  You don’t necessarily have to be the next Freddie Hubbard with improvisation, or the next Maynard Ferguson with range, but you should be able to at least play an intelligent solo if called upon, and play up to E’s and F#’s above high C.  This can vary, but that seems like the accessible range that is most called upon.

Stay tuned for more practice ideas on how to make yourself more marketable as a player…

“Play with conviction!  The audience has no interest in your self doubt.”

Art Blakey

Have a GREAT week!