Which Comes First, Technique or Musicality?

This question is much like the chicken or the egg issue. Which should be taught first? One camp believes that without technique, nothing can be played and the other camp asks the question “what good is technique if it isn’t musical”. Both have their cases and in this post I will try to bring the two sides to a happy mid point. Most of my early teaching was geared to the technical approach but as I increase candles on my birthday cake I must admit, all technique can have its disadvantages. One student who stands out as the most gifted…

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The Perfect Lesson Plan #3- High School Player

At this level of development, the expectations and requirements are similar to the Junior High student with a few exceptions. Foremost at this level is the added amount of performing such as in jazz bands, concert bands, marching bands, all-region and all-state tryouts and as well as solo/ensemble performances. At this juncture, the player needs foremost to continue to gain playing techniques as in Junior High but needs additionally to be aware of the condition of his/her lip at all times. Too many players run into lip problems at this level which can easily be avoided. I have listed below…

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The Perfect Lesson Plan #2- Junior High School level player

At this point in your advancement as a trumpet player you should now be able to play with a good tone, know all of the fingerings used on your instrument and have a decent range (a solid A to the C just above the staff) and a reasonable amount of endurance. At this point in your advancement, you will be performing regularly in a large ensemble (usually a concert/marching band) and will be starting to think about performing solos as well as small ensemble music. Within this post I will try to cover some of the more advanced expectations you…

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Solving your Jazz and Legit Mouthpiece Problems

On one day you are playing Brahms in an orchestra and the next you are playing Kenton in a club and the choice of sound is becoming a problem. One requires a soft and gentile timbre and the other a more edgy tone with an increased high range. One solution would be to change trumpets for each situation but at the cost of instruments today, who has that kind of cash. Another possibility would be to attempt to color your tone with your existing equipment but you will find this is only an act of desperation. This scenario was exactly…

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On Which Paper Is It Best To Print Your Music?

Has this ever happened to you? You have a quick page turn in your concert and the next two pages are stuck together. Under the existing light, you suddenly realize that the notes on the reverse side of your music are showing through. As you quickly turn your page, the sheet gets stuck on the stand and tears in two. While erasing your previous pencil markings from your music, you gouge a hole where your notes used to be. These are very common situations and I have finally found the solution to these as well as many other problems caused…

Finally! I found the best lead pipe brush, again.

After searching for more than a decade, I finally found a source for the best lead pipe cleaning brush in the world. When I bought my first Schilke trumpet, I also purchased a cleaning brush they had in the shop and now I have I have finally found a source who stocks the same brush. I think it is time now to retire the old and send in the new! justman-brush-company-is-the-industry-leading-manufacturer-of-laboratory-scientific-and-glassware-brushes http://www.justmanbrush.com/catalog/ 715325 Black Nylon Smooth 1/2″ 1.2 3″ 7.5 18″ 45 $3.69

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How To Place Your Mouthpiece In Your Horn

Have you ever heard or read something that does not make any sense to you at all and then you set out to prove it wrong only to find that it is actually true? This happened to me this past week and even though it is an embarrassment, I will swallow my pride for the betterment of the brass world. This past week I read a post on one of the brass bulletin boards which stated that this person claimed that the rotation of the mouthpiece could actually change how the instrument responded when played. Just the thought of someone…

Free Rhythmic Study with Recording

You may find this useful to practice your jazz rhythms for all of these examples have been taken from our current show in Branson, “The All Hands On Deck Show”. If you become tired of the cymbals in the recording, you can do two things to improve the sound- 1. Move the left and right fader control back and forth to lessen the drums. 2. Add more bass and less treble to cut down on the edge of the cymbal. Trumpet sheet music- rhythmic-study-trumpet-in-bb Practice recording-

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New Flow Studies Material- Part III

This is my third and final post in this series of material on “New Flow Studies” and I have included two additional sets of exercises. In this post I have included a series of exercises using the intervals of a third, fourth. I would suggest that you do the following. 1. Start with the interval of a second until it becomes easy for you at the faster speed. 2. Begin the intervals of a third at the slow speed until it becomes easy for you. 3. Begin the intervals if a forth with caution…… When I recorded this exercise, I…

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