Upward Slurs Made Easier

With FeelingI would like to give the late Mr. John Beer (former trumpet Prof. at the University of Iowa) credit for this helpful hint for improving your percentage of success with upward slurs.

During one of my lesson with my good friend at the University of Iowa, John pointed out the fact that I was doing my upward slurs the hard way and proceeded to give me instructions to correct this weakness.

As I played, he said that I was playing the top note too loud. To me it seems logical to do until he played it his way. To my mind, he had just done the impossible! After his explanation and encouragement, I was playing upward slurs with the best….. or at least better than when I walked into his studio that day.

Here is what he told me.

Play strong on the low note and soften to the higher note.

Below I have included exercises for you to try as well as a recording to practice with.

If you want to give credit to someone for showing you this simple trick, please give credit to John.

If it doesn’t work you can blame me.

Upper Slurs Made Easier

Bruce was a member of the faculty at the University of Northern Iowa, School of Music in Cedar Falls from 1969 until his retirement in 1999. He has performed with many well-known entertainers such as Bob Hope, Jim Nabors, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme, Anita Bryant, Carman Cavalara, Victor Borgie, the Four Freshman, Blackstone the Magician, Bobby Vinton and John Davidson.