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Build incredible trumpet chops

03

Regardless of your skill level it can be important to review the basic fundimentals of improving range and endurance on the trumpet. The trumpet is not an easy instrument to play. While they may say otherwise, anyone who is great at the trumpet and has phenominal range has worked hard to get it. Sure it comes easier to some than others but everyone must practice to get better.

Below are some basic guidelines you can follow. This is just the basics and not an exhaustive list.  Read the other articles on this site and other sites to learn more. 

Warmup Properly

If you don't take the time to properly warm up your practice sessions are not going to yield good results.

Work on your sound first

Too many trumpet players work on range and hitting high notes before they are getting a good sound. The very most important thing to get right is a good middle register sound. You are wasting time to trying to play higher if you do not have a good sound. Not only are you likely playing wrong and developing bad habits, range means nothing without good sound.

Keep relaxed and use good air

One simple trick is to fake a yawn when taking your air in. A yawn is a natural and relaxed way to get maximum oxygen into your body. When exhaling continued the relaxed feeling and keep the air moving. Practice at least 10-20 times a day taking a deep and letting out the air in a fast but relaxed manner.

 

Play musically

It's often easy for us trumpet players to get sidetracked into exercises, lip slurs, and other embouchure building feats.  While the best players certainly practice a lot, you will find most of them spend a majority of their time playing music. At least 50% of your practice should be spent on playing music as opposed to drills and exercises.


To play well in the high register, practice just as much in the low register

Jim Manley, one of the best trumpet players you will find with an incredible range and sound changed my playing forever with just one secret tip. Practice pedal tones. If you are struggling for range it is likely you are unable to play pedal tones as well. If you have a decent range but your sound is not full, you need to practice the pedal range. Future articles will go into this in more detail.

Have Fun!

If you are struggling or stressed out when you play you will get absolutely no where. 99% of trumpet playing is simply having a good sound through the middle register of the horn. low C to high C. Master that range and you can be a great trumpet player.


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