Technique

Michael Sachs on warming up

While living in the Cleveland-area during my Master’s studies, I had the great fortune of studying with two masters of orchestral trumpet; the great Bernard Adelstein at the end of his career with the Cleveland Orchestra and the dynamic Michael Sachs at the beginning of his.  Talk about a source...

Maintain your Warm-up mode

I had a student the other day that was having difficulty playing without tension and was really “attacking” the notes – not playing the music, thus getting all tight, thus missing more, thus getting more tense…  We talked a minute about what could be causing him to be having such...

A Music Student’s Top Ten List

Someone showed a list similar to this to me a while back and I apologize for not currently being able to give proper credit to the original author.  I have edited and paraphrased a few things in my list but primarily the credit for this Prep List goes to someone...

Richardson – Demonstration of Crossover Depth

I can count on one hand the crossover trumpet players that I would actually buy CDs of BOTH their classical and jazz playing.  Rex Richardson is one of those players.  There are plenty of players who specialize in one field and dabble in the other but it’s rare to find...

What’s the Deal with Transcribing Jazz?

Outside of practicing your butt off, aspiring jazz musicians are told two things will also help their improvising; listening to great jazz players and transcribing their solos.  I do not disagree with this.  After all, jazz is a language and to understand it we must not only study the grammar...

Ray Mase on Practicing

Ray Mase is one of my absolute, all-time favorite trumpet players.  He plays in the American Brass Quintet, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and teaches at Julliard Aspen Music Festival.  He has the most singing, vibrant, lyrical tone I have ever heard on the trumpet and is a huge influence on my...

Recital Programming

Most universities require that their music majors perform a half recital (20-30 min) their junior year and a full recital (45+ min) their senior year.  Here are some thoughts and strategies I have on programming. Programming Strategy Your first recital can be a nervous endeavor.  Like many of us, when...

Scales are Neighborhoods

This is my mantra with my private and university students.  (Actually, one of my many mantras.)  Another favorite is: Scales are Useless!  -until they’re memorized. My problem with typical scale work is that everybody practices them the same way.  (Click the scale images to enlarge them.  Then, your “back” button...

Ornamentation

One of the things I find myself discussing often with students is how to make a trill, or general ornamentation guidelines.  It’s actually pretty involved, aside from the part about making a finger go up and down… First a little historical (hysterical) context: The Quantz View Noted musicologist Johann Joachim...

Practice Routine Pie Chart

As we get older and (hopefully!) develop musically it seems that the demands on our time and playing increase exponentially.  There never seems to be enough time in the day for everything that I want/need to work on.  Coming up with a method of organizing my practice time has helped...