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Thread: Mouthpiece Recommendations for trombone doubling

  1. Mouthpiece Recommendations for trombone doubling

    Hello - long time reader of the forums, but a first time poster.

    I play euphonium in a military band as a reservist, and have been tasked with playing a lot more trombone lately. My current euphonium set up is a Deg BB1 on a Yamaha 641 (my horn) or 642 Neo (government-owned). I had decent luck with a Wick Heritage 4AL when I was playing more trombone in the past, but at the time I was using that same Wick, an SM4, or SM4U on euphonium. My current trombone I have on loan is a Conn 88H, and my work is a mix of concert band and brass quintet.

    In a perfect world, I would like to find something that feels similar to the BB1 but with a shallower cup more suitable for trombone. Decent options off the top of my head:
    - Bach 5G
    - Wick 5BL
    - Schilke 51

    Other thoughts? In a perfect world I would lean towards getting a Doug Elliott configuration with the same rim and different cups/shanks for each instrument, but that may be a bit cost prohibitive.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Anderson, Indiana
    I've read that Dennis Wick developed the 4AL to get the sound he wanted from the Conn 8H and 88H trombones. Although I use a 4AL on euphonium, it doesn't work for me on trombone. (But then I'm light-years away from the musician that Mr. Wick is.)
    When I recently switched from euphonium to trombone in a community band, I wanted to better match my sound to that of the principal trombone player who was using a Wick 6BL. I tried the Bach 5G, the Schilke 51 and several other mouthpieces. I finally settled on the Remington mouthpiece that came with my Elkhart Conn 88H. ("The Chief" knew what he was doing.) Good luck in your search.

  3. I had a lot of success with the Giddings Boreas:

    Itís similar to the feel of a 5G. There are also a ton of other Giddings offerings in or close to that size. They are a bit on the expensive side, but I find the stainless steel to respond quicker and helped me make a more characteristic trombone sound more easily than a brass mouthpiece. Nothing wrong with a good old Bach 5G either!

  4. #4
    An important key to trombone/Euph doubling that Martin touches on is that it’s essential to have a clear concept of a distinct characteristic sound for each instrument. Without this distinction, I found my trombone sound was “euphonium on a stick”. There are others I’ve heard whose euphonium sound is very tromboney.

    Mouthpiece makes a difference, but the sound concept makes more.

    Don Winston

  5. Currently I play a 51D on euph and a Greg Black 4G-5G M (for medium weight) on trombone. Although...I canít find a super great reason for playing different mouthpieces. Because of what Don said, if you have a very strong concept on each horn, thatís half the battle.

  6. Quote Originally Posted by djwpe View Post
    Euphonium on a stick
    This is hilarious, and unfortunately a pretty accurate description of my trombone sound!

    P.S. upvote on Hiramís Greg Black suggestion. Those are great Mouthpieces.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    NYC metro area
    Quote Originally Posted by Ajeasley View Post
    Hello - long time reader of the forums, but a first time poster.

    I play euphonium in a military band as a reservist, and have been tasked with playing a lot more trombone lately. My current euphonium set up is a Deg BB1 on a Yamaha 641 (my horn) or 642 Neo (government-owned).
    I use the BB1 on euphonium (Mack Brass, which is a clone of the Yamaha 641/642), and a Bach 6.5AL on my Bach 36B trombone. The BB1 rim may be closer to the Schilke 51 rim (I've read that the BB1 is a tweaked 51D), but I have found that switching between the BB1 and 6.5 AL is pretty easy.
    Dean L. Surkin
    Mack Brass MACK-EU1150S, BB1, Kadja, and DE 101XTG9 mouthpieces
    Bach 36B trombone; pBone; Vincent Bach (from 1971) 6.5AL mouthpiece
    Steinway 1902 Model A, restored by AC Pianocraft in 1988; Kawai MP8, Yamaha KX-76
    See my avatar: Jazz (the black cockapoo) and Delilah (the cavapoo puppy) keep me company while practicing

  8. Thanks for the feedback everyone! I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiment of compartmentalized concepts for euph and trombone - when I was playing both on a fairly regular basis, I like to think that I was pretty good with this delineation. I was able to get a hold of a Schilke 51, so we'll start there.

  9. #9
    I am also a trombone/euphonium doubler, and play bass and alto trombone as well, so finding the 'right' mouthpiece was important. I really liked the trombone sound I was getting from my Hammond 11ML, so I went with that. I actually hadn't played baritone/euphonium since H.S., but I finally decided to get back into it about a month ago. I found that getting a good "euphonium" sound was definitely helped by going up a bit on the cup size. I picked up a Hammond 11L, and it seemed to work a lot better.

    Of course, it also depends on the Euphonium, as if you are like me, and tend to look for used instruments in need of some love, med/euro shanks are often encountered.


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