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Thread: Embouchure Change/Building Upper Register

  1. Thank you all for your quick and timely responses! Just to report, I finally got that high Bb no problem (after the embouchure switch) and am working on getting comfortable up there.

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by euphoniumism View Post
    Thank you all for your quick and timely responses! Just to report, I finally got that high Bb no problem (after the embouchure switch) and am working on getting comfortable up there.
    I know I'm a bit late to the party, but I definitely found that the higher range on trombone and euphonium came easier with using less mouthpiece pressure on the lips. I know some screech trumpets are all about ramming the horn into their face with high pressure, but that ultimately doesn't help with sustained high range, IMHO. Posture, Support, etc all play a part. Also having my P.E.T.E. on hand during times at work when I basically just am reading and responding to emails.

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by jkircoff View Post
    Steven Mead has a video about developing high and low range. It's worth a look IMO.

    I just reviewed this video. Excellent! Great advice for range improvement along with Dave's videos. This forum is a tremendous resource.
    John 3:16

    Mack Brass Euphonium
    Conn Victor 5H Trombone
    Yamaha 354 Trombone
    Mack Brass 200S BBb Tuba

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Tucson, where tacos are real.
    I appreciate it when a player prefaces his or her advice with, "this has worked for me." There are a variety of roads to a destination, and what has worked for one, might not work for all. When I was a music major in college, I was exposed to a lot of ideas on how to "visualize" concepts that could not easily be transferred in words. More recently, I have read a lot of advice on the Internet regarding range, and much of it is contradictory.

    I have read: "Allow your lower jaw to rise/ hold your jaw at a constant position." "Curl in your bottom lip/ never curl in your bottom lip." "Articulate pitch-specific vowels with your tongue/ keep your tongue out of the way." "Blow more air for higher notes/ your whole range requires the same breath intensity." "Lip position doesn't change/ lip aperture tightens."

    Bottom line: it is the vibration of the lip(s) that creates the sound. Any tone-producing vibrating medium follows the same principle: pitch is increased when the vibrator is tightened or shortened, causing a change in the vibration frequency. Every player finds his or her own way of making that happen. This has to happen, or the pitch absolutely will not change. Consider the violin: when one is playing very high, one needs to adjust pressure with the bow, in order to keep the vibration going with that increased string tension. Harder/faster bowing does not change the pitch--it only allows the vibration to occur in the presence of the string's "reluctance to vibrate." As Scotty said to Captain Kirk, "Ye canna' change the laws of physics."
    Last edited by Acemorgan; 10-05-2019 at 06:46 PM.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Agreed. I've often read the advice that the mouthpiece should be set on the bottom lip and the upper lip should be left 'free' so to say, or things similar to that. Well sadly I can barely play that way. I 'anchor' my mpc on my upper lip, but I can still manage to play above the TC staff decently (and my problems up there are simply down to lack of practice for the last 6 months or so). When I try to switch it around to anchoring on my bottom lip, it simply becomes very hard to even play in the middle register. That's just how my face works, sadly.

  6. #16
    I had the pleasure of playing in a band with a gentleman named Merle Erler for a number of years. Merle played tromone with National Symphony in the 1930s(!!!) and then in the Navy Band fro many years. As he put it, "If high range doesn't come easy to you, it's a real pain in the ass to learn!" I agree.


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