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Thread: Lip quiver

  1. Lip quiver

    In recent months my lip has begun to quiver rapidly within the first five minutes of practice every day. It happens during long tone warmups at various pitches. The quiver doesn’t hurt, it sounds like a nice fast vibrato, and it dissipates within about ten minutes, but At the same time I can’t control it. This is probably somewhat age related (I’m 74), but I have no symptoms or history of Parkinsonism.

    Has anyone else, of any age, experienced this chop quiver (as opposed to chopped liver - sorry)? Thanks.
    Last edited by Dave Strickler; 08-31-2019 at 09:25 PM.

  2. #2
    Welcome to the forum!

    I saw your post on the FB group too.

    I personally do not have any experience on this, so I can't contribute anything but I'm sure the others will have an insight or experience!
    "Never over complicate things. Accept "bad" days. Always enjoy yourself when playing, love the sound we can make on our instruments (because that's why we all started playing the Euph)"

    Euph: Yamaha 642II Neo - 千歌音
    Mouthpiece: K&G 4D, Denis Wick 5AL

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Dumfries, VA (Potomac Shores)
    Hello Dave,

    First of all, I think it's inspiring that you're still serious about your playing at 74! What a great example for all of us!

    In my experience both teaching and with it happening to myself many years go, I find it to be overuse of a portion of the lip either from too much/too little pressure on the mouthpiece as well as lack of proper air support. I would suggest experimenting with opening the teeth space slowly and slightly as well as making your air support a bit more "dense". Not faster air, just a bigger amount of it to support the vibration. Once you get the desired result, THEN start your long tone process again focusing on SOUND and moving air. I hope that helps!
    Brandon Jones
    Principal Euphonium - The United States Air Force Band, Washington, D.C.
    Principal/Solo Euphonium - Brass of the Potomac
    S. E. Shires Artist & Clinician

  4. #4
    You might consider a web/Skype session with Doug Elliott. He's quite good at helping people through various chop issues.

    In reading your question for the 3rd or 4th time, something occurred to me. My core principal in warming up is to ease into everything gradually. Given your experience, perhaps you should treat long tones the same way. Try starting with half notes, in an easy range, varying the notes a bit. Make your next step just simple scale fragments in an easy range. Take a 20 second break then, and see how long tones feel.

    Even though the quiver seems harmless (because it goes away each day), I don't like to let things like that "get used to me." They might decide to stay around.
    Dave Werden (ASCAP)
    Euphonium Soloist, U.S. Coast Guard Band, retired
    Adams Artist (Adams E3)
    Alliance Mouthpiece (DC4)
    YouTube: dwerden
    Facebook: davewerden
    Twitter: davewerden
    Instagram: davewerdeneuphonium

  5. I actually had almost the exact same issue several years ago. I think that Brandon's advice is good, so I'd start there. I know that long tones were a big help for me when I was experiencing the same problem.

    For what it's worth, I also found that switching to a slightly smaller mouthpiece with a more comfortable rim helped me as well. Not sure if that actually had anything to do with it or not, but might be worth a try.

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