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The Trombone ForumTeaching & LearningPractice Room(Moderator: blast) What's it take to be a GOOD doubler (or multi-instrumentalist)?
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davdud101
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« on: Jul 02, 2017, 07:58PM »

I've been investing the better part of the last two years honing my skills as a trumpeter - and I have for all intents and purposes become as good at trumpet as I am at trombone.


Unfortunately, that's not saying much.  Amazed


All self-pity aside, I'm hoping to spend the rest of the year targeting specific problems in and improving my valved-instrument playing - specifically with regards to technique, finger speed and arpeggios and stuff like that. Once that's through and I've reached the goal I'm aiming for, I'll target the specific problems in my trombone playing. I've no intentions to be a professional-level player (though that'd be sweet!), but I have certain goals that I want to meet as a trombonist, valved-instrument player and general musician.

So, the title says it all...for you doublers and multi-instrumentalists, I'm dropping the open-ended question: What does it take to be a GOOD instrumental polyglot? What defines "good" to you for a multi-instrumentalist?
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« Reply #1 on: Jul 02, 2017, 08:04PM »

I think about it like this: There is no such thing as "doubling," just being good at multiple instruments.  You're not splitting your time between two instruments, you're giving our 100% to each.  To me that's the mindset it takes to be good at many instruments (this is why I only play low brass...trumpet is really hard!  More power to you).  Alex Iles wrote a few really good posts about this, might be worth a search. 
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marccromme

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« Reply #2 on: Jul 05, 2017, 02:33PM »

What does it take to be a GOOD instrumental polyglot? What defines "good" to you for a multi-instrumentalist?

It takes the same as being good on one instrument: daily practice on every of the instruments you want to master ... and daily practice on switching between instruments.

Good is the same: playing tasteful and elegant, being able to express your musical ideas. At your own technical level, that is.
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« Reply #3 on: Jul 05, 2017, 02:51PM »

For me it's all about putting in the time on the various instruments I play!!  I put more time in on mu primary Tuba which I try to practice daily.  Then I alternate between Bass Trombone, and Euphonium (which I use a similar size MP rim on each). 
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dershem

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« Reply #4 on: Jul 08, 2017, 07:06PM »

I think about it like this: There is no such thing as "doubling," just being good at multiple instruments.  You're not splitting your time between two instruments, you're giving our 100% to each.  To me that's the mindset it takes to be good at many instruments (this is why I only play low brass...trumpet is really hard!  More power to you).  Alex Iles wrote a few really good posts about this, might be worth a search. 

Exactly.  If you want to play multiple instruments, you have to actually play multiple instruments just as you would if you just play one.  Put all of the time needed to get to where you (and the guy hiring you) need.
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« Reply #5 on: Jul 11, 2017, 05:01AM »

For me it's all about putting in the time on the various instruments I play!!  I put more time in on mu primary Tuba which I try to practice daily.  Then I alternate between Bass Trombone, and Euphonium (which I use a similar size MP rim on each). 


That combination will help. But in my experience, people who pursue multiple instruments end up being average players on all of them. Not outstanding on any. But it really depends what your definition of "GOOD" is, doesn't it?
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Pre59

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« Reply #6 on: Jul 11, 2017, 06:15AM »

If anyone is serious about playing Jazz now they have to play keyboards or guitar to not only acquire harmonic depth, but also to arrange etc. I took up the bass gtr a year after the tbn and it has informed and modified my trombone technique. When I'm playing the bass I really get to listen to the Tbn, and vice versa.

I've had long periods playing one or the other and added the D/Bass about 20 years ago. It's a good idea at an early stage to be realistic about your likely prospects, and if you want to stay busy and have musical life or profession, being resourceful and adaptable is a huge asset, and doubling can really increase the odds for you.

 



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