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Author Topic: Large bore obsession  (Read 2410 times)
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sirisobhakya
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« on: Feb 07, 2018, 05:40PM »

My school band director/teacher, whom I am looking forward to help in advising trombone students after I go back to my home country, has quite an obsession with large-bore trombone, or at least he seems to have. So now we have 6th-graders walking around with .547" horns, 1st trombone (8th- and 9th-graders) also with .547" horns, and a 9th-grade girl with a Bach 50B, which she has been using since 8th grade at least. He also prefer large bore when looking for a new (used) horn, so almost all the newer horns in the band are .547", and a few .525"/.547" dual.

Is there any reason to justify this? Conversely, is there any harm this can do to the students? If the latter is the case, I would like some strong arguement to convince him, because he might still see me as a student of him.

The students didn't say much (except the bass girl who sometimes says she has not enough air for the 50B, of which I'm not surprised), but maybe they just don't know if something's wrong or how to express it. I was like that when I was in the band in middle school.
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« Reply #1 on: Feb 07, 2018, 05:57PM »

This is a really common thing, although your teacher may be pushing the age lower and lower. Colleges tend to require students to use large bore instruments. That's ok for classical studies, but for anything else, any other bore will do. High school kids and younger should probably play a smaller bore so A) they don't get frustrated with how much work it is and quit playing B) There's no reason for casual players, especially young students to be stuck on large bore C) real trombone professionals play small bore too.

Some people make the argument that kids should be able to play large bore, because some kids play tuba. Ok, possibly lung capacity is not an issue (although I don't believe that), but most jazz/pop pros play small bore and one of the reasons is that large bore up high and fast is just too much work. If its too much work for a pro, how much more so for a young student.

You'll get a range of answers here, but starting kids on small bore horns is probably the best thing to do. Classical players in general are the ones who tend to get obsessed with 547+.

I moved to 547 when I was 13, and I thought it was too young. It was too heavy and required too much air. Even now, as an adult, the amount of time I spend playing 547 is like 5% of my total tenor playing time. If I can pick which size to play, I always pick 525.
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« Reply #2 on: Feb 07, 2018, 06:26PM »

Different viewpoint here.  I played a student .500 bore horn until I got a .547 pro quality horn starting my sophomore year of high school when I was 14, about to turn 15. My senior year I had the flexibility to sit between the first and bass trombone in jazz band and double whichever part was needed.  6th grade may be too early for a larger bore, but a good player should be able to handle a larger horn say freshman or sophomore year.  My opinion, for whatever it is worth...
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« Reply #3 on: Feb 07, 2018, 06:44PM »

It depends on the context.  There are bromides that go both way, e.g. 'large bores sound like slide-euphoniums/slide-tubas' vs. 'trombones should sound emulate the sound of a euphonium as much as possible'.  My high school bd was in the latter camp as it sounds your is as well.

I can understand the criticism when it is idiomatically incorrect. For example, hearing a big band with 4 Bach 42s has a very high bar to jump over compared to smaller instruments for the sake of style. Similarly, it can be easier for a section of large bores to get a characteristic, contemporary classical sound to blend with a wind band or orchestra so it does not cut through the other instruments despite not being played too loudly.

Weight is one physiological consideration. Typically large bores and basses have F attachments and they are not particularly ergonomic in their stock configuration.  There are devices that can help with this. This consideration continues well beyond the age that you are talking about. I'm in my 20s and I wouldn't dream of playing a bass unaided, though I'm shorter in stature than the typical person. That is a very legitimate consideration for someone of that age, though a straight large bore generally does not weigh much more than a straight small bore.

Beyond weight, I'm not convinced there are major physiological reasons that one would be incapable of playing a larger bore trombone.  Amanda Davidson was doing very well on a large bore when she was in middle school and she's obviously in the middle of a great career. One of the only people of whom I graduated with who still plays now is in one of the Army Field Bands in DC and didn't touch a tenor trombone until midway through college.  He started in 6th grade on a Bach 50B3 and is one of the best players I personally know around my age. And I'm aware of several great tubists who started on tuba around that age. 

One additional problem with large bores is the maintenance.  Students where I was from are known for doing 0 maintenance on their instruments. Literally oiling (yes, oiling, like with piston oil) once or twice a semester. It isn't their fault per se, since none of the BDs really made much out of making sure that instruments were properly functioning.  That is at least... kind of okay on a straight horn.  On a horn with a rotor though, you can get into all sorts of leaky trouble with an unmaintained valve.  And Bach horns tend to be on the larger size of the spectrum too, even of large bores. Though you mentioned 525/547 and I'm not aware of any stock Bach horns with that coniguration so it must be a... Conn 52H maybe?

There are plenty of people who want to be amateurs and are quite okay doing just band. For those people it's probably just as fine as picking a small bore up.  It has  been  done    pretty  successfully  before. (That was a cursrory search of youtube while I procrastinate on doing my homework where I saw at least 1-2 large bores in a section of elementary, junior high, or high school bands).

EDIT: On the other hand, obligatory mentioning of trombone shorty at 13 playing with Wynton...
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« Reply #4 on: Feb 07, 2018, 08:17PM »

I知 at a rehearsal of Planets. I知 going to need a bigger horn (than my .525).
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« Reply #5 on: Feb 07, 2018, 10:08PM »

This topic comes around every so often. I have a different take on it. I've seen junior high students do excellent on large bore tenors as long as the mouthpiece is not too big. A Bach 6 1/2AL on a Conn 8H can work very well. If you think this is too big, consider that in the same band class other beginners will be using a Bach 6 1/2AL on a Yamaha 321 euphonium, which has a bore which is larger than a large bore tenor. In fact the common beginner euphoniums have a larger bore and bell than the bass trombone, and yet beginners handle them without anyone telling them it's too large. And then there's 6th graders on tuba...
I don't believe you should put the students on a bigger mouthpiece than they can handle, no 5g or larger for beginners please! And many young players would do better on a straight horn as a lighter horn is easier for beginners to hold up, and they really do need to learn 6th and 7th position!
 I know many band directors want them on an F attachment horn, and since many parents won't buy a step up horn later, they will push the large bore F attachment horn as the first and only horn. The misconception of some educators about the F attachment is a topic unto itself, but if the weight of the instrument is a problem, it would be better for the student to play on a straight tenor, at least for the first year or so.

If the F attachment is misunderstood, the situation is far worse for bass trombone. Once I was touring with a service band and we arrived at a high school and had an hour or so to kill before our concert. By luck it was time for the HS band students to come in to band for rehearsal. The first trombone player I saw has a double trigger bass trombone. I thought, "well this looks interesting!" Then a second player came in with an another identical bass bone, and I thought, "this must be an exceptionally good situation, two double trigger bass trombones in the same band. By the start of band class, all eight of the trombone players in the band had double trigger bass trombones! Later I asked about this and was told the band director proffered the sound of the bass trombone to the tenor trombone, and all the bass trombones were school horns that the kids were required to play! This of course is the ultimate expression of the "the best trombone sound is a slide euphonium" The band director in this case, may have many virtues, but understood nothing about the sound of either a tenor or bass trombone, how to teach it, or how the trombones should blend in an ensemble sound. Trombones sound nasal? the easy fix, if you have more money in your budget than any idea of how to teach low bras,s is to put them all on bass trombones, easy  broad mid range, although the high range is nothing to brag about, and no need in typical band parts for them to ever play actually low! More common is the situation where the kid without a horn, or the worst player in the section is given the school double trigger bass trombone, into which he sticks his  6 1/2 AL or 5G clone, and has no clue what to do with the instrument and just uses it as a big heavy tenor to play regular parts in band. I've seen quite a few school horns where the second trigger levers have been ripped off, no doubt by students who never use them, got tired of them getting in the way and just tore them off.
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« Reply #6 on: Feb 08, 2018, 05:43AM »

I escaped the tyranny of 547 horns years ago and now my go to horn is a Bach 36 for just about everything. Then again, I don't play in a symphony very often. Then again, when I got my Bach 42 in 11th grade, I didn't know anything about bores and I just played the horn and loved it. I think it has more do do with physical maturity than age. And also, most non trombone playing band directors don't know squat about trombones and they associate large bore with being a professional instrument.
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« Reply #7 on: Feb 08, 2018, 05:50AM »

I知 at a rehearsal of Planets. I知 going to need a bigger horn (than my .525).

Note that it was written for instruments that were at the very largest that size - and quite possibly a lot smaller.
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« Reply #8 on: Feb 08, 2018, 06:45AM »

Note that it was written for instruments that were at the very largest that size - and quite possibly a lot smaller.

This is a common argument, but I doubt the composer or trombonists knew anything other than what the trombone section had.

If the 88H had existed at that time, I bet everyone would have adopted it rather quickly.

We have better designs today. There's a reason why nearly everyone plays a Bach 42 clone or 88H clone in the orchestra or wind ensemble outside of historical reenactment groups. There's a reason why we don't use muskets on the battlefield outside of historical reenactment.

Historical accuracy be damned, so to speak.
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« Reply #9 on: Feb 08, 2018, 06:49AM »

Note that I wasn't advocating historical accuracy; rather I was suggesting that feeling that one needs a large bore to make it work is probably a feeling worth re-evaluating.
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« Reply #10 on: Feb 08, 2018, 06:59AM »

Note that I wasn't advocating historical accuracy;

Note that it was written for instruments that were at the very largest that size - and quite possibly a lot smaller.

I can only interperet that as, "you should use something small because obviously the composer intended it to be played on a small bore".

rather I was suggesting that feeling that one needs a large bore to make it work is probably a feeling worth re-evaluating.

Trombones aren't the only part of the orchestra that isn't playing the way the composer's orchestra might have, or using equipment that might have been used when the piece was composed.

The orchestra has evolved. Trying to pidgeonhole small bores into that because we think we know better is unfair to the rest of the orchestra, which has its own ideas about how the trombones should sound.

It's not unreasonable to default to equipment that is used for nearly every period of music that the modern orchestra plays. It's not surprising at all that a medium or small bore trombone wouldn't cut it on Planets.
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« Reply #11 on: Feb 08, 2018, 07:03AM »

I think Ellrod's already using a .525" bore in his orchestra? Correct me if I'm wrong Ellrod. If it's working generally in that context already, it's unlikely not to work for The Planets.

I thought this was a pretty simple and straightforward observation; didn't realise I was going to fall foul of the large bore police... :-)

Was originally written as
That's how that reads
then edited to
I can only interperet that as, "you should use something small because obviously the composer intended it to be played on a small bore".

Ah, in that case let me help you out: It isn't what it says, and it isn't what was meant.
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« Reply #12 on: Feb 08, 2018, 07:18AM »

I think Ellrod's already using a .525" bore in his orchestra? Correct me if I'm wrong Ellrod. If it's working generally in that context already, it's unlikely not to work for The Planets.

I thought this was a pretty simple and straightforward observation; didn't realise I was going to fall foul of the large bore police... :-)

Ah, in that case let me help you out: It isn't what it says, and it isn't what was meant.

It did read kind of snarky. To the point of wether it should be working or not, we can only really defer to Ellrod, since none of us have heard the orchestra play.
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« Reply #13 on: Feb 08, 2018, 07:29AM »

Where I live, church conductors think (I guess) that a trombone should sound like a slide Euphonium. Wanting to fit it, I decided to "get with it"; bought a King 4B/F and now use it with a Bach 4G mpc. I tried a vintage 88H but I didn't like the feel of it in my hands even though I liked the sound. But anyway, now I have a warmer tone than the Euphoniums & baritones I sit next to.

My vintage King 2B is now for sale. I personally think the small-bore sound is nice, but as far as I can tell - at least in my neck of the woods - it is a dated sound that is not currently in fashion, even for lead.

I don't expect anyone to quote me or anything. I'm just venting my personal realization (maybe it's a misconception) that - as far as trombones are concerned - it's a large-bore world. At my age, I don't think I will see that pendulum swing back much, if any.   

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« Reply #14 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:08AM »

Last night, a few weeks before the concert, we had a bunch of people show up to play that I've never seen before, including a wall of bassoons (4, including contra), 4 trumpets, and all kinds of strings. The rehearsal hall is full to the brim. At FFF the .525 is beginning to sound a little shrill. I'll probably give the .547 a try at the next rehearsal.

Note that it was written for instruments that were at the very largest that size - and quite possibly a lot smaller.

It does do nicely in VW's Folk Song Suite. Was this originally for band, and then adapted for orchestra or the other way around? I love this piece.
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« Reply #15 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:11AM »

This is a common argument, but I doubt the composer or trombonists knew anything other than what the trombone section had.

If the 88H had existed at that time, I bet everyone would have adopted it rather quickly.

We have better designs today. There's a reason why nearly everyone plays a Bach 42 clone or 88H clone in the orchestra or wind ensemble outside of historical reenactment groups. There's a reason why we don't use muskets on the battlefield outside of historical reenactment.

Historical accuracy be damned, so to speak.

"The Planets" was written in England by an English composer. A very good English composer. Your statement "I doubt the composer or trombonists knew anything other than what the trombone section had" is perfectly true, although they damned well would have known how they wanted the music to sound.

I don't know about this one, though. "If the 88H had existed at that time, I bet everyone would have adopted it rather quickly."

I have played absolutely wonderful Conn large bores from the early 1900s and even earler. The late Jack Nowinski had several. Not 88Hs, but with many of their tonal and playing characteristics. Good .547 horns were indeed available at the time that "The Planets" was written. Why didn't everybody play them? Why did it take another 30+ years before great players like Gordon Pulis switched from Conn 78Hs to 88Hs? Why were most of the orchestras...at least in the U.S. and France...using .525 and smaller horns?

Because that's what worked best in those orchestras playing that music in those venues under those conductors.

Duh.

Just like now.

The orchestras were smaller; the venues were more resonant...more wood, less plastic and far less college-trained physicist...err ahhh, I mean"acousticians...screwing up centuries of successful trial-and-error-developed musical hall design. And...the rest of the instruments sounded different than contemporary ones as well. The musicians themselves...as has been and remains the case throughout recorded history...made their instrumental choices according to what they heard as they were coming up and what worked for them in their own playing situations.

Trombone bores have grown larger and larger...at least in the orchestral-style worlds...in an evolutionary
manner. Magically drop a few 88Hs from the future into hands of the players who premiered "The Planets" and they would not have been able to use them, just as if you got several pristine Conn 2Hs from the Pryor years and asked the tenor players in modern orchestras to use them in mainstream, every day performance.

Duh twice!!!

I guess that this all started when Ellrod said...quite simply..."I知 at a rehearsal of Planets. I知 going to need a bigger horn (than my .525)." If he was at a rehearsal of the same piece with an ensemble that tried to replicate the way that it was originally played, he might have written "I知 at a rehearsal of Planets. I知 going to need a much smaller horn, much different horn (than my .525), pitched much lower. Preferably the kind that was in vogue in English orchestras at the time."

Yup.

There's a reason why I keep 5 different sizes of tenor trombone handy. To fit the music, whatever it is. And if I was playing in historically accurate situations, I might need a few more.

So it goes.

Later...

S.

P.S. Ellrod...borrow a .547 if you don't have one. See if it works. Try everything; use what works. For you!!!
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« Reply #16 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:13AM »

Holst played trombone (a little, skinny one probably) and knew exactly what it could do. You can hear/see/feel it in some of the parts he wrote. Ultra-trombonistic. F-G, a little triplet turn on A, back down. We noodle this stuff all the time.

Planets is absolutely brilliant. I cannot fathom a Victorian/Edwardian Englishman in his study, writing this stuff.

No 88Hs in England until the 60s or so, I think. Trade barriers protecting English instrument makers. Mr. Wick and others would smuggle 8/88Hs into the country. (UK customs officer: Is that a trombone in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?)

[Not wishing to start an argument here, but] "If he was at a rehearsal of the same piece with an ensemble that tried to replicate the way that it was originally played, he might have written "I知 at a rehearsal of Planets. I知 going to need a much smaller horn, much different horn (than my .525), pitched much lower. Preferably the kind that was in vogue in English orchestras at the time."

I wonder. I bet Holst would have loved some big dark horns in this piece. There are so many moments that call for weight, that are ponderous and dark. (so he wrote in an extra bassoon, plus contrabassoon, plus euph. Think of Mars.) Edgy and dark (at the same time). Probably raised a few eyebrows first time out.
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« Reply #17 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:14AM »

I play lead in a chamber orchestra where I use a Conn 88h with a 525 slide, or a Conn 79h (522 bore).
I play in a brass quintet where I use the Conn 88h w/525 slide and a 1936 24h (484 bore) for jazzier stuff.
I play in a trombone quartet where I usually play a Kanstul 1662i bass bone (562), and the 79h, and maybe a 48h (500) for solos.
I sometimes play in a big band where I have used 48h for lead, 79h for 3rd, and 1662i for bass.
When I play in any new group where I don't know what to expect, I bring the 79h or the 88h w/525.

I don't remember the last time I put my 547 slide on the 88h outside of the house. The only reason I'd do it would be if I really needed to overpower a large orchestra (which doesn't exist here).

There are many musical styles in the world. Classical is one of them. For most of us, it's not the only one, and even if it is, there are multiple colors in any ensemble. Why get stuck on one size? It doesn't make any sense. There is no positive reason to do it. If I could only have two instruments, I'd have the 88h and probably the 48h (I've wanted to fall in love with a 3b, but I just can't do it). I doubt anyone would object to my 525 horns in any supposed 547 situation. Really.

This forum can be so hypocritical. In one breath someone preaches that the hardware hardly matters at all, and in another you hear this unequivocal bias for large tenors. I like to use equipment that I have that I feel helps me fit the gig. If I ever do another recording of Bruckner equali, or other trombone and organ pieces, I'll pull out that 547 slide again. Until then, most of what I do is much smaller, and I feel needs a smaller sound.

Music is full of nuance, shouldn't we teach that? Teach kids that every thing is a nail, and all they'll be able to do will be hammer.
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« Reply #18 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:50AM »

Back to original question.  I worked low brass with an area school near me for 10 or so years.  The school bought instruments for all students.  For trombones, the Yamaha 400 Intermediate series (can't remember exact numbers)  For the beginners and Jr. High (6-8 grade), .525 bore.  For the High School (9-12 grade) .547 bore.  I do agree with modelerdc about mouthpiece choice with that.  6 1/2AL for all students.  If they took lessons or if it was appropriate after a couple of years playing (usually in High School) a 5G.  Nothing more, except for Bass Bone 1 1/2G.  No Bass Bone until High School.  The kids that weren't that serious usually never left the 6 1/2AL.  And yes, we had large and small shank versions of both.

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« Reply #19 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:51AM »

I play lead in a chamber orchestra where I use a Conn 88h with a 525 slide, or a Conn 79h (522 bore).
I play in a brass quintet where I use the Conn 88h w/525 slide and a 1936 24h (484 bore) for jazzier stuff.
I play in a trombone quartet where I usually play a Kanstul 1662i bass bone (562), and the 79h, and maybe a 48h (500) for solos.
I sometimes play in a big band where I have used 48h for lead, 79h for 3rd, and 1662i for bass.
When I play in any new group where I don't know what to expect, I bring the 79h or the 88h w/525.

I don't remember the last time I put my 547 slide on the 88h outside of the house. The only reason I'd do it would be if I really needed to overpower a large orchestra (which doesn't exist here).

There are many musical styles in the world. Classical is one of them. For most of us, it's not the only one, and even if it is, there are multiple colors in any ensemble. Why get stuck on one size? It doesn't make any sense. There is no positive reason to do it. If I could only have two instruments, I'd have the 88h and probably the 48h (I've wanted to fall in love with a 3b, but I just can't do it). I doubt anyone would object to my 525 horns in any supposed 547 situation. Really.

This forum can be so hypocritical. In one breath someone preaches that the hardware hardly matters at all, and in another you hear this unequivocal bias for large tenors. I like to use equipment that I have that I feel helps me fit the gig. If I ever do another recording of Bruckner equali, or other trombone and organ pieces, I'll pull out that 547 slide again. Until then, most of what I do is much smaller, and I feel needs a smaller sound.

Music is full of nuance, shouldn't we teach that? Teach kids that every thing is a nail, and all they'll be able to do will be hammer.


If you want to play in top level ensembles with the best players I think your primary goal is to make music, but as a team,and blend with the players around you. If you are capable of doing this on any size trombone thats great! Some players can... but I think its rare. A lot of people would be really jealous of those who can. If you play in a section where you know each others playing really well and are capable of making a blend with each of you playing radically different size trombones then that is totally fine.

Most people who want to study performing on trombone want to be able to make some money doing so. Before you establish yourself as a professional player with a signature sound, you need others who have potential influence in your employment to deem that you are capable of working with others. No one starts as a soloist dictating to others what sound they should be making. In orchestra, it is generally easiest to blend a section of large bore trombones. In big band, you are going to probably find that blending will be easier on a smaller instrument. I think it is a good thing that university teachers encourage players to work on a size of instrument that is appropriate to the genre of music they want to make a living in. If you want to play in different styles and have the cash, get different size trombones and practice! But I would think it not in the students best interest if a teacher said "Be an individual. Get the smallest trombone you can, and change the orchestra world from the outside". Maybe that will change in future, but right now I strongly believe that to be a recipe for failure.

Once you have regular employment, then maybe is the time to explore creating your image of how YOU think the sound you make on the trombone should fit into the ensemble you play in. I disagree with your attitude that one size kind of locks you into a "specific" sound. Large bore trombones are not simply a nail. Good players are in fact capable of producing quite a large range of sounds on them. Same with the smaller bore trombones in the hands of good players. But no one wants to work harder than they have to to make good music, and no one wants to work with a player who sticks out and defends it by saying they dont agree with the sound the rest of the section make. Generally, playing similar size instruments is less work to blend. Generally!  :D

In a setting where your employment is not riding on how your playing can help enhance others around you, then play whatever. Who cares, make yourself happy.


As to the forum being hypocritical, sure it happens. But most people advocate "the right tool for the job" phrase when discussing this issue. The instrument doesnt matter phrase I think mostly relates to when someone is looking for gear to solve issues they should really be addressing in personal practice. Just because you own a small bore trombone does not mean you will automatically have a good high register or compact sound. Just as owning a bass will not give you a low register for free, or make your sound "bigger" with no work.
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« Reply #20 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:55AM »

This thread reminds me of one a few years ago where the BD was a trumpet player who figured since a 1C was a nice large trumpet mouthpiece, a 1G... ;-)
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« Reply #21 on: Feb 08, 2018, 08:58AM »


This forum can be so hypocritical. In one breath someone preaches that the hardware hardly matters at all, and in another you hear this unequivocal bias for large tenors. I like to use equipment that I have that I feel helps me fit the gig.

I知 at a rehearsal of Planets. I知 going to need a bigger horn (than my .525).

 Don't know
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« Reply #22 on: Feb 08, 2018, 09:08AM »

Jaws.

Sheriff Brody, seeing the shark pass beneath the boat: "You're going to need a bigger boat".


Quint: No, this boat is big enough.


We know how that turned out.
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« Reply #23 on: Feb 08, 2018, 09:19AM »

The large bore with F rationale dates from two generations ago.  In those days most trombone students had ONE instrument.  Emory Remington figured if they could only afford one horn, it should be capable of playing all the parts in the orchestra (the 4th part in a Jazz Band was still considered a tenor part).

Nowadays most kids going to college have two or more trombones and don't need a "one size fits all" instrument.  Also, we don't usually ask a tenor player to play the bass chair any more.  So a kid will either specialize in bass trombone or tenor trombone.  To cover the tenor trombone an F-attachment is a convenience, but hardly a necessity.  And for some genres a small bore is actually better.

Plus, some kids can't fill a large bore trombone (or a Euphonium or a tuba) and they should be playing a horn of a size they can fill.

More and more I'm discovering that the 0.525" horn is a real chameleon and might be a better choice for High Schoolers.
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« Reply #24 on: Feb 08, 2018, 10:02AM »

99.99% of music is not The Planets. Or Mahler. Or organ and trombone music. 547 is one size of horn, which is appropriate for some stuff, but not everything. Bolero on smaller bore is totally appropriate. Symphony Fantastique. American in Paris. Any march. Any music not performed in a tux on a big stage in a huge hall. We had a thread here not that long ago about classical pros using smaller bore horns in real orchestral performance. I'm not saying scrap your 547s, I'm saying open your mind a little. You can't paint everything with the same brush.
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« Reply #25 on: Feb 08, 2018, 10:07AM »

It does do nicely in VW's Folk Song Suite. Was this originally for band, and then adapted for orchestra or the other way around? I love this piece.

The band version is the original.  Gordon Jacob adapted it for orchestra.  I've found playing the orchestral version to be pretty dull.  Trombone seems to have lost some good parts.  Either way, I've played in on a .547, 'cuz it's what I have.  
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« Reply #26 on: Feb 08, 2018, 10:34AM »

.508 is a good size for many things as well (I think the 3B/F is an ideal concert band horn, for example), but, for me, I find .547 useful for parts that exist largely within the staff like you find in many orchestral second trombone parts.

There also may be some mouthpiece considerations with regard to the wall thickness and throat/backbore of large and small shank mouthpieces (yes, there are large-shank medium bore leadpipes made now, but that wasn't always the case), but I'm not sure about that.
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« Reply #27 on: Feb 08, 2018, 12:39PM »

99.99% of music is not The Planets. Or Mahler. Or organ and trombone music. 547 is one size of horn, which is appropriate for some stuff, but not everything. Bolero on smaller bore is totally appropriate. Symphony Fantastique. American in Paris. Any march. Any music not performed in a tux on a big stage in a huge hall. We had a thread here not that long ago about classical pros using smaller bore horns in real orchestral performance. I'm not saying scrap your 547s, I'm saying open your mind a little. You can't paint everything with the same brush.

I have been on the forum for awhile now and I can稚 really remember anybody saying large bore horns for everything. In the orchestra that I play in the expectation is the tenors will show up with large bores unless it is a piece that is traditionally on something else. That is the way it is in the orchestral world. 98% of my playing is in the orchestra
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« Reply #28 on: Feb 08, 2018, 12:47PM »

I have been on the forum for awhile now and I can稚 really remember anybody saying large bore horns for everything.

If you're putting 547s in the hands of jr high students, they are playing everything on large bore, regardless of propriety. That's what this whole post is about.
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« Reply #29 on: Feb 08, 2018, 03:00PM »

Holst played trombone (a little, skinny one probably) and knew exactly what it could do. You can hear/see/feel it in some of the parts he wrote. Ultra-trombonistic. F-G, a little triplet turn on A, back down. We noodle this stuff all the time.
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I wonder. I bet Holst would have loved some big dark horns in this piece. There are so many moments that call for weight, that are ponderous and dark. (so he wrote in an extra bassoon, plus contrabassoon, plus euph. Think of Mars.) Edgy and dark (at the same time). Probably raised a few eyebrows first time out.
The lick in Uranus makes me think he was thinking of a small bore instrument. That's a hell of a thing to have to play on a .547 bore.
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« Reply #30 on: Feb 08, 2018, 03:14PM »

If you're putting 547s in the hands of jr high students, they are playing everything on large bore, regardless of propriety. That's what this whole post is about.

As with most posts, it started in one place and ended up in another. You got to keep up. In reference to you believing that there is a push here to use large bores for everything, I believe you are wrong. I read more posts about which horn to use than posts about how a teacher is putting all their band kids on a particular horn.
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« Reply #31 on: Feb 08, 2018, 03:41PM »

Thank you for all the answers! I think I can see some larger picture now.

To be clear, I don't have any problem with "graduating" grade 9 or even grade 8 students to a .547". I myself also graduated at grade 9 (beaten-up 36B to a nice-looking 42C, then spiraled down toward bass). I am just not sure about shoving a .547", sometimes with F-attachment, into 6th graders' hands.

To be fair, those 6th-graders having .547" horns bought them. So it is partly understandable under the reason of "if you have to buy one horn it should be able to do everything". But is having 6th-grader newcomer buy a .547" Bb/F full-sized horn a good idea? I'm not so sure and that's why I asked. (They are quite sloppy Bach student horns, though, but I have already said about that in previous thread so I would not repeat it.) Back when I was in the band some of my friends also used .547" horns from 7th grade, one even used it from the start in 6th grade!

Mouthpiece is not a problem. We have many more Yamaha 48s than we need. They came with marching baritones. The bass trombone girl, though, uses a Yeo ( Amazed), but that can be because there was no smaller bass mouthpiece in good shape lying around: all the 1 1/2 G lost their plating so long ago, and no one bother about buying new ones. I did gave her a Yamaha 59 last time I flew back, but not sure whether she is using it or not. I am also looking for small used bass mouthpieces to donate.

The band do classics almost only in competition (which is once a year). Normal literatures are mostly film music and pop music. The trombone section is quite large (6-8 veterans, plus 8+ newcomers), so I doubt cutting-through is a problem. It goes without saying that a student uses ony one horn for all kind of music.

For me, euphonium and trombone use quite different concept of air. The resistance is also much different. I can easily fill a euphonium or marching baritone without much effort, but clearly must use more force, energy and focus to control the air with my bass trombone. I think bends in the tubing have obvious effect on the resistance and the air needed.

Though you mentioned 525/547 and I'm not aware of any stock Bach horns with that coniguration so it must be a... Conn 52H maybe?

The dual-bore horns are Getzens of some sort.

By the start of band class, all eight of the trombone players in the band had double trigger bass trombones!

That's a ridiculously rich school you got there.

As with most posts, it started in one place and ended up in another. You got to keep up. In reference to you believing that there is a push here to use large bores for everything, I believe you are wrong. I read more posts about which horn to use than posts about how a teacher is putting all their band kids on a particular horn.

That's no problem for me :D. I like reading discussions.
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« Reply #32 on: Feb 08, 2018, 03:52PM »

Does no one remember that Holst was a trombonist and likely knew exactly what sound he wanted from them?
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« Reply #33 on: Feb 08, 2018, 03:55PM »

To be fair, those 6th-graders having .547" horns bought them. So it is partly understandable under the reason of "if you have to buy one horn it should be able to do everything". But is having 6th-grader newcomer buy a .547" Bb/F full-sized horn a good idea? I'm not so sure. (They are quite sloppy Bach student horns, though, but I have already said about that in previous thread so I would not repeat it.) Back when I was in the band some of my friends also used .547" horns from 7th grade, one even used it from the start!

'Good idea' is relative.  The big problem I see is that ergonomically it can be uncomfortable.  It's uncomfortable to me an I'm older. But just about the only horns that are - out of the box - with F attachments and ergonomic are 3BFs/3BF+.  But even then not everybody likes those.  With a Neotech or similar it is probably reasonable to some degree.  Again, that isn't specific to large bores, that's any horn with an F attachment. So the benefit you get by having a student by one horn is in some ways negated by the lack of ergonomic options. As I am prone to say: There isn't really a solution, only a compromise. Either way.

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Mouthpiece is not a problem. We have many more Yamaha 48s than we need. They came with marching baritones. The bass trombone girl, though, uses a Yeo (Amazed), but that can be because there was no smaller bass mouthpiece in good shape lying around: all the 1 1/2 G lost their plating so long ago, and no one bother about buying new ones. I did gave her a Yamaha 59 last time I flew back, but not sure whether she is using it or not. I am also looking for small used bass mouthpieces to donate.


If this is the girl you were talking about earlier, I would suggest that the bass might not be the problem, but possibly the Yeo.  That's a big mouthpiece not just in diameter of rim but in every aspect.  I'm not surprised she is having trouble filling the horn up.  I have trouble filling a Yeo up and the rim size works well for me.

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The dual-bore horns are Getzens of some sort.

Those are good horns. Probably the Eterna series (700s?)  I've yet to try one that I don't like. They're pretty easy to play too as they tend to be built well and the 525 upper really gives it a light blow.  At least all the ones I've tried.  Maybe not as light as a small bore but I suspect that if you were to put it in the hands of someone without telling them what it is they might not know it was as big as it is.
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« Reply #34 on: Feb 08, 2018, 05:37PM »

If this is the girl you were talking about earlier, I would suggest that the bass might not be the problem, but possibly the Yeo.  That's a big mouthpiece not just in diameter of rim but in every aspect.  I'm not surprised she is having trouble filling the horn up.  I have trouble filling a Yeo up and the rim size works well for me.

Can well be. I switched to Yeo from a Yamaha 59 recently and can immediately feel the difference in openness and air necessary. The Bach 50B in question, though, also needs much air, more than my YBL-830 double trigger. I suspect, however, that it is due to some maintenance issue. The 50B is at least 20 years at the band and must have seen much abuse with almost non-existent maintenance.


Those are good horns. Probably the Eterna series (700s?)  I've yet to try one that I don't like. They're pretty easy to play too as they tend to be built well and the 525 upper really gives it a light blow.  At least all the ones I've tried.  Maybe not as light as a small bore but I suspect that if you were to put it in the hands of someone without telling them what it is they might not know it was as big as it is.

I have never played the horns, so I cannot say much.
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« Reply #35 on: Feb 08, 2018, 05:50PM »

Does no one remember that Holst was a trombonist and likely knew exactly what sound he wanted from them?


Ellrod beat you to it
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« Reply #36 on: Feb 08, 2018, 05:51PM »

99.99% of music is not The Planets. Or Mahler. Or organ and trombone music. 547 is one size of horn, which is appropriate for some stuff, but not everything. Bolero on smaller bore is totally appropriate. Symphony Fantastique. American in Paris. Any march. Any music not performed in a tux on a big stage in a huge hall. We had a thread here not that long ago about classical pros using smaller bore horns in real orchestral performance. I'm not saying scrap your 547s, I'm saying open your mind a little. You can't paint everything with the same brush.

I think I mentioned it briefly in my last post, but I confused as to why you think large bore trombones are only capable of one specific sound?
You are of course correct, you could play all those pieces you mentioned on smaller instruments, but one of the attractions of symphony players to large bore trombones is that they are easy to colour and manipulate. I have played Bolero and American in paris in professional settings and not thought the guys on the top part were doing a dis service to the music by playing on large bores..... because they were good musicians and capable of adjusting their sound to make the music sound appropriate.
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« Reply #37 on: Feb 08, 2018, 06:06PM »

I think I mentioned it briefly in my last post, but I confused as to why you think large bore trombones are only capable of one specific sound?
You are of course correct, you could play all those pieces you mentioned on smaller instruments, but one of the attractions of symphony players to large bore trombones is that they are easy to colour and manipulate. I have played Bolero and American in paris in professional settings and not thought the guys on the top part were doing a dis service to the music by playing on large bores..... because they were good musicians and capable of adjusting their sound to make the music sound appropriate.

I doubt 6th-7th graders can "color" that much.

Then, why is large bore horn easier to colour and manipulate than small bore horn? If I remember correctly I have read someone's comment that "making a bright horn sound dark is easier than making a dark horn sound bright". Sorry if misquote or the other way around. And if a musician is really good, it doesn't matter if he use a small bore, isn't it?
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« Reply #38 on: Feb 08, 2018, 06:17PM »

I doubt 6th-7th graders can "color" that much.

Then, why is large bore horn easier to colour and manipulate than small bore horn? If I remember correctly I have read someone's comment that "making a bright horn sound dark is easier than making a dark horn sound bright". Sorry if misquote or the other way around. And if a musician is really good, it doesn't matter if he use a small bore, isn't it?


Absolutely. A good musician will make anything sound good, but as I mentioned in my previous post, I think the sound and style is easier to manipulate and blend on a small bore horn in a setting with other small bores and vice versa for large bores. Outside of their respective "homes" i dont think one is easier or harder to play. Your memory of someone's quote sounds pretty subjective..... but then so are my thoughts  :D

I would think that there are plenty of other things 6th graders should worry about before "colouring" their sound in a stylistic manner. My thought is just that it really isnt a big deal to have them playing large bores. The only real deciding factor I can think of at that point is that cheap student trombones tend to only come in small bore.
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« Reply #39 on: Feb 08, 2018, 06:19PM »

These are all very subjective words and to a large degree I find it to be influenced by your physiology.  I'm a naturally bright player.  Like, brighter than the sun bright.  So for me, coloring a large bore is waaaaaay easier than going the other way.  I think a lot of that is due to my mouthpiece placement, which is similar to Alessi's setup.  The rim almost touches my nose.

Other players tend to be the other way around.  Look at JJ Johnson for example.  Ridiculously rich, 'dark' sound on relatively tiny equipment.  He had a special King made at one point that was in between the 3B and 2B because the 3B was too dark.  

It seems that there is a tendency to see the world through the lens that your own physiology interprets the response of an instrument. I think that in reality that experiences like this are highly personal so there isn't really a one-size-fits-all indication you can give beyond generalities for which there are many exceptions.
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« Reply #40 on: Feb 13, 2018, 12:02AM »

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« Reply #41 on: Feb 13, 2018, 02:52AM »

My school band director/teacher, whom I am looking forward to help in advising trombone students after I go back to my home country, has quite an obsession with large-bore trombone, or at least he seems to have. So now we have 6th-graders walking around with .547" horns, 1st trombone (8th- and 9th-graders) also with .547" horns, and a 9th-grade girl with a Bach 50B, which she has been using since 8th grade at least. He also prefer large bore when looking for a new (used) horn, so almost all the newer horns in the band are .547", and a few .525"/.547" dual.

Is there any reason to justify this? Conversely, is there any harm this can do to the students? If the latter is the case, I would like some strong arguement to convince him, because he might still see me as a student of him.

The students didn't say much (except the bass girl who sometimes says she has not enough air for the 50B, of which I'm not surprised), but maybe they just don't know if something's wrong or how to express it. I was like that when I was in the band in middle school.
Interesting thread. There was a large bore obsession in Swedesh school years ago. Today the Yammaha 500 bore is much in ues. I must say that those horns work much better for kids to be the first horn. The bass comes much latter, the first "bass" could be a 547 bore.
"kids play the 547 bore horns very good" well I sertainly have not seen that very much. Often the 500 bore was a big relife to yong persons after struggling with the 547 bore horn.

Whe it comes the grown ups the playing sitation is what makes the choise of horns. In an big band the blend in the section is important.
I remember years ago when a young player subbed i a bigband that was big in Sweden, the guy brought his 547 as that was his only horn. The lead player said after the gig "You are a good player, but next time you better bring a smaller horn". After that he play only 500 bore horns, Yammaha. Red with Yammaha in white letters in the bell.
In a symphony orchestra you play what the leader or conducter tell you to play. The composer have no say, the conductore desides and you may think it is right or wrong, you play what you are suposed to play.

Years ago I was aked to play Mozartエs Requiem on modern instruments. I know that this happens sometimes, but I absolutely refuse to participate in that, I been asked to several times, but I think modern horns absolutely destrys the beauti of that music.

In big bands I do have the oldfashion idea that the bass should sound like a trombone, I often hear (amature) bigband where the bass does not blend with the tenor bones, but sound like it is trying very hard to sound like a contrabass trombone.
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« Reply #42 on: Feb 16, 2018, 09:44AM »

Bore aside, I feel it's important for young trombonists to develop technique on a straight tenor, no trigger.  Most band directors steer students to buying larger trigger horns for two reasons, avoiding extended positions and fearing the parents won't buy another horn down the road.
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« Reply #43 on: Feb 16, 2018, 10:57AM »

Bore aside, I feel it's important for young trombonists to develop technique on a straight tenor, no trigger.  Most band directors steer students to buying larger trigger horns for two reasons, avoiding extended positions and fearing the parents won't buy another horn down the road.

I don't mind this too much. Having young kids try to play 6th and 7th only forms bad habits, with most of them shortchanging those positions or contorting the body/embouchure to compensate.

If I had my way everyone would start on baritone or euphonium and switch to trombone when they are large enough to play trombone properly.
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« Reply #44 on: Feb 16, 2018, 02:17PM »

I went that route (played a straight horn for a lot of my development and even in college) and really wish I'd have just used the F attachment.  I'm so short that I legitimately can't even play a 7th position B natural without contorting my body.  The F attachment just makes it so much easier.
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« Reply #45 on: Feb 16, 2018, 03:14PM »

I went that route (played a straight horn for a lot of my development and even in college) and really wish I'd have just used the F attachment.  I'm so short that I legitimately can't even play a 7th position B natural without contorting my body.  The F attachment just makes it so much easier.

Sometimes the F-attachment becomes a crutch.  John Coffey, who taught nearly everybody in New England from after World War II until his death in 1981, used to disable the F-attachment on his student's trombone until the student demonstrated proficiency on the straight horn.  That may be a bit extreme, but you get the idea.
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« Reply #46 on: Feb 16, 2018, 03:20PM »

I don't mind this too much. Having young kids try to play 6th and 7th only forms bad habits, with most of them shortchanging those positions or contorting the body/embouchure to compensate.

If I had my way everyone would start on baritone or euphonium and switch to trombone when they are large enough to play trombone properly.

A bit off-topic (but it is my thread anyway): how do you learn/teach euphonium/any valved brass instrument fingerings from scratch? I started with trombone, and then mapped trombone positions to fingerings. With trombone you can see why the pitch lowers and how far; the relation between increasing tube length and lowered pitch. One cannot directly see that with valved ones. Is it pure memory,, or you do the math in your head? Like Gb = Bb minus 4 semitones = 1+3 -> valve 2 & 3, etc.?

I went that route (played a straight horn for a lot of my development and even in college) and really wish I'd have just used the F attachment.  I'm so short that I legitimately can't even play a 7th position B natural without contorting my body.  The F attachment just makes it so much easier.

I remember when I was in 6th grade playing One Moment in Time on a straight. Low C, B, Bb, A, Ab and reverse in rapid successtion at the bridge. I literally wanted the arranger to 堵ive me more moment in time to move the slide! (And the slide was infernal from lack of proper maintenance. I guess I had strong arm as a kid...)
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« Reply #47 on: Feb 16, 2018, 03:31PM »

I learned valves by comparing to positions:

1st position = no valves
2nd position = 2nd valve
3rd position = 1st valve
4th position = 1st + 2nd valves
5th position = 2nd + 3rd valves
6th position = 1st + 3rd valves
7th position = all valves

Note that this results in some rather off-pitch notes, especially with combinations.  But the other valved instruments have the same problems so it sorta fits.

Later I started analyzing and the combinations began to make more sense.

I'd play exercises I knew well on slide using the valves SLOWlY to get used to them.  Eventually I was able to speed up.
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« Reply #48 on: Feb 16, 2018, 03:43PM »

Weird, I've never tried to mentally map slide positions to valve combinations.

A few years after learning trombone, I picked up tuba. I learned Bb tuba fingerings out of a method book, and then reinforced them by doing scales. Once I got a 4 valve tuba my teacher taught me how to use the extra valve to correct tuning issues with 1+3.

I would really have to think about what slide position a given fingering is, even though I can play a note on either instrument without thinking about where to put slide/fingers.
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« Reply #49 on: Feb 16, 2018, 03:45PM »

I learned valves by comparing to positions:

1st position = no valves
2nd position = 2nd valve
3rd position = 1st valve
4th position = 1st + 2nd valves
5th position = 2nd + 3rd valves
6th position = 1st + 3rd valves
7th position = all valves

Note that this results in some rather off-pitch notes, especially with combinations.  But the other valved instruments have the same problems so it sorta fits.

Later I started analyzing and the combinations began to make more sense.

I'd play exercises I knew well on slide using the valves SLOWlY to get used to them.  Eventually I was able to speed up.

What he said.  A euphonium player in jr. high kept borrowing my trombone to practice, and his horn was just laying there, so  translated slide positions to valve combos and there I went.
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« Reply #50 on: Feb 16, 2018, 04:53PM »

Perhaps a better way of putting it is that the F attachment provides you many alternatives in the register one would use it in so I see no advantage to not using it in general perhaps even most of the time.  Sure, if you have like Db -> C -> Db or something by all means, you'd probably want to use 5 6 5.  But the F attachment isn't a crutch anymore than someone not used to an F attachment playing Bb -> C -> Bb in 1 -> 6 -> 1.  Or similarly, the opening to the Organ Symphony with the Bb not in first.  In those cases, it's more of a crutch to NOT use the F attachment.
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« Reply #51 on: Feb 16, 2018, 06:36PM »

I learned valves by comparing to positions:

1st position = no valves
2nd position = 2nd valve
3rd position = 1st valve
4th position = 1st + 2nd valves
5th position = 2nd + 3rd valves
6th position = 1st + 3rd valves
7th position = all valves

Note that this results in some rather off-pitch notes, especially with combinations.  But the other valved instruments have the same problems so it sorta fits.

Later I started analyzing and the combinations began to make more sense.

I'd play exercises I knew well on slide using the valves SLOWlY to get used to them.  Eventually I was able to speed up.

I did that too. On the first times only, though. It has become sort of muscle memory.

What I really mean with my question is: how one, with no past experience on trombone, learn the valves? Or to put it another way: how to teach someone new to brass instrument to play valve? They cannot compare it to slide position (since they don稚 know what slide is), and likely have little knowledge of semitones and something like that.

Sorry if my question was poorly phrased.
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« Reply #52 on: Feb 16, 2018, 07:16PM »

Like so many discussions on TTF --- very interesting !
    I would like to suggest that one important perspective is being ignored in this discussion --- BALANCE ! 
    We have all seen small individuals playing large instruments and large individuals playing small instruments. Whether it is a matter of personal obsession, ["I've always wanted to play the tuba"!] or a matter of circumstance, [This is the last instrument available if you want to be in the band !] there is no reason that persons of small stature can't excel at playing large instruments and vice versa !  Whether it be Wycliffe Gordon making a small bore tenor cry for mercy or B.B. McCollough making a bass trombone bend the walls of the Pittsburgh Symphony Hall slightly outwards, the same principal applies --- BALANCE.  Wycliff is a BIG man on a small horn and B.B. was a small man on a big horn.  The list could go on, but I'll leave it for everyone to reflect on players they've known that fit the description.  Male, female, short,tall, fat, skinny ---- you name it ---- and you will find an example that fits, and they all will have one thing in common ---- BALANCE !  Combining the tools of the trade to achieve a desired result is BALANCE.  It can be done and is being done every day all around us.  Bore sizes and mouthpiece dimensions be damned ---- WE are the greatest variable in the equation and progress will be more satisfactory in every way once we address this reality.  Just sayin' ----------   Cheers to all -----  Bob
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« Reply #53 on: Feb 16, 2018, 07:17PM »

I did that too. On the first times only, though. It has become sort of muscle memory.

What I really mean with my question is: how one, with no past experience on trombone, learn the valves? Or to put it another way: how to teach someone new to brass instrument to play valve? They cannot compare it to slide position (since they don稚 know what slide is), and likely have little knowledge of semitones and something like that.

Sorry if my question was poorly phrased.
If they have no idea of brass, it becomes a rule.  

(bass clef):

Bb, F, D are all with no valves.

A, E, C# are all with 2nd valve.

Ab, Eb, C are all with 1st valve.

G, D, and B are all with 1-2

Gb, Db are with 2-3

F, C are with 1-3

E, B are with 1-2-3

You learn do this to get that and leave the logics for another day.
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« Reply #54 on: Feb 17, 2018, 08:24AM »

Not wanting to derail the original thread too much but I cam across this recording of Gustav Holst conduct the LSO in The Planets recorded in 1926  :-0

Makes Interesting listening https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5lPMRCTJAs


Enjoy!


BellEnd
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« Reply #55 on: Feb 17, 2018, 12:19PM »

Not wanting to derail the original thread too much but I cam across this recording of Gustav Holst conduct the LSO in The Planets recorded in 1926  :-0

Makes Interesting listening https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5lPMRCTJAs


Enjoy!


BellEnd

I had little time to listen, but initially? Sounds like small bores played big. Big trumpets rather than "Germanic"trombones. (Whatever that term really means...)

S.
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« Reply #56 on: Feb 17, 2018, 02:06PM »

Hmmmm ... maybe I won稚 take my .508 to the dress...
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« Reply #57 on: Feb 17, 2018, 02:21PM »

I do believe that a large bore tenor or bass great for someone willing to take on.  I used a single valve Bach 50B in the beginning of 9th grade (freshmen year) at age 15.  Before, I used a Gen II. Conn 88H which I used throughout all of junior high (7-9) starting at 7th grade at age 13.  After a year using the 50B, I started high school in 10th grade aged 16 with the school's Benge 290 before getting my own when turning 17 second semester.  I've been using bigger equipment for almost six years and the entirety of trombone for about two years short of a decade.

I've been pretty much using bigger horns all of my trombone playing, and overtime I had gotten well used to it and has really worked well for me from junior high to the end of high school, I even started on a 6.5AL which is bigger compared to others around me whom had used 12C's which is usually ideal for beginners.  

FWIW, people aren't the same and sometimes large bores are better for certain players, at least in my experience.  I don't believe in the large equipment and mouthpiece craze, I just found that they personally worked better for me.  That's my take on the topic.        
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« Reply #58 on: Feb 17, 2018, 04:29PM »

I do believe that a large bore tenor or bass great for someone willing to take on.  I used a single valve Bach 50B in the beginning of 9th grade (freshmen year) at age 15.  Before, I used a Gen II. Conn 88H which I used throughout all of junior high (7-9) starting at 7th grade at age 13.  After a year using the 50B, I started high school in 10th grade aged 16 with the school's Benge 290 before getting my own when turning 17 second semester.  I've been using bigger equipment for almost six years and the entirety of trombone for about two years short of a decade.

I've been pretty much using bigger horns all of my trombone playing, and overtime I had gotten well used to it and has really worked well for me from junior high to the end of high school, I even started on a 6.5AL which is bigger compared to others around me whom had used 12C's which is usually ideal for beginners.  

FWIW, people aren't the same and sometimes large bores are better for certain players, at least in my experience.  I don't believe in the large equipment and mouthpiece craze, I just found that they personally worked better for me.  That's my take on the topic.        

Reminds me that I played the school's 72H while a sophomore (three year school) having played only a student small bore before that.   Can't tell you what MP it had, but that was about 45 years ago... Got an award for bass bone at a jazz festival, so must have been doing something right!
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« Reply #59 on: Feb 18, 2018, 02:18AM »

Not wanting to derail the original thread too much but I cam across this recording of Gustav Holst conduct the LSO in The Planets recorded in 1926  :-0

Makes Interesting listening https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5lPMRCTJAs


Enjoy!


BellEnd

Excellent find. Mars is fast! Rocketing along - not to my personal taste to be so fast. And the whole recording is not very accurate in many places... The LSO of today would not be happy releasing such a performance...! Amazing how professional standards have risen. Agree with Sam - little trombones played big - which was after all the local style - showing how to use that equipment to work in this piece - projection rather than heft. Note that there are various places where the trombone sound adds pleasing things to the mix that large bores just can't do the same way - e.g. much of Jupiter and the big opening of Uranus. I wonder who the tenor tuba player was? A euph pulled in from the brass band world? Was Alex Mortimer the usual suspect for the LSO? Doesn't sound anywhere near enough polished enough playing for the stellar reputation he's left to history, though, and I thought he'd headed north before 1926.
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« Reply #60 on: Feb 18, 2018, 02:58AM »

I just finished reading all of this thread... A trombone is supposed to sound like a trombone, not a euphonium.  A euphonium will sound different mostly due to being conical.  The larger bore, of course, does make a difference... but they are different animals... much like a flugelhorn to a trumpet. 

Also... a tenor trombone is not supposed to sound like a bass trombone... different animals.... much like a standard trumpet to a piccolo trumpet... yes... a standard trumpet CAN play what a pic does... but the timbre is different.  It痴 all about accuracy of style.  I own trombones of all sizes (except contra)... because to be accurate to the style is VERY important.  In all honesty, the horn I use the LEAST is my .547 horn.  But I DO use it, depending on the section I am playing with, and the style of music being played. 

I think that if someone only could own one instrument... they should own a .525 bore instrument with an F attachment.  It is the most versatile instrument.  I DO NOT believe that larger bores are taking over... I just believe there a lot of ill-educated people out there... which is a shame.
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« Reply #61 on: Feb 18, 2018, 08:28AM »

Planets is a wonderful example of this. It has some lovely trombone parts. It also has a prominent euph solo. More euphonious.

I suppose an argument might be made for a section consisting of a .508, .525, and a .547. But, we don稚 have that available.
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« Reply #62 on: Feb 18, 2018, 10:24AM »

When I was a performance major at a conservatory in the 70s, a .547 was the only choice for a tenor: Bach 42B, King 4B, Conn 88H.  Now, I play my 3B in big band on lead, my 4B in orchestras and community bands, and my TR180 bass for, well, bass.  The 4B doesn't fit playing Dorsey, the 3B doesn't fit playing Mahler.  I hear some marching bands these days want large bore tenors, something I don't understand. But then again my high school marched at 160 BPM with horn swagger...
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« Reply #63 on: Yesterday at 11:06 AM »

Excellent find. Mars is fast! Rocketing along - not to my personal taste to be so fast. And the whole recording is not very accurate in many places... The LSO of today would not be happy releasing such a performance...! Amazing how professional standards have risen. Agree with Sam - little trombones played big - which was after all the local style - showing how to use that equipment to work in this piece - projection rather than heft. Note that there are various places where the trombone sound adds pleasing things to the mix that large bores just can't do the same way - e.g. much of Jupiter and the big opening of Uranus. I wonder who the tenor tuba player was? A euph pulled in from the brass band world? Was Alex Mortimer the usual suspect for the LSO? Doesn't sound anywhere near enough polished enough playing for the stellar reputation he's left to history, though, and I thought he'd headed north before 1926.

Apparently, Holst had to speed up the tempo to fit the 78 disks.
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« Reply #64 on: Yesterday at 12:15 PM »

Amazing how professional standards have risen.
Or maybe just editing ability. Nowadays if there are clams they can do another take and maybe splice things together to get a flawless sounding recording. That was much more difficult to do back then.
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« Reply #65 on: Yesterday at 12:37 PM »

I just finished reading all of this thread... A trombone is supposed to sound like a trombone, not a euphonium.  A euphonium will sound different mostly due to being conical.  The larger bore, of course, does make a difference... but they are different animals... much like a flugelhorn to a trumpet. 

Also... a tenor trombone is not supposed to sound like a bass trombone... different animals.... much like a standard trumpet to a piccolo trumpet... yes... a standard trumpet CAN play what a pic does... but the timbre is different.  It’s all about accuracy of style.  I own trombones of all sizes (except contra)... because to be accurate to the style is VERY important.  In all honesty, the horn I use the LEAST is my .547 horn.  But I DO use it, depending on the section I am playing with, and the style of music being played. 

I think that if someone only could own one instrument... they should own a .525 bore instrument with an F attachment.  It is the most versatile instrument.  I DO NOT believe that larger bores are taking over... I just believe there a lot of ill-educated people out there... which is a shame.
Agree.  There really isn't anything versitle than a .525 with F-attachment and it's a great tenor to use from ensembles 1st parts, jazz for 2nd or 3rd parts, pits, etc.  Wish there were used more often from different players of any kind! Good!
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« Reply #66 on: Yesterday at 01:59 PM »

I think its the word "large" that is the clue here. Let me explain. Its about more "volume". Bigger mouthpieces, bigger horns, more volume. LOUDER. Younger people buy that easy but I understand them. Everything is louder today. Orchestras is bigger and I understand the  trombonists in the big orchestras try to adjust. I was in cinema with my small child, its extremely high sound even it is movie for small children. Listen the advertisement on TV, its extremely high volume.

Its sad because there is a limit what the human ear can take. Its sad because with louder sounds, the colour, the excitement, the nuances in the sounds is lost. And then also musical nuances. But nobody can stop that development before the human ear say stop.

So I understand both pro and amateurs that want "large" Just so sad we loose the delicate, colourful and interesting sound......but we have a choice.

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« Reply #67 on: Yesterday at 04:47 PM »

Hi. Our band hosted a visit from a school band and when their Jazz band played most of the kids were playing large bore horns and they sounded like a row of slide euphoniums, not a true trombone sound. I think a lot of kids are playing horns that are too big for them. A little girl joined our band with a large bore Bach strad. Her hands were so small she had to have a wrist strap and her mouthpiece was like a bucket. I loaned her a large shank Yamaha 48 mouthpiece and she said that made a big difference. I agree with MoominDave. Cheers Max









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« Reply #68 on: Yesterday at 05:54 PM »

I think its the word "large" that is the clue here. Let me explain. Its about more "volume". Bigger mouthpieces, bigger horns, more volume. LOUDER. Younger people buy that easy but I understand them. Everything is louder today. Orchestras is bigger and I understand the  trombonists in the big orchestras try to adjust. I was in cinema with my small child, its extremely high sound even it is movie for small children. Listen the advertisement on TV, its extremely high volume.

Its sad because there is a limit what the human ear can take. Its sad because with louder sounds, the colour, the excitement, the nuances in the sounds is lost. And then also musical nuances. But nobody can stop that development before the human ear say stop.

So I understand both pro and amateurs that want "large" Just so sad we loose the delicate, colourful and interesting sound......but we have a choice.

Leif


Interesting thoughts Leif, although I'm not sure I can *completely* agree with your thoughts when it regards orchestral work.
I do feel like the aim is for "louder", but it also seems like being able to get more volume just means a higher 'ceiling', more headroom so to speak.
I will agree that a lot of music is mixed to be loud these days. Funny because when listening to REALLY old recordings (I'm talking, phonograph and wax cylinder-days), those bands had to  (it seems) because the recording equipment wasn't very sensitive, and you can hear it on the recordings, haha!
I haven't looked into it too much but wasn't that before the days of "bigger, deeper, darker"?
But yeah, you are definitely right about everyone going for snappier, zippier, brighter, more exciting, louder, more ear-piercing  Amazed takes quite a bit to appreciate both ends of the spectrum, and today's youths are a bit more desensitized to it I think (with me being a part of "today's youths")
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« Reply #69 on: Yesterday at 06:04 PM »

It's interesting because my perception has always been that commercial groups (acoustic or particularly electric):

1) Play on smaller equipment that sounds louder than bigger equipment

in addition to 1

2) Put out more volume than classical ensembles I've played with.


And that is nearly universal.  I always take hearing protection to those types of performances whether or not I'm on stage or in the audience.  I never do that with classical repertoire.

It's possible that's a perception thing because I'm a very bright player, but I've always chosen large bore over small bores for classical playing because it blends better with the rest of the ensemble. It's to make my sound appear quieter, not louder.
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« Reply #70 on: Yesterday at 07:43 PM »

I hear some marching bands these days want large bore tenors, something I don't understand. But then again my high school marched at 160 BPM with horn swagger...

I have seen videos of marching band boys (and girls) doing Trombone Suicide with large bore horns, WITH F-ATTACHMENT.

Their schools (or parents) sure are rich.
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« Reply #71 on: Yesterday at 08:12 PM »

I have seen videos of marching band boys (and girls) doing Trombone Suicide with large bore horns, WITH F-ATTACHMENT.

Their schools (or parents) sure are rich.

Or stupid... :D
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