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Author Topic: Richard Smith, still nutty  (Read 5823 times)
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elmsandr

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« on: Feb 07, 2017, 08:25AM »

So, first the link:
https://vimeo.com/162048336

Now some thoughts... He is very correct on one major part here:  Airflow is not soundwave propagation.  However, I would take his demonstration more seriously if he didn't sound horrible on all the notes he played on all the horns.  Really, at least a better mic is needed, that sounds bad.  I'd love to see one of those diaphragm mouthpieces played by somebody really good with blind A-B test to see what it does to the feedback to the player.  For me, my buzz is often quite rough without the feedback from the horn.  We can continue to debate the merits of mouthpiece buzzing and free buzzing, but the horn does provide direct physical feedback to the chops.  Would that diaphragm cut that feedback loop or make it less effective?

Anyway, was just sent this video today and figured there may be some interesting talking points here,
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« Reply #1 on: Feb 07, 2017, 02:47PM »

In 1999 the ITG published a Smith article entitled "Exciting Your Instrument."  He described what look to be just the items used in the video.  In that article he had help from Dudley Bright in assessing the effects.

I'm not going to say much more on this, as I got pretty well trounced last time I said there was proof air did not have to go THROUGH the horn from the mouthpiece for it to work.

But I think Smith makes it clear that the air from the face does NOT have to go through the horn.  This in turn pretty much relegates the "blow it to the back wall" method as an analogy that seems to work for some (although I'm not sure I've heard it work.) Of course, if we thought about it, we'd realize that the sound from the lips moves at the speed of sound, and NONE of us can move air THAT fast!

The questions that come to my mind with the Smith paper and this video are not far from yours.  From my perspective, I wonder if the air passage in the horn is a bit of serendipity similar to that of the bell shape.  The bell taper was well established before the science came along that could characterize it. 

I suspect that it would take a LOT of work balancing the air out the side port of the mouthpiece to get just the right resistance to support just the right buzz at just the right pitch and just the right dynamic. 

But it seems like two factors in the horn work almost automatically to provide this regulation:
1) actual "AC" acoustic impedence, with effects amplified near the mouthpiece by passage restrictions
2) very low "DC" input impedence of the MP/Throat/Venturi/bore/bell system.

I don't know if Smith is nutty.  I think he, like Benade, is good at taking theoretical acoustical concepts and letting them leak out into the real world in way ordinary folks can understand.  And he seems to have fun doing it.
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« Reply #2 on: Feb 07, 2017, 03:04PM »

He surely builds amazing instruments. If only he could play like his former and deceased partner, Derek....
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« Reply #3 on: Feb 11, 2017, 12:20AM »

But I think Smith makes it clear that the air from the face does NOT have to go through the horn.  This in turn pretty much relegates the "blow it to the back wall" method as an analogy that seems to work for some (although I'm not sure I've heard it work.) Of course, if we thought about it, we'd realize that the sound from the lips moves at the speed of sound, and NONE of us can move air THAT fast!

But you do have to make your lips vibrate, and it seems obvious to me that increasing the volume of sound requires one to blow more air through the lips. It may not have to go through the trombone, but it does have to go through the lips. Maybe he was suggesting that device could have a practical use for a musician, but I didn't feel that he was. To me it seemed more like just a method of demonstrating a principle.
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« Reply #4 on: Feb 11, 2017, 12:35AM »

Here's what I'm not sure I understand, though. I tried a simple experiment: I recorded the sound of myself buzzing the mouthpiece alone, then played back the sound into a trombone. What came out of the bell was not the sound of a trombone, but rather a very slightly amplified sound of a mouthpiece buzzing. Then I tried a somewhat more complicated experiment: I made a pair of artificial lips, connected to the rim of a mouthpiece, sealed it off with another mouthpiece set backwards, rim to rim, inserted it into a trombone, and blew compressed air into it. The result sounds like what we expect a trombone sound to be. So why didn't my recorded sound amplify in the same way? Is it because it wasn't sealed?
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« Reply #5 on: Feb 11, 2017, 04:31AM »

Musings from a rank amateur...

Maybe this as an indication that the horn as a wave guide is really about the resonance qualities of the horn.  The lips create vibrational resonance and that vibrational resonance is slotted and amplified through the open tubing of the instrument as a wave guide.

For me, personally, I know my sound quality improved significantly when I spent some time doing Bill Adams pipe playing on my horn.

Just throwing this out there.  I'm curious to see other thoughts from our forum. :)

--Andy
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« Reply #6 on: Feb 11, 2017, 06:12AM »

But you do have to make your lips vibrate, and it seems obvious to me that increasing the volume of sound requires one to blow more air through the lips. It may not have to go through the trombone, but it does have to go through the lips. Maybe he was suggesting that device could have a practical use for a musician, but I didn't feel that he was. To me it seemed more like just a method of demonstrating a principle.

I also think that one has to blow more air to play louder.  I think you put your finger right on the difference though: through the lips. So the difference I see is focusing on the part making the originating noise rather than the horn itself or especially the back of the room.  This is actually a very positive thing: we can DO something about the lips.  This much seems to me closely analogous to the very careful selection of drivers for loudspeaker horns.  Wit the wrong one, efficiency plumets and sound balance diminishes.  The the one that matches the acoustcal/mechanical impedances makes the horn shine.

Of course, we DO have to "play the room."  The standing wave in our horn will react differently to each room acoustic.  Knowing how to adjust our face to meet the room most gracefully lets even a pianissimo be heard clearly in the back of the room.

I think that second part might be a TINY bit of why your interesting experiments had such interesting results.  There are papers describing how brass instruments also function, up to a point, as waveguides.  Disrupting the guide seems to me like a good way to disrupt the sonic qualities. So, recording the EXACT amplitude of the MP buzz at the EXACT point where you will reintroduce it into the system, and reintroducing it with those exact parameters... Smith handled that by immediately taking what was "captured" by the membrane and "releasing" it back into the horn.

The air from the face does not need to go through the horn.  Unquestionably it DOES need to go through the lips, just as a bow must move across violin strings.  From there every facet of the SHAPE of the ENTIRE system makes differences.  Benade made interesting observations about shape of bell AND shape of cup/throat/backbore on the way flared horns simulate the overtones that are not inherent in a pipe closed on one end.  How did the partials line up after Smith took out so much of the final bit of the cup and the entire throat?

These questions are well beyond the abilities of my self-directed readings on acoustics.  So I'll just focus on matching my face to the horn at the mouthpiece, and matching my horn to the room through the mouthpiece.  But I'll never blow it to the back wall again  Evil
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« Reply #7 on: Feb 11, 2017, 01:14PM »

What I generally meant with nutty here was that he had an opportunity to show that it generally did not matter to make a good sound, but he just showed that it made a sound. It would have been interesting to hear music with his third way, but that didn't happen.

As for more air being required, I try to think of it as more energy required. As the air input is the only way we have to get energy into the system, how else do we make it work.

Cheers,
Andy
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« Reply #8 on: Feb 11, 2017, 01:31PM »

What I generally meant with nutty here was that he had an opportunity to show that it generally did not matter to make a good sound, but he just showed that it made a sound. It would have been interesting to hear music with his third way, but that didn't happen.

As for more air being required, I try to think of it as more energy required. As the air input is the only way we have to get energy into the system, how else do we make it work.

Cheers,
Andy

I agree. Sadly missed opportunity to show what he got with Dudley Bright.  He REPORTED that Dudley found it very playable, but here we are with Youtube, and no reinforcment of that assertion.

Wonder if he'd take kindly to a note to that effect?  Seems friendly enough... hmm.....
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« Reply #9 on: Feb 11, 2017, 01:34PM »

It's interesting to know what's really going on, but that doesn't necessarily help us be better musicians. Often, mental constructs that are not directly related to the actual physics of the process seem to help us. As an analogy, in golf, the only thing that matters is the speed, path, and orientation of the club head during the split second that it is in contact with the ball, yet players often think about "hitting the target", or spend a lot of time working on their backswing, and it does seem to help them become better golfers. "Blowing to the wall" might help some trombonists if that thought helps them blow the correct amount of air through their lips.
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« Reply #10 on: Feb 13, 2017, 11:26AM »

Here's what I'm not sure I understand, though. I tried a simple experiment: I recorded the sound of myself buzzing the mouthpiece alone, then played back the sound into a trombone. What came out of the bell was not the sound of a trombone, but rather a very slightly amplified sound of a mouthpiece buzzing. Then I tried a somewhat more complicated experiment: I made a pair of artificial lips, connected to the rim of a mouthpiece, sealed it off with another mouthpiece set backwards, rim to rim, inserted it into a trombone, and blew compressed air into it. The result sounds like what we expect a trombone sound to be. So why didn't my recorded sound amplify in the same way? Is it because it wasn't sealed?

You can do that experiment in a more simple way, and it's the way I buzz in/walk in, based on hearing a pro do it.  My recordings confirm it though it doesn't sound as good as he does.

Start the buzz.  Slowly bring the horn and mouthpiece combination up to the lips until the tone starts.

You will hear three distinct phases:  a quiet mosquito buzz, then a different tone as the horn begins to act like an megaphone.  Then as contact solidifies, the horn starts to play a trombone timbre. 

What that middle phase means, I don't know.  But I agree with you that it isn't the same as the trombone sound you get a second later. 

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« Reply #11 on: Feb 13, 2017, 11:59AM »

You can do that experiment in a more simple way, and it's the way I buzz in/walk in, based on hearing a pro do it.  My recordings confirm it though it doesn't sound as good as he does.

Start the buzz.  Slowly bring the horn and mouthpiece combination up to the lips until the tone starts.

You will hear three distinct phases:  a quiet mosquito buzz, then a different tone as the horn begins to act like an megaphone.  Then as contact solidifies, the horn starts to play a trombone timbre. 

What that middle phase means, I don't know.  But I agree with you that it isn't the same as the trombone sound you get a second later. 


I wonder if one took a small speaker, sealed it inside the mouthpiece so that it is airtight, then played a recorded sound of lips buzzing, if that would produce a "trombone" sound from the bell. From what you're saying, there is obviously something about the lips being actually sealed on the mouthpiece that makes it a "trombone" sound.
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« Reply #12 on: Feb 13, 2017, 12:40PM »

From what you're saying, there is obviously something about the lips being actually sealed on the mouthpiece that makes it a "trombone" sound.

Maybe.  There are other possibilities though.  It is possible that the trombone affects exactly how the lips vibrate in some way.  So the buzz outside the horn, whether live or recorded, may not be the same input as the buzz on the horn.
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« Reply #13 on: Feb 13, 2017, 07:41PM »

---snip---

I'm not going to say much more on this, as I got pretty well trounced last time I said there was proof air did not have to go THROUGH the horn from the mouthpiece for it to work.

But I think Smith makes it clear that the air from the face does NOT have to go through the horn.  This in turn pretty much relegates the "blow it to the back wall" method as an analogy that seems to work for some (although I'm not sure I've heard it work.)
---snip---

Oh.

So easy to experimentally disprove!!!

#1-Go get a supermarket plastic bag...you know, like the ones in the produce department?

#2-Place it  tightly over the bell of a trombone.

#3-Secure it with a fairly tight rubber band around the flare.

#4-Play the trombone and watch the bag expand. And watch the sound diminish as well.

DUH!!!

The lungs are the equivalent volume of a couple of those bags.

You are breathing and blowing...if you can play at all..quite deeply.

After a few breath-needing phrases...,where in the hell do you think all of that air is going?

Out your rear end?

Through your ears?

Being absorbed into the solid brass of the instrument?

Duh squared!!!

Cubed, even!!!

Before blowing:



After blowing:



So many quacks; so little time.

Sigh...

S.
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« Reply #14 on: Feb 13, 2017, 10:36PM »

I'm thinking you didn't actually watch the video, Sam.
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« Reply #15 on: Feb 14, 2017, 01:01AM »

Sam, the short version is membrane between mouthpiece and instrument, air vented out of mouthpiece, no air travelling through instrument, instrument still plays.

I think calling Dr Smith a quack is a bit of a stretch. You are quite entitled to disagree with his methods and conclusions but I don't think he's setting out to deceive.
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« Reply #16 on: Feb 14, 2017, 02:50AM »

I'm thinking you didn't actually watch the video, Sam.

and

Sam, the short version is membrane between mouthpiece and instrument, air vented out of mouthpiece, no air travelling through instrument, instrument still plays.

I think calling Dr Smith a quack is a bit of a stretch. You are quite entitled to disagree with his methods and conclusions but I don't think he's setting out to deceive.

I did indeed watch the video. What I learned from it is as follows:

If you want to make a bad, unmusical sound come out of your brass instrument, you don't need to put air through it.

Duh.

Any brass player who has popped his m'pce with the palm of his hand knows that you don't need to blow through the horn to make a sound.

So?

And...a "quack" is not necessarily a purposeful fraud. Self-deception abounds in the quack world as far as I am concerned.

This whole vid makes me think of the wonderful cartoonist Rube Goldberg.



Over and out.

S.
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« Reply #17 on: Feb 14, 2017, 04:20AM »

Richard showed this to me 1985, I made my own "special mouthpiece" that could be used to play trombone with no air passing through the trombone.
The feedbac from the vibrating air column in the trombone still works, the lip do wibrate in the trombones favorit frequencies.
 
Of corse he had lots of fun making this video! He did not seriously think this was a way to play other the for fun!

Yes you can make a trombone sound with a small loudspeaker (mice) connected to the trombone, yeas it has to be absolutelly airtight. This was done at the Royal Institute of Technology in the 70s.

I don´t see that the horrible sound he made has anything to do with this, he did a good demonstation.
Tims demonstration say something too, but that is not the same story.

The plastic bag is actually a fun idea, if you like to this demonstration with the "demo mpc" you can first play with a normal mpc and the plastic bag taped to the horn, everybody can see the bag grow when the air fills it, when using the "demo mpc" everybody can see that even if the trombone can be played like a trombone, the bag will not move or change.
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« Reply #18 on: Feb 14, 2017, 05:24AM »

He is not saying that air does not go through the horn when it is being played. He is saying that it is not "because" of the air going through the horn that the sound goes through the horn. He demonstrates beyond doubt that it is not necessary for air to travel through the horn to make sound.

FWIW..
M
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« Reply #19 on: Feb 14, 2017, 05:47AM »

He is not saying that air does not go through the horn when it is being played. He is saying that it is not "because" of the air going through the horn that the sound goes through the horn. FWIW..
M

I think that the air moves so slowly through the horn, relative to the sound wave, that the sound wave sees the air as essentially stationary. 
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« Reply #20 on: Feb 14, 2017, 08:19AM »

I think that the air moves so slowly through the horn, relative to the sound wave, that the sound wave sees the air as essentially stationary. 

The airflow makes the lips vibrate. The vibrating lips + trombone make the standing wave. The standing wave is in fact standing, the noodes and antinoodes stay in their positions as long as play a certain tone, at the bell the standing wave accelerates to a moving sound wave. The airflow does move through the horn in normal playing, but that is not making the sound. After the airflow makes the lips vibrate, it is nothing but debri.

When Richard Smith play the trombone with his "demo mpc" no air goes inte the trombone, the diaphragm vibrates the vibration + trombone make the standing wave.
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« Reply #21 on: Feb 14, 2017, 08:34AM »

He is not saying that air does not go through the horn when it is being played. He is saying that it is not "because" of the air going through the horn that the sound goes through the horn. He demonstrates beyond doubt that it is not necessary for air to travel through the horn to make sound.

FWIW..
M
But unfortunately, he did not make any demonstration that a good, musical sound is possible.  Sure, it is a sound, but it isn't a sound that my trombone should make in a performance.

That's what I meant by nutty.  There may be plenty of evidence for this, but it isn't present in this video. He always seems to be amusing himself rather than actually proving his point.

Cheers,
Andy
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« Reply #22 on: Feb 14, 2017, 10:21AM »

The airflow makes the lips vibrate. The vibrating lips + trombone make the standing wave. The standing wave is in fact standing,

It is pure semantics (terminology) and not relevant to the discussion, but I do not believe in a standing wave having any real existence.  A standing wave is a graphical representation of the superposition of multiple moving waves - it isn't real.  It exists only when you draw it. 

We now return you to your regularly scheduled argument. 
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« Reply #23 on: Feb 14, 2017, 01:07PM »

It is pure semantics (terminology) and not relevant to the discussion, but I do not believe in a standing wave having any real existence.  A standing wave is a graphical representation of the superposition of multiple moving waves - it isn't real.  It exists only when you draw it. 

We now return you to your regularly scheduled argument. 

No that is not right, the standing does exist and is proved many times.
I know that you don´t belive in standing waves, but there is actually no other way to explane how brass instruments work.
http://www.stmary.ws/HighSchool/Physics/home/notes/waves/StandingWave.htm
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« Reply #24 on: Feb 14, 2017, 03:39PM »

Oh.

So easy to experimentally disprove!!!

#1-Go get a supermarket plastic bag...you know, like the ones in the produce department?

#2-Place it  tightly over the bell of a trombone.

#3-Secure it with a fairly tight rubber band around the flare.

#4-Play the trombone and watch the bag expand. And watch the sound diminish as well.

DUH!!!


Sam, Smith specifies TWO conditions in HIS experiment:
1) the air MUST go through the lips and keep doing so;
2) the air must NOT be allowed through the horn.

Your experiment fails on condition #1: you only allow air through the lips as far as the expansion of the grocery bag will allow.

The air is the bow; the lips are the strings: air MUST pass the lips. NO one is disputing that.

But the passage of sound through a brass instrument is much more like the transfer of energy in one of those "Newton's Cradle" toys than the passage of water through a pipe.  That's pretty much what Smith shows.

You can "disprove" anything by leaving out key parameters.  But it seems rather moot in this discussion.  I really don't see ANYone going to the trouble of making a sufficiently effective side-dumping port on a specialized mouthpiece to begin to rival the "bow control" we get by interacting with the REACTIVE impedance on brass instruments that automatically adjusts quite a bit depending on frequency.

I'm puzzled at your hostility toward the idea of air flow making the sound go through the horn, since I consider your videos and posts on embouchure and formants to be some of the best descriptions of how to make a great sound, and all of that really seems to focus on optimizing the sound right at the source. 
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« Reply #25 on: Feb 14, 2017, 06:45PM »

No that is not right, the standing does exist and is proved many times.



svenne,
I looked at your video and it is excellent for explaining many of these concepts.

My conception is a little different, sorry, and I hate to take up bandwidth on a topic a little off the track.

So very briefly (I hope) based on ideal gas law, there isn't much air in air.  I once calculated that if an air molecule were the size of a tennis ball, only one would fit in the average US living room - yet it would hit the walls often enough to apply 14.7 psi average pressure to them.  basically, air is empty.

Yet a pressure pulse can propagate down the tube.  It does this through collisions.  It goes down the tube until it hits something it can reflect from - an impedance mismatch, either the end of the tube or the point in the flare at which it can't maintain pressure, depending on the frequency.

These "waves" are longitudinal.  they go down and back, down and back.  That's all they can do, unlike a string that can go sideways, twist, etc. 

Now it can happen that in the down and back travel of the wave, there are points (nodes and antinodes) that maintain a constant pressure relationship based on the superposition of the values.  If you trace pressure along the length of the tube with your pencil, it may look like a standing wave.

Is that real?  I say no, some say yes.  YMMV.  I'm admittedly a bit of a purist on this topic. 

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« Reply #26 on: Feb 14, 2017, 07:29PM »

I'm not buying those arguments from sabutin  Bad dog.  No Biscuits. ... he left out the standard "Bet on it!!"






Has anyone noted that car horns produces enormous volumes of sound, at tuned pitches, without blowing volumes of air?

They have a vibrating diaphragm at the "mouthpiece" end of the horn but no compressor or blower is need to push air through the horn.




The diaphragm oscillates to and fro, moving a tiny quantity of air in and out but creating a large sound with the help of the resonant horn.  You can play that horn forever but it's basically the same air vibrating in the horn, not a continually replenished stream.




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« Reply #27 on: Feb 14, 2017, 11:28PM »


Any brass player who has popped his m'pce with the palm of his hand knows that you don't need to blow through the horn to make a sound.

So?
So, you said that could be "easily disproven". Now you say it's true. Make up your mind. Yeah, RIGHT.

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I did indeed watch the video. What I learned from it is as follows:

If you want to make a bad, unmusical sound come out of your brass instrument, you don't need to put air through it.

Duh.
Don't know if you noticed, but Smith didn't make a musical sound when he blew air through the trombone either. So all that proves is that he's probably not a very good trombone player.

Duh.

The POINT is, he demonstrated that the air going through the trombone does not "carry" the sound to the bell. That's not intuitively obvious, and a lot of people didn't know that. It's called science, and it's interesting. If it's not interesting to you, then don't read the thread. No need to come in here and p1ss all over everybody.

Duh.
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« Reply #28 on: Feb 15, 2017, 12:49AM »

Has anyone of You played the "jews harp " ? Try to blow as You activate .. Very increased sound output ! ( same happens as You suck actually), .....moving air ! 

Trond
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« Reply #29 on: Feb 15, 2017, 05:11AM »

Has anyone of You played the "jews harp " ? Try to blow as You activate .. Very increased sound output ! ( same happens as You suck actually), .....moving air ! 

Trond

A baby has a lung the size of your thumb.

A baby's earsplitting paintpeeling cry can go on for minutes nonstop.  Seems like hours.  Most of it on one breath.

Clearly large volumes of air are not required for sheer volume, as any parent can attest.  I wish I could recapture that infant efficiency playing trombone. 
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« Reply #30 on: Feb 15, 2017, 05:29AM »

A baby has a lung the size of your thumb.

A baby's earsplitting paintpeeling cry can go on for minutes nonstop.  Seems like hours.  Most of it on one breath.

Clearly large volumes of air are not required for sheer volume, as any parent can attest.  I wish I could recapture that infant efficiency playing trombone. 

Yes ! .... But a baby's vocal chords combined with a grown ups lungs would be truly ear shattering ! But this is not the point ; the amount of sound output for a given input is....  AND ; speed of the air.. There is a loudspeakermanufacturer ( which name escapes me ) that has a propeller in front of the speaker to increase low frequency output..  Air speed affects !
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« Reply #31 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:03AM »

There seem to be a lot of people mad at me here.

So it goes.

My point is...and has consistently been for a long, long time...that there are entirely too many people who cannot play a lick, pontificating about brass playing. You want to theorize? Great. If you can really play, I'll pay attention. If you cannot?

Phfffft...

I do not really care whether the air "goes through" the horn, magically dissipates on its way out or takes an alternate route out of our nether regions. The only question that interests me is the following:

How does such information help people to make great music on a brass instrument?

With the following corollary:

If it does not help, why pay attention to it?

And the answer to that one is:

Because it's just another of many cop-outs...many side-hobbies to excuse not learning how to play.

Go practice.

You be bettah off.

S.
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« Reply #32 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:05AM »

I think I will link this discousion to Richard Smith, I am sure he will enjoy it!
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« Reply #33 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:07AM »

Yes ! .... But a baby's vocal chords combined with a grown ups lungs would be truly ear shattering ! But this is not the point ; the amount of sound output for a given input is....  AND ; speed of the air.. There is a loudspeakermanufacturer ( which name escapes me ) that has a propeller in front of the speaker to increase low frequency output..  Air speed affects !


This is too interesting to leave at an "escaped name" :)  The only thing I've found close so far is this patent from JVC Kenwood: http://documents.allpatents.com/l/42138090/US6863153B1 ... any chance this is it? I find many hits about mitigating propeller noise with loudspeakers, but none on increasing low frequency output with one.  Even if it is NOT a "high fidelity" mechanism, I'd still love to know more about it!!
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« Reply #34 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:09AM »

I think I will link this discousion to Richard Smith, I am sure he will enjoy it!

Thanks, Sven! It sure would be nice if Dr. Smith could get Dudley Bright to "reprise" the testing Dudley did of this system, but on video this time.
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« Reply #35 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:16AM »

Has anyone of You played the "jews harp " ? Try to blow as You activate .. Very increased sound output ! ( same happens as You suck actually), .....moving air ! 

Trond

I believe the name has morphed to "jaw harp" in many places.  VERY ancient instrument indeed!

And what a great challenge.  I have to see where I put mine.  In the OLD days I would have just wondered.  Now I can use Audacity and home recording gear to get a good visual representation.

I HAVE noticed differences with air going in AND out on this instrument.  But up to now I've attributed it to opening the throat and having a back-resonator to support the twang in the teeth and jaw.  So... experiment time.  Just need to find the time... and the harp!
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« Reply #36 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:43AM »

This is too interesting to leave at an "escaped name" :)  The only thing I've found close so far is this patent from JVC Kenwood: http://documents.allpatents.com/l/42138090/US6863153B1 ... any chance this is it? I find many hits about mitigating propeller noise with loudspeakers, but none on increasing low frequency output with one.  Even if it is NOT a "high fidelity" mechanism, I'd still love to know more about it!!

There was an early scheme for amplification that used compressed air, modulated by a valve, modulated by a phonograph needle.

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« Reply #37 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:44AM »

There seem to be a lot of people mad at me here.

I'm not mad, just puzzled.  And I think your two excellent follow-up questions provide the answer.

How does such information help people to make great music on a brass instrument?

With the following corollary:

If it does not help, why pay attention to it?


What I perceive and appreciate in these nice, simple questions, is a very direct desire to get out of the murk of data, through the slightly less murky waters of information, through the distillation of knowlege, and on into the realm of wisdom.

Looking at Smith's May 1999 ITG article he MOSTLY stopped at the "knowledge" level.  He DID venture a little further, citing an example of a trumpet that had no resistance to direct air blowing through the instrument, but PLAYING very stuffy because of plating debris.

And THAT little bit of wisdom is why these things make a difference.  Having these bits of knowledge helps us hunt in the RIGHT places for things that DO help us play great music, and avoid those places that do not.

In this particular case, I think we learn one thing to avoid, as it does not help us make music any better: horn alterations that simply allow non-vibrating air to flow through the horn more easily.

I think we also learn something to pay attention to: the kind of chops focus you show so clearly.  To me, this shows that whatever time I spend making the best sound I can right at the chops will be rewarded out the bell.

Smith's paper talks about how the science of this "... should help players understand how they make notes..."
I have to agree with you that, without any idea of how such understanding applies, it is worth less than nothing: it takes up time we could use on things we already know will help our playing.

'nuff of this.  I'm going to try to buzz a bit. Maybe shift stuff around and color that buzz.  

Thanks for taking the time to provide those two questions.  Nice summary of the same thing being asked by others in this thread.  
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« Reply #38 on: Feb 15, 2017, 09:05AM »

There was an early scheme for amplification that used compressed air, modulated by a valve, modulated by a phonograph needle.



Holy smoke!  Air modulation instead of electric modulation!  Helpful (but not overly so) pictures here: http://www.douglas-self.com/MUSEUM/COMMS/auxetophone/auxetoph.htm

Looks like it used the air as a hammer against air already in the system, gating each hammer blow by the fine grids, one attached to the needle.  I guess, in theory, the grids should not have vibrated.  Again, in theory, NO grid vibration would have been the goal.

I suspect what made it loud was the force of those hammer blows right at the grids, and not the speed of the air out the horn after.  But since THIS type of horn is so different from a brasswind, I'm not sure I'd spend the time asking the owners.
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« Reply #39 on: Feb 15, 2017, 01:58PM »

This is too interesting to leave at an "escaped name" :)  The only thing I've found close so far is this patent from JVC Kenwood: http://documents.allpatents.com/l/42138090/US6863153B1 ... any chance this is it? I find many hits about mitigating propeller noise with loudspeakers, but none on increasing low frequency output with one.  Even if it is NOT a "high fidelity" mechanism, I'd still love to know more about it!!

Found it ! ; Eminent technology ; rotary woofer 

Trond
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« Reply #40 on: Feb 15, 2017, 02:58PM »

If it were really the forward motion of the air that made a trombone so loud, you could be just as loud buzzing on your mouthpiece or just buzzing your lips, since all of those would be moving the same amount of air forward.

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« Reply #41 on: Feb 15, 2017, 03:05PM »

If it were really the forward motion of the air that made a trombone so loud, you could be just as loud buzzing on your mouthpiece or just buzzing your lips, since all of those would be moving the same amount of air forward.



That doesn't compute at all. Don't we all agree the instrument is some sort of amplifier or resonator?  Don't know
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« Reply #42 on: Feb 15, 2017, 03:17PM »

Here's another thought experiment... i can sing just about as loud inhaling as I can exhaling.  If the exhalation of air were the major factor in sound volume then the inhaled notes should be inaudible.



That doesn't compute at all. Don't we all agree the instrument is some sort of amplifier or resonator?  Don't know

Obviously it must be since mouthpiece buzzing and lip buzzing can not produce the same volume, even with moving the same volume of air forward.

It's the waves in the air (shaped and resonated in the horn air column) that are the sound, not the forward motion of it. 
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« Reply #43 on: Feb 15, 2017, 03:24PM »

Here's another thought experiment... i can sing just about as loud inhaling as I can exhaling.  If the exhalation of air were the major factor in sound volume then the inhaled notes should be inaudible.




Again, that doesn't mean much- it's just the air passing over the vocal cords in the other direction. The same amount of air.
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« Reply #44 on: Feb 15, 2017, 05:49PM »

If it were really the forward motion of the air that made a trombone so loud, you could be just as loud buzzing on your mouthpiece or just buzzing your lips, since all of those would be moving the same amount of air forward.



No, but your comment does point out the disconnect we run into.

Air flows slowly into the horn, it is part of the process of introducing a sound wave.

The sound wave is not air flow.  Resistance to air flow is not necessarily resistance to sound wave and vice versa. 

The common metaphors of blowing through the horn, moving warm air, etc. etc., are useful to some people, meaningless to others, counterproductive to others. 

Air and sound wave are two separate entities. 
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« Reply #45 on: Feb 15, 2017, 05:55PM »

Found it ! ; Eminent technology ; rotary woofer 

Trond

Many thanks!

This is quite new, long after my days of applying Thiele-Small equations to programs on a Sinclair ZX-1(I think... it was a while ago).

Going to take some time to digest.  But at first glance, I think this has more in common with the compressed air amplifier than trombone sound formation.  It is DELIGHTFULLY out-of-the box thinking (although it depends on a huge box to work.) 

So far I'm clear on the variable-pitch "propellers" which control amplitude.  I'm not so clear on whether that entire mechanism is on a diaphragm to control pitches.  And only very foggy on general principle of operation. 

But worth studying!

Thanks again!
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« Reply #46 on: Feb 15, 2017, 07:56PM »

Found it ! ; Eminent technology ; rotary woofer 

Trond

Looked at this link very carefully http://www.rotarywoofer.com/howitworks.htm and I think I get it.  The pitch (high-low) of the tone is controlled by a diaphragm, like on a conventional cone woofer.  The amplitude is controlled by the pitch ANGLE (steep/shallow) of the variable-pitch blades.

As noted here (http://www.soundandvision.com/content/eminent-technology-trw-17-rotary-subwoofer), the "fan" turns at a constant speed.  In this youtube video with the inventor (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDkKQdRDNzQ) he shows the blades wiggling (pitching) AND the voice coil moving the blades back and forth AND gives the operating principle in a nutshell: each rotation of the blade during a single cycle of a tone multiplies the area of the blades, so that as the number of cycles goes down in relation to the rotation, the effective area of the "cone" multiplies.

In a nutshell, the driver fan operates on a helix of air.  It is not that passing the air on its own makes this louder; it is that passing the air exposes more area to the mechanical amplification of the driver motor.

So not a case in point for the case you were making, but certainly a VERY interesting and useful technology.  If I got a double rotor BBb double-slide bass, could I play notes low enough to need this for stage amplification?  Evil

Thanks for the entirely new (to me) technology!!!
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« Reply #47 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:36PM »

Again, that doesn't mean much- it's just the air passing over the vocal cords in the other direction. The same amount of air.

Once again, air blowing out isn't what it's about,
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« Reply #48 on: Feb 15, 2017, 08:54PM »

Is anyone here able to play a trombone while inhaling?
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« Reply #49 on: Feb 15, 2017, 09:32PM »

Is anyone here able to play a trombone while inhaling?

I gave it a try. Almost!

I can buzz while inhaling. I can't quite quite seal the edges of the mouthpiece when my lips are being sucked in against my teeth so it's not a true embouchure being formed. Possibly a much smaller mouthpiece would help.

However, if i hold the horn up to my lips while I'm buzzing the sound is indeed amplified and can be heard to emanate from the bell.

It's not a fine trombone sound but i only tried it for a couple minutes.
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« Reply #50 on: Feb 15, 2017, 11:56PM »

Looked at this link very carefully http://www.rotarywoofer.com/howitworks.htm and I think I get it.  The pitch (high-low) of the tone is controlled by a diaphragm, like on a conventional cone woofer.  The amplitude is controlled by the pitch ANGLE (steep/shallow) of the variable-pitch blades.

As noted here (http://www.soundandvision.com/content/eminent-technology-trw-17-rotary-subwoofer), the "fan" turns at a constant speed.  In this youtube video with the inventor (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDkKQdRDNzQ) he shows the blades wiggling (pitching) AND the voice coil moving the blades back and forth AND gives the operating principle in a nutshell: each rotation of the blade during a single cycle of a tone multiplies the area of the blades, so that as the number of cycles goes down in relation to the rotation, the effective area of the "cone" multiplies.

I
In a nutshell, the driver fan operates on a helix of air.  It is not that passing the air on its own makes this louder; it is that passing the air exposes more area to the mechanical amplification of the driver motor.

So not a case in point for the case you were making, but certainly a VERY interesting and useful technology.  If I got a double rotor BBb double-slide bass, could I play notes low enough to need this for stage amplification?  Evil

Thanks for the entirely new (to me) technology!!!

Ok ! ... So not a case in point for my theory of moving air , should have read the technical brief a little more thorough..  :-0

Trond
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« Reply #51 on: Feb 16, 2017, 05:05AM »

Is anyone here able to play a trombone while inhaling?
Eh, kinda.  Maybe?  After a grand total of trying for about 10 minutes...  Can make a buzz, even a halfway decent free-buzz.  On the Mouthpiece it is more difficult but not impossible.  With the horn against the face- I can barely get it to lock in on a pitch.  That is, I cannot adjust my buzz to a partial so that it locks in solidly.  I think if I spend a lot of time on it, maybe it would work.  But man does it not feel good.  That said, the process isn't that unnatural feeling to me. I am very proficient at whistling while inhaling, often changing breath direction seamlessly.  That doesn't feel too bad, but the lips coming toward the teeth doesn't seem to work as well.  Maybe that smaller mouthpiece would help.

This brings me back to one of my central points...  The soundwave in the horn influences the buzz.  That is, the buzz as an input is NOT an independent variable to the output.  This is one thing I am most curious about Dr. Smith's setup; does the system provide enough feedback to the face to let it play 'normally' or at least proficiently?  Man, I wish he had demonstrated this thing with a good player with a great sound.

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Andy
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« Reply #52 on: Feb 16, 2017, 05:42AM »

Ok ! ... So not a case in point for my theory of moving air , should have read the technical brief a little more thorough..  :-0

Trond

Man, I wish he had demonstrated this thing with a good player with a great sound.

... and maybe with a control of normal mouthpiece versus the altered one?  Thinking more about Trond's find, I have to wonder if the passage of the ongoing column of air in the mouthpiece DOES have an analogy in the column of air in the rotary subwoofer.  If it is, then finding a way to dump the air on the subwoofer and deliver the vibrations via a membrane would be THEORETICALLY possible.  But it is easy to visualize that such a membrane would introduce a HUGE efficiency loss for the volume of air needed to excite each cycle in, say, a 2 cycle per second tone.

Extrapolating that to the trombone, having a good player/normal mouthpiece compared to same player/altered mouthpiece could show empirically how much efficiency is lost going through the membrane at different frequencies. 

What if each new instant of air allows an increase in the apparent radiating area for the originating vibration in the lips?  In the subwoofer, the amplification is less as the frequency rises toward the RPM of the "fan" blades.  By analogy, on a brasswind, this kind of amplification would also be less as frequency rises in relation to available flow of air.  Restricted aperture size for high notes would reduce available flow of air BUT would also allow greater amplitude of vibration relative to the aperture size.

In contrast, low playing, especially pedals, have limits in just how far the lips can travel to increase volume, even if lip-roll is adjusted to increase apparent mass of the vibrating area. 

Maybe this isn't exactly a case in point of Trond's assertion, but Thigpen's successful rethinking of how to get a larger subwoofer "cone" makes me rethink the function of air going through the horn, especially in the low register.

Interesting that Dr. Smith carried out his experiment on a trombone.  I wonder if he could find membrane material with enough sensitivity for trumpets, or enough travel for tuba?

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« Reply #53 on: Feb 16, 2017, 06:36AM »

I like the idea of playing while inhaling, and I suspect that it would work if you could somehow rearrange your physiology to put your teeth on the outside of your lips, although the existence of a shaped and manipulable cavity behind the teeth seems to alter the quality of the sound.

I'm interested in Brad's artificial lips experiment. I'm also wondering where one buys artificial lips, but I certainly don't want to put that into Google. Seems to me that if Brad's artificial lips work when you put air past them as though exhaling, they would also work if you put a vacuum behind them.
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« Reply #54 on: Feb 16, 2017, 11:47AM »

I will try some experiments when I have time after I get home from my TMEA trip.

I can fairly easily make something similar to his setup.

Stuart Dempster can play while inhaling.
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« Reply #55 on: Feb 16, 2017, 12:11PM »

I took the liberty of copying this link from a topic by boneick.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCQFMr4Wwb0

Seems applicable.
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« Reply #56 on: Feb 27, 2017, 07:58AM »

Dudley bright was kind enough to provide some comments for this thread.  As you may recall, he was the player cited in the original Richard Smith paper from 1999.  I think we can agree that the principal trombonist of the London Symphony would count as "qualified."

Here are Dudley's comments, without any editorial comment from me:

Seems like there's quite a can of worms here.  I guess Richard's initial impetus for the experiment was the oft quoted stuff about 'putting more air through it' (PMAT) and other similar bits of wisdom. Some of my students will tell you I can be quite unkind about this kind of thing and have actually considered putting my views into some kind of research. It must have irked Richard somewhat too, for him to consider putting the time and effort into his experiment that he did. First off, as they say, he did explain to me that he had tried or considered using a trumpet/mouthpiece but the dimensions were too fiddly and settled for the trombone. He used a medium bore student trombone and mouthpiece. The mouthpiece was cut across the cup diameter about 2/3 of the way down. A membrane was inserted across the cut and the two parts brought together with hooks and elastic bands.

He'd explained that the air had to escape from the cup somehow and he had drilled a small hole on the side of the mouthpiece to that effect. He had experimented with different membranes and found condom to be the most effective. He also pointed out that the hole on it's own didn't work and he had deduced that some impedance loading was necessary. So a tube of I guess 3 or 4 mm diameter 7 or 8cm long was attached to the hole and he could then produce a note.

To return to the experiment - quality it it wasn't. Quite apart from the difference between my .547 bore Conn/5G and a blessing(?) student model + 12C the sound was very basic and had to be coaxed in individual notes. Melody wasn't up to much. Nevertheless tone came out of the instrument without the movement of air through the bore - QED!

What interested me was that initially the notes were rather weak - intonation - forget it. After a bit of experimentation I was able to make a stronger more stable sound. What seemed to work was making a closed, tight nasal buzz. What might explain this phenomenon? My thought is that the air pressure in the mouthpiece stretched the condom membrane, making it less responsive to transmitting the vibration into the bore. Adopting a less-air approach slackened the condom membrane and allowed more vibrations through thus exciting the trombone more convincingly. So I wouldn't advocate a less-air technique at all.

I suppose another consideration is that different registers require different quantities of air and the loading pipe can only suit a narrow band. Go lower and the membrane again stretches. I don't remember what happened in different registers but expect it got weaker going down. The experiment can only be a set of compromises. Ideally you would have an infinitely thin membrane and the loading tube would vary in size with volume and pitch.
 
Another aspect which I think one of your forumers touched on was the way in which vibrations from an instrument inter react with the vibrations of the lips. In the experiment I doubt this aspect could work properly, again making the whole process less akin to real playing.

Here we go into another territory and confront buzzing, free or with mouthpiece. There is no doubt that it is unlike coupled note production. Yes mouthpiece practise has its uses, some very productive but it is not the same. Consider how long a breath lasts playing a middle Bb mezzo piano on the mouthpiece v the trombone. 'Using' the same amount of air through the trombone would equivalent to something like five f's!

Now, when a note begins in the normal way, pitch of the nearest harmonic reaches back from the instrument vibrations and shakes the lips at that frequency. As one correspondent mentioned, it happens at the speed of sound so you don't hear the coupling. The less responsive the lips are to this coupling the more likely, poor tone or splits are likely to occur. The more readily and easily the lips resonate with the intended harmonic the greater likelihood of a better sound quality. It might explain the idea of 'more air' where that impression also allows the lips more freedom to find the resonance with the instrument. It does explain why the buzz tends to stop when the lips are uncoupled from the mouthpiece. (Less likely while making a tight nasal sound). This is more likely to happen the further down you go. Less likely in the high register and as Denis Wick used to demonstrate (probably still does) play a top Bb, lift the mouthpiece of the bottom lip, keep buzzing and slur up an octave to super Bb then replace the bottom lip. Pure super Bb- no problem.

Where does that leave us? I'm inclined to say, somewhere in the middle. The Richard Smith demonstration can never be truly representative and proves nothing with regard to tone quality only the raw physical fact that sound does not require air to propagate its vibration through the trombone. So are PMAT'ers anywhere near the truth at all? Does it matter? My view for what it's worth is that if it works and is helpful then use it. Where I run for cover is when there is quasi science touted around and people are misled into trying to do something that isn't really true and haven't got a clue how to do it. Playing a trombone or any musical instrument well is hugely complex and can't be reduced to some simplistic soundbites. The brain is really wonderful and can automatically take care of most of it most of the time if we know how to do that.

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« Reply #57 on: Feb 27, 2017, 10:46AM »

I had som fun with this stuff! Check it out!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fj15Bh6_58E
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« Reply #58 on: Feb 27, 2017, 11:31AM »

I had som fun with this stuff! Check it out!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fj15Bh6_58E

That WAS fun  Good!
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« Reply #59 on: Feb 27, 2017, 10:39PM »

He is not saying that air does not go through the horn when it is being played. He is saying that it is not "because" of the air going through the horn that the sound goes through the horn. He demonstrates beyond doubt that it is not necessary for air to travel through the horn to make sound.

FWIW..
M

For what it's worth, indeed.

I ask again, Matthew...so what???

The air most certainly has to go through the aperture, right? And as any  serious brass player knows, a fairly good air seal is necessary at the intersection of rim and lips to produce a good sound and good playing characteristics. Drill a hole somewhere in the shank of the mouthpiece and what happens? I'll tell you what happens because I at one time had a m'pce w/a mic hole drilled into it. Take the mic out of the hole and what do you get?

Bupkis is what you get.

So where's the beef?

Where's the meat?

Where is the profit in all of this palaver?

The musical profit.

Really!!!

Just another diversion, seems like to me.

I once had a teacher (Not of music but of ...other things...) who used to say to us, "You either do it or you don't."

If you don't, you fill your life with all sorts of other relatively empty pursuits.

But if you do "do it?"

Then there is nothing else to say.

S.
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« Reply #60 on: Feb 27, 2017, 11:48PM »

Yes I think Sam have a good point here. I can't see how this demonstration could help us progress in our daily playing? In the meanwhile I keep blowing out, not in....and let the air go through the horn. :)

Leif
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« Reply #61 on: Feb 28, 2017, 12:04AM »




Where is the profit in all of this palaver?

The musical profit.

Just another diversion, seems like to me.

If you don't, you fill your life with all sorts of other relatively empty pursuits.



What if the goal is for the science profit and not the musical profit?  Science is the vocation and playing the trombone is the avocation.

All this would be a diversion to you as it keeps you from what is important...to you.

And then there are others who would wonder why you spend so much time practicing.  Seems like a huge diversion from a more worthy pursuit.

Try everything and use what works, right?  Being a professional musician works for you.  It doesn't for everyone. 
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« Reply #62 on: Feb 28, 2017, 02:50AM »

Well said, Dan
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« Reply #63 on: Feb 28, 2017, 03:05AM »

 :) Well I had som fun! The point? Obviously to show that the airflow has to pass the lipp-aperture to start the vibrations. The vibrations set up the standing vawe in the horn. You do not fill the horn with air to create a tone, you fill it with vibrations. The horn was a little hard to play both with plastic bag and more so with the R S mouthpiece (I did not use a condom to block the air from going in to the horn, but plastic that you wrap food in may it is easier with a condom?)
Can it make som a better player? Well, that was not the point, many subjects and discousions on TTF does not make anybody a better player, but may be intersing for some. It is so nice with things that you don´t find interseting, you can just ignore it. Hi

Nevertheless, I do certainly think it can make sombody to re-think the purpose of the airflow, and to relize it is not forzed air to fill the horn, but air flow to make the lips buzz, yes I think that can helps someone to a better player.

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« Reply #64 on: Feb 28, 2017, 05:14AM »



Nevertheless, I do certainly think it can make sombody to re-think the purpose of the airflow, and to relize it is not forzed air to fill the horn, but air flow to make the lips buzz, yes I think that can helps someone to a better player.



Also, the answer to playing better does not always have to be "move more air."  If we understand that the air makes the lips buzz, we might figure out how to make them buzz freely with less air, and that could be a good thing. 
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« Reply #65 on: Feb 28, 2017, 05:34AM »

Also, the answer to playing better does not always have to be "move more air."  If we understand that the air makes the lips buzz, we might figure out how to make them buzz freely with less air, and that could be a good thing. 

Tim,

I think this is the most important point I'm taking away from all this.

I had wondered earlier about the possibility that a major function of the acoustical system in a brasswind was assistance in just dumping air.  Sven's video leads me to think so.  Dudley's post supports that.

It would be interesting (to me) to hear if ANY note comes out sounding almost the same with the RS mouthpiece as with a regular one.  I suspect it would be JUST one note.  The hole in the RS mouthpiece is NOT just a hole.  As Sam says, that is just a leak and sounds crappy if at all.  The hole is the start of a tuned port.  It didn't look to me like any calculation was done to tune that port, but empirical lengthening until sound could be supported. 

My logical extension of that tuned port idea is that the mouthpiece/venture/pipe-closed-at-one-end-resonator provides an acoustical reactance that allow just the right amount of air to be dumped for any frequency, rather than just the one of a single tuned port.

Corollary to that is that if I try to put MORE air through than the system is tuned for, bad things will happen.

So, aside from satisfying scientific curiosity, this does have daily practice implications for ME.  No big changes, but I do spend a little more time focused right at the chops, experimenting with different volumes and pitches, listening and feeling carefully (again, right at the chops) for the combinations that feel best, produce the best sound, appropriate volume, and use just the right amount of air.  I don't just play the long tones, but really, really pay attention to how my chops are reacting to the whole system.  And my focus remains right at the chops, not on a back wall somewhere.  This nutty experiment confirms (for me) that if I get it right at the chops, the rest will take care of itself.
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« Reply #66 on: Feb 28, 2017, 05:54AM »

For what it's worth, indeed.

I ask again, Matthew...so what???

The air most certainly has to go through the aperture, right? And as any  serious brass player knows, a fairly good air seal is necessary at the intersection of rim and lips to produce a good sound and good playing characteristics. Drill a hole somewhere in the shank of the mouthpiece and what happens? I'll tell you what happens because I at one time had a m'pce w/a mic hole drilled into it. Take the mic out of the hole and what do you get?

Bupkis is what you get.

So where's the beef?

Where's the meat?

Where is the profit in all of this palaver?

The musical profit.

Really!!!

Just another diversion, seems like to me.

I once had a teacher (Not of music but of ...other things...) who used to say to us, "You either do it or you don't."

If you don't, you fill your life with all sorts of other relatively empty pursuits.

But if you do "do it?"

Then there is nothing else to say.

S.
Sam, consider the following... Understanding turbulent airflow does nothing to make you a better driver.  It does, however, help somebody engineer a better intake manifold that allows you to be a better driver.  Knowing about how mist forms from a pressurized opening does nothing to make you enjoy a sunday drive.  It does, however, help somebody engineer a better fuel injector to make that drive smoother and last longer for the same amount of fuel.  They aren't empty because you cannot find the purpose there.  They aren't even empty to your stated goal.  They just aren't for you.

If this helps somebody think of a better way to understand what is really happening physically in the horn... great.  Maybe they can use that to make a better mousetrap for us so that folks like you can go to new musical heights.  Kinda hard to ask where the fruit is when all that has been presented is a way to plow a field.  It might take a lot more work to figure out how to get fruit out of it.  Heck, there might not ever come any fruit from it, but it takes a lot of bad ideas to get a good one.

Cheers,
Andy
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« Reply #67 on: Feb 28, 2017, 11:38AM »

For what it's worth, indeed.

I ask again, Matthew...so what???

The air most certainly has to go through the aperture, right? And as any  serious brass player knows, a fairly good air seal is necessary at the intersection of rim and lips to produce a good sound and good playing characteristics. Drill a hole somewhere in the shank of the mouthpiece and what happens? I'll tell you what happens because I at one time had a m'pce w/a mic hole drilled into it. Take the mic out of the hole and what do you get?

Bupkis is what you get.

So where's the beef?

Where's the meat?

Where is the profit in all of this palaver?

The musical profit.

Really!!!

Just another diversion, seems like to me.

I once had a teacher (Not of music but of ...other things...) who used to say to us, "You either do it or you don't."

If you don't, you fill your life with all sorts of other relatively empty pursuits.

But if you do "do it?"

Then there is nothing else to say.

S.
You heard the king, folks. All science that doesn't 100% directly relate to how Sam plays the trombone shall henceforth be referred to as "fake news". Now everybody log off and go practice.
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« Reply #68 on: Feb 28, 2017, 11:43AM »

I've wasted my life  :cry:
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« Reply #69 on: Feb 28, 2017, 12:54PM »

But dear trombonists (and scientists), there is nothing new here. Even our tipp tipp tipp tipp tipp ....grandfather in the stone age knew the air going through the lips make the sound. The sound depends how we form the lips and how we use the air. Is there really anything new here? There is nothing....that is useful. We still have to use the air, lips, tongue, our body to make the horn sound the way we want. And I bet this will not change the way to play, or change the horn for the next thousands of years. Or the genious simple prinsipp our horn is....like I told there isn't anything new here....it was exactly the same prinsipp our tipp tipp......used.  :)

Leif

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« Reply #70 on: Feb 28, 2017, 12:57PM »

The sound depends how we form the lips and how we use the air.



If that's all the sound depends on then may I send you my address so you can ship me all those nice vintage Conns you have?  Your Mt. Vernon mouthpiece, too.   Good!
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« Reply #71 on: Feb 28, 2017, 01:03PM »

Discoveries lead to more discoveries.  We may go through dozens or hundreds that don't mean anything by themselves.  But the journey may lead to a discovery that makes a huge difference.  Decrying any gain in knowledge is a shame regardless of whether or not it really affects you or me.
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« Reply #72 on: Mar 01, 2017, 02:24AM »

Quote
It didn't look to me like any calculation was done to tune that port, but empirical lengthening until sound could be supported.


Right. The RS mpc I made is very much done by chanse. I am sure that if you spend more time and made much more misstakes before publishing the result I could make the thing to work much better.

I do wunder if it would be worth it though, what the experiment did show is that the airstream does not have to entry the horn to make a sound, even with this crappy setup.

The wibrating part more then the lips in the mpc is some plastic film made to wrap food in.
That is what make the vibrations going into the horn. Of course the plastic film is not the optimal embouchure you can think of.

I hade literally hundreds of student who was thinking of the blow must fill the horn with air, sometimes it was really difficult to get them to understand that if the vibrations in the lips was right, the rest will take care of it self. The blow is just to set the lips in vibration. In the mouthpiece when connectied to the horn. I you could lead the airstream out of the horn with a more sophisticated way then whatr I did you would most likely get a good tone out of the instrument.

Is this old news? Well maybe for some of you who use you brain i a sientific way, But I insure you that when I did this experiment infront of classes with musicstudent in 16-18 years of age they all got very suprised since they though that the airstream going through the horn was what make the sound.
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« Reply #73 on: Mar 01, 2017, 04:07AM »

You heard the king, folks. All science that doesn't 100% directly relate to how Sam plays the trombone shall henceforth be referred to as "fake news". Now everybody log off and go practice.

And all brass playing-related "science" that doesn't 100% relate to playing the horn well will heretofore be referred to as "Blowero science."

Go blow it out your...awwww, you know!!!

S.
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« Reply #74 on: Mar 01, 2017, 04:54AM »

Sometimes I do love the TTF!  :D
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« Reply #75 on: Mar 01, 2017, 04:57AM »



Is this old news? Well maybe for some of you who use you brain i a sientific way, But I insure you that when I did this experiment infront of classes with musicstudent in 16-18 years of age they all got very suprised since they though that the airstream going through the horn was what make the sound.

Did you ever succeed in convincing one of them that it was not actually the brass that vibrates and produces the sound, but the air column?   :D
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« Reply #76 on: Mar 01, 2017, 06:27AM »

Did you ever succeed in convincing one of them that it was not actually the brass that vibrates and produces the sound, but the air column?   :D

Will anyone ever succeed in convincing you that the vibrations produced by the brass DO matter to the player?
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« Reply #77 on: Mar 01, 2017, 09:04AM »

Will anyone ever succeed in convincing you that the vibrations produced by the brass DO matter to the player?

Interestingly enough, Richard Smith is helpful on this aspct as well.  If you search for his 1988 ITG article "It's All In The Bore" you'll find not only article, but lots of subsequent research around the globe citing the article.  In a nutshell, the concensus seems to be that the shape determines trombonishness, but that the surrounding materials DO affect the specific colors within that trombonishness.
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« Reply #78 on: Mar 01, 2017, 10:16AM »

  In a nutshell, the concensus seems to be that the shape determines trombonishness, but that the surrounding materials DO affect the specific colors within that trombonishness.

There's a distinction I make here that Euph does not.

The word you used is affect (verb).  I admit the possibility that there is an effect (noun).  In fact it is probable there is an effect, I just think it is small enough that in well run tests in most acoustic environments it is likely below the limits of detection for most people.  That means that the very large effects that people notice are probably due to something else.  That something else gets ignored but it's important. 

The word he used though is produced, and that's not unique to him.  A very large number of players think the brass produces vibrations and adds them to the tone.  It can't.  It can only subtract. 
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« Reply #79 on: Mar 01, 2017, 11:02AM »

But dear trombonists (and scientists), there is nothing new here. Even our tipp tipp tipp tipp tipp ....grandfather in the stone age knew the air going through the lips make the sound. The sound depends how we form the lips and how we use the air. Is there really anything new here? There is nothing....that is useful. We still have to use the air, lips, tongue, our body to make the horn sound the way we want. And I bet this will not change the way to play, or change the horn for the next thousands of years. Or the genious simple prinsipp our horn is....like I told there isn't anything new here....it was exactly the same prinsipp our tipp tipp......used.  :)

Leif



Leif,
If none of this is new (and, since the research was done in 1999, it isn't really new either) then why have teachers like Sven and Dudley Bright had to deal with students who tried to solve their problems with the "Put More Air Through" (PMAT) approach?
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« Reply #80 on: Mar 01, 2017, 11:54AM »

Dave, there is and was some bad teachers which had one solution to almost every trombone related problem; "blow more air, use more air"

About blowing air through the trombone; nothing wrong with that, that's how it feels for me. Just have to use the air in a way we get the sound we want. Like a guitar player hit the string with a finger to get the sound, we use air, lips, tongue, mouth in a special combination to get the desired sound. So it is and has always been.....isn't it?

This tread is starting to be fun...hehe

Leif
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« Reply #81 on: Mar 01, 2017, 12:20PM »

Dave, there is and was some bad teachers which had one solution to almost every trombone related problem; "blow more air, use more air"


Leif

Or maybe it's not so much bad teaching, but that some players just are in the habit of thinking air, while others might think chops. 
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« Reply #82 on: Mar 01, 2017, 12:35PM »

Or maybe it's not so much bad teaching, but that some players just are in the habit of thinking air, while others might think chops. 

Yes some focus only on one thing. But it is a combination of many aspects. Air, tongue, lips, throat, vowels ...etc  slide, arm, ....it sounds simple but everything has to be right to get the result. Right amount of air, right amount of tension or use of muscles im the right places. Then the understanding of music...the mental part...

Some think air can solve everything but everything has to work together in harmony. So as Sam tell, work and practice. Try to understand and have a goal.

Leif
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« Reply #83 on: Mar 01, 2017, 12:53PM »

Yes some focus only on one thing. But it is a combination of many aspects. Air, tongue, lips, throat, vowels ...etc  slide, arm, ....it sounds simple but everything has to be right to get the result. Right amount of air, right amount of tension or use of muscles im the right places. Then the understanding of music...the mental part...

Some think air can solve everything but everything has to work together in harmony. So as Sam tell, work and practice. Try to understand and have a goal.

Leif

As a teacher you are in a unique position to think about appropriate metaphors.  Since all students learn in different ways (well all the students I ever met or heard of) it should be helpful to have metaphors that work for each student. 

Some teachers really don't know any better than to follow PMAT.  Some feel PMAT is useful as a step in a Wittgenstein Ladder (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wittgenstein's_ladder.)  I think this experiment shows that PMAT is NOT a step that should be in anyones learning ladder.

More useful metaphors?  strings, bows, and fingerboards, among others.  The lips are the strings, the air and tongue are the bow, and the embouchure along with slide positions are the fingerboards.  Simplifying assumptions that are not inherently just plain false.

The ideas are certainly not new, but having a concrete demonstration of just how false PMAT is IS new.  And being able to categorically toss out a false metaphor eliminates that as a distraction from teaching/learning/playing, so we can focus where things WILL make a difference.

Does that make sense?
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« Reply #84 on: Mar 01, 2017, 01:55PM »

You all make sense Dave  Good!
I think it was fun discussing a little but this soon getting to complicated for my simple brain  :D

Im just a teacher for small kids and are used to explain with simple words. And I try to progress my self to play better but know I will never be a super trombonists. For me the journey to get better is the fun, even if my progress isn't exactly the best. I still have fun with the small steps I make.

Playing trombone or learning to play can be explained with simple words but with so many factors involved its still a complex task that need both time, brain and work to achieve results. For me in my position its the small steps, both forward and back, that makes the hole fun.

Keep on the discussion dear trombonists, Im afraid I dont understand everything here...not first time  :D  ;-)

Leif
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« Reply #85 on: Mar 01, 2017, 03:06PM »

There's a distinction I make here that Euph does not.

...

The word he used though is produced, and that's not unique to him.  A very large number of players think the brass produces vibrations and adds them to the tone.  It can't.  It can only subtract. 

Read it again, Tim. I said nothing about vibrations producing changes that affect the tone. I merely said that the vibrations produced by the brass matter to the player. How a horn vibrates, regardless of whether that vibration affects the sound, makes a difference to me as a player. Are you saying that the horn doesn't produce vibrations?
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« Reply #86 on: Mar 01, 2017, 06:50PM »

And all brass playing-related "science" that doesn't 100% relate to playing the horn well will heretofore be referred to as "Blowero science."

Go blow it out your...awwww, you know!!!

S.

And all self-important, egotistical, pompous jerks will be known as Sam Burtis. Pant
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« Reply #87 on: Mar 01, 2017, 07:11PM »

Well, at least everyone has remained civil.  :/
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« Reply #88 on: Mar 01, 2017, 07:17PM »

Let's please keep it between the lines. Maligning members (Burtis/Blowero) isn't cool. Definitely breaking ToU.

Tit for tat. You've both thrown your jabs. Party over.

Just sayin'
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« Reply #89 on: Mar 01, 2017, 07:51PM »

Sorry you folks don't like it, but if some lout tells me " blow it out your ...", he's gonna hear back from me.
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« Reply #90 on: Mar 01, 2017, 07:52PM »

Could one play the trombone by blowing it out their....?
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« Reply #91 on: Mar 01, 2017, 07:54PM »

Sorry you folks don't like it, but if some lout tells me " blow it out your ...", he's gonna hear back from me.

I get it. But as a mod, I am asking that it stop. Thanks
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« Reply #92 on: Mar 01, 2017, 07:56PM »

Read it again, Tim. I said nothing about vibrations producing changes that affect the tone. I merely said that the vibrations produced by the brass matter to the player. How a horn vibrates, regardless of whether that vibration affects the sound, makes a difference to me as a player. Are you saying that the horn doesn't produce vibrations?

In the truest, most pure sense, no the brass does not produce vibrations.  Only an energy source can produce vibrations.  The brass can transmit them and reflect them back to the player, but it does not produce them.  Mostly useless semantics, but it is a significant difference in terminology when discussing the relatively minor effect of material differences.

Cheers,
Andy
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« Reply #93 on: Mar 01, 2017, 08:15PM »

Theoretically, couldn't the brass produce new content through sympathetic vibrations unpresent in the original input signal? Or is that considered transmission.
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« Reply #94 on: Mar 01, 2017, 08:17PM »

I get it. But as a mod, I am asking that it stop. Thanks

Done. I won't post again in this thread.
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« Reply #95 on: Mar 01, 2017, 08:25PM »

In the truest, most pure sense, no the brass does not produce vibrations.  Only an energy source can produce vibrations.  The brass can transmit them and reflect them back to the player, but it does not produce them.  Mostly useless semantics, but it is a significant difference in terminology when discussing the relatively minor effect of material differences.


In the truest, most pure sense, yes!! the brass DOES!! produce vibrations. Why is it so hard for people in engineering-related fields to see that words can be used in a non-engineering context by those outside of the field and still be accurate? The brass makes your hands vibrate. Without the brass, your hand wouldn't vibrate. The brass produces vibrations in the player's hands.

Do you feel the horn vibrating when you play? Do your hands vibrate in the same way if you place a speaker in front of you and play back a recording of your playing, or even in if the speaker is behind you? The brass is producing vibrations. They may be secondary, but they still exist.

Tim and I disagree on how the sound is transmitted, but surely all three of us can agree that the vibrations that are felt in the hand are transmitted by the vibration of the horn, right? Which is why a P-bone might sound OK, but gives an unacceptable level of feedback to the player. It produces less vibration in the hands than a brass trombone.

I can't answer to whether changing material changes the sound, but my unscientific, subjective, experiential perspective is that changing the materials in a horn produces predictable trends in how that horn vibrates in my hand, and I prefer how some horns and some materials vibrate to how other horns vibrate.

Are all fora haunted by people who put such a fine point on semantics?

The Hi Fi Forum: "My new speakers produce a fantastic sound!" "No, the electricity flowing through them produces the sound."
The Espresso Forum: "The espresso coming out of the La Pavoni burned my finger." "No, it was the heat energy in the espresso that burned your finger."
The Baking Forum: "Fleischmann's yeast doesn't seem to make the dough rise as fast as Red Star." "No, the exhaled CO2 coming from the yeast cultures in the dough made with Fleischmann's yeast results in a lower coefficient of expansion than the C02 coming from the yeast cultures in the dough made with Red Star."

Not "mostly" useless semantics. "Purely" useless semantics.
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« Reply #96 on: Mar 01, 2017, 09:05PM »

Theoretically, couldn't the brass produce new content through sympathetic vibrations unpresent in the original input signal? Or is that considered transmission.
I think so.  But I have absolutely nothing to back it up.
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« Reply #97 on: Mar 02, 2017, 02:05AM »

Quote
grandfather in the stone age knew the air going through the lips make the sound. The sound depends how we form the lips and how we use the air. Is there really anything new here? There is nothing....that is useful. We still have to use the air, lips, tongue, our body to make the horn sound the way we want. And I bet this will not change the way to play, or change the horn for the next thousands of years.

Well, the experiment did not prove that the horn feature was important, actually the opposite.
The transmiting of the vibrations to the horn in my show was done through the vibrating plastic film, nevertheless, the horn reacted with the bore profile and did set up a standing vawe (sorry Tim) so that there was a clear series of partials. As a matter of fact the horns boreprofile is extremely important. There have been brass instruments around for thusends of years, trombones from around 1450, the bore-profile has chansed many times, today we play different trombones like small, medium, medium-large, large and bass trombone (not coutning contrabass or alto) and sackbut that has a completely different bore-profile. No the old time trombonists did think that the lips made the sond, we dont think so today either. The lips and the horn makes the sound, the horn is as important as the lips.

For many years I told my students to blow through the horn. In my experience it is much more revarding to say blow the lips, let the sound fill the room.

You do the teaching, in anyway you want, I hade some fun, and yes some of the reactions made me have some more fun!  :)
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« Reply #98 on: Mar 02, 2017, 05:42AM »

Theoretically, couldn't the brass produce new content through sympathetic vibrations unpresent in the original input signal? Or is that considered transmission.
It will filter reduce and transmit.  They will sound different.  Still playing in semantics, they are a version of what is in the horn.  Returning more to the topic, I generally feel that these are closely coupled systems and the inputs are not completely independent of the output.

To respond to euph, yes... it feels different and sounds different behind the bell.  I believe that it may be possible to measure differences on the other side of the bell, but that is a tall task for repeatability.

Quote from: Euph
The Hi Fi Forum: "My new speakers produce a fantastic sound!" "No, the electricity flowing through them produces the sound."
The Espresso Forum: "The espresso coming out of the La Pavoni burned my finger." "No, it was the heat energy in the espresso that burned your finger."
The Baking Forum: "Fleischmann's yeast doesn't seem to make the dough rise as fast as Red Star." "No, the exhaled CO2 coming from the yeast cultures in the dough made with Fleischmann's yeast results in a lower coefficient of expansion than the C02 coming from the yeast cultures in the dough made with Red Star.
Come on, man...  These are all items with direct causal relationships.  Hot water contains the energy.  Brass contains no energy.  Speakers.. I have no problem with saying a person playing a trombone produces a sound... but when you try to assign causal relationships to components is where you get yourself into some corners.  Semantics are often useless, but when you are trying to go through causal relationships, getting to details matters.  My engine makes my car go, but if you take that engine and put it on a bike with no gas tank, it won't make the bike go.

Cheers,
Andy
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« Reply #99 on: Mar 02, 2017, 06:18AM »

To respond to euph, yes... it feels different and sounds different behind the bell. 

And that was 99% of my point. Tim focuses on sound, and his belief that materials don't affect sound implies that materials "don't matter." My point is that regardless of whether they affect sound, they matter to the player.

I have no problem with saying a person playing a trombone produces a sound... but when you try to assign causal relationships to components is where you get yourself into some corners.  Semantics are often useless, but when you are trying to go through causal relationships, getting to details matters.  My engine makes my car go, but if you take that engine and put it on a bike with no gas tank, it won't make the bike go.


??? I'm not sure what you mean about putting a car engine on a bike, but car propulsion is one of the best analogies for the point I'm making here. I drive a Chevy Volt. If you're looking at causal relationships, the generator is what makes my car go, by providing energy to a traction motor. An engineer might say that it doesn't matter whether the  generator is powered by the DC battery or by the car's internal combustion engine, since both are producing electricity which drives the wheels. However, I can think of six or seven reasons why I prefer to have the DC battery powering the traction motor, and a lot of that has to do with how the car "vibrates." Semantics and meta-language won't get to a greater truth here than "to me, it's more enjoyable to drive when it's powered by the DC battery."
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« Reply #100 on: Mar 02, 2017, 07:03AM »

Could one play the trombone by blowing it out their....?

Funny.... I distinctly recall two phrases from almost every lesson with John Coffey.  One was "Tongue and blow kid, ya follow or not?"

The other was "Blow it out yer ..., kid"

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« Reply #101 on: Mar 02, 2017, 07:29AM »

And that was 99% of my point. Tim focuses on sound, and his belief that materials don't affect sound implies that materials "don't matter." My point is that regardless of whether they affect sound, they matter to the player.

??? I'm not sure what you mean about putting a car engine on a bike, but car propulsion is one of the best analogies for the point I'm making here. I drive a Chevy Volt. If you're looking at causal relationships, the generator is what makes my car go, by providing energy to a traction motor. An engineer might say that it doesn't matter whether the  generator is powered by the DC battery or by the car's internal combustion engine, since both are producing electricity which drives the wheels. However, I can think of six or seven reasons why I prefer to have the DC battery powering the traction motor, and a lot of that has to do with how the car "vibrates." Semantics and meta-language won't get to a greater truth here than "to me, it's more enjoyable to drive when it's powered by the DC battery."

Yup.  I sorta straddle a divide here with you and Tim.  I generally feel that the results are so minor that they are virtually unmeasurable in most objective manners.  However, I can also think of a dozen reasons why I prefer to play certain materials or constructions.  My theoretical construct here is the close coupling of the system and the change in input that results from the differences make things different for the player, if not the listener.  As I noted in another thread, when the feedback I get from the horn doesn't match what my learned practices expect, I am lost and uncomfortable playing. 

Continuing to steer back to the topic, if we could use this divorce of the air flow from the sound column to break down elements of that feedback loop, I think that could lead to some fascinating developments in instrument design.  For manufacturing systems, we strive to develop a product where the useful output of the system is less sensitive to input variation.  That is a dimension can a wide tolerance and not have any effect on fit form or function (before I lose everybody, imagine a slotted hole for a bolt.  It doesn't matter as much where that hole is in one dimension if there is a slot to accommodate the variation).  Could we understand the feedback process so that we can tailor the feedback to the operator more independently of the sound produced?  The problem for me theoretically is that we don't all want to sound the same, so how to still allow good variation in output without making the whole system sterile.

Anyway, this is a lot of dancing about architecture,
Andy
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« Reply #102 on: Mar 02, 2017, 08:07AM »

What if the goal is for the science profit and not the musical profit?  Science is the vocation and playing the trombone is the avocation.

All this would be a diversion to you as it keeps you from what is important...to you.

And then there are others who would wonder why you spend so much time practicing.  Seems like a huge diversion from a more worthy pursuit.

Try everything and use what works, right?  Being a professional musician works for you.  It doesn't for everyone. 

I teach a great deal, Dan. I teach anybody and everybody who wants to learn how to play a brass instrument, and I have a sliding scale regarding my payment which boils down to "Pay what you can afford. Same effort from me no matter what you can afford or how far you have progressed." Why? Because I believe that what I am really teaching is a meditative discipline...a non-sectarian form of worship, a chance for us to stop talking to ourselves (The essence of "meditation," really.) and appreciate the infinite in a very focused and calm manner. Any and all digressions from that attempt...no matter how it is taught...have been proven useless to me. They are useless if the goal is to be a working musician; they are useless if the goal is just to "get better," and they are useless in a meditational sense. Anyone who wants to run one of many Rube Goldberg attempts to complicate these matters is free to do so as far as I am concerned, as I am free to criticize their work.

"Pure science?"

Go to a physics site.

As I have stated here on numerous occasions, I have yet to meet a physicist who has used his knowledge of physics to become a better brass musician. Although I am aware that there may be some, there are literally thousands and thousands of fine brass players who have never given the "physics" of the instrument a thought.

After Albert Einstein had played a string quartet rehearsal with Jascha Heifetz, Einstein asked Heifetz what he thought of his playing.

Heifetz's immortal answer?

"You play very well, Albert...for a physicist."

Like dat.

S.
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« Reply #103 on: Mar 02, 2017, 08:18AM »

Yet the conversation goes on.  Hi
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« Reply #104 on: Mar 02, 2017, 08:57AM »



Continuing to steer back to the topic, if we could use this divorce of the air flow from the sound column to break down elements of that feedback loop, I think that could lead to some fascinating developments in instrument design. 

Or - and this is where I'm coming from - in pedagogy rather than instrument design.  We put too little emphasis on what Sam calls the "soft machine." 
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« Reply #105 on: Mar 02, 2017, 09:09AM »

Discoveries lead to more discoveries.  We may go through dozens or hundreds that don't mean anything by themselves.  But the journey may lead to a discovery that makes a huge difference.  Decrying any gain in knowledge is a shame regardless of whether or not it really affects you or me.

Yes, but...spending time on useless knowledge is simply wasted time.

Some people here are saying that knowing this "the air doesn't go though the horn" thing makes them concentrate more on the air buzzing through the lips rather than flowing through the horn.

DUH!!!

That's what the various buzzing techniques do.

And...done well...they lead directly to better playing.

Duh twice!!!

There is a resistance balance in any brass instrument that must be achieved to play well...a balance between and among:

1-The amount of air that produces a resonant sound and buzz at the embouchure

2-The resistance produced in the soft machine (mostly controlled by the various arches of the tongue)

and

3-The resistance of the entire acoustic hard machine.

Too much air produces...well, you've heard bad drum and bugle corps, right? Or wildly overblown salsa players? And too little...a much more common problem with students right on up to semi-professional players...produces a breathy, weak, tenuous sound.

And then there is the Goldilocks mean. For every player, on every horn, at every volume, in every register. Not too much; not too little...juuuussst right.

If one habitually produces a nasty, blasty sound, there is no need for theoretical information to tell you that "more air" is not necessarily the solution to the problem, you simply need to listen to...and emulate...great players of your choice. And if someone cannot tell the difference between a blasting fool and say Joe Alessi or Tommy Dorsey, then...then I don't know what to say except "Best of luck in the future."

Somebody back there on this already too long thread consciously wrote something that was meant to insult me. I do not take insults personally, but I also do not back down from things that I know to be true.

And I will continue to do so.

S.

P.S. You want 'science?" OK. Here is a little scientific experiment that I would like you to do. If you can freebuzz, do so on say a middle Bb and put your hand in front of your lips. Air is quite plainly moving. Stop the air with your finger on the aperture. No airflow, no sound.

Then buzz into a m'pce and do the same thing.

Ditto with the air, only it is a little more dispersed because the shank's diameter is greater than the diameter of the embouchure's aperture...like opening the adjustable spout at the end of a water hose. Put your finger on the end of the shank. What happens? The air stops dead in its tracks and with it aslo does the sound.

Now put the m'pce into a leadpipe and do the same thing. The air is again slightly less focused because the leadpipe has a larger diameter overall than does the m'pce shank. Finger stop the end of the leadpipe and once again all airflow and sound stop.

Put the m'pce + leadpipe into a slide and once again play a note. Put your hand in front of the opening on the other end of the slide and what do you feel? Again...a slightly more dispersed airflow because the diameter of the slide is greater than the diameter of the leadpipe.

Now take the tuning slide out of a bell section and attach the bell to the slide. Play a note and put your hand near the open neck pipe. Once again...a slightly less focused air flow due to the larger diameter of the neck pipe, but air is still clearly flowing through the horn. Stop it with your finger and the note stops.

Then put the smaller part of the tuning slide into the neck pipe but leave the larger part of the tuning slide unattached to the bell section. Same experiment, same results. Air is flowing but again it is more dispersed due to the larger pipe diameter, and stopping the end of that pipe will stop the airflow and the sound.

Now put the whole horn together and play the same note. Put you hand in front of the bell. It is hard to feel any air moving, but this is again because the radical flare of the bell disperses the air to a point where it is hard to feel. If you could produce a real, perfect air stop for the bell without harming the bell you would experience the same thing as you did during all the intermediate stops along the way.

Or, of course...something truly magical happens in the course of the air after in reaches the end of the tuning slide and it just...disappears!!!



It's gone!!!

But...oh. Wait a minute!!! We are doing science here.

Not magic.

My bad.

Later...gotta go practice.

S.
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« Reply #106 on: Mar 02, 2017, 09:31AM »

Sam,
You CONTINUE to make up your own version of the Smith experiment. 
IGNORING the terms of the experiment is NOT science. 
In the Smith experiment it is FUNDAMENTAL that air continue to pass through the lips.

ALL your "scientific" experiments STOP air passing the lips.

I do NOT understand why this is so hard for you to grasp.

I will NOT continue to waste my time as you continue in this vein.

I respect your playing.
I respect your method books.
I respect your teaching.

The kind of responses you've posted in this thread so far have undermined all that respect.

I'm sure this doesn't bother you at all.  It is pretty sad for me.
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« Reply #107 on: Mar 02, 2017, 10:25AM »

Sam,
You CONTINUE to make up your own version of the Smith experiment. 
IGNORING the terms of the experiment is NOT science. 
In the Smith experiment it is FUNDAMENTAL that air continue to pass through the lips.

ALL your "scientific" experiments STOP air passing the lips.

I do NOT understand why this is so hard for you to grasp.

I will NOT continue to waste my time as you continue in this vein.

I respect your playing.
I respect your method books.
I respect your teaching.

The kind of responses you've posted in this thread so far have undermined all that respect.

I'm sure this doesn't bother you at all.  It is pretty sad for me.

At around :40 of the original post's video, Dr.Smith states "I've been interested in doing demonstrations that will bust some of the myths that have grown up around playing instruments and even making instruments. And one of the big ones is (get?) putting air into your instrument to make the sound...come out."

I do not believe that this is a "myth," and my experiment above proves that it is not. Now...if he had said "to make a good, musical sound come out" it would have been even more ludicrous, but he did not. He proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that a "sound" can be made to come out of the instrument without any airflow within the instrument. I can do that, too. With a hammer.

BANG!!!

A sound came out of the instrument.

I know that this is a reductio ad absurdum argument, but on the scale of absurdity what he is doing is not too far away from the hammer idea in terms making music on a brass instrument.

I was quite clear in my post immediately above regarding the absolute necessity of moving air all the way through the horn if one is to play it well. Telling a young student...or any student whose head is not yet quite on straight regarding how to play...that he or she does not need to "[put] air into the instrument to make the sound come out" strikes me as being totally counterproductive in about 99% of the cases that I have seen over the years. Putting the right amount of air...not too much, not too little...through the horn is the correct approach a far as I am concerned, and all the tortured experiments in the world that might purport to prove otherwise are totally useless in the actual study and practice of playing a brass instrument. My simple experiment above is all you need to know on the subject.

I am sorry that you have lost so much respect for what I am doing. I am reminded of recent video interview I saw of Jay Friedman speaking about his difficult early experiences with trying to talk to other, older brass players regarding Arnold Jacobs's "Song and Wind" approach...they basically told him that Jacobs was full of hot air and would screw up Friedman's playing. (Jacobs was full of hot air, but it was the good kind; he put it though an enormous horn and made enormously effective sounds with it.)

I am speaking very simply about what "the air" does as it goes through the horn and produces sounds. No air...all the way through the horn because there is nowhere that it can escape except through the bell...no sound. (Also...no buzz, no sound. There have been other "scientists" and players who say the lips aren't buzzing either. I take exception to that as well.)

You no longer respect me for speaking common sense? And then proving it?

So it goes.

Be well.

S.
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« Reply #108 on: Mar 02, 2017, 10:58AM »

...
"Pure science?"

Go to a physics site.

As I have stated here on numerous occasions, I have yet to meet a physicist who has used his knowledge of physics to become a better brass musician. Although I am aware that there may be some, there are literally thousands and thousands of fine brass players who have never given the "physics" of the instrument a thought.
...
But.. many folks have used the physics of the instruments to make better components for YOU to make better music. Do you not believe this is even in play here?

Quote from: sabutin
Yes, but...spending time on useless knowledge is simply wasted time.
This is the dumbest thing I have read from a smart person in a long time.

'Back to the mines with you, we don't have time to play those silly instruments!'

When you profession is largely considered a waste of time, throwing stones seems an odd way to go.

Cheers,
Andy

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« Reply #109 on: Mar 02, 2017, 11:15AM »

But.. many folks have used the physics of the instruments to make better components for YOU to make better music. Do you not believe this is even in play here?
This is the dumbest thing I have read from a smart person in a long time.

'Back to the mines with you, we don't have time to play those silly instruments!'

When you profession is largely considered a waste of time, throwing stones seems an odd way to go.

Cheers,
Andy

Paying attention to those who consider "my profession" to be a waste of time is a waste of time in and of itself.

Human time on earth is finite. I waste as little time as possible on things that I cannot affect.

Including this discussion.

I've had my say. Go do whatever makes you happy.

I've proven my point to the best of my ability.

Feel free to discuss among yourselves.

Over and out.

S.
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« Reply #110 on: Mar 02, 2017, 11:20AM »

Svenne, I admit I didn't read the hole tread and I first saw your video today. Cool  Good! Didn't know you play tenor also!

If my family go to Sweden this summer, I go and visit you. I bring my Conn and you give me some tips on how to play the Sinatra songs. We have relatives living in Mjölby so we might take a trip. And we can go and have a beer in "Grøna Lund". Mjölby isnt that fare away from Stockholm, 1 or 2 ours with car?  Im also a little curious about trying some new instruments like your Kanstul. Brasspecialisten also have some instruments in the shop?

On topic; Today a singer told us his approach to sing. About how to use air, how to make the throat, jaws and different ways to form the body to make different sounds. Very interesting. He told even the canals up to nose and eyes is a factor in shaping the sound. Classical singers open as much as possible to make a good sound. He show us how he warm up and we did it together with him. Even I with my horrible voice felt I could get a decent sound. Amazing! When thinking about it, a lot of the prinsipps are the same on trombone. The air stream make the "voice muscles" vibrate. Same as we use air to make lips vibrate. They dont use tongue then to start the tone and they use a lot more "shape inside" throat and the hole head to color the sound. In short we could learn from singers...

Anyway, very interesting and much of it is the same prinsipp on trombone!  Amazed



Leif

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« Reply #111 on: Mar 02, 2017, 01:36PM »

Paying attention to those who consider "my profession" to be a waste of time is a waste of time in and of itself.

Human time on earth is finite. I waste as little time as possible on things that I cannot affect.

Including this discussion.

I've had my say. Go do whatever makes you happy.

I've proven my point to the best of my ability.

Feel free to discuss among yourselves.

Over and out.

S.

Sam, shouldn't you go and try experiment a little....you never know...just joking...

Anyway, we obvious have discussed nearly everything in this forum when we make a this tread that long. Its starting to be more like facebook where people either tell they have a solution for all "world problems" or they tell what wonderful food they made for dinner.

 :D ;-) Don't know Amazed Yeah, RIGHT. Bad dog.  No Biscuits. :/

Leif
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« Reply #112 on: Mar 03, 2017, 02:49AM »

 
Quote
My point is that regardless of whether they affect sound, they matter to the player.

That is true.

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« Reply #113 on: Mar 03, 2017, 03:23AM »

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Some people here are saying that knowing this "the air doesn't go though the horn"



Well, that is not how it is. Nobody in this thread say "the air doesn´t go through the horn".
Absolutely nobody.


Except, when you lead the air stream out of the mouthpiece before it can enter the horn.



Nobody disagree with that. All your "experiments do work. Nobody disagree with that either.

Is it possible for all of us to agree on two simpel thing things?



1 when we play the trombone, the air goes through the horn.

2 if we somehow lead the air out of the mouthpiece before it enters the horn, the air does not go through the horn. Thats not how the trombone is played most of the time though.  :)



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« Reply #114 on: Mar 03, 2017, 05:07AM »


Is it possible for all of us to agree on two simpel thing things?

Maybe we could agree on a third thing.  It's not super controversial in itself, but it requires recognition that a myth exists and is widespread, and not everybody may want to agree with that observation.

The third thing is this:  The answer to all trombone playing problems is not Put More Air Through.

Experienced forum members know this, but it's still extremely common advice here and outside here.  Can't hit the high notes?  Move more air.  Support more.  Bad tone?  Move more air.  Chipping notes?  move more air.  Move faster air.  Move warmer air.  Fog the mirror.  Etc. 

In one of sam's last posts, he said "move the right amount of air."  I would suggest that is a necessary but not sufficient condition.  Yes, you should do that, but even that isn't the answer to all problems, it's just a requirement.

I have another opinion but I think there would be less agreement, I'll save it a bit.   
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« Reply #115 on: Mar 03, 2017, 05:13AM »

I always thought the idea behind the meme of "moving air" is NOT to move it through the horn necessarily, but rather to move it through the chops, in specific ways; fast, slow, volume, from the gut, etc.   Don't know

...Geezer
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« Reply #116 on: Mar 03, 2017, 05:45AM »

As I have stated here on numerous occasions, I have yet to meet a physicist who has used his knowledge of physics to become a better brass musician. Although I am aware that there may be some, there are literally thousands and thousands of fine brass players who have never given the "physics" of the instrument a thought.

I'm not a physicist, but I've used some of the acoustic side of that knowledge to improve my playing. I can think of two examples right away:

Realizing that the typical slow slur exercise where upward slurs include a crescendo and downward slurs include diminuendos can be balanced such that the aperture formed by the buzz stays more constant in size despite the change in vibration frequency and volume, leading to a new and fun way to think about those exercises.

Finding interesting ways to tune chords with higher harmonics. Our ears certainly can find a lot of fun tuning tambres, if you will, but a short dive into what harmonics actually can happen can sometimes drive us to trying out ideas that aren't as obvious. For example, the 19th harmonic distance from a root is pretty interesting, includes a nice difference tone, but I find that it can be somewhat difficult to find by ear, and didn't really, until I knew it existed. It's very close to the Pythagorean minor third.
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« Reply #117 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:31AM »

Breath control is a fundamental in that a brass player who wants to play at the highest level must gain control over the air flow through the lips before any other aspect of playing can be really controlled. That's why so many teachers talk about it.

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« Reply #118 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:31AM »

I always thought the idea behind the meme of "moving air" is NOT to move it through the horn necessarily, but rather to move it through the chops, in specific ways; fast, slow, volume, from the gut, etc.   Don't know

...Geezer

Geezer,
I'm glad you had that idea.

I have yet to see anybody recommend it so I doubt that it is commonly accepted wisdom.  Nobody tells you to aim your air through your lips or even into the mouthpiece; they tell you to blow the candle out past your bell, to nail your sound to the back wall, to aim at your teacher's nose, etc.  
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« Reply #119 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:33AM »

Breath control is a fundamental in that a brass player who wants to play at the highest level must gain control over the air flow through the lips before any other aspect of playing can be really controlled.
Chris Stearn

Well, yeah.

Quote
That's why so many teachers talk about it.


But they rarely if ever do - they make talk about air flow, but normally not specific to the lips. 
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« Reply #120 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:41AM »

Svenne, I admit I didn't read the hole tread and I first saw your video today. Cool  Good! Didn't know you play tenor also!

If my family go to Sweden this summer, I go and visit you. I bring my Conn and you give me some tips on how to play the Sinatra songs. We have relatives living in Mjölby so we might take a trip. And we can go and have a beer in "Grøna Lund". Mjölby isnt that fare away from Stockholm, 1 or 2 ours with car?  Im also a little curious about trying some new instruments like your Kanstul. Brasspecialisten also have some instruments in the shop?

On topic; Today a singer told us his approach to sing. About how to use air, how to make the throat, jaws and different ways to form the body to make different sounds. Very interesting. He told even the canals up to nose and eyes is a factor in shaping the sound. Classical singers open as much as possible to make a good sound. He show us how he warm up and we did it together with him. Even I with my horrible voice felt I could get a decent sound. Amazing! When thinking about it, a lot of the prinsipps are the same on trombone. The air stream make the "voice muscles" vibrate. Same as we use air to make lips vibrate. They dont use tongue then to start the tone and they use a lot more "shape inside" throat and the hole head to color the sound. In short we could learn from singers...

Anyway, very interesting and much of it is the same prinsipp on trombone!  Amazed



Leif




Leif! Looking forward to see you this summer! You do play the Sinatra song very good, lets do some playing and test horns and meet some friends! Well Gröna Lund maybe, Brass specialisten if the shop is open. Svenne
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« Reply #121 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:42AM »

Geezer,
I'm glad you had that idea.

I have yet to see anybody recommend it so I doubt that it is commonly accepted wisdom.  Nobody tells you to aim your air through your lips or even into the mouthpiece; they tell you to blow the candle out past your bell, to nail your sound to the back wall, to aim at your teacher's nose, etc.  

Doesn't mean it's not right.

That's another part of it.

But it starts at the gut - for me anyway. Then comes the lungs, then the throat, then the chops, then the horn and finally that damn candle. lol

In the end, I want to have a sensation of blowing from the gut and through the horn, unimpeded by anything. The purest trombone sounds I have ever heard gave me that concept. 

...Geezer
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« Reply #122 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:48AM »

Well, yeah.
 

But they rarely if ever do - they make talk about air flow, but normally not specific to the lips. 

Arnold Jacobs: "blow the lips".
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« Reply #123 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:49AM »

Arnold Jacobs: "blow the lips".

What does that even mean.

...Geezer
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« Reply #124 on: Mar 03, 2017, 06:55AM »

Arnold Jacobs: "blow the lips".

"with a conversational breath."

We'll ask geezer what it means. 
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« Reply #125 on: Mar 03, 2017, 07:01AM »

"with a conversational breath."

We'll ask geezer what it means. 

Lol. How the heck should I know. That's what I love about these memes that get spouted out with no rhyme or reason and presumably the student is supposed to nod knowingly, then proceed to do the very same thing he always did wrong.

That's why I have a truly knowledgeable instructor. He is my filter for these half-baked things. I like them fully-baked. lol

...Geezer
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« Reply #126 on: Mar 03, 2017, 07:10AM »

Lol. How the heck should I know. That's what I love about these memes that get spouted out with no rhyme or reason and presumably the student is supposed to nod knowingly, then proceed to do the very same thing he always did wrong.
...Geezer

In their defense, geezer, teachers use these memes because they do work, with the right student.  Maybe neither knows why, but experience tells them to try. 

I'm one of those they tend not to work with.  Bad student, bad!

Golf instructors say "you must hit against a braced left side."  What the heck does that mean?  To me, nothing!  When somebody finally explained "use an external rotation of the hip to stop the pivot of the lower torso while allowing the shoulder turn to continue through impact" I knew exactly what to do. 
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« Reply #127 on: Mar 03, 2017, 07:25AM »

In their defense, geezer, teachers use these memes because they do work, with the right student.  Maybe neither knows why, but experience tells them to try. 

I'm one of those they tend not to work with.  Bad student, bad!

Golf instructors say "you must hit against a braced left side."  What the heck does that mean?  To me, nothing!  When somebody finally explained "use an external rotation of the hip to stop the pivot of the lower torso while allowing the shoulder turn to continue through impact" I knew exactly what to do. 

Yes. My point exactly. I guess we need a little (maybe a lot) more information sometimes. I always had trouble taking tests other than math-type tests in college because I always stopped myself before putting down my first impression of an answer to ask myself, "Self, what does he REALLY mean by that question? AHA! It's a trick question!". Then I would proceed to answer the question on that premise and get it wrong. Math and science were different. Stuff was what it was. I don't know if it still is, but I imagine today there are memes that make a mess of it.

...Geezer
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« Reply #128 on: Mar 04, 2017, 03:00AM »

Theoretically, couldn't the brass produce new content through sympathetic vibrations unpresent in the original input signal? Or is that considered transmission.
I do think we talked about that some time ago?
That is an interesting issue though. The metal do vibrate. Actually even with the RS mouthpiece.
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« Reply #129 on: Mar 04, 2017, 06:26AM »


That is an interesting issue though. The metal do vibrate. Actually even with the RS mouthpiece.

Years ago I read the abstract of an article presented at some Acoustical Society meeting.

I could not read the full text without paying, and I no longer remember where I saw this.

The results of this study seemed to be that yes, the brass structure does vibrate, and that half the input to the brass came from the wind column vibrating within the horn, but the other half came from the physical contact of the lips. 

It's an intriguing idea; I might have thought that the relatively soft lips would serve to damp the transfer of vibration, and that the connection between the two systems would be relatively weak, but it appears maybe not. 

This would suggest an explanation for noticing an effect from heavy mass mouthpieces. 
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« Reply #130 on: Mar 04, 2017, 09:14AM »

Years ago I read the abstract of an article presented at some Acoustical Society meeting.

I could not read the full text without paying, and I no longer remember where I saw this.

The results of this study seemed to be that yes, the brass structure does vibrate, and that half the input to the brass came from the wind column vibrating within the horn, but the other half came from the physical contact of the lips. 

It's an intriguing idea; I might have thought that the relatively soft lips would serve to damp the transfer of vibration, and that the connection between the two systems would be relatively weak, but it appears maybe not. 

This would suggest an explanation for noticing an effect from heavy mass mouthpieces. 

On the same tack as my previous postings on this thread:

I find it very interesting that there are so many differing "scientific" results regarding how a brass instrument works, but if you listen to the brass-playing and brass design masters...and pay attention to how carefully they choose and design equipment...there is a kind of consensus about equipment that says a great deal about how that equipment works. Historically that consensus has gradually changed along with the idioms being played and the forms/venues in which a given music is most often listened, but in any era, any given idiom and any geographical area there is always a pretty good mainstream consensus. M'pces, bore sizes, bell sizes, relative weights and alloys, platings, etc.

Regarding the function of the brass itself in a brass instrument, I do not know a single fine brass player who does not recognize...in one way or another...the importance of the vibration of the whole instrument. How is it vibrated? By what mechanisms? Trial and error approaches produce the results, and whether the lips on the m'pce actually produce the vibration, the air column does this or some imagined percentage of the two does not much enter the player's mind when choosing. The hard machine/soft machine system is a gestalt, a single entity. The player starts at some point...the horn/m'pce that is being played...and experiments.

The same m'pce design but with more mass? Produces a "deader" sound. Darker, slower reacting. With less mass? A brighter, more ringing sound w/quicker reaction times. In which direction does the player want to go? The choices are gradually made. Telling a fine player that the hard machine/soft machine system vibrates a given horn 50% from the contact of the lips and 50% from the vibrating air column...or 20%/80%, zero percent in both cases or any other possible so-called "scientific" results...is really something of a nothingburger for most fine players. They are computing on a level of accuracy and differentiation that "science" cannot hope to approach.

Why do I say this?

Because if science could approach it, machines would be creating music on the same or even higher levels than do human beings. We do have a great deal of pure machine music and also a kind of cyborging of humanly-produced musical results...digital pitch adjustment currently being the one most commonly encountered...but  none of it trumps the musical level of great players.

Not even close.

Even the great brass makers...the really great ones, like Vincent Bach, Jake Burkle, Larry Minick and Earl Williams...rely mostly on human results, not "scientific" ones. Their designs...and the evolution of those designs...have been a collaborative experience. Player X wants so-and-so. He gets it. Player Z wants that design maybe a little altered. That gets done too. Players S, T, U, V and W also input their opinions over a few years. Et voila!!! The Williams 6, the Minick 100H, the great Bach, King and Conn designs appear. Each is a consensus instrument design. By the time the scientists have figured out...or think that they have figured out, after interminable bickering among themselves...a "scientific" explanation for what happens in a given instrument, conditions have already changed and new horns, new designers have gone through the same process. The process of consensus design from the top players is a trickle-down consensus that improves the breed every time.

I have gone through parts of this design system myself, from the time I first spent with John "Peppy" Pettinato as he continued the Vincent Bach tradition of "eyeing-out" specs...he used a pencil to measure m'pce backbores, for instance, and his thumb to measure cup depths and configurations...right on through putting together 6 fine horns at Shires under the guidance of Steve Shires, Gabe Langfur and Ben Griffin, all of whose reactions to my requests were basically "Here. Try this leadpipe." (Or bell or slide or tuning slide or...like dat.) No "scientific" gobbledegook. I am sure that Steve has some good grasp on the physics underlying his own designs, but that's just a jumping off point. It's the players that have informed him much more than any science can possibly do so. That's why he has a "Blair Bollinger" model instead of a "PhD in Physics Dr. Xactly Like This" model.

Duh.

And the beat goes on.

Later...

S.
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« Reply #131 on: Mar 04, 2017, 05:30PM »

===

I blow through here
The music goes 'round and around
Whoa-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho

And it comes out here
I push the first valve down
The music goes down and around
Whoa-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho

And it comes out here
I push the middle valve down
The music goes down around below
Below, below, deedle-dee-ho-ho-ho

Listen to the jazz come out
I push the other valve down
The music goes 'round and around
Whoa-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho
And it comes out here

----
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« Reply #132 on: Mar 04, 2017, 10:01PM »

===

I blow through here
The music goes 'round and around
Whoa-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho

And it comes out here
I push the first valve down
The music goes down and around
Whoa-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho

And it comes out here
I push the middle valve down
The music goes down around below
Below, below, deedle-dee-ho-ho-ho

Listen to the jazz come out
I push the other valve down
The music goes 'round and around
Whoa-ho-ho-ho-ho-ho
And it comes out here

----

Precisely.

Thank you.

S.

P.S.
Quote
The Music Goes Round and Round
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


"The Music Goes Round and Round" is a popular song written in 1935.

History
The music was written by Edward Farley and Mike Riley, the lyrics by Red Hodgson; the song was published in 1935. The song was recorded by Tommy Dorsey and became a hit in 1936.[1] The song was the musical interlude for the Columbia movie "The Music Goes 'Round" in 1936.

Hear it.

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