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Author Topic: Playing Loud  (Read 385 times)
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stealthheartocarinaZ
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« on: Feb 20, 2017, 11:41AM »

I'm not sure if this is the correct place for this...I say this a lot outside the forum, but my section leader's most famous quote is "play loud." She's been saying that ever since I first joined the section, and it has been permanently imprinted in my brain. It makes sense; the trombone section is amongst the smallest in the band, so even during concert season, we have to be at a near-blasting level in order for our parts to be heard.

The problem is, I can never tell when I am playing too loud or too soft. I am constantly out of breath in the middle of a piece. Not to mention, I am still singing alto as part of a choir, and the change in breathing techniques from singing to the trombone really throws me off and I feel like I'm about to pass out at times. Besides practicing as I regularly do, are there any exercises that would help me in either of these cases (trombone or singing)?
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« Reply #1 on: Feb 20, 2017, 12:31PM »

Do the section leader tell to play loud all the time? I would say you should learn to trust yourself and adjust the volume to the rest of the band. One trombone can play louder than the hole band. Try to balance it to the music, listen what the conductor say. Practice basics so you can master both soft and loud.

Leif
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Steven

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« Reply #2 on: Feb 20, 2017, 12:36PM »

I'm not sure if this is the correct place for this...I say this a lot outside the forum, but my section leader's most famous quote is "play loud." She's been saying that ever since I first joined the section, and it has been permanently imprinted in my brain. It makes sense; the trombone section is amongst the smallest in the band, so even during concert season, we have to be at a near-blasting level in order for our parts to be heard.

If the trombone section has to blast to be heard, everyone else is playing too loud.  You can't solve this without the band director doing his or her job.
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Steven Cangemi
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« Reply #3 on: Feb 21, 2017, 07:47PM »

"play loud."
[/quote]

NO WAY. My section leader gave my section (it was only us two) the EXACT same quote back when I was in marching band. Haha.. but like they say - NEVER pay louder than you can with a good sound!

I (personally) believe that the 'understanding' of how loud you're playing versus how much air/effort you're putting in is just something that comes from playing as much as possible and learning your horn. Especially since you as the player are situated behind the horn.
Not sure if this helps at all, but best of luck! Good!
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« Reply #4 on: Feb 22, 2017, 11:48PM »

After a year back on my bass trombone, I thought I was making a good sound. Our band's 1st trombone (playing a 2B) would tell me "you have a big horn, fill it up!" A couple of lessons with Doug Elliott and I found out I was doing it wrong! Now, with a more correct and larger buzz, my sound is much fuller. Maybe you need some help to work on a larger, fuller, more efficient sound.
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Geezerhorn

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« Reply #5 on: Feb 23, 2017, 05:02AM »

For me, playing loudly on a given note takes the right kind of embouchure strength and support from the gut. I'm training myself to play some notes I have had trouble with at fortissimo or greater, without the sound cracking. Part of my training is to know how far I can take it during private practice before the note starts to crack and then not take it quite as far during actual play. And as I improve, I can take it further. But there is no excuse for a cracking or otherwise bad tone, regardless of what the conductor wants. You have to know when to say when.

...Geezer
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stealthheartocarinaZ
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« Reply #6 on: Mar 02, 2017, 03:38PM »

Thanks for the advice, I'll keep that in mind. I just need to get past everyone yelling at me - I get really anxious when someone tells me I'm not playing loud enough. I make my section leader frustrated because I'm really self-conscious about playing and she says I need more self-esteem.  :(
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