August 2018
















Each day it is important to find balance in your practice. Sometimes there is just not enough time to work on all aspects of your playing that need attention. Sound, range, endurance and pitch are so fundamental that they should not be neglected. This month I developed this exercise to combine these factors and I found this very helpful.


Best Sound, smooth connecting air flow and exact pitch.

Process: Intonation = Sing; Sound = Buzz (on mouthpiece); Range & Endurance =  Play!! At first do just some of the exercises- as you gain strength add more and extend to your full range. Only play when your sounds is full, resonant and relaxed.

Basic pattern – the notes for each exercise:









Applied exercise (demo of notes inserted to the pattern):










Be sure each top pitch is relaxed and is as full a sound as the first note of the exercise. I start on low F# and go as high as possible each day. You may wish to start on middle “C” instead. Start simply and grow little by little so as to let your range and endurance develop.

Beginning on low F# model

Then continue as above!

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If you are looking for some expanded chord/triad possibilities to practice, try The Allen Vizzutti Trumpet Method Book 2 Harmonic Studies (published by Alfred Music)



Francois Raube Concerto for Trumpet – “Humeurs” in four movements 1.Décidé; 2. Plaisant; 3.Lent; 4.Gai. Francois Raube is a French composer writing music for the theatre, film and TV as well as “Classical” concert music. The Trumpet Concerto was written for Guy Touvron and is an interesting and fun work to perform. This piece was brought to my attention by my student Eunbyeol Jo, a senior at Seoul National University, as she is preparing for her graduation recital. Visit her Facebook page Trumpet Esther Bags/Luggage – please hit the Like button


Guy Touvron, trumpet

Frédéric Mellardi, trumpet


available from:


Of Interest

Thomas Stevens- sad news- a great player has passed. Visit his site to learn more about this wonderful and special player. His performance of Avak the Healer by Alan Hovhaness was one of my very favorite trumpet recordings. I listened to it every day for years in hopes of being able to mimic and develop such a beautiful sound as is heard on that recording.


Alan Hovhaness, Marni Nixon, Thomas Stevens – Avak the Healer


Thomas Stevens -Robert Henderson- Variations Movement IV


Maurice Andre– Mozart Concerto in Ab (Oboe Concerto in C KV 314)


Matthew Mucky – workshop


James Watson – Gareth Wood Trumpet Concerto



Each month I review materials I have played in the past or try a new book that seems different in the approach presented from other books in my library. This month I focused on two new trumpet solos. James Stephenson Sonata No. 1 for Trumpet and Piano and Concerto for Trumpet by Francois Rauber (see above).

Both pieces were written for current trumpet soloists- the Stephenson for Richard Stoezel and the Rauber for Guy Touvron. While both works have technical sections that will require practice, the strength of both pieces is the prominent lyrical nature of the solos. The Rauber was written for a “C” trumpet and playing on that pitched instrument will be an advantage. The Stephenson comes with both a “C” and a “Bb” part and in my initial practice both instruments work well.

The Stephenson-

Movement I asks you to be particular about rhythmic note values. Do make a difference between double dotted eight and thirty-second note and the dotted eight and sixteenth note. Listen carefully for pitch when playing with the straight mute. Measure 68 should remind you of your careful study in the Clarke Technical Studies for the Cornet or Trumpet book. Play these measures evenly and with a good sound at a  piano dynamic.  I especially like the “waltz” movement II. When the music becomes more technical (letter C and letter J), be sure to keep the lyrical waltz style and let the melody have a singing quality. Movement III has many meter changes, work them out slowly. Try to understand why the composer chose those specific meters (3/8, 5/8, 7/8 or ¾ and 4/4) Make each rhythm be clearly understood with how you do or do not accent the beat or pulse. This will help the music have the correct character and play with style!

If you are looking for new pieces for a recital please give both of these a good look.

Next month I will be investigating Suppli-bilities: Advanced Technical Drills for Suppleness and Agility by William Vacchiano.  (published by Charles Colin Music). This book looks enjoyable, challenging and functional for strengthening fluidity through the complete range of the trumpet.

Music available from:





Stay positive in your practice and imagine that you have a most beautiful sound!!