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Editing by Samuel Johnstone
Illustrations by Juliane Pieper
Research for this blog was made possible by a generous scholarship from the Berlin Senate.
Author Archives: Nathan Plante
Whisper Tones (featuring the Whisper Penny)
Whisper tones, ghost notes, half-air half-tone, aeolian sound – composers have different ways of describing this in their music. I‘ve received several requests from other trumpet players to cover this topic, as it is one that seems to come up … Continue reading
Posted in General Trumpet Knowledge Tagged airy sound, ghost notes, whisper penny, whisper tones Leave a comment
After so many posts on different trumpet techniques I realized that information about the auxiliary instruments is a bit scattered. In this post I aim to gather all of the relevant information on the piccolo trumpet in one easy to … Continue reading
Posted in Auxiliary Instruments, General Trumpet Knowledge Tagged multiphonics, mutes, piccolo, piccolo trumpet, split tones Leave a comment
I’d like to start this post by making it clear that I do prefer playing the trumpet with an actual trumpet mouthpiece! Nevertheless, there are some unique sounds that can be made by using an alternative mouthpiece on the trumpet. … Continue reading
Posted in Contemporary Techniques Tagged alternative mouthpieces, bassoon reed, mouthpieces, multiphonics Leave a comment
Even though this blog is focused primarily on writing for trumpet, I do think it is important to include a few tips about how the performance material for trumpet – or indeed, for any instrument – should be prepared. I … Continue reading
Posted in General Trumpet Knowledge Tagged Elaine Gould, handwriting, notation, performance material 1 Comment
The Double-Bell Trumpet
When I first saw Marco Blaauw’s double-bell trumpet, I was fascinated but skeptical. The effects are great, but are they enough to justify this huge modification of the instrument? Not to mention the expense of having one built! I avoided … Continue reading
Posted in Auxiliary Instruments, Contemporary Techniques Tagged double bell trumpet, half valve, mutes Leave a comment
My good friend, tubist and author Jack Adler-McKean, will cringe at the title of this post. He rightfully insists that: “a multiphonic means the same thing regardless of whether its for string, wind, brass, keyboard instrument or voice: making multiple … Continue reading
Posted in Contemporary Techniques Tagged mccormack, multiphonics, sanders, seyedi, singing, toledo, voice Leave a comment
Tongue Slaps and Other Percussive Sounds
Tongue Slap / Tongue Ram Whenever I have a gig with my horn colleague Samuel Stoll, we inevitably get into a heated discussion about the difference between tongue slap and tongue ram. In my opinion, this is one technique with … Continue reading
Posted in Contemporary Techniques Tagged lip smack, Marton illes, palm slap, percussive sounds, tongue slap, valve sounds Leave a comment
Glissandi on the trumpet are kind of a mixed bag. On one hand, the trumpet can produce the super cool falls and doits that are familiar from jazz music. On the other hand, it’s nearly impossible to produce a pure … Continue reading
Posted in Contemporary Techniques, Standard Techniques Tagged bending, chromatic, glissando, half valve, microtones, overtones, valve slides 1 Comment
In classical trumpet playing, half-valve sounds are usually unintentional and a sign that you aren’t fully depressing the valve, or that you seriously need to oil your valves because they aren’t coming back up fast enough. This “mistake” has been … Continue reading
Posted in Contemporary Techniques Tagged half valve, liza lim, yangfan xu Leave a comment
Trills, Shakes and Tremolos
Trills Standard half-step trills are easily played across the trumpet’s entire range using the valves. Whole-step trills can be tricky depending on the pitches and fingerings used. Listed below are the more technically awkward whole-step trills on the trumpet. Tremolos … Continue reading
Posted in Standard Techniques Tagged bisbigliando, half valve, ligeti, lip trill, shake, stockhausen, tremolo, trill 2 Comments