19 votes
Accepted

Does the lip really vibrate at the same frequency of a brass instrument?

At least for trumpet, yes, the lips really vibrate that quickly. For a high trumpet note, the lips may vibrate at more than 1000 vibrations per second. This is fast, but remember that the muscles are ...
Aaron's user avatar
  • 86.9k
9 votes

Music Physics Question - Automatic Trumpet Embouchure Mouthpiece

This has been done, at least as an experiment. There's a paper Artificial buzzing lips and brass instruments: Experimental results (pdf download link) in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21k
9 votes
Accepted

I have to loosen my jaw to play the lowest notes on my Bari. Is that normal?

If you have to loosen up to play the low notes then your embouchure is too tight and you need loosen up over the whole range of the instrument. Start by working on just the low notes, and then when ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21k
9 votes

If I were to switch from playing clarinet (6 years) to starting oboe, how hard would it be?

I love the instrument and I'd really like to start learning Then do it. I'm almost 48 years old. About two months ago I started French horn lessons. I have never played a brass instrument before. I'm ...
Todd Wilcox's user avatar
  • 56.6k
9 votes
Accepted

Plastic vs. wooden recorder and saliva build-up?

With any plastic recorder you will always get some condensation due to the air coming from your lungs being very humid. This usually should not render the recorder unusable in a few minutes, unless ...
Lazy's user avatar
  • 19.9k
6 votes

Proper embouchure to leak air while playing EWI?

Leaking air out of the sides of the embouchure is a really bad habit to get into if you also play real wind instruments. It can be audibly distracting and it's also totally unnecessary. Oboe players ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21k
5 votes
Accepted

Importance of jaw alignment for brass players

This is a personal thing and there's no universal answer. I play trumpet with a slightly upward angle, and I know great players who play with all sorts of angles. That being said, it seems like most ...
MattPutnam's user avatar
  • 22.4k
5 votes

Re-learning bass trombone after many years

The common wisdom I got from the brass faculty at my university was: You won't be able to make an informed choice on a mouthpiece until you're skilled enough that you can tell whether it's the ...
Simon Dawkins's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

Lip pain when playing flute: how to overcome?

There is no doubt that you don't have sufficient breath control here. I have experienced similar problems (clarinet, sax) as have friends on brass instruments while learning and improving our ...
Carl Witthoft's user avatar
5 votes

Lip pain when playing flute: how to overcome?

If it hurts, it's wrong. Many players can play higher octaves all evening without pain. But to diagnose what exactly is wrong, someone would need to see and hear you playing. If you're lucky, ...
Camille Goudeseune's user avatar
5 votes

Does playing with a mouthpiece patch affect your embouchure?

Using a mouthpiece patch is a personal choice, except when play-testing a mouthpiece before buying it (to prevent tooth-marks on the mouthpiece). Some people like them, some people hate them but they ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21k
4 votes
Accepted

How hard would it be to switch from a bass clarinet to a soprano sax?

Sax and clarinet are extremely similar in both embouchure and fingering. There would be a tremendous amount of skill transfer if you were to switch. That being said, soprano is sort of a side member ...
MattPutnam's user avatar
  • 22.4k
4 votes

What woodwind instruments have easier embouchure?

It depends on how you define 'easier', but if you are having problems with the trumpet you might have more success with a woodwind instrument. In terms of physical effort and pressure on the lips the ...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21k
4 votes

What woodwind instruments have easier embouchure?

The difference between a brass instrument and a woodwind is that on a brass instrument the lips themselves need to create the pitch (so in some sense the lips are part of the instrument). This is not ...
Lazy's user avatar
  • 19.9k
3 votes
Accepted

High G and G# splitting/jumping to the next harmonic on saxophone

Assuming your instrument is in good condition, I'm pretty sure it's the embouchure. One important thing to remember is that no matter how you do voicing and tone imagining etc., finally it all comes ...
Reno Yeh's user avatar
  • 116
3 votes

If I were to switch from playing clarinet (6 years) to starting oboe, how hard would it be?

The oboe is much harder to play than the clarinet. Your experience on the clarinet will help a bit, a lot of the fingerings will be familiar. The oboe has much more resistance, you will need to re-...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21k
3 votes

Learning the Flute embouchure with a teardrop in the lips?

I once had a student with a pronounced "cupids bow" (as they call it). He was never able to get a clear sound and eventually had to give up the flute. But whether or not you can do it probably ...
Scott Wallace's user avatar
3 votes

How to develop a proper trumpet embochure: Tuning and range

Like any instrument, the trumpet takes a lot of practice to become proficient. However, the trumpet is extremely unforgiving, often more so than a lot of other instruments. I've been playing for ...
tptcat's user avatar
  • 589
3 votes

What woodwind instruments have easier embouchure?

Clarinet is generally reckoned to be the 'easiest' wind instrument to get started on. (Unless you include recorder, melodica, harmonica etc. of course.) But whatever problems you're having with ...
Laurence's user avatar
  • 92.2k
3 votes

How can I help my beginner horn players access the mid and high range?

Start with some simple slurs, from written C to E and back, and then from C to G and back. The longterm goal is to explore the entire harmonic series of the horn. Have them observe their mouth shape ...
Minu's user avatar
  • 31
2 votes

How will getting braces affect my embouchure?

My wife was a flutist through elementary school and middle school and was the first freshman to play in wind ensemble in high school. She had braces from middle school through early high school and it ...
user1118321's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Oboe embouchure issues?

Your breath support may be the issue, as well. This article may be helpful: Of all the students in a beginning band program, the oboe players usually struggle the most. Even with a good reed and ...
Tim Burnett - Bassist's user avatar
2 votes

Will learning trumpet damage my single reed embouchure?

This really depends upon how proficient you want to be at the clarinet and saxophone or trumpet. The problem is tonal consistency. If you play clarinet and saxophone well you can mess up your tone ...
Sean's user avatar
  • 31
2 votes

Decades of wrong oboe embouchure

A retraining with exercises involving the "set - relax - air - jaw-pressure" type routines might be in order. https://www.somsd.k12.nj.us/site/handlers/filedownload.ashx?moduleinstanceid=4175&...
Richard Barber's user avatar
2 votes

High G and G# splitting/jumping to the next harmonic on saxophone

I have the same trouble and am an advanced player. Recently, I traded tenors for a rehearsal with my friend and I could play the G2 and G#2 easily with no trouble at all. I had tried all other ...
Nicola's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes
Accepted

Exercises for getting a consistent tone on the flute

It's a slog. I did the same thing a year or two back. Although I didn't carry on with flute, I did get to the point where I could get a reasonably decent tone. The exercise I found most helpful was ...
danmcb's user avatar
  • 3,448
2 votes

How much does an embouchure's shape affects the ability to produce a note on a flute?

Depending on the diameter of the tube the optimum embouchure diameter should be about 10-15 mm. The hole can either be circular or slightly oval (with the long axis along the tube) or more of a '...
PiedPiper's user avatar
  • 21k
2 votes

Tips for going between trumpet and sousaphone from tune to tune?

I switch from Jazz small bore tenor trombone, large bore tenor trombone, bass trombone, sousaphone, and trumpet all the time. If I do have to switch between instruments quickly, I look for a ...
ROSS OLLER's user avatar
2 votes

Is curling sides of tongue when playing trumpet a good/bad idea?

I think if you'd already curled your tongue, you wouldn't then be able to double- or triple- tongue, which both require you to articulate the start of the note with a K consonant, rather than the T ...
Brian THOMAS's user avatar
  • 11.6k

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