Canadian Musician - July/August 2017 - Page 30

BRASS Paul Baron is one of today’s most highly respected lead and commercial trumpet players. His sound is distinctly bright and powerful and carries with it decades of experience in a wide range of musical styles from jazz to rock, big band to musical theatre, and TV jingles to movie soundtracks. As well as being a performing artist for Jupiter Instruments and Pickett Brass with his signature line of mouthpieces, Paul is also an author, educator, and clinician. By Paul Baron Target Note Exercise Part 2 I n the March/April 2017 issue, I described my methodology for practicing Target Note exercises and how I approach the target note. For the sake of simplicity, I have written these exercises an octave lower in pitch. If playing these up an octave from the written pitch is too challenging for now, just play them in a lower key. Just work on the part of your range you want to expand. The methodology and the point of these exercises are not necessarily building up to the double G right away. If high D is where you top out, or the A below it, that is totally fine. Play the exercises up a second or a fifth from where they are written, starting in the key of A or D. It does not matter where you start, as long as you start somewhere with a goal in mind. In Ex. 1, you can see the target note G is approached from an octave below with a glis- sando. Do not think of tightening up your lips more for the higher note, but think of com- pressing the air more in your abs and pushing a faster, more intensive stream of air. You will need to support the chops as the air speed increases. Do not think of this as clos- ing the aperture diameter, but rather holding it firmer against the increasing air speed. This will keep your sound big and resonant even as you ascend to the upper register. By Ex. 4, you can see that you are ap- proaching the G first from a semitone below with the F#, and then coming down onto the G from the A a whole step above. Even though the A might not come out, still make the attempt. This will keep your mind on a higher goal. In Ex. 5, you are approaching the G in a similar way but bypassing the G going from F# to E to G and then coming down and opening up from the A down onto the G. Ex. 6 is written in the key of F to totally 30 • C A N A D I A N M U S I C I A N skip the G for now by a whole step on either side, and in Ex. 7, you’re playing two Gs going up and past it, and then back down. By Ex. 9, you are approaching the G from a minor third below and increasing the descending intervals from thirds to fourths. These exercises are just examples of how I approach the target note so feel free to come up with more. I use this approach for variety in practice, but also to really solidify the note in my ears and chops. I need to be able to hit those notes any way they are thrown at me. Have fun with these exercises. This is an excerpt from Paul’s new book, Trumpet Voluntarily – A Holistic Guide to Maximizing Practice Through Efficiency, containing more expanded informa- tion on this subject as well as 19 chapters with music examples and exercises. The book serves as a guide to teach the player how, what, and when to practice. It is available now through