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Hi Johnelwood

Another great post from you – thanks for taking the time. I am 4and a half years in still progressing day by day or rather week by week (I think of you when I get into Gladiator mode..!)
These last 4 weeks I am focusing on how to play c above the staff with real ease and reasonance. I am focusing on shape but in a departure to my thinking until now I am now thinking less of shape of lips and more of “shape of the face” (but not excluding lips) and what are the tiny imperceptible changes I can be making to help find the shape.. the sound. For about a week I was looking for the one faceshape change that would help the c ring thru easy and clear .. I then came to the conclusion it is not one thing but a dizzy pyramid of “items” (for want of a better word)

For me today (cos my thinking could change tomoro!) “Face shape changers” is just then an idea I entertain / a space I imagine / an image / and sometimes a conscious physical action.

I have so far (and it feels a bit silly writing them down) have face shape changes like:
roll in the face area above the top lip
imagine the area directly below the nostril
feel the sound underneath the back top teeth
the cavity under the front tooth
roll in top lip
imagine air cavity under top lip – visualize as circle of air
kiss forward with lips.. traditional corners
imagine balloon of air in back of mouth
imagine jaw as under carriage of a plane clicking forwards…

as you see no rhyme or reason here and some in contradiction to others..

is this all too childish.. any comments? But long and the short of it is I now at the end of the day (cos I am one of these guys who has to learn the trumpet each day anew) I might be playing 20 or 30 c s above the staff that I’m happy with and 3 or 4 I’m delighted with.. (in Greg speak a monster putt or the perfect drive!) and during the day maybe 200c s in total. (2 months ago my c was only achieved on one of those perfect days or effort) But all the time not pushing.. over trying.. all shape and not effort..

cheers for now and stay safe Steve

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