Day 1: Getting Back on the Wagon

This is the first full day back on the wagon. I played the trumpet for six years as a child and teenager. I am a comeback player with two years under my belt, although I haven’t made much progress within the last year. I am setting my audition date for the third week of August. I will perform Petite Piece Concertante by Balay. A successful audition will allow me to become a music major.

There is a unique aspect to what I am trying to accomplish

  • I am 44 years old.

You may be asking why and how I fell off the wagon. It’s simple, the beautiful tone I hear in my head does not match the tone coming out of the bell. For many, many months I was trying to find a comfortable embouchure, but I was also changing my tonguing to the bottom teeth as specified by Claude Gordon. There was also a mouthpiece merry-go-round period which befalls many brass players. This brings us to the fact that I put the horn down.

So I read and executed Kenny Werner’s directions in his excellent book Effortless Mastery. I did pick up my horn and noodle around, then say to myself “That is the most beautiful sound I’ve ever heard.” I also used the four different meditations to help me relax when picking up the trumpet. But I did not continue with Claude Gordon’s book, nor Arbans, nor Clarke.

I decided to check on private lessons at my local state college that offers a two-year AA Music degree. The short story is I’m going to start working with a highly-regarded private teacher and in 91 days I have my one-shot audition. My private trumpet bootcamp.

After my audition, the department head will decide if I can be successful in the music program.

I am feeling nervous, scared, and excited at different times of the day. This blog is a way to capture my journey and perhaps someone will find something useful in my experience.

This is a list of useful books I’m using to achieve my goal: