Baritone to Trombone advice

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by MosleyMF, Nov 21, 2014.

  1. MosleyMF

    MosleyMF New Member

    Hi guys. I'm thinking of swapping my baritone for a Trombone. I'm getting sick of Bari as all the parts are dull. Is the Trombone easy to play. It's never seemed that hard to me but I am only a amateur. Any advice welcome. Instruments, slide positions, embrochure etc. Thanks in advance. MMF.
  2. Hsop

    Hsop Member

    You mention that it's never seemed that hard to you so you should be fine. Shame about that dull baritone music. Makes you wonder how a baritone player from dyke can be British solo champion then?
  3. MosleyMF

    MosleyMF New Member

    Sorry. I didn't mean to offend. I'm sure the baritone player in Foss Dyke band is great but I don't exactly play at that level. MMF
  4. halsasaurus

    halsasaurus Member

    I tried to move from Baritone / Euphonium to Trombone for a bit of Variety and a challenge way back when. I probably taught myself the wrong way though i.e I saw a note and its relative fingering of valves which I then mentally associated with a slide position on the trombone. It was basically ok but, I never felt like I was doing it the right way. The trombone is often referred to as Gods Own Instrument and a Trombonist should apparently never be out of tune. Unfortunately, this certainly never applied to my Trombone playing, although I have always been happy with my tuning on valve instruments. Maybe it is just me but I definitely think that it is easier for a Trombone player to move to Baritone than the other way around
  5. hobgoblin

    hobgoblin Member

    There are some great players in lesser bands. It always amuses me when Sandy Smith is accorded guru status on here, and frankly I could blow him off the stand and I play horn with a non-contesting outfit.
  6. MosleyMF

    MosleyMF New Member

    Sorry you've lost me there chief. A bit new to this. I've just got into our senior band. Does he play for Fulham band?
  7. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

    The Trombone is easy to play :), but hard to play really well :(. If you want to transfer I suggest that you get hold of Tune a Day books 1 & 2 for Trombone in the treble clef. Learn on a small bore (0.500") instrument and make sure that the slide moves smoothly with next to no effort; forget about a trigger (f section) for a couple of years or more - IMHO they can be a mixed blessing.

    For now you might well get away with using the same mouthpiece as you use on your Bari; later a Wick 6BS (& its large shank 6BL brother) is a popular piece with Trombonists. Trombones are thought of as having 7 slide positions but that really isn't quite true, some shifts are shortened or lengthened slightly dependant on pitch so you really need to use your ears to keep in tune (which my conductor reminds me of and I find hard to do).

    Good luck.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2014
  8. MosleyMF

    MosleyMF New Member

    That's great advice. Thanks so much. As a matter of interest. Why do some Trombones have springs at the top of the slide? Do they need replacing every year like my lafluer Bari valve springs seen to do. If so, what's the best way to disassemble the part in question. Sorry, I'm a amateur engineer as well as very amateur Bari player.
  9. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

    Pleased to have been of some help.

    I've got/had several trombones and non of them have/had springs at the top of their slides, but it is something I've heard of. Unlike all the valved instruments trombones can play in perfect pitch if the player has a good enough ear to adjust the slide. Most people think that the open notes on an instrument play in perfect pitch (no valves or slide normally used on, in assending pitch: C,G,C,E,G,C etc) but that is not so. The spring is there to provide a stop and reference point but you can sharpen an open note into perfect pitch by pulling up against the spring - I think that's near enough correct but there are more expert trombonists on here to correct me.

    I would be very inclined to leave any springs fitted well alone as, unlike your bari, I doubt that they will ever need much attention - if it ain't broke don't fix it ....
  10. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    I always thought the spring was there so you don't knock your teeth out when coming into first position during a fast bit ...
  11. hobgoblin

    hobgoblin Member

    The spring is just another example of health and safety gone mad. Manufacturers are now so scared of someone taking their teeth out when going quickly from 7th to closed that they have engineered in a little shock absorber. My advice - rip it out with pliers and trust your accuracy.
  12. 2nd tenor's post is wisdom.
    Springs at the top of the slide are there so that 1st position (slide closed) notes have a fixed point of reference, but can still be sharpened on the fly as needed. Typically you'd tune the instrument (main tuning slide) to C (concert Bb) with the slide just touching the springs, this being your nominal 1st position. You then have scope to adjust each note you play up or down in pitch as needed to play in tune.

    They say a trombone should never be out of tune. I say a trombone can never be "in" tune, because slide positions are non-definitive and really just a guide, needing fine adjustment with every note you play. Unlike valves which are definite (ie either open or closed) on a trombone, muscle memory and your ears are all you have to play in tune (or not).

    Players sometimes remove the springs because of the noise when you close the slide against them. To remove you can fashion a hook from bent paperclip or similar or use tweezers/needlenose pliers and just hook them out. My personal preference is to use one spring only (on the lower slide leg) rather than on both.

    Do they need replacing? Rarely, if ever. It's not unknown for them to snap, but most commonly in my experience they sometimes work loose and drop out. 2 mins with the pliers to re-shape the end of the top coil, and then re-fit.

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