Bass trombone

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by groovy, Feb 5, 2004.

  1. groovy

    groovy Active Member

    I have played the bass trombone for the first time today to my great joyness! I will be playing it for the Scottish Championship and it is well groovy. Who agrees that the bass trombone is the greatest instrument of all time, and is there any tips for my playing? Thanx guys :D
  2. BassTromBeast

    BassTromBeast New Member

    I'm a bass trom player. Only advice is grow an extra lung and hit it as hard as you can! Everyone expects vulgarity so you may as well deliver! :lol:
  3. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Air! Ideally, aim to push every single note straight through from the diaphragm, and get the tongue well out of the way along the bottom of the mouth - huge fat sounds of goodness - groovetastic.

  4. JessopSmythe

    JessopSmythe Active Member

    Pretty much what Dave said but even more air!
  5. Okiedokie of Oz

    Okiedokie of Oz Active Member

    **gasps** More...**extremely loud inhale** AIR!!!!!!!!

    Seriously, in order to play it well, you have to be able to push the sound OUT fo your instrument! It's no good storing it in the bell!!
  6. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    I'd go along with what Dave has said, but just make sure you keep a proper trombone sound in that fatness - that sound can easily be lost in moving to a bigger-bore instrument.
  7. sober_phil

    sober_phil Member

    Yep - its all about air and using it wisely. Careful not to get too razzy though (although I know some people like it!), but if anyone can tell me how to razz the pedal Ab in Tristan then please do! All advice welcome....
  8. Okiedokie of Oz

    Okiedokie of Oz Active Member

    Pedal Ab? AS in 3 ledgerlines Ab?

    Easy Peasie!!! The quick and easy way, switch to slightly smaller equipment. #2 mouthpuece, smaller leadpipe.....a tenor trombone :wink:
  9. low Ab?!?! that is a bit nasty. I once played Bass Trombone in Prokofieff's Sinfonia Concertante for 'Cello and Orchestra and that has a pedal Bb at the end of the second movement and that needs a kind of Sfffffffz effect.
  10. sober_phil

    sober_phil Member

    Thats the note - easy enough to play, but its not so easy to find the right balance in the band. Easier if it was a long note, but hitting it as a quaver and keeping it short but also loud enough I can't do too well.

    The passage is 4 quavers pedal ab, trigger D, both triggers B, f below stave (1st and 3rd beats of bar for 2 bars), and you don't want the other 3 to stick out.
  11. neiltwist

    neiltwist Active Member



    and remember you are supporting the other trombones, not blasting! and also it's not the most important part!

    try putting a pedal Ab in on the last note. That will kill you.
  12. Space Cowboy

    Space Cowboy Member

    You bass trombones have it too easy. You want to have a look at the first movement of the Gordon Jacob Concerto. Top concert D(bass cleff 5 ledgers up Brass band Bb Top E) followed two beats later by a pedal concert G marked ff.

    Get practicing boys. Its all about AIR as said before.
  13. sober_phil

    sober_phil Member

    The problem is with the speed of air - needs to be slower as its a pedal, but as its a short loud note I have a natural tendancy to try to force too much air through too quickly and it all backs up on me.

    Agreed - its by no means the most important part, but I think it (the pedal Ab) needs to be heard, especially considering its relationship with the 3 notes following.

    I don't doubt it, but why should I want to? Thats not the part thats written, (or even an octave to refer to the Pedalling thread).
  14. BottyBurp

    BottyBurp Member

    Plus volume! And a nice 'edge' to it - I luuuuurve Bass Trom... (and that's from a cornet player!)
  15. neiltwist

    neiltwist Active Member

    it's not written, but it's fun. I seem to have missed the pedal thread though somehow!

    with regard to the written Ab, the airflow doesn't have to be slowed, you just need a bigger bore instrument or mouthpiece, or a change of tac.
  16. Brian Kelly

    Brian Kelly Active Member

    Welcome to the club! You are obviously a musician of great taste and discernment.

    As for tips, MoominDave said it all, really. Just be careful to get just enough edge to make it sound like a trombone and for the sound to cut through the band when necessary, but not too much so that it sounds like a runaway powersaw.
  17. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    The Bass Trombone is a fantastic instrument, I like them so much that've often used 2 Bass Trombones my Orchestral music! :wink:

    TIMBONE Active Member

    Sir Thomas Beecham was rehearsing the Halle orchestra for a performance of The Planet Suite. There is a point in "Uranus" where the double basses, tuba and BASS TROMBONE hit a very low note at fff, (only fff Mr McFadyan, that is all that is needed). Sir Thomas stopped the orchestra, looked at Terry Nagle, the BASS TROMBONE PLAYER at the time, and said, "YOU NEED PAPER FOR THAT ONE". That is the sound that means you are truly there as a bass trombonist.
  19. Okiedokie of Oz

    Okiedokie of Oz Active Member

    I hate it when non-appreciators of that sound stop bass trombonists from reaching that colour.

    Dennis did it to me by making me play a smaller bass. IT DIDNT RESONATE THE SAME!!!!!!
  20. JessopSmythe

    JessopSmythe Active Member

    I remember rehearsing for the areas, a few years back, under Jimmy Davies. The markings on my part were a bit vague; so I asked Jimmy what the dynamic was supposed to be. After making a big show of looking at the score, he looked up, grinned, and said, "ON, PLEASE"