More advice needed, please, on BBflat Bass

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Elwood, Aug 10, 2015.

  1. Elwood

    Elwood New Member

    Having brought home a BBflat Bass for the summer break, I'm trying to blow sonorous sounds form the beast. So far, I can play reasonably well from a written middle C up an octave.Playing notes lower than the middle C is proving impossible for me. My lips (chops?) are as slack as they can be and vibrate mightily, but the notes will not go any lower.

    I'm assuming that the fingering is the same as for other valved instruments. I would appreciate advice on extending the range downwards.
  2. Andrew Norman

    Andrew Norman Active Member

    Practice... give it time
  3. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

    The fingering is the same as other valves instruments.

    I've played the Tuba at various times over the years and find that playing them is a bit of an art, IMHO the double B is the harder of the two to control. Tubas need large volumes of air to play even a couple of bars and with such large mouthpieces the chops struggle to provide the required control, etc.

    To build the needed chops I suggest playing long note scales, start on the notes you can manage within them and then work up and down the scale from that note. I find that playing the simple music in books like Winners Galore a help too, those who are a it more technically able might find additional help by playing the tunes in a different octave or even just a few notes higher or lower (but then a change of key will be needed too).

    Daily practice, even if for a short time, will produce results as your chops change and you begin to understand the instrument better. I think that if you search the forum (again) you'll find some recent threads on the BBb and hope that the above helps, good luck.
    pedaller likes this.