Trombone Mouthpiece

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by mictop, May 9, 2009.

  1. mictop

    mictop New Member

    Appologies if this has been covered before but I need a bit of advise, I am play 1st trombone in my main band but I am helping another band on bass trombone ( they have lent me a Reynolds Bass Trombone). My own trombone is a courtoius using a Dennis Wick 6BL (although I struggle to get down to the lower range with this) - Is it worth getting two mouthpieces for the 2 instruments or getting 1 overall mouthpiece.

    Any help or advise will be gratefully recieved

  2. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    I was recommended not to use a tenor trom mouthpiece on bass as it's not deep enough. I think it would be like suggesting a flugel player uses a cornet mouthpiece. You could probably get something with a similar rim to help you play on both.

    Although - I'm still playing flugel at home, and as long as I play both of them regularly it's not too hard going between them.
  3. Hells Bones

    Hells Bones Active Member

    How old are you Mictop and how long have you been playing?
  4. mictop

    mictop New Member

    I am 48 yrs old and have been playing for about 35yrs I mainly played Bass Trombone until 4 yrs ago and have used the 6BL that came with the trombone.
  5. Hells Bones

    Hells Bones Active Member

    What MPiece did you use with the bass trom?
  6. mictop

    mictop New Member

    At the moment I picked the bass trombone up on wednesday and have used it for 1 rehearsal the mouthpiece that was in the case is a Dennis Wick 2BL
  7. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Think you must mean a 2AL, unless the mouthpiece is some weird custom job - there's no such piece as a 2BL in the Wick catalogue.

    Here are some relevant points:

    1) There is no mouthpiece of an appropriate size that you can use on both tenor and bass that will let you do the best job you can on each instrument. If you were to go down this route, you should look at pieces in the 3 to 4 size range - Bach 3G or 4G, or Wick 3AL or 4AL. However - you would find that stamina in the high register on 1st would become much harder work than you are used to, and equivalently you would find that the low register on bass would be harder work and less full-sounding than others find it.

    2) To make a success of doubling two instruments, you need to put in practise time on both of them regularly. If you do this, I see no harm in using two mouthpieces - and the two you have access to I would stick with, if you like them. However, if you don't practise both setups regularly, you will probably confuse your chops as you'll only be picking up something different every now and again.

    3) I wonder what sort of Reynolds bass trombone you have. Is it a Contempora? That might not be the easiest of bass instruments for a tenor player to switch to and from (with that big bell), although it's certainly not one of the hardest to blow. The 2AL is probably a pretty good match to it - people whose judgement I respect have suggested that it responds better to smaller mouthpieces.

    4) Tenor and bass trombone is actually not as easy a combination to double successfully as one might suspect. Not many people are able to play both each as well as the other; far more people are able to double euphonium and one of the trombone sizes successfully. Practise time on both is the key. If you are not able to dedicate practise time to the bass, I wonder if a better solution for your second band might be for you to play the bass part on the tenor. But then, your smallish tenor mouthpiece would probably make that rather difficult.

    Good luck with it, whatever you decide. Your previous bass experience will certainly stand you in good stead...
  8. timbloke

    timbloke Member

    Taking on the comment above about playing bass trombone part on a tenor, I always carry a Kelly (Plastic) 2(?AL) equivalent which I use on my Bb/F tenor should I want to occasionally dabble on Bass. Whilst it is not an ideal solution, it can be quite a quick way of switching, the only problem is getting that proper bass trombone sound. I couldn't do it if I was wanting to take bass trombone seriously again, but fine for occassional playing.

    But echoing what has been said already, practice is probably the only way to really switch successfully.
  9. BoBo

    BoBo Member

    I echo the sentiments above, I play bass and occasional tenor. I use a Schilke 59 for the bass and for a while I did use that on the tenor as I was wary of messing up my embouchure. This led (for me) to poor endurance and therefore poor performance on the tenor. I now use a 4BL for the tenor and this works well, probably doing less damage to myself as a result and better tone etc.

    Bottom line with all these mouthpiece threads though is that you have to go with what is right for you.
  10. Bass Trumpet

    Bass Trumpet Active Member

    I would suggest looking for a reasonable middle-ground. I personally use a Wick 4AL which I think gives a fairly even sound throughout the whole range.

    However - a word of caution! Internet forums are not really a good way of gaining good advice. Without actually hearing you play, I can only guess what would work. Same goes for any advice given here. With the best will in the world, you will probably get conflicting views from a number of different sources - none of which actually have first-hand experience of the problem.

    BTW, I write the above without the intention of causing offence to anybody concerned who has offered advice. I simply point out that the world wide anorak is not necessarily the best place to discuss such a complex and personal issue.

    Anyway mictop, I sincerely hope you resolve this quickly and continue to enjoy your playing.
  11. RonBarnes

    RonBarnes Member

    I would advise that if you are happy with your 6BL in your tenor trom, keep it. I you play bass only occasionally, and the Reynolds comes with a Wick 2AL, use that. There is no mouthpiece on the market that I know of that will satisfactorily cover both instruments.

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