What's your technique for quick mute changes?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by hicks, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. hicks

    hicks Member

    This is aimed at trombonists really. There's a very quick mute insertion for 1st and 2nd trom in Carnaval Romain, requiring a straight mute being rammed home and ready to play an important part in the space of 1 bar (quick tempo too).
    Any tips for an ultra quick mute change without peppering the bell with dings? I've always done it right handed, which is probably not the best way.
  2. Queenie

    Queenie Member

    mute either between your legs or behind your knee, and a quick reaction with the left hand. I haven't played it but have had things like this in the past and i'm afraid that's the best solution i've found.
  3. Bayerd

    Bayerd Active Member

    As Queenie says, and if that's still not enough, work out which bit is best to leave out. It's probably not that important anyway....
  4. DMBabe

    DMBabe Supporting Member

    Or if one of the people in front aint doing anything get them to do it..... I've had to in another piece.... as did one of our percussionists.... and they don't have very much in Carnaval Romain. Am pretty sure that wouldn't get you sent to brass band prison! :roll:
  5. Tucked in behind the right knee and then a very quick right hand :D
  6. hicks

    hicks Member

    Probably will do that. Both sections either side of the mute change are important, we've been told by the MD.
    Does anyone know where I mean? Around letter L.
  7. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    1) you actually have two bars to change, not one ...

    2) I would disagree with your MD; in the three bars preceding 'L', 1st trom is doubled by 3rd cornets (and partially by 2nd horn as well), and 2nd trom is doubled by bass trom.

    3) ... in any case, the change can't be that difficult, 'cos my 'bones haven't complained yet, and they're normally the first to whinge.

    4) Surprisingly, when it comes to fast mute changes, a lot of people overlook the obvious thing which is to actually 'practise' the change ... (sorry about using the 'P' word on a Sunday evening!)
  8. i find a wedging it behind the left knee and using the left hand with trom held in closed by right hand is quickest. might be unauthodox but that way the slide don't get in the way.

    worth a try? most helpful if note before or after is in closed position.
  9. hicks

    hicks Member

    You might be taking the tempo slower than us.
    Thanks for pointing out the doubling of parts, I'll mention that to the MD, as I'm really going to struggle to get the mute in at the pace we're taking it.

    Oh yeah, I've already been practicing today, so I can feel good about that :)
  10. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    For the quickest changes, I in advance move to the position where I'm resting the bell on the palm of my left hand and holding the mute just below the bulb, pointing towards the bell, but with hand splayed out to hold it away from the bell; then a quick flex of the wrist puts it in in minimal time. Will only fail if you need to operate the thumb valve - but that shouldn't be the case here.

    Don't remember ever seeing anyone else doing this - but I find it's by far the quickest way to do it - you can get a mute in and out pretty much between continuous notes this way. Perhaps I should patent the technique!
  11. Hells Bones

    Hells Bones Active Member

    I've done that before, Dave. Had a mute change in 2 beats and that was the only thing I could do for it.
  12. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Damn your eyes!
  13. MedwayMan

    MedwayMan New Member

    Right knee - right hand. Left knee - left hand. Left hand holding mute on bell. Tried all 3 to suit part at various times. But if volume when dropping the mute is important, left hand on bell is much the more impressive.
  14. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    my technique is...

    don't bother

    have a look/listen, most of the time it won't really matter - and maybe someone is covering your part.

    and then there is facing away or playing into the part - both of which have been known to avoid MDs/Adjudicators displeasure
  15. Mattytheshark

    Mattytheshark Member

    A few people metioned behind the knee but I and our bass trombone player came unstuck on a contest recentely with that one. The chairs at Fleetwood contest werte lower than the ones in our bandroom and so we tried to 'grip' the mute during a quick change and couldn't keep hold of them! I managed to just about get it between my legs to play the next bit (which was just three trombones! Typical!) but he didn't manage it! Learned a lesson there!
  16. Edd

    Edd New Member

    We had a 2nd cornet player with the idea of putting her mute behind her knee when not in use. She seemed to think she could hang on to it fine, but when out MD spotted it, fur flew! and rightly so. If it can happen, it will, and that mute would have gone rolling across the floor mid-piece at the area.....
  17. I always had best intentions for it with the mute under my knee but the panic of the moment meant I always screwed it up! The only way to do it is to miss a few bars before surely? Thats if the muted sections more important than the part before it!

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