[Dixielandjazz] Laying off

Larry Walton Entertainment - St. Louis larrys.bands at charter.net
Thu Oct 26 08:43:18 PDT 2006

What goes with clarinet players is endurance and speed over the register 
break.  It just depends on how long you don't play.  While I played clarinet 
I spent time practicing on cross fingerings and the register break.  Those 
are two things that suffer when you don't play for awhile.  A player can get 
away with biting rather than using the embouchure muscles but the tone 
suffers and again endurance drops rather quickly.  I assume that the person 
is playing nothing at all and is never practicing.  I find it hard to 
believe that a person could be at the top of his form after a layoff of some 

Brass players lose range and endurance rapidly.

The instrument that this is most true about in the WW family is the Tenor 
and Bari sax but even there endurance is the first thing to go.

I was in a repair shop one day and a guy brought in an Alto Sax that 
obviously hadn't been played in years.  He explained that he had been asked 
to join a community band and hadn't played for a long time and needed his 
horn put into playing shape.  That guy pulled out the mouthpiece, put a reed 
on it and played the most beautiful sound and some neat licks on it.  So it 
can happen but -----

I find I have to play all the time or my fingers get log like and especially 
on long gigs playing Soprano my lip will get irritated and be sore the next 
day if I lay off much.  That really didn't happen while I was still playing 
St. Louis
----- Original Message ----- 
From: <Cebuisle2 at aol.com>
To: <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
Sent: Thursday, October 26, 2006 10:00 AM
Subject: [Dixielandjazz] (no subject)

> Jim is probably correct in his description of the problems of teaching
> students. Most of the clarinet players I started over the years stuck with 
> it for
> at least a year or two, trombonists gave up by the score after a few 
> weeks.
> In addition to the bleating and mooings that the horn is capable of, the 
> slide
> positions are a wonderland for kids. Always had more trouble finding a
> trombone than a clarinet. However, the reed embouchure can also be lost 
> from
> non-practice
> Recently bought a used clarinet for my adult son, who once played one in 
> the
> school band. Tried it out before giving it to him as a gift. Couldn't get
> anything above the octave key!!
> Lat's hear it for those dedicated 'bone  players--  
> Ted
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