Date: Thu, 08 Oct 1998 10:24:49 -0400
From: Jeanne G Pocius <>
Subject: Re: Scott E. and long tones

First of all, let me say this: *I am not a fan of typical *long-tone* practice*

That said, let me explain:

Merely playing one note until your breath is exhausted is not going to do you any good at all...It's important to recognize that, if THAT is your concept of playing long tones, you'd be better off practicing on extended lip flexibilities!

Instead, try the following:

Instead of playing simple one note, try playing a simple chorale tune or hymn at about quarter note equals 40!  This enables your ability to play  lengthily, but also develops your articulation(legato) and your releases(tenuto to the max!)...You should also work on your dynamics while so doing, using different dynamic levels(from ppp to fff), and also using crescendos and decrescendos as you play the piece...

This also enhances your awareness of inner phrases and makes you aware, not just of tone quality, but also of pitch constancy...

Perhaps part of the reason I'm against the traditional approach to long-tones is that I'm a card-carrying member of the *REALITY* school of trumpet playing....

You're seldom going to play a piece of music that requires you to play one note for 2 and a half minutes straight!

Donning my flame suit, now!<G>

John Daniel wrote:
> The main reason to practice long tones is to work on our sound and to learn
> how to play.  As far as conditioning goes, it is possible to do too much,
> so use common sense, the lip isn't the strongest muscle in the body.  Most
> everyone can benefit from practicing long tones.
> John Daniel
> Scott E. wrote:
> >
> >"don't do a lot of long tones it tears down the muscles around the lips."
> >
> >I'm way out of my league here, but I've never been told this before.  Are
> >there any confirming or contrary views from the rest of the list?