24 Monday Feb 2014
58 Ways to Improve as a Horn Player
- Before you start playing, stand up and stretch. Give your head, face, and scalp a massage. Eyes closed, focus on the word “horn” for 1 minute. Breath deeply.
- Don’t bring your cell phone into the practice room.
- Warm up with comfortable overtone series patterns. Know the numbers of the overtones (hint: the central C E G triad is 4 5 6).
- Work on overtone skips separately from adjacent overtone movement before you mix the two.
- Learn new scale types, not just octave major scales, e.g. minors (natural minor, harmonic minor, melodic minor, Dorian mode).
- Practice scales in all lengths, not just octaves.
- Work on arpeggios of various types and lengths, not just scales.
- Practice patterns (decorate a scale in some way, then play it in diatonic sequence up and down, e.g. scales in thirds).
- Be able to turn around at any time when you play scales.
- Start scales with a pick up or after beat one – not always on the strong beat.
- Every once in a while, don’t play anything in 2/4 or 4/4 the whole day. Continue reading »