Yesterday we held our annual Brass Day at Western, where I teach trumpet. Every year I offer a clinic, and this year my class was called “The Power of Scales.” Basically I attempted to summarize this series of articles over the course of an hour. No small feat!
Here is a copy of the handout I used for the clinic – I also gave the audience a copy of Sunday Scales 6: Variations Galore to give an example of practice variations. If you’re just discovering this series of articles for the first time, those two links are probably a great place to start.
Today’s exercise has it all: a living history, virtuosity combined with artistry and even a little detective-work thrown into the mix. We’re talking about the famous Abblasen call by Gottfried Reiche. Continue reading “Sunday Scales 20: Abblasen”
Last week, we discussed translating major exercises to minor. Now we’ll go a step further and look at some exercises in the other modes.
To me, modes were just a bunch of Greek names I memorized during undergraduate music theory. I never practiced them and I never played them (as far as I knew). But modes are a great stepping-stone to jazz and world music and a wonderful challenge in the practice room.
Let’s take a moment to understand the modes. Continue reading “Sunday Scales 19: À la mode”
This week we’re going to talk about minor – I’m sure you know it’s important, but do you actually practice it? In my case, I never practiced it much for two reasons: first, most exercises and etudes are in major keys; and second, the three minor modes make it confusing to translate exercises to minor. So this week, we’re going to look at a few scale patterns from previous article and show what they might look like in various minor modes. Continue reading “Sunday Scales 18: Minor misunderstandings”
Building on our efforts of two weeks ago, we’re back with more Plog (see below) and another attempt at memorization by chunking. This time, we’ll look at an exercise from volume three, built around the major second (M2) interval:
Continue reading “Sunday Scales 17: More Plog, more chunks”
Let’s take a look at another Stamp exercise, this time from the Supplemental Studies:
Yowza. Continue reading “Sunday Scales 16: Stamp (part 3)”
Anthony Plog’s “fingering exercises and etudes” from his Method for Trumpet (see below) make for fun practicing. This week we’ll take a look at Vol. 2, Ex. 7:
At sixteen measures, this is on the longer side for a scale pattern. How are we going to memorize it? With two techniques. The first is already in this article’s title: “Divide and Conquer.”
Continue reading “Sunday Scales 15: Divide and conquer the chunks”