Staying in top playing shape post band shutdown



  • I don't know about the rest of you, but the loss of regular band practice and playing gigs affected my playing. I noticed I was losing endurance and the range was starting to suffer. To combat this I increased my daily morning practice from approximately 50 minutes of horn on chops to 70 minutes, spent more time on the more difficult exercises ( especially 2 octave scales in all keys ), individual range exercises, and as well, I increased my afternoon playing of tunes to match the morning practice time with horn on the chops. Now things are coming back for me.

    How 'bout you folks after zero band participation ? Any troubles ?



  • Just "business as usual", here. My practice regime hasn't changed. But broadly, it just seems to me to be common sense. Practice like you always did but compensate for lost ensemble playing time by,

    1.) using the technology to play in "contrived' ensembles, . . - if you don't know the technology, this is a good time to learn.
    2.) Increase the time, difficulty of additional exercises/etudes,
    3.) Organize a set of tunes like you would, otherwise, have been playing in an ensemble, both in difficulty and time.

    Also, if your so inclined, have a bit of fun. Music Minus One and Aebersold have a wealth of jazz and classical play-alongs, some with ensemble to orchestral accompaniments. Nothing like playing a Mozart solo piece with full orchestra accompaniment.



  • @Kehaulani
    Dr. Mark suggested I look into Charlier, too. That would be new to me.



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  • @Kehaulani
    Thanks, I just downloaded it. It's going to be a challenge for me. But at my age everything is a challenge.



  • @GeorgeB said in Staying in top playing shape post band shutdown:
    @Kehaulani, But at my age everything is a challenge.

    Yeah. I got up this morning. Wasn't sure if I could. 😈



  • @Kehaulani

    Ha ha, I have that problem every morning.

    Well I played that first exercise and by the time I got down to those high A's
    my tone didn't sound so great. I think I am going to take Mr. Charlier in small bites. Now I think I'll go play that wonderful ballad The Second Time Around but not with Charlier today. ☺





  • I have maintained my routine practice schedule as never know when a gig will come up. Just got one from the union this week that I play tomorrow. Waiting for more to open now that our governor has opened up restaurants.



  • I’ve barely touched a horn for the last couple months. I was in pretty good shape in preparation for Easter, but since then, I’ve probably dropped to the “unwashed masses” level of playing. I suppose I’m not too motivated to practice if there’s nothing to play for. It will come back pretty quickly when I hit the practice room regularly, though.



  • @Dr-GO said in Staying in top playing shape post band shutdown:
    Just got one from the union this week that I play tomorrow.

    😨



  • @Kehaulani
    Thanks for that link. One thing I realize now is that I was trying to play the etude too fast and really tiring myself out. Today I am going to tackle #1 again but at a much slower tempo until I familiarize myself with the entire piece.



  • Play it at a speed that you can play it error-free and then play it again regardless of tempo, but this time in a purely musical/expressive manner. Then combine the two, gradually playing it faster but never ignoring the musical phrasing.



  • @Kehaulani
    Yeah, I realize the importance of getting the phrasing right. All good advice there. I am anxious to get at it this afternoon, but along with the anxiety is the question of how much am I gonna screw up. When I get this first Charlier down I am going to celebrate with a double shot of Jack Daniels ☺


  • Qualified Repair Techs

    One thing to remember is that when you get back into those rehearsals, especially with amateur groups, your endurance will suffer even if you’ve been practicing. Adjusting (or trying to!) to other folks intonation will tire you out faster, especially since a lot of them will not have kept up their practice habits, so don’t get too discouraged once you go back.
    I still have no idea when my next gig will be or who it will be with - everything I had on the books is cancelled up to October. It’s pretty depressing! Thankful that I married a guitarist so I’ve got someone to play with right now, but we are both pretty bored. If things open up for small groups soon, we have two different couples we can play with (Bass/drums) to play some jazz with, at least.



  • @GeorgeB said in Staying in top playing shape post band shutdown:
    @Kehaulani-When I get this first Charlier down I am going to celebrate with a double shot of Jack Daniels ☺

    And if you don't get it down then, what? The whole bottle? 😈



  • @GeorgeB said in Staying in top playing shape post band shutdown:

    How 'bout you folks after zero band participation ? Any troubles ?

    I play in a jazz trio, which doesn't rehearse. So the lack of rehearsal time doesn't impact me.

    Glad to hear @Dr-GO (Gary) is getting gigs. What type of gig was it? And did you have to make any "social distancing" adjustments?

    I've starting playing outdoors with my trio this month. We had our second gig today, which we livestreamed, and used to raise money for local causes. My first real post-COVID gig (unless things change) is early July. It will be an outdoor gig.

    Mike



  • @tmd said in Staying in top playing shape post band shutdown:

    Glad to hear @Dr-GO (Gary) is getting gigs. What type of gig was it? And did you have to make any "social distancing" adjustments?

    Mike

    The AFM local 101-471 got me a gig to open a church for their Pentecost services. It was held with amazing social distancing, with families sitting in single pews staggered one end to middle to other end of pew, ALL I mean 100% wearing masks! I played at 12 ft from the organist (having to remove my mask when playing) but kept it on at all other time. No hymnals. All responses AND hymns were projected on a large screen so that no paper service items would be distributed.



  • Had no problem playing the church performance as the version of the Handel I played the month before shut down when very well. I believe my practice routine has my performance requirements well under control. This is reassuring as I never know when a gig will be coming my way at any time as the union is always surprising me.


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