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How to Choose the Right Reed (Clarinet)
Reed strength varies per and the mouthpiece. A reed should provide adequate resistance in order to achieve control and a good tone. However, a reed that is too stiff will not respond well and may be too hard to play.
 
Strength 
 
Reed strength is indicated by a number/ designation from 2 to 5
2 - soft Beginners 
3 - Medium - Strength 3 is a bare minimum for playing in the upper register 
3 1/2 Medium Hard - 3-1/2 is appropriate for most intermediate players
4 - Hard
4 1/2 - Hard (Medium )- Professionals and advanced students generally use 4 or 4-1/2.
5 - Hard (Hard)
 
Brands 
 
Beginner Brand 
Rico - They are cheap and easily found
Intermediate 
Mitchell Lurie
Vandoren - this brand is little thicker then Rico so start with a 2 1/2  to 3
Professional 
Vandoren 
V-12
Olivieri
 
Clarinet Fingering Chart

Trumpet Mouth Pieces

The Trumpet  mouth piece is made up of  6 elements and  each element can affect how you play. Some mouth pieces are better for  beginners  and some better for advance players who play in a wide variety of pitches.  Choosing the right mouth pieces can   affect the quality of your music so picking the right one is important. When selecting a mouth for your trumpet consider the following . 

  • Cup Diameter
    • Large cup Diameter : Increases volume, control. Produces a large volume and reduces risk of cracked tones
  • Small Cup Diameter
    • Relieves fatigue, weakness. Requires little strength but limits the tone inhibits embouchure development
  • Cup depth
    • Deep: Darkens tone, especially in low register.
    • Shallow: Brightens tone, improves response, especially in high register. 
  • Rim
    • Wide: Increases endurance but reduce flexibility.
    • Narrow: Improves flexibility, range.  Great for users who must cover a  wide pitch range
    • Round: Improves comfort but makes clean low-register attacks difficult.
    • Sharp: Increases brilliance, precision of attack
  • Throat
    • Large: Increases blowing freedom, volume, tone; sharpens high register (largest sizes also sharpen low register).
    • Small: Increases resistance, endurance, brilliance; flattens high register
  • Backbone
    • Except in general terms, it isn’t possible to identify backbones by size because they also vary in shape. Various combinations of size and shape make the tone darker or more brilliant, raise or lower the pitch in one or more registers, increase or decrease volume. In each instance, the effect depends in part on the throat and cup used in combination with the backbore.
  • Shank  
 
Parts of Trumpet
  1. Mouthpiece - where the player places their  lips and blows to introduce air and vibration to the instrument essential to making sound . Mouthpieces come in  varying sizes and are made from various materials such as brass or silver. 
  2. Finger Buttons  - Allows the user to select  the note  they which to play by manipulating the pistons below.
  3. Valve Pistons.  /Piston -  When you blow into a trumpet's mouthpiece, the pistons reroutes the two different slides. There are three pistons: 
  • Piston 1 : is the closest  one  to the player closest to you,
  • Piston 2:  is in the middle  one 
  • Piston 3:the third is the farthest. 
5. Finger hook -  Is a place where us a player can rest their little finger which is not needed  for playing.
6. Valve Slides - help produce sound as well as adjust the pitch of notes. There are three valve slides: 
  • Value Slide 1 : lowers the highest note a whole step (also called a fundamental, which is produced when you're not holding down any valve), 
  • Value Slide 2 : lowers it a note a  half step 
  • Value Slide 3 : is produce notes that are lower in register
7.  Bell - The part of the trumpet where the sound comes out of. Usually  made of brass but can also  be lacquered in gold, which produces a more mellow sound, and silver-plated, which produces a brighter sound. They are so available in  sterling silver. Alterations to the bell of the trumpet affects its sound. 
8.  Leadpipe - The tube from the mouthpiece to the tuning slide.
9.  Valve casing -   Is the casing surround the  three cylinders 
10. Turning slide - The part of the trumpet which can be pulled or push to adjust to tune ones instrument to correct key.
 
How does a trumpet work?
The Trumpet is a brass instrument or a lip-reed that produces sound. The players controls the sound produced by vibrating the lips as air passes through there instrument.  The trumpet is one of the higher-pitched brass instruments, unlike the Tuba  or Trombone which produced a deeper, richer sound. 
 
The sound produced by the trumpet can be described  in terms of intonation, color of sound, density of sound, projection and impedance or resistance. 
 
  • Tone Color - is basic frequency response. The frequency response  can be changed using the mouthpiece. For example, a deeper cup  can produce a higher frequency sound. While  the bell / flare shape , size, material  and thickness effect the  frequencies. A flare that reduced radiation of sound will sound more brighter while, denser materials like red brass or copper can also sound  more mellow. 
 
  • Efficiency - is the proportion of energy in to energy out. In horn design, we get improved efficiency when increasing the resistance in the mouthpiece compared to the bell. 
 
  • Intonation - is the correspondence of the pitch that our ear wants to the natural partials designed into the horn. We affect the intonation with the mouthpiece and backbore, leadpipe design and the size of the bell. Different mouth pieces will affect the intonation differently resulting in  a wide variety of sounds variations.
 
  • Slotting - is the ability for an  instruments to lock onto a tone or Q. Q is  the ability of a resonant system to tune to a particular note.
 
  • Projection - is the ability of a horn to make itself heard at a distance. It is a combination of tone color and efficiency as well as the bells capability to keep the sound from spreading after leaving the bell.