Hard to choose!

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bigbandbone
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Hard to choose!

Post by bigbandbone » Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:23 am

I'm a proponent of one mouthpiece only. My chops just don't like switching mouthpieces.
Suddenly I find I have two great but very different mouthpieces and cannot make up my mind which one to play.
What criteria would you use to choose?
FYI I'm playing a 72H. The two mouthpieces are a Marcinkiewicz 1 1/2G and a Denis Wick 0AL Heratige. I play both big band and symphony/concert band.
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Vegastokc
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by Vegastokc » Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:57 am

bigbandbone wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:23 am
I'm a proponent of one mouthpiece only....
Your post caught my eye - not because I am any level of expert - but as a recently returning player, I frequently contemplate mouthpieces. My first go around playing (20+ yrs ago) I was 100% with you: Stick with THE ONE. Lately, I find myself swapping a little more often depending on what the music calls for. ("Mouthpiece is a tool" approach)

FWIW: The choice probably just comes down to the one that gives you more of the tone, stamina, range, flexibility and feel you are looking for. Even if that difference is nominal. If all else fails, just go with the one that looks better. :P

(Again, I am in no way an expert)
TromboneMonkey
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by TromboneMonkey » Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:07 pm

Take them on a gig or rehearsal. Play one all the way through the first set, then switch to the other one some time in the second set. You'll know which one works better.

If you REALLY can't chose between them, flip a coin. If you land on one side and are like "YEAH!!!" then you know you should choose that one. If you land on one side and think "awwwww... :(", choose the other one.

But gigs usually tell the tale of which piece of gear works best.
norbie2018
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by norbie2018 » Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:30 pm

Recording yourself practicing the same part(s) on the different mouthpieces helps as well.
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Vegastokc
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by Vegastokc » Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:51 pm

norbie2018 wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:30 pm
Recording yourself practicing the same part(s) on the different mouthpieces helps as well.
That's a good idea. :good:

TromboneMonkey wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:07 pm
Take them on a gig or rehearsal.
Do you mean those rehearsals we are now doing where we each have our own bubble like that John Travolta movie from way back? :D
(I know that was a long way to go for a joke/pop history reference but we have to keep killing time somehow :idk: )
Doug Elliott
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by Doug Elliott » Tue Mar 24, 2020 1:51 pm

Make a list of the playing characteristics of each. NOT the physical characteristics, just all about how they play.
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Vegastokc
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by Vegastokc » Tue Mar 24, 2020 2:19 pm

Vegastokc wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 12:51 pm
(I know that was a long way to go for a joke/pop history reference but we have to keep killing time somehow :idk: )
...In between practicing of course!
PaulT
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by PaulT » Tue Mar 24, 2020 3:32 pm

(this is for players that are in the earlier stages of their trombone journey)

The following is my experience, to date, as a developing player who has returned enthusiastically to the trombone after a long, long layoff. (the "to date" part matters because I've learned that whatever I hold to be true at any given time is subject to change as experience mounts).

I have been immersed in the "what mouthpiece do I choose" since I dived back into trombone three years ago. I now have three nice tenors and a bass (seldom played... so far). I'll just discuss my .525 (as it is in the middle, but the tale is the same for all of them).

I have picked up an embarrassing number of mouthpieces for that .525, but for simplicity's sake I will just say that I spent most of my first weeks with a 7C. Then I spent the remainder of the year trying to decide whether I preferred the Yamaha 48 or the Bach 6.5 AL. It was a fool's errand, as both are very similar and the preference I might of had for one on one day shifted to the other the next day. But, both were bigger than the 7C and both sounded better to me than 7C. So, the 7C was shelved. While the battle between the 48 and the 6.5 was never fully resolved, I eventually settled on the 48 (I maybe noticed a tad more "presence" with it, whatever that means.)

Then, sometime in year two, I began trying out a Yamaha 51C (similar but ever so slightly smaller than a 5G).I went back and forth and forth and back between the 51C and the 48/6.5. But I came to prefer the sound of the 51C. It was a bit bigger than either the 48 or the 6.5 AL and it sounded fuller and richer.

Then, in year three, I began trying out a Bach 5G and a Yamaha 51 (I had developed the impression that the 5G was a "standard" to be striven for). The 5G and the Yamaha 51 were very, very similar. But, both were a little bigger than the 51C and both sounded a little fuller and richer. And I spend a month trying to decide which of the two darn near identical mouthpieces I preferred.

But, then something interesting happened. I pulled out the 51C one day for some reason, and as I went through the pieces I was working on, I noticed that while the individual notes may not have sounded quite as rich or full, the piece as a whole sounded a little better. There was just a little more control and musicality over the phrases. And I went back to the 51C. And stayed there. For a while.

Until, for some reason, I pulled out my 6.5 AL. And (as you've probably guessed), I felt like I was playing little better on it than I had been on the 51C. Individual notes and scales didn't sound quite as full and rich, but the pieces I was playing sounded a little better (and sounded better longer). I just had a little more control over the horn and my sound both.

And now I'm back to trying to decide between the Yamaha 48 and 6.5 AL. Again, two oh so similar mouthpieces, with one sounding just a teensy bit better one moment, the other the next. And the point here, for me, at least, often the slightly bigger mouthpiece will sound better when you are going back and forth comparing single tones and scales and it will seem that bigger is better. But, while the tone may be better, the music may not be.

(I did try the 7C again to see if my backwards journey continued, but nope. The 7C didn't do it. But, it wouldn't surprise me if the 51C showed up again sometime in the future)

______________________________________________________-

Interestingly, I went through the same deal with guitar. I had been very happily playing 000/OMs (mid-sized guitars). But, one day I fell in love with a big 12-fret Martin Dreadnought I played in a shop (a D-28S). Oh my goodness, did that big guitar have big sound. And it came home with me. And later, a D15S, another 12-fret D found its way to me as well. I was now a 12-fret D player. But, after nearly a year or so, it slowly dawned on me that while my G chords thundered, I wasn't playing as well, or as often, as I did with my OM (a smaller guitar with a smaller, but still really good, sound). It was the same deal. "Big" sounds really really good, but it isn't always better.
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harrisonreed
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by harrisonreed » Tue Mar 24, 2020 9:18 pm

bigbandbone wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:23 am
I'm a proponent of one mouthpiece only.
This is great if you only play one instrument, in one style. If you also play tenor, then obviously it's no good. If you are asked to play in a BQ or any other different group, it might not work.

That said, I think it's very possible to find a versatile mouthpiece that does a lot of things really well, and that works with a few different ensemble types. Yeah!

Pick the one that you can do the most with, given practice.
mrdeacon
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by mrdeacon » Tue Mar 24, 2020 9:31 pm

harrisonreed wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 9:18 pm
bigbandbone wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 11:23 am
I'm a proponent of one mouthpiece only.
This is great if you only play one instrument, in one style. If you also play tenor, then obviously it's no good. If you are asked to play in a BQ or any other different group, it might not work.
I don't think that's what OP was saying... I think he was just saying he only wanted to use one bass mouthpiece. Or at least that's how I interpreted it. He uses a different tenor mouthpiece in his profile.
Rath R1 2000s, Elliott XT
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bigbandbone
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by bigbandbone » Wed Mar 25, 2020 4:58 am

mrdeacon wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 9:31 pm
harrisonreed wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 9:18 pm

This is great if you only play one instrument, in one style. If you also play tenor, then obviously it's no good. If you are asked to play in a BQ or any other different group, it might not work.
I don't think that's what OP was saying... I think he was just saying he only wanted to use one bass mouthpiece. Or at least that's how I interpreted it. He uses a different tenor mouthpiece in his profile.
I'm no longer playing any tenor trombone. Just have not updated my profile. Full time bass trombone now. And want to play just one mouthpiece.
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ArbanRubank
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by ArbanRubank » Wed Mar 25, 2020 5:49 am

bigbandbone wrote:
Wed Mar 25, 2020 4:58 am
I'm no longer playing any tenor trombone. Just have not updated my profile. Full time bass trombone now. And want to play just one mouthpiece.
Me too! I guess I'll have some tenors to get rid of when this downturn is over. I think bass trombones get a bad rap. I see them as beautiful soloist instruments instead of bottom-dwellers.

To the OP: I use only one size mouthpiece on my bass trombone - permanently - until I switch. Each time I switch, I think, "This is IT!" Then a while later, it isn't. But since a Bach 1.5G enables my full range and gives me just enough core for the type of bass soloist sound I want - this one is IT (for now)!

There's another thread about going larger on mouthpiece sizes. I don't think of it as larger is better. I think of it as right-sizing my mouthpiece for the proper interface between my chops and the horn, to enable best what I want to do.
tbonesullivan
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by tbonesullivan » Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:31 am

Not always an easy thing to find. I discovered that one thing I DO like are wide rims. I know some aren't fans, but the L -series bass trombone mouthpieces from Ferguson music are no joke. I know some worry they are too "commercial" sounding, but I haven't found that to be the case.

So, sound and comfort are my two big things when looking for a mouthpiece. See which one feels better, which one you have better flexibility with, etc. Also if two mouthpieces are very similar in width, there really isn't much of an adjustment for that reason. The cup and backbore are going to affect that more.

Finding the mouthpiece that best suits your needs is a lifelong pursuit for many. Good luck!
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Thrawn22
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by Thrawn22 » Wed Mar 25, 2020 8:52 pm

Nothing wrong with using one for one thing and the other for something else.


Having used a marcinkiewicz on a 72H before I didn't dig it.

That being said, if both feel comfortable and play well, then you'll need to have someone or a few someones listen to you play on botb and go from there.
bigbandbone
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by bigbandbone » Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:09 pm

It dawned on me this morning when I was switching back and forth between the two mouthpieces, playing demanding excerpts, and trying to compare and choose one mouthpiece to concentrate on. Consistently one was making me smile, the other was not. I'm going with the one that leaves me smiling...
PaulT
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Re: Hard to choose!

Post by PaulT » Thu Mar 26, 2020 7:26 pm

bigbandbone wrote:
Thu Mar 26, 2020 5:09 pm
...I was switching back and forth between the two mouthpieces, playing demanding excerpts, and trying to compare and choose one mouthpiece to concentrate on. Consistently one was making me smile, the other was not...
You were smiling? Sounds like it was messing with your embouchure, Better go with the other one.


.


(that's a joke, son)
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