Advice · Education · Playing techniques · Teaching techniques · Trumpets

Articulated Air

So what does ‘Articulated Air‘ mean. Some teachers may refer to ‘articulation‘ or ‘tonguing‘ as an isolated discipline in trumpet playing. The reality is that everything comes back to the way that we control our flow of air through the trumpet. This is nothing new, of course, we know that the air is what fuels the machinery of our music-making. So why, do we as teachers so often talk to students in terms that can be confusing and take the emphasis away from the only truly crucial element?

The use of language in teaching, particularly with younger and developing minds is crucial to give clarity of message and to make sure that the correct mental triggers are in place to help them in their development. This is a concept in which I have done a lot of work and research, and will be exploring in several future articles.

Articulated Air is a concept that adds the tongue (in various shapes and positions depending what you are playing) to your airstream. The focus as ever is on the breath in and supporting the flow of air out. We set up the air to flow and allow the tongue to articulate as the icing on the cake.

I have developed a number of exercises that encourage this natural use of articulated air and have included some below. You may also be interested to visit the Educational Resources page where there is a variety of exercises and concepts for you to explore.

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you would like to explore these or any other trumpet playing concepts in more detail. You can contact me via the Lessons page.

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