Updated: Apr 26, 2022
I cracked open Jordan Hoffman's Power Player Trumpet Course and my fiancée, Seth, wanted to join in.
For me, I was excited about the course because even though I played lead trumpet in the college big band and have played first trumpet in a lot of groups, I could have (and could still) use a little guidance on how to get even better.
I have a reliable range and was put on the right track by my early teachers, especially Rich Worcester and Bob Levy, but haven't seen any type of online course that specifically teaches how to play high notes powerfully and gracefully.
This course seems to be what I have been looking for. It addresses the elephant in the room... that the trumpet is a highly physical instrument and there are so many players out there who struggle for decades unnecessarily because they don't know how to work with the instrument instead of against it.
Jordan does an amazing job laying out exactly how to expand your range and reach your potential as a physically strong player. Everyone is capable of playing notes like high E, F and G above the staff and higher... you just have to know how to do it.
Seth is also getting into it, and it is helpful and relevant for him too. About a year ago he joined a community adult marching band that plays a lot of physically taxing gigs like pub crawls where you're out playing for several hours. When he first joined up, they immediately wanted him to play first because there ARE players who can play a high C or a high D, but they might not be able to do it for hours and hours like they need to. They end up taking turns and taking things down an octave... which is fine... but it would be more satisfying for everyone to be able to just keep playing with a powerful sound the whole time.
Players everywhere struggle with the physical part of playing. I totally get that, and it's nobody's fault. Most teachers don't even know how to explain what should be happening with the embouchure. But Jordan explains how to create an ideal embouchure in lesson 1.
I often hear people say that they like playing the third or fourth parts. They actually prefer to do that. Okaaaay. Someone has to play the lower parts and sound good on them, definitely. But there are a lot of people playing those parts because they have simply given up on their own range, out of pure frustration.
If this sounds like you, I urge you to check out Jordan's Power Player Trumpet Course. And if you know any other players who are struggling with their range, pass this link along. They can see an improvement in the first lesson.