This presentation/paper first explores the timeline of a programming project that greatly informed my approach to the trumpet, and resulted in an article in the Journal of the International Trumpet Guild of the same name. We then go through the mechanics of brass playing, several techniques that set participants up for success in the practice room, and delve into a more philosophical understanding of what the project means– that guru can come from anywhere and everywhere.

Point 1: A Problem, a Process, a Solution

My problem, a double buzz, but only occasionally

For science! A systemic process

The revelation

Point 2: Insight Examined

The problem with trying hard

The mechanism, a concept

Angels and demons

Point 3: Concept to Reality

The fundamentals: Free buzzing, lip glissandi, low register articulation, pedal tones (mouthpiece and instrument)

Training lizard brain with Herbert L. Clarke

What to avoid: maladaptive habits, a short checklist

Point 4: A Pliable Mind

“Guru is everywhere”

The Blue Parakeet

A personal anecdote, and a call to action

Special thanks to advisors on this project who contributed both in substance and in inspiration: David Bilger, Tom Hooten, Dominik Gaus, Micah Wilkinson, and Phil Hembree.