How can trumpet solos lay on the bass better?

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by stormwriter, May 5, 2005.

  1. stormwriter


    Mar 25, 2005
    In another thread, someone said we should transcribe trumpet solos. I don't understand how a brass instrument's solo's could lay out on the bass to where they're more playable to us bass players than something like a tenor solo. Yes, i know trumpet solos, in general, are less busy than tenor solos, but that has nothing to do with this "lay out on the bass better.." statement.

    Can someone please explain?
  2. littlekatie


    Jul 14, 2004
    London, UK
    i think (although i may be wrong), that it has something to do with the harmonic series, which is all very complicated. my fiancee is a trumpet player, so i'll ask him and get back to you all, but im pretty sure that trumpet harmonic series relates easily to the tuning in 4ths of the bass. will get back to you on that one!
  3. anonymous0726

    anonymous0726 Guest

    Nov 4, 2001
    That was me (likely) who made that statement.

    The reason that I say this is that trumpet has similar limitations to the bass: stamina, range, arpeggios and large register jumps are difficult, etc.

    After years of frustration, being a bassist and son of a tenor player, the things that saxoffonists can do easily on their instrument (multi-octave flurries of arpeggios, patterns, etc.) are near impossible on our instrument. After having arrived at my own box 'o tricks and then comparing mine to that over other melodic bassists and trumpters I made the correlation.
  4. I found transcribing 'bone soli to be helpful. Slide 'bone has some physical distance limitations that are similar to bass. Some bonists to consider: Jimmy Knepper, Bob Brookemeyer, JJ Johnson, Kai Winding, Robin Eubanks...
  5. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    my main axe is trumpet, so i can agree with Ray....

  6. Ed Fuqua

    Ed Fuqua

    Dec 13, 1999
    Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
    You know, one thing my buddy Matt (who's a guitar player) has been doing is working up Bird heads and solos in the alto key. Since alto tranposes (an Eb instrument, right) the blues in F is actually being played in Ab. He says that a lot of fingering and phrasing issues got a lot easier for him....
  7. I also play the trumpet, and agree with Ray! :) But i have seen it with the trombone aswell!
  8. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    If I could play open fourths on DB along the lines of Woody Shaw, I'd be a happy pup.
  9. My main axe is saxophone. An F blues on piano is played in D on alto (or baritone). On tenor/ soprano/ bass sax, an F blues is in G.
  10. 33degrees


    Jun 4, 2005
    try some trombone solos, like jj johnson, they really sound great on upright, especially as he plays around the octave G (octave on the G string). and chet baker also works, try 'summertime' from chet in paris cd.
  11. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I think this is a very good point. I know when I go along to my local Jazz club every week, there are quite a few Sax players who sound very impressive are very exciting and who come out with these incredible flurries of notes with no apparent effort - but when I hear a trumpet player, I'm almost always thinking how beautiful their lines are, how melodic, how simple!

    I think that's something worth aspiring to...?
  12. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    I find this to be rather interesting...a decent parallel is doubling on both BG and DB. Personally, my technique on BG is worlds beyond my DB technique, so I find myself feeling the notes on DB more, playing less, and playing more melodically, whereas on BG I have an occasional tendency to throw taste to the wind and go where my chops take me. This is a huge problem, IMO, one I work at fixing, and also IMO, a huge problem amongst sax players today. A lot of younger guys I've seen play have the tendency to take the technical capabilities of the saxophone -- multioctave 16th note runs, etc. -- and exploit them as much as possible, while completely throwing melodic concept, tone, and expressiveness to the wind. This isn't nearly so much of a problem amongst the older crowd (any NYC players familiar with Donny McCaslin? I love this guy).

    Personally, I find technical limitations on an instrument forces one to be a better overall musician. A sax player can noodle real fast and impress non-musicians and non-experienced musicians, but someone on the trumpet or trombone (or, dare I say it, DB) has to really play their ass off in a lot of different ways to get the same kind of reaction (and to get calls BACK to gigs.)