Introducing the Trumpet

Our friend Lloyd introduces the Bb Trumpet in this short video:

Lloyd explains how he got a chance to learn to play the trumpet at School and never looked back. He encourages everyone to do the same! In the video he plays an excerpt from the tune “Cherry Blossom Pick and Apple White” made famous by Perez Prado, a Cuban bandleader and piano player, known as “King of the Mambo”. Lloyd also has 2 adorable, very well behaved dogs called Buddy and Delilah!

The Trumpet is probably the best known brass instrument and is very widely used in all forms (genres) of music, from orchestras, jazz bands, concert bands, pop music to film music.

The trumpet comes in a variety of sizes, although the most common is the Bb Trumpet that Lloyd is playing. Lloyd’s trumpet uses piston valves but in this next video our friend Calum demonstrates a rotary valve trumpet, which are more common in Europe:

It is one of the higher pitched brass instruments, although the Piccolo Trumpet and Soprano Cornet are higher. The high pitch, the shallow, cup-shaped mouthpiece, the narrow, cylindrical tubing and forward pointing bell give the Trumpet it’s characteristic “fanfare” sound that carries above the rest of the band.

The Trumpet is similar to the Cornet and Flugelhorn, but has a livelier, more brash sound compared to their warmer, more mellow tone. For a discussion of the differences, see our introduction to the Bb Cornet.

Here is another informative introduction to the Trumpet from the Internet (not one of ours but we like it!):

Listen to the Trumpet sound in the theme tune to Britain’s longest running soap, Coronation Street!

Here is an old recording of possibly the greatest jazz trumpeter ever, Louis Armstrong. Not only was Louis Armstrong a brilliant trumpet player, he was also a great singer and entertainer. The other musicians in his band aren’t bad either – can you name the instruments?

As well as the Trumpet, the band featured, from left to right: Piano, Drum Kit, Trombone, Double Bass (the big string instrument), and Clarinet. Louis is also joined by another singer.

Last but not least, here is the Dorchester Brass Quintet playing the famous Trumpet Voluntary (Prince of Denmark’s March) written by English Composer Jeremiah Clarke about 1700. What instruments are playing?

There were 2 Trumpets at the front, French Horn behind on the left, Trombone behind on the right, and Tuba at the back in the middle.

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