The creation of quality brass tone always begins in the mind – not at the the lips. For both the teacher and the student an ideal concept of sound must first be realized. While this concept of sound can be detailed over time, it should be inspired by the following:
- Focused, repeated listening (recordings, live music, etc.)
- Experimentation on the mouthpiece/instrument
- Teacher/colleague input
- Personal experience
- Personal taste
Once this “mental picture” of the sound has been established, both teacher and student can start working together to focus in on the desired sound. If you are not a brass player and you are unsure about a brass-specific concept of sound, talk with private lesson teachers, local master teachers, or clinicians in your area to help.