I sell reprints of this trumpet method, originally published in 1927 by Omaha trumpet teacher, Fred Elias.
I never knew Mr. Elias, having moved to Omaha well after his death. However I know and respect a great many of his former students and wanted to preserve this method for future generations.
I assisted Paul Pugh with his doctoral thesis on Fred Elias by introducing him to former students and family members.
Fred Elias, Omaha trumpeter and teacher : the three trumpet method books /
Paul William Pugh; Fred Elias
English Book : Thesis/dissertation/manuscript Archival Material vi, 208 leaves
: music, ill. ; 28 cm. (U of Northern Colorado)
Mr Pugh’s thesis contains references to correspondence from the famed Herbert L. Clarke to Mr. Elias. One letter describes a “stunt” to play high notes and is often quoted:
In a letter from Clarke to Fred Elias dating 10/11/1940 he says:
Up to your old tricks again with your betting on high tones. I wrote you last Monday from my country home in in Garden Grove, posted it in Santa Ana, where we had dinner, and found yours of the 4th when I returned Tuesday at Long Beach.
So you still want to increase your range of the cornet: Especially at your age. Well, there is a trick I used to practice when traveling with Sousa, when my lips did not seem to respond after being up all night with local town bands, and playing my usual solos the next day. You know the condition, eh? Well, by practicing this "stunt" carefully, knowing just how to get each interval, correctly from high "C" up, I have often reached two octaves above "G" in the top space of the scale...Sometimes higher.
This takes no strength, power nor strain. It is so simple that one is astounded at the results. Of course one must have a good embouchure and control of thde lip muscles. It is difficult to explain, but easy to demonstrate, and is scientific.
When you form your lips to produce the above "G," just touch your tongue, very slightly, to your bottom lip, the tip, which throws the tip of the lower lip up towards the tip of upper lip, using much power. The tone is produced to the inside of upper mouthpiece at an angle of 45 degrees, instead of blowing straight into the throat of the mouthpiece as one does in playing the cornet.
Try it, after you have gotten the idea. I can do it without any embouchure, any time. But it must be practiced to get results.
Another letter from Mr Clarke is an endorsement of Fred Elias’ Buzz System.
In a handwritten correspondence dating July 8k, 1941:
Many thanks for [sic] nice letter and pictures. Have been quite ill, my heart gave out a month ago and was in bed. 'Very serious. But am gaining strength slowly and am resuming directing our two daily concerts as usual for awhile.
My new teeth are beautiful! But am not trying for any high 'F's' at present. Still, when I start making a musical tone, shall commence from the very beginning and use the 'Buzz System,' to feel the proper lip vibration and then start all over again with a new zest and prove that one can play properly with fake teeth…
Glad you like your new cabin and are so well and happy. Ruby joins me with best wishes and good health for nell and her good self.
You can find out more about Mr Elias here:
http://abel.hive.no/trumpet/tpin/elias.html (review from a customer in England)
Fred Elias even helped Charles Colin get started! (click the link)
One of his relatives had a family web site with pictures, more information, and advertisement for King Liberty trumpets, featuring Fred. There are also pictures of his daughter, Evelyn, who played trumpet on the vaudeville circuit, touring the world with an all girl orchestra, who was also featured in King promotional literature. But, alas, it no longer exists
You can purchase the book for $18 US, including shipping in the United States.
Use PayPal to email me the funds
Twenty Valuable Pointers (from Fred Elias)
1.Never study under a poor Instructor. He may ruin you for life.
2. Always keep alert for pointers, I have learned a lot from only beginners.
3.No matter how good you are, there is always some one better.
4. Listen to good trumpet players every chance you get. It is better than taking a lesson.
5.Make a neat appearance when on an engagement.
6.Never use saliva on valves. There is acid in it which is apt to eat through walls.
Use a good grade valve oil.
7.Clean Instrument once a month. Shot is very good.
8. Practice mornings or evenings. Your mind is clear at these times.
9.Never cross legs when practicing or playing, this displaces your capacity and looks bad.
10.Build up a good library of music. Practicing different music don't make it so tiresome.
11.Be an all around Trumpet player, so you can fill in anywhere.
12.Don't try to master your Instrument in two weeks. It takes years.
Ask some good musicians how long they have been at it.
13.Don't fool or "kid" around while playing an engagement.
14.Always do your best. You can't tell who is listening to you.
15.Practice scales and chords every day. They are your musical friends.
16.Your lips are your working tools. Keep them in shape.
17.Don't fool with other instruments or different mouthpieces. Get a good mouthpiece
and stick to it. I have had good success with a Vincent Bach #7 mouthpiece.
18.Be original. You might have good ideas. There are no two trumpet players alike.
19.There is nothing like standing still—you either go ahead or go backwards.
20.There are only two roads to success. Practice is both.