is John Lynch. You may have heard of me if you're a trumpet
player interested in high-register playing; in 1984 I wrote
a method book on altissimo trumpet playing, A
New Approach to Altissimo Trumpet Playing (C.L.
Barnhouse, Publisher). I've performed professionally, as a
trumpet player, off and on for several years, but most intensively
from 1975 through 1979 (approximately 1500 performances during
this period). By training and experience, however, I have
been, for several years, essentially a nuclear physicist and
engineer (with NASA) with a wide variety of technical
interests and publications in Mathematics, Statistics, Heat
Transfer, Nuclear Reactor Physics, etc.. Over the past five
years, I've found that by applying contemporary analytical
and experimental methods to the problems associated with trumpet
mouthpieces, I have made, what I believe to be, a major breakthrough
in mouthpiece technology.
this time, I researched the available literature on mouthpiece
acoustics, formulated a new and more effective mouthpiece
concept and did systematic experimentation as well as analysis
to test the concept's validity, approaching this problem in
much the same manner as I would approach a problem for NASA.*
This work resulted in an improved mouthpiece for brass instruments,
the "Asymmetric", that's designed to extend
most players' high range by as much as seven semitones while
retaining the flexibility, sound quality and intonation of
currently available conventional mouthpieces.
by side comparisons (in which the player plays, for example,
first a conventional, radially symmetric mouthpiece, and then
an "Asymmetric"), the "Asymmetric"
tends to have a significant, quantifiable range advantage.
Range is very important to nearly all trumpet players. Students,
especially, will find that they may now qualify to play more
difficult, higher parts, advance more quickly and compete
more effectively in their school bands and orchestras for
first and solo chairs. But, range is only part of the story.
A significant byproduct of the "Asymmetric's"
cup design is more endurance. The "Asymmetric"
tends to provide increased endurance and ease of
playing, especially in the high register; high range performance
tends to be easier, even after several hours of continuous
use. The value of these mouthpieces is rooted in demonstrable
performance rather than in mystique, slogans or advertising
rhetoric. The design is the result of lots of sophisticated
mathematics and computer analysis, the first of its kind.
These mouthpieces aren't for everyone, however.
position the mouthpiece approximately "1/3 ON THE TOP LIP
AND 2/3 ON THE BOTTOM LIP". (Many
players do this already; it has been found empirically, and
can also be shown analytically to be advantageous for high-register
playing.) Also, you must make sure that the wider part
of the rim is DOWN (toward your bottom lip). If you can do
this, your range should increase significantly. If you're
tired of playing your same old, warmed-over version of a 1938
vintage, radially symmetric mouthpiece, and are ready for
cutting-edge technology, try the new "Asymmetric",
the first real innovation in mouthpiece technology, and the
last mouthpieces you'll ever have to buy!
A more complete explanation of the theory and development
of the "Asymmetric" trumpet mouthpiece can be found in Appendix
D of the 1994 revised edition of A
New Approach to Altissimo Trumpet Playing by John
H. Lynch (C.L. Barnhouse, Publisher), and in the International
Trumpet Guild Journal Vol. 20, No. 3 Feb. 1996.