• Ben Vasko

New exercises to pass time during quarantine! *free sheet music download*

Howdy y'all- I hope you are all staying sane! One thing I have noticed about being quarantined is that my appetite for consuming music is growing. I am powering through etude books like an all-you-can-eat buffet. I have also been dreaming up different ways to achieve the sound in my head. This has led to the development of a few new exercises, some of which I'd like to share with you today.

A hallmark of contemporary tuba music is wide intervallic leaps. I personally have a hard time achieving these, whether it be from low to high or high to low. Typically I allow my face to get tense or I stop the flow of my air. I have made a quick series of exercises to address this issue. I call them "Flapjacks." I do these on F tuba, but I've included different print-outs for different keys. I'll explain each one below.

There are two styles of "Flapjacks." The first is called "Buttermilk."

(This is from the print-out for F tuba. The rest are at the bottom!)

The idea of "Buttermilk" is to use the eighth note as a reminder to keep the air flowing into the next bar. Think of it like a springboard! Start as slow as you need to, being sure you stay relaxed, make a beautiful sound, and center the notes. Always use a metronome and a drone with this.

The next exercise is called "Homestyle."

Again, this is done with slurred air and a light tongue. "Homestyle" allows for a quick check of leaping up and back down, and leaping down and back up. I tend to anchor myself to certain notes, which gets me stuck sometimes. I have been doing this for a few days now and I'm slowly becoming less dependent on which note I start on to navigate around the horn easily.

Let me know what you think! I would love some feedback on this venture. I hope these help someone like they have me. Happy practicing y'all.

Downloads below

Flapjacks for Euphonium
Download PDF • 70KB
Flapjacks for F Tuba
Download PDF • 69KB
Flapjacks for Eb Tuba
Download PDF • 69KB
Flapjacks for CC Tuba
Download PDF • 69KB
Flapjacks for BBb Tuba
Download PDF • 69KB


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©2018 by Ben Vasko.

Boston, USA

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