So you fell in love with that trumpet sound. You may have even bought yourself a trumpet and started to play. Then what is the next step? A little history lesson, of course. Knowing the roots of your favorite instrument will make you appreciate it more, and could even help you to become a more dedicated musician. With that in mind, here is a brief history of the trumpet.

The trumpet itself has been around for centuries, having gotten its start being used as signals for the military and also for religious occasions. Trumpets from that time were generally made out of bronze or silver, and since it was used only for signaling purposes, they contained no valves. Because ancient trumpets relied on the changing of crooks to change notes, the need for change was evident. The modern valved trumpet got its start in the early 1800s in an effort to give the trumpet player the opportunity to play all twelve notes in the chromatic scale.

Some of the more famous trumpet players from the classical genre include:

Rafael Mendez

Considered by some to be the best trumpet player in the world, Mendez was known for a brilliant tone, awesome range and technique, and for his clean and fast double-tonguing ability.

Adolph “Bud” Herseth

One of the greatest orchestral trumpet players in history, Herseth held the chair of Principal Trumpet for the Chicago Symphony for over fifty years.

Allen Vizzutti 

Vizzutti is a modern day trumpet master who is equally adept at many different genres of music – being most famous for his classical playing. Taught by his father, who was also a trumpet player, Vizzutti received a full scholarship to the world famous Eastman School of Music where he earned his Masters degree.

Here are a few of the more famous jazz trumpet players, in no specific order:

Miles Davis

Definitely one of the most influential trumpet players of the 20th Century, Miles’ music was constantly evolving which was significant in a career that spanned from the 1940s all the way to his death in 1991. Miles was known for his clear, distinct tone and his use of space that is emulated to this day.

Dizzy Gillespie

One of the co-founders of the bebop movement along with saxophonist Charlie “Bird” Parker, Dizzy was well-known for his improvisational technique. He had a high-flying range and utilized complex harmonies in his songs and improvisations. His famous puffy cheeks became a detriment to his late career due to affecting his tone and range.

Maynard Ferguson

Maynard is considered a God to many trumpet players, due to his ability to play cleanly in the extreme upper register. Maynard got his first major break in the early 1950s in Stan Kenton’s band, and later went on to lead his own bands for many decades. Maynard was a musical chameleon, always changing with the music of the time. Some hard-nosed music critics called this a sell-out, and his choice of music could sometimes be called tasteless (Think disco), but there was never any denying Maynard’s playing.

Roy Hargrove

One of the better-known current trumpet players, Hargrove attended the Berklee College of Music in Boston for a year, and then moved on to The New School in New York. Hargrove’s first solo release was in 1990 when he was just twenty-one years old. During his career, he has recorded and performed with small combo groups and big bands. Hargrove has also ventured into the fusion movement with his group RH Factor, which combines jazz, funk, soul, and gospel music.

The history of the trumpet is a complex thing that spans several centuries. What started out as a signaling instrument for the military and religious organizations, has over the years become an instrument that can be used in many different styles of music. While this was just a brief history, it is recommended that you continue to learn about the many great trumpet players in history, from past to present. After all, it was most likely that same trumpet sound that brought them to this great instrument.

Getting back to the original question of whether price and quality affects trumpet sound, the answer is “absolutely.” Visit us at  http://besttrumpetsguide.com/ for more help on picking the right trumpet. Musicians of all levels face the important issue of picking the best trumpet and, although there are exceptions to the rule, you will find that the more you pay for a horn normally means that you are getting one of better quality You should always try to buy the best trumpet that you can afford.

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Mike Dwyer is a freelance writer in Louisville, KY. He writes about culture, the outdoors and whatever else strikes his fancy. He loves hunting, fishing and camping.