HBM – Mutes

Harmon – brand name (straight mute) – need the wah-wah mute tube in (loudest, wah-wah, 1930’s), extended, removed (cool jazz, 1950’s on)

Plunger- sink (trumpet), toilet (trombone)

Plastic mutes generally aren’t so good – break ,timbre

Hat mute – play ½ in and ½ out to keep timbre and volume

Felt hat – how to make

Normally make an instrument sharp – Hunt says to compensate with embouchure, but, if there is time, it is better to pull the tuning slide

Trumpet can extend 1st and 3rd slides to lower all but open and 2nd valve

Ensemble playing, straight mute is assumed if mute not specified; not true for solos

Stone-lined straight mute for horn, add string for quick mute changes

H.O.B. – hand over bell – too closed will make the horn flat – keep hand cupped, marked:  +, o  

Sharp mute=   corks too low; flat mute= corks too high(also fuzzy low notes)

New mute: insert tightly in ball overnight before adjusting corks

Light mineral oil to renew dry, glazed corks

Horn – stopping mute – transposing –good for low, muted notes & people w/ small hands

Mute Designations

English                       Italian                         French                                    German

muted                          con sordino                 sourdine                                  mit Dämpfer

take off mutes             via sordino                  enleves les sourdines              gedämpft (horns)

Dämpfer weg

without mutes             senza sordino              sans sourdine                          ohne Dämpfer

Mute Recommendations

Type                           Trumpet                                 Horn                           Trombone

straight                        metal                                       Stone-Lined                metal

Vacchiano                                                                   Vacchiano

(Leblanc)                                                                     Jo-ral

Tom Crown                                                                 Tom Crown

            aluminum – lighter sound

brass – darker sound

copper – darkest sound


Denis Wick (loud)

TrombCor (in tune!)

cup                              Stone-Lined                                                                Stone-Lined

(Humes & Berg)

TrombCor (adjustable cup)

harmon                        Harmon


Tom Crown bubble


plunger                        sink                                                                              toilet

practice mute              Yamaha silent brass