BUZZ to Brilliance VIDEO REVIEW
by Dr. John Kuzmich Jr.
Available at Oxford University Press
(use code 29300-banddirector)
Brilliant 20-in-1 Trumpet Method
For years I have taught young students by piecing together bits and pieces from 20 or 30 method books and other texts. I would gladly have traded all of these for one comprehensive, detailed book that could guide students through the early stages of learning the trumpet. After searching high and low, I discovered that there was no such book.
So much of what we learn as students is from our teachers tell us… things that often are never written down, such as cleaning the trumpet, structuring your practice, or choosing a mouthpiece. We may learn these things along the way, but there are often wide gaps in our knowledge.
After years of searching, I finally decided to write a book that answered all the questions my students asked over the years, as well as sharing ideas passed down to me from my teachers. The book I searched for all those years now exists. Its name is Buzz to Brilliance.
So … what makes Buzz to Brilliance so useful for teachers, university brass methods classes, students, and comeback players alike?
First, Buzz to Brilliance is written with clear, conversational language, short chapters, and engaging special features — perfect for secondary students and anyone else who wants information in a concise, easily-digested format. Drawings, diagrams and pictures are visually inviting and make each concept easy to understand.
Second, Buzz to Brilliance maximizes the efficiency of band class or private lessons by anticipating students’ questions. Whether buying a new trumpet, mouthpiece selection, adjusting to braces, or what to expect in marching band, it’s all there. Special features offer insights into diverse worlds, from the workbench of a master repairman to the French horn studio of a master teacher.
Third, Buzz to Brilliance works both on the music stand and as a study reference. Following the written chapters of the book, a comprehensive set of exercises cover the fundamentals of technique, including breathing, high range, lip slurs, accuracy, articulation, and pedal tones. With practice schedules, a mouthpiece comparison chart, tuning fixes and more, the book is a complete resource for the teacher and student.
Finally, Buzz to Brilliance covers essential (but seldom-discussed) topics such as managing frustration, balancing practice time, setting goals, choosing a private teacher, sight-reading, and performing. In particular, the chapters on practice skills, sight-reading, and performing are a must-read for any musician.
Returning players will find detailed technical explanations that allow them to identify and overcome limitations in their technique, while the exercises provide a clear pathway for them to advance to a very high level. University methods teachers will find that while the book is accessible in its language, it makes no compromises on content.
Buzz to Brilliance is a unique and ground-breaking contribution to the trumpet pedagogy. A must-have tool for any teacher, student, or parent who is serious about the trumpet!