This is the book in which Norman D’Ath presents his “No Pressure System” for the upper register of the trumpet. Please read below this excerpt from the author’s forward where he lays out his method brilliantly. There are samples to the left to peruse, then click above for an immediate PDF download.
“Not so long ago, most brass players employed a system in which, as they ascended to the upper register of their instrument, the mouthpiece tended to be forcibly pressed against the lips. In this way was achieved the smaller aperture required when producing high notes. Such pressure, quite understandably, stopped the circulation of the blood to the lips in the same way that a string tied tightly round a finger will rapidly cause the finger to become numb. Thus the great majority of performers possessed only a limited range. The undue application of pressure not only lessened their endurance, but caused a heavy playing engagement to become a mild form of torture. Their playing careers, too, were often shortened.
Occasionally, however, a player with all the physical qualifications, discovered for himself a method which did not require this excessive pressure, and was able to play passages which his less fortunate brethren found impossible. For long it was considered that these ‘naturals’ had some exceptional gift which could not be acquired by the rank and file; but years of study of their work convinced thoughtful musicians that these players all had points in common which could be copied by any student who desired to do so. Thus every brass player of today has a chance of being able to play passages which were formerly beyond the scope of any except the most gifted performers.
This method which did not require excessive pressure of the mouthpiece on the lip became known as the ‘No Pressure method.”