I recently re-watched an informative Monette-produced video on valve maintenance and realized that I’m still not quite oiling my valves correctly according to the video below.
Good valve cleaning and maintenance advice for any type of trumpet, not just a Monette. Monette Trumpets in Portland, Oregon make unique trumpets for some great players, including Wynton Marsalis, Ingrid Jensen, Adam Rapa, Manny Laureano, Rashawn Ross (plays a D over triple-high C), Ron Miles, Urban Agnas…. Check out the many Monette horns, at Monette.net.
Great valve oil is clear and absolutely does not smell! There is nothing worse than stinky valve oil. You don’t want to be breathing those nasty petrochemical fumes. Get yourself some Al Cass valve oil (clear and odorless). I used this for decades before switching to the really good stuff, Ultra Pure valve oil, in 2-ounce and 8-ounce sizes .
You can listen to a whole chapter on trumpet maintenance from my book, Sound the Trumpet: How to Blow Your Own Horn, from way back in May, 2010.
And here’s a gratuitous (but classic) video of the great Rafael Mendez, who definitely has oiled his valves before this performance of Flight of the Bumblebee and Mexican Hat Dance. Great closeups of his superb embouchure. Some excellent advice on practice, too. What a great player!
Some Other Helpful Cleaning Supplies:
- …Spitballs: For a quick/easy way to get the gunk out of your horn.
- …Brass Saver brush set (no metal to scratch your horn!)
- …Mouthpiece Brush
- …Al Cass valve oil (highly recommended)
- …Ultra-Pure Valve Oil and/or Cleaning Kit (highly recommended)
- …slide grease
- …Yamaha Trumpet Cleaning Kit (can’t vouch for the oil which is probabably smelly, but it’s got a snake, ‘piece brush, casing brush, grease)
- …Polishing Mitt
The Usual Resources:
- Education is more important than Capitalism: I’ve given away well over 1 million free music book PDFs worldwide. Get your own free digital copy of
- …..Sound the Trumpet: How to Blow Your Own Horn
- …..Basic Music Theory: How to Read, Write, and Understand Written Music
- The Practice of Practice: a blog on music practice.
- Free mp3 examples from the book
- Other free printable practice aids
- Free trumpet video lessons
- Trumpet method books
- Conch Shell Trumpet Played for First Time in 3,000 Years (neatorama.com)
- Ancient trumpets played eerie notes (sciencenews.org)
- The Psychology of the Trumpet: what happens when you don’t give a stuff (benjmarston.wordpress.com)
- Clean Up Your Axe: Long-term Illness linked to Goop Inside Trombone (talkingtrumpet.wordpress.com)
- Chromatik: An Online Music-Learning Resource (intentionalpractice.wordpress.com)
- RIP, Laurie Frink: “Trumpet Mom” for Many Jazz Trumpeters (talkingtrumpet.wordpress.com)
- Woody Shaw: The Last Great Trumpet Innovator (wnyc.org)
- Dizzy Gillespie on Grooveshark (grooveshark.com)