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#30  When playing a wind instrument, here are 10 thoughts regarding improving your Articulation

Updated: Nov 26, 2023

Welcome to DK's Tips and Tricks! I'm DK, one of the instructors at Melody Mart, as well as

the head band and orchestra guy for the store. One of my standout qualities is my proficiency in playing around 13 instruments, with expertise in providing private instruction for 11 of them. You'll often hear myself or others affectionately label me as a "band nerd," and that truly encapsulates who I am. Over the past 15 years, I've accumulated a wealth of knowledge through formal education and extensive performance experience across multiple instruments. Instead of keeping all this knowledge to myself or randomly mentioning it in my lessons, I've created this corner of the internet dedicated to sharing interesting facts about woodwinds, brass, and string instruments. This is a space where you can discover something new about your instrument.

  • The syllable used for tonguing on wind instruments can be Tah or Too depending on instrument.

  • The tip of the tongue should rest behind the upper teeth, where the gum and teeth meet.

  • Release air by building pressure behind the tongue, then simply move the tongue out of the way.

  • The tongue is the only part of the mouth that should move.

  • To end a note, simply stop the flowing of air.

Double tonguing uses the sounds “T” and “K” (Ti-ka).

  • Tonguing should be done on the airstream, rather than stopping and starting each note in succession.

  • For legato tonguing, the syllable “dah” should be used.

  • Triple tonguing uses the syllables “TTK” (ta-ta-ka).

  • When tonging fast excerpts, the tip of the tongue should move light and freely.

  • Flutter tonguing is done by simply blowing air, while rolling the tongue (as in rolling your R’s in Spanish.

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