In my initial posts on the brass instruments, I did not spend a lot of time covering mutes. Here, I rectify this. It’s virtually impossible to write about the sound of mutes. Instead, I will link to videos demonstrating the different varieties.
This video demonstrates four different trumpet mutes: bucket, straight, cup, and harmon (a.k.a. bubble or wah-wah).
This video is by the same player using a different brand of mutes: harmon, fiber straight, cup, and plunger.
Demonstration of a plunger mute.
Demonstration of a harmon mute
Performance on a bucket mute
Debussy’s Fetes from Nocturnes. One of the most famous muted trumpet passages in the orchestral literature.
All trumpet mutes work on cornet.
“Samuel Goldenberg and Schmulye” from Pictures at an Exhibition
Demonstration of straight, cup, bucket, and plunger
Demonstration of a bucket mute
Demonstration of harmon and solotone mutes
Demonstration of a straight mute
Demonstration of a cup mute
Euphonium and Tuba
Demonstration of straight (practice) mute on Euphonium.
Euphoniums and Tubas using cup mutes
Demonstration of a straight mute for tuba
Demonstration of a bucket mute for tuba
…and now for something completely different…