Your trumpet stand is as valuable a piece of protective gear for your horn as your case is. Maybe even more so - your case usually stores your horn while it's sitting unused, but your stand has to protect your horn while it's in action with a myriad of other activities going on around it. Choosing the right stand for your needs is paramount!
Like many professional trumpet players, I've been through several brands and versions, and I would be hard-pressed to say there is one particular model that meets every need, but I can tell you some pros and cons for various types.
THE STANDARD MODEL
The standard trumpet stand is the three-legged version that elevates your horn about a foot or so off the ground. Some fine examples are made by Hamilton and Belmonte.
- - Keeps your horn at a good level for easy reach, especially if you're standing, as in a big band
- Helps keep the horn at a visible level for people who may be moving around your instrument
- The higher the horn, the harder the fall, and three legs isn't foolproof
- Can be a little bulky to carry around
THE FLOOR-LEVEL MODEL
This is probably the version I see most often among professional players and for a variety of reasons. You can find some great versions from K&M and Pack-A-Stand.
- Keeps horn at a great level for sitting, ideal for session work.
- The lower the horn is, the less chance of damage from a fall.
- Most versions have five legs, creating a wider and more stable base. It is incredibly rare that these stands would ever topple over without some external force applied.
- Most versions are designed to easily slide into your horn's bell for storage, making it one less thing to carry and making it ideal for travel.
- Not ideal for standing situations where you are switching between horns a lot.
- Having the horn so close to the ground might make it hard to see for someone who isn't paying close attention while walking around. Trumpet bells make an awful crunching sound when they're stepped on!
THE MULTI-HORN MODEL:
Just like cases, some stands are designed for multiple horns to accommodate the multi-player horn. Having one stand to hold your trumpet, flugelhorn and piccolo trumpet may be a great solution for you. The most popular version is made by Hercules.
- Obviously convenient to have all your horns on one stand.
- Horns sit at a generally good level for either standing or sitting.
- Pulling one horn off, especially during a rushed transition, can upset the other horns and cause the stand to topple. Some players add extra weight to the stand to keep it more stable.
- A bigger stand to carry around.
Be sure to consider your most common playing opportunities - are you in a live band usually, or sitting in a studio? Are you standing in a Big Band or sitting in an Orchestra? How often do you need multiple horns? If you do the same thing all the time, it may make your selection easier, but like many players, you may find you want to have multiple stands available to fit your various playing situations.
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Tony Guerrero is a freelance trumpet player in Los Angeles California. Performing and recording with a wide range of artists ranging from John Tesh to High School Musical, Tony is at home in nearly any style on both trumpet and piano. For more information on Tony including his latest Recording titled "Blue Room," visit www.tonyguerrero.com.