Why Use A Mute?If you play trumpet or Trombone and have been considering using a mute but are not quite sure what they do then hopefully this will answer your questions. One reason is that it makes your instrument quieter which will probably please your neighbours but more importantly it gives the sound you get a bit of colour and dimension. A Mute can extend the range of sounds that you can get from your instrument considerably. They come in huge range of different shapes and sizes and are made from a whole variety of materials. Aluminium, Copper, Brass, Compressed cardboard, plastic, or wood each giving its own unique sound.
From the Harman ( Wah Wah) mute which is often reminiscing of those late night American detective films which will give you that “jazzy” “late night” brassy sound to a strait or cup mute. There is the plunger which you can vary the sound, the bucket mute and not forgetting the practise mute which is what your neighbours will appreciate mostly. Many experienced brass players will have at least three or four different mutes that they carry around with them.
To use slightly wet it or just blow a little warm breath onto it to prevent it slipping out and just insert into the bell. There can be a tendency for a mute to stuff up or muffle the sound in the lower register when you first start playing with it but that is something that you will get use to it with time and practice.