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Just one more question... Earplugs?

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Burke
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Joined: Mon Dec 20, 2004 6:01 am

Postby Burke » Sun Oct 16, 2005 3:38 am

I bought some green NNR 30/SNR 84 earplugs and it is a lot easier on my hears to stand the higher notes than an ordinary bundle of tissue paper. I agree with Stargle. I doubt my band director will let me use them in the concert. Maybe she will at least let me where one in my right ear since the way that I sit, the audience sees only the left side of me and its where the picc's sound is loudest.
Band Geek, I'll tell you what I told Stargle. I am very proud of you this morning. :wink:

Starqle
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Postby Starqle » Sun Oct 16, 2005 9:46 am

You have a point there. As I'm playing in college, not as part of a job, I'm not sure if that law applies. However, that page might help out. Still, I'm fairly sure that they'll at least require me to get more invisible ones. Bright blue ear plugs that have a blue string going from one plug to the other or construction-work orange ear plugs would be distracting to the audiance. I did see some clear ones, though...

- Martin

Band_Geek
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Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 5:39 pm

Postby Band_Geek » Sun Oct 16, 2005 11:10 am

Thank you Burke. Playing the picc with earplugs is so much easier on my ears. The only thing that sucks is that when Im done playing after an hour of practicing, everything seems so much louder.

Burke
Posts: 100
Joined: Mon Dec 20, 2004 6:01 am

Postby Burke » Mon Oct 17, 2005 6:07 am

You have a point there. As I'm playing in college, not as part of a job, I'm not sure if that law applies. However, that page might help out. Still, I'm fairly sure that they'll at least require me to get more invisible ones. Bright blue ear plugs that have a blue string going from one plug to the other or construction-work orange ear plugs would be distracting to the audiance. I did see some clear ones, though...

- Martin
I'm sure you're right in your assumption. Those regulations do not apply to you, and although my background is in industrial safety, I don't believe they apply to professional musicans either. If any do, there are people here who will have been exposed to them and perhaps will join this thread long enough to post that information. MeLizzard posted her very good thoughts about hearing protection, but I didn't read anything of a regulatory nature. I'm sure she would know.

This was ten years ago, but one of my offices was on the same military installation that housed the U.S. Navy Band. I was in contact with those folks on numerous occasions for safety or fire prevention reasons, and this aspect of safety never entered into any of our discussions. My work in that case focused on the structure of, and use of their building, and I was (now, regretably) never aware of this. Had there been a radial arm saw section in the band, I would have been on it like white on rice. :lol:

The premise for using Wicks paper to support your argument for hearing protection is clear in his work. If you and your fellow students do not wear hearing protection, one may conclude that some of you will probably incur a hearing loss, especially if you continue this level of involvement in music beyond your college experience. Thus, you'll be suggesting the incorporation of a hearing protection guideline that will not have the force of law.

We've taken this thread to a zen level in short order, and I have to share that I'm getting in a little over my head. Please do not take anything I say as gospel. Moreover, my academic background had nothing to do with music, but I can tell you that the head of my program would have been receptive to new information respectfully presented by a student. His grand nature was to reach for the highest truth, so I would have felt no fear in offering any cogent argument. He would have respected that attitude in a student. In fact, he expected it.

Bright blue, eh? No, I don't suppose that will fly when you're performing. The next time you're in the drug store, take a moment to bend the pharmicist's ear, and ask about an alternative that isn't as visible. The brand of in-the-ear protection we dispensed in the workplace was flesh colored (assuming that the flesh in question was Asian or Caucasion). In any case, however, that option would be the more acceptable alternative.

Good grief! Can I get on a soapbox, or what?

Shutting up and signing off ... for now,

amhso
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Postby amhso » Mon Mar 13, 2006 11:43 pm

there usually is only 1 piccolo in a band who is doubling as a flutist too. I was also considering earplugs, even though this is my second year with a piccolo.

amhso
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Postby amhso » Mon Aug 28, 2006 8:15 pm

sorry to double post. I have 5 piccolos in my high school marching band. it is indeed unbearable loud and im getting earplugs. even if it doesnt ring my hears, i think just for the sake of not being annoyed, im getting earplugs.

flutegeek1992
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Postby flutegeek1992 » Wed Aug 30, 2006 5:15 pm

I play pic (this is my 4th year) and I've worn earplugs from day 1. I have these fitted ones (the squishy kind) that my father brought home from his work. They have this horribly ugly cord on them, but I like it. You can just grab the cord and pull your earplugs out. I wear them when I'm practicing and in band. However, in concerts I usually don't. It all depends. If I'm mostly playing flute (low stuff) I don't. But if I'm mostly playing pic I do. I have nice earplugs for shows (without cords so people can't really notice).

fluteguy18
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Postby fluteguy18 » Wed Aug 30, 2006 5:40 pm

I cant stand to play with earplugs in. I really hate earplugs. So, even though I have been playing picc a long time, I have only worn earplugs twice. Yeah, my hearing in my right ear has suffered a little, but it has done very little damage. However, if you want really good earplugs, you can get silicone earplugs that you roll into a ball, and press in your ear. It will then mold perfectly to YOUR ear. Swimmers use them a lot (I use them sometimes when swimming). So, if you want good earplugs, I would go this route.

just my .02

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flutepicc06
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Postby flutepicc06 » Wed Aug 30, 2006 7:35 pm

You can also have custom earplugs made for you by some distributors that are custom fit to you, and block out most of the sound, but without distorting quality of sound. They're great little things, though a bit pricey (at somewhere around $100-$150), but if you're playing picc a lot, I think they're well worth it. I also have some hearing loss in the right ear, and since I plan to play for many years yet, I want to prevent any further damage that might occur (especially since I'm a bit of a piccolo specialist).

erinjahanm
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Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2011 6:09 am

Re: Just one more question... Earplugs?

Postby erinjahanm » Wed Aug 17, 2011 6:27 am

The simplest way to safeguard your hearing is to wear earplugs. But not just any earplugs will do for the purposes of musicians. Normal earplugs, which come for everyone's use and just focus on reducing the noise as much as possible, don't suit musicians as they muffle the sounds and distort the music's tones. The answer then lies in musicians' earplugs – a category of earplugs specifically designed to meet the requirements of protecting their ears while allowing them to hear the music clearly

Introduced to innovative musicians ear plugs|musicians ear plugs

Ambidexter
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Re: Just one more question... Earplugs?

Postby Ambidexter » Thu Sep 22, 2011 6:18 pm

I can confirm this. Even if your ears won't be ringing after playing the piccolo, there will still be quite some tension - as I perceive it - on your ears as you play, which also makes it difficult to listen to the details of your play.

I purchased a pair of ER20 earplugs on e-bay, that went for around $20. Much worth the while, as they do not colour the sound very much, and you won't feel inhibitions to play loud (apart from compassion with your neighbours, maybe). You need to get used to the different sounding for a while, though.

When playing in a large room, or outside, I don't feel the need for earplugs so much. So it much depends on how spacious your room is. My experience is, that especially the height of the room is of importance; rooms with high ceilings sound far more pleasant that those with low ceilings.

TheLastVen
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Re: Just one more question... Earplugs?

Postby TheLastVen » Sun May 29, 2016 11:06 am

Please, wear ear plugs! I play a fair amount of piccolo; I always wear them in my at home practice and occasionally in rehearsals and concerts. It does affect my ability to hear intonation which is why I don't wear them full time in rehearsal. I have a pair of custom, musician's ear plugs but grab a squishy pair from the drug store if that's more readily available. Have fun!

SylvreKat
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Location: KC metro

Re: Just one more question... Earplugs?

Postby SylvreKat » Sat Jan 14, 2017 4:04 pm

Old thread, but I'll post my experience.

I've played picc for over 35 years. In college a flute major told me about "piccolo deafness" and to use some cotton. I've always kept a couple cotton balls in my bag. My directors have never--NEVER--told me to not use it, although the current one will sometimes make a kidding comment about it. I've even worn it during concerts--play picc cotton in, play flute cotton out.

Now devil's advocate time. A few years ago I got my hearing tested. Yes, I have hearing loss. I mentioned picc deafness, and the audiologist said that's not the cause at all. My loss is hereditary and mainly in the mid-range, where voices tend to fall. What little high-end loss I have is just the typical aging loss.

So while I do agree that piccists should wear some sort of protection, I also think that unless you're playing nonstop for long sessions, you're no more prone to hearing damage than from sitting in front of the trumpet section blaring into both ears. My audiologist said it's not the high pitches, it's the loudness over the length of time.

>'Kat
Flutes:
1975 Gemeinhardt M2 in chrome nickel
1982 Armstrong 80
2006 Yamaha 584

Piccs:
1978 Artley piece of crap 15 P
1982 Gemeinhardt 4S
1980s (?) Armstrong all wood (no model)

Bass:
2006 Jupiter di Medici G0199

Plus many many flute-cousins....


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