Greg Black mouthpiece options
People seem to have a hard time keeping track of all the options Greg Black mouthpieces offer. So here is an explanation of the different options and a table to help you find the ideal mouthpiece for you.
Most mouthpieces come in 4 different weight options: Light, Regular, Medium, and Heavy. The difference from one option to the next heavier is approximately 20 grams. And of course a Light mouthpiece will look different from a Heavy one as the blanks have to be different. This is relative to the mouthpiece size that is chosen, i.e. a 5G Medium will be much heavier than a 1G Medium as there is more brass removed from the rim and cup on the bigger mouthpiece. Also with the bore and backbore, the larger the bore the lighter the mouthpiece, i.e. the .312″/#2 tighter option is heavier than the stock bore option.
Some models are limited to one specific weight (like the Lone Star bass trombone model) or to less than 4 options like the NY Series. Heavy New York models can be made by special order request. Also all sizes can be made in lonestar weight by special order request.
4 different mouthpieces from Light to Heavy.
So what does a heavy mouthpiece do different to a light mouthpiece?
As always with mouthpieces, this is very personal and I can only talk about my experiences. But I think those are the general tendencies: A heavier mouthpiece will be more “stable” than a light mouthpiece. That means it will hold your sound better together if you go for loud dynamics. It is also supposed to project better, but as you could lose some color to your sound, this might not apply to you. The downside – if you go too far with this – is you could be losing some clarity to your sound. If you already play on a heavy instrument, you could have a hard time shaping the notes the way you want them to. Generally speaking I think Greg Black’s Regular weight is a very good compromise.
Greg Black offers a few series that are different from the “standard” mouthpieces. Here are some explanations so you will understand those different series better:
New York Series
The New York Series provides a selection of mouthpieces with a really warm and rich sound. The rim is particularly comfortable and offers excellent support. Globally, I get a denser and richer sound on the New York Series than on the standard mouthpieces. But – again – that’s my experience with them. Don’t get confused by the numberings! The NY1 is still a tenor trombone mouthpiece with a 26.90mm rim; it’s not a bass trombone mouthpiece like the 1G. The same goes for the NY1.25, NY1.5, NY1.75, NY2 etc.
The New York models have a wider outside diameter with a rounded more cushion rim shape as well as a #1 backbore which is slightly tighter in the top compared to the #3 that is standard on all G cup variations. Throughout the New York series, the ‘.5’ cups are the depth of the 5G variations. ie New York 5 = GS cup, New York 5.25 = GSD cup, New York 5.5 = G cup, etc. There are some minor cup shape differences, with the depth staying consistent with the G cup variations.
The New York rim shape is more round and it is also a little thicker from the inner rim to the outer corner, resulting in more rim support. That extra rim support is VERY subjective to each player, depending on dental structure and lip thickness, whether the lips vibrate more freely or not.
The backbores are different on the mouthpieces, the Standard backbore on the NY series is the #1, the Standard backbore on all G cup variations is the #3. In essence, the #3 is more open because of the shape in the upper part of the backbore. That is not to say the #1 backbore is small, just a different shape.
When trying a New York series that is an equivalent mouthpiece depth to the one you play now, it is best to keep the weight the same. For example, if your 4.5G-5G is a Regular weight; then you’d want to play the New York 5.5 Regular weight. This way variables within the mouthpiece are better for the comparison.
The “AL” Style mouthpieces share the same rim as the standard mouthpieces. A 5AL will have the same rim as a 5G. But all “AL” style mouthpieces share the same cup depth (Medium), rim width (medium wide), and bore (.265″). So the bore is sensibly smaller than the standard series. “AL” Style mouthpieces also come in only three weight options: Light, Regular and Medium. Although Heavy AL models can be made by special request.
Lone Star bass trombone model
Previously, the LONE STAR model was a custom order but is now available as a stock mouthpiece!This special model combination and blank shape that Greg designed for the LONE STAR model is in-between our light and regular weights allows for a new option to the individual searching for a resonance and response not offered until now. From auditions to the symphony hall, this piece is road tested and battle proven and perfect for bass trombonists that prefer larger diameters.
The Lone Star is not available in different weight options.
Greg Black mouthpiece chart
Here’s a chart showing all the options available. You can sort the chart according to your needs. Use the search field on the upper right to filter for a particular size. For example: if you write 25.4, the chart will filter for all rows containig that size.
It is difficult to stock all those different options. But I try my best to have the most asked mouthpieces in stock. Check out the Mouthpiece shop to see what is in stock right now. If something isn’t in stock, just shoot me an email and I will order it for you.
On “out of stock” products there’s also a button saying “Email me when it’s in stock again”. Hitting this button lets me know you’re looking and I’ll do my best to restock as soon as possible.