Distinctive Mutes for Discerning Musicians


If you need a great straight or cup mute, there are many, many choices available from small upstarts to large, well-known companies that have been in the music business for decades and sell mutes by the tens of thousands every year. It's a mature, crowded market where great options are widely available. We're different. Hirschman Mutes focuses on creating the very best mutes that other companies have never made, stopped making or don't make very well. Our first product was the Gen I Chicago Stinger buzz/kazoo mute for trumpet and have expanded our product line to plunger mutes for trombone.





KR INDIGO MAX PLUNGER FOR TRUMPET

The "KR Indigo" MAX Plunger Mute is the culmination of a decades-long quest for the best sounding, BY FAR most in tune, easiest to play, most comfortable to hold, most expressive trumpet plunger that money can buy. "KR" represents the initials of Kenny Rampton, world-renowned trumpet player and long-standing member of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra under the direction of Wynton Marsalis. Kenny co-designed this plunger with Hirschman Mutes, incorporating feedback from some of today's top trumpet players. We are proud to include amongst our official endorsers both the Duke Ellington and Count Basie Orchestra trumpet sections.

IN TUNE!

From low to high, the most in-tune plunger ever. It also provides consistent pitch when switching between open and closed (tight) plunger, something essential for ensemble passages. Better intonation means less "lipping" of notes, reducing fatigue and increasing endurance.

Kenny Penny™ venting system

Some players like to drill a hole through their plungers (where the wooden stick was) and some don't. Others carry two plungers in their bag to have both. The Kenny Penny venting system provides one penny outside the plunger and another inside. Turning the outer penny closes the plunger hole with the inner penny. Kenny Rampton likes it closed for playing over straight mute and open for plunger alone. There's no right or wrong, and the Kenny Penny lets you discover your ideal sound...that's our "two cents."

No slip hand grip

Our large, comfortable hand grip makes the plunger easy to pick up and hold. No more slips or drops!

Built to Last

The KR Indigo is made of durable silicon and is much less prone to the drying out/cracking that occurs with many rubber hardware store plungers.

Fits over standard straight mute

An in tune plunger deserves to be played over an in tune straight mute. Use your favorite regular sized straight mute and say goodbye forever to stuffy, out of tune pixie mutes.

Tone hole

With the Kenny Penny in the open position, you can create interesting effects by covering/uncovering the tone hole with a finger.

Distinctive color

Inspired by Duke Ellington's Mood Indigo and Snooky Young's/Clark Terry's blue plungers, with a design updated for the 21st century.

Get buzzed!

Our Chicago Stinger Gen II mute provides buzz/fuzz to your plunger solos

KR INDIGO PLUNGER FOR TRUMPET

The "KR Indigo" (Standard) Plunger Mute was created as the result of feedback gained during the testing phase of our MAX plunger. Some players loved the sound and intonation of our MAX plunger, but were looking for a more traditionally-sized plunger.

In Tune!

From low to high, this plunger has better intonation that any other plunger on the market (except our own MAX model!). It also provides consistently good pitch when switching between open and closed (tight) plunger, something essential for ensemble passages. Better intonation means less "lipping" of notes, reducing fatigue and increasing endurance.

Kenny Penny™ venting system

Some players like to drill a hole through their plungers (where the wooden stick was) and some don't. Others carry two plungers in their bag to have both. The Kenny Penny venting system provides one penny outside the plunger and another inside. Turning the outer penny closes the plunger hole with the inner penny. Kenny Rampton likes it closed for playing over straight mute and open for plunger alone. There's no right or wrong, and the Kenny Penny lets you discover your ideal sound...that's our "two cents."

Fits in any hand

This mute is smaller than the KR Indigo MAX and is a great choice for trumpeters that like a more traditionally-sized plunger, younger players and those with a shorter reach/smaller hands.

No slip hand grip

Our large, comfortable hand grip makes the plunger easy to pick up and hold. No more slips or drops!

Built to Last

The KR Indigo is made of durable silicon and is much less prone to the drying out/cracking that occurs with many rubber hardware store plungers.

Fits over standard straight mute

An in tune plunger deserves to be played over an in tune straight mute. The standard model fits over many regular sized straight mutes so you can say goodbye forever to stuffy, out of tune pixie mutes.

Tone hole

With the Kenny Penny in the open position, you can create interesting effects by covering/uncovering the tone hole with a finger.

Distinctive color

Inspired by Duke Ellington's Mood Indigo and Snooky Young's/Clark Terry's blue plungers, with a design updated for the 21st century.

CHICAGO STINGER GEN II TRUMPET MUTE

Co-designed with Kenny Rampton of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, the world's best buzz mute just got better.  The Hirschman Mutes "Chicago Stinger Gen II" is inspired by the buzz mutes of yesteryear, and has been redesigned from scratch with 100% custom components, engineering, and technology to provide the best intonation, slotting, playability, and BUZZ across the entire range of the trumpet at any price.

Trumpet Chicago Stinger

The ultimate buzz

Superior sound, intonation and playability from pianissimo to fortissimo and from the bottom of the horn to the top. Our proprietary Hornet Resonators™ provide the ultimate in buzz/fuzz and durability.

Vortex Corking System™

Attenuates and channels the unmuted trumpet sound through two angled passageways, enabling more buzz while minimizing back pressure

Venturi Pressure Diffusion Disk™

Structural element inside the mute improves intonation and playability

Thunderbolt Caplets™

Protect the resonators from damage in your bag/case while transmitting maximum buzz in your sound

Heavy gauge wall construction and premium materials

Provide superior sonic and physical integrity

Designed for the KR Indigo line of Plunger mutes

Playable alone or under our KR Indigo or KR Indigo MAX Plungers, sold separately

KR INDIGO BIG BLUE PLUNGER FOR TROMBONE & BASS TROMBONE

The Hirschman Mutes KR Indigo "BIG BLUE" Plunger Mute has been optimized to give the very best combination of sound, size, feel, pitch and flex money can buy. We are proud to include amongst our official endorsers the Duke Ellington trombone section.

In Tune!

Better intonation that any other plunger in your mute bag, especially when switching between open and closed plunger. If only the great Al Grey was still with us! He said that old school, 20th century "tight plunger...causes a back-pressure against your air stream and it throws your instrument out of tune.....Some players find adjustments in their lip and air pressure to play through it; others simply learn to slip past it." We have reduced these problems with our innovative design.

BIG - Because size matters!

The BIG BLUE is designed to work with both the tenor trombone AND bass trombone. Bass trombonists Dave Taylor and Earl McIntyre are two early testers and endorsing artists that gave invaluable feedback during the design process.

Kenny Penny™ venting system

Some players like to drill a hole through their plungers (where the wooden stick was) and some don't. Others carry two plungers in their bag to have both. The Kenny Penny venting system provides one penny outside the plunger and another inside. Turning the outer penny closes the plunger hole with the inner penny. Kenny Rampton likes it closed for playing over straight mute and open for plunger alone. There's no right or wrong, and the Kenny Penny lets you discover your ideal sound...that's our "two cents."

No slip hand grip

Our large, comfortable hand grip makes the plunger easy to pick up and hold. No more slips or drops!

Built to Last

The KR Indigo is made of durable silicon and is much less prone to the drying out/cracking that occurs with many rubber hardware store plungers.

Distinctive color

Inspired by Duke Ellington's Mood Indigo and Snooky Young's/Clark Terry's blue plungers, with a design updated for the 21st century.

CHICAGO STINGER TROMBONE MUTE

The Hirschman "Chicago Stinger" is inspired by the buzz mutes of yesteryear, particularly the 1920's era "Chicago" Combination Trumpet Mute. The Chicago Stinger has more resonance, plays more in tune and blows more freely than these older mutes, which are no longer sold or manufactured. The Chicago Stinger adds a distinctive buzz to your tone which can be effective for modern as well as old time jazz solos. The mute may be played in combination with your own plunger.

OUT OF STOCK

Sound

This mute is equipped with three replaceable kazoo resonators that provide a unique buzz/fuzz effect for modern or old time solos.

Plunger Friendly

This mute sounds great alone or can be used under your plunger for even more interesting and voice-like effects.

Distinctive color

The black and yellow coloring is inspired by the bee and gives the mute a more authentic buzz.

Videos and Photos

A collection of photos, videos and advertisements with our products, customers and endorsing artists.

KR Indigo MAX

Trumpet Plunger

KR Indigo Standard

Trumpet Plunger

KR Indigo Standard

Kenny and Wynton

KR Indigo MAX

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo MAX

Kenny Rampton on Tour

Duke Ellington Trumpet Section

Duke Ellington Trumpet Section

Count Basie Trumpet Section

Count Basie Trumpet Section

KR Indigo Pyramid

From Schagerl

Roman Wutzl

Trumpet Teacher at Musicscool Conservatory Zürich (Switzerland) tries the KR Indigo at Schagerl

Schagerl Company Photo

Our dealer in Austria. Karl Schagerl on the right and his parent on the left...family and tradition!

Josh Landress Brass

Our dealer in North America. Josh and the team reopened the NYC store in a new location in July 2020.

Scotty Barnhardt

Live at Birdland with the Count Basie Orchestra

Ed Hirschman

With JoBonanno and the Spirit of Asbury Review

ScoreFlipper Cloud Home

Kitchen Sink

KR Indigo Meme

Short Ties

KR Indigo Meme

Pixie

KR Indigo Meme

Drill a Hole

KR Indigo Meme

Pixie RIP

KR Indigo Meme

Cracked

KR Indigo Meme

Oops

KR Indigo Meme

Ugly Duckling

KR Indigo Meme

Squirrelly

KR Indigo Meme

Indy - Mike Del Quadro

KR Indigo Meme

The Matrix

KR Indigo Meme

MacGyver

Josh Rzepka

Mute Monday: KR Indigo MAX YouTube

Trent Austin

KR Indigo MAX Unboxing YouTube

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo MAX "I’ve Found a New Baby" YouTube

Wynton Marsalis

KR Indigo Standard YouTube

Gregorio Mangano

KR Indigo Standard - It Don't Mean a Thing MP4

Arturo Sandoval

KR Indigo MAX MP4

Randy Brecker

KR Indigo MAX Demo MP4

Rashawn Ross

Dave Mathews Band - KR Indigo MAX MP4

Kenny Rampton

Features Overview MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo plays over full sized straight mute MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo MAX - Embraceable You MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo Max - Alone Together MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo MAX - Blues Improv MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo Don't Get Around Much Anymore MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo MAX Improv Growl MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo In A Mellow Tone MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo MAX - One For My Baby MP4

Tom Williams

KR Indigo Blues MP4

Troy Dowling

Positive Trumpeters Worldwide - Don't Get Around Much MP4

Matt Hilgenberg

The Preacher MP4

Joshua Kauffman

KR Indigo and MAX Review MP4

Brandon Lee

The Mooch MP4

Michael Rodriguez

KR Indigo - Fiesta Mojo MP4

James Zollar

KR Indigo Standard Demo MP4

Jason Prover

KR Indigo Demo MP4

Joe Boga

KR Indigo Demo MP4

Joe Fiedler

Chicago Stinger Trombone Mute MP4

Lars Wendt

Chicago Stinger Trombone Mute MP4

Kenny Rampton

KR Indigo Trombone Plunger Prototype MP4

Kenny Rampton

Chicago Stinger "Angel Eyes" YouTube

Frequently Asked Questions

You asked. We answered.

FAQs

The KR Indigo BIG BLUE plunger is designed for both tenor and bass trombone. Bass trombonists Dave Taylor and Earl McIntyre were two of our early testers and endorsing artists who gave invaluable feedback during the development of this mute.
Yes! Contact us for a 10% discount for educational program and military orders of 5 or more mutes.
It’s a personal preference that depends on which size mute you are most comfortable holding. Both models fit well on almost any size bell, so that should not be a consideration. The KR Indigo MAX offers the ultimate in intonation and will provide more clearance for straight mutes, while the KR Indigo model is great for young players and those that prefer a more traditionally sized plunger.
Probably! Ee added extra “lip” to ensure there’s plenty of “landing room” and it works with all but the very smallest bells. Check out our specifications for exact dimensions.
Yes, and a standard straight mute is the best choice for quality of sound and intonation. Most straight mutes on the market will work fine with both sizes, as long as the corks are filed properly. The KR Indigo MAX provides a bit more clearance.
We made the mutes in blue as a tribute of Snooky Young and Clark Terry, two of the greatest plunger trumpeters of all time who both played blue plungers. No other colors are available.

While technically known as a butterfly valve, we call it the "Kenny Penny"™. The Kenny Penny is a brass rod with a penny "handle" on the outside and another penny on the inside. The hole in the center of the plunger is fully opened (vented) or closed (unvented) when the outer penny is rotated a quarter turn.

Some folks like a hole drilled in the center of their plunger and some don't, and others carry two plungers in their bag to have both. Now you can have either by rotating the Kenny Penny. Plunger master Al Grey advised trombone and trumpet players not to drill a hole through their plungers. Kenny Rampton​ likes to keep his plunger closed when playing with a pixie straight mute and open when playing plunger alone. There's no right or wrong way, and the Kenny Penny lets you discover your ideal sound.

The "KR Indigo MAX" (Height 3.5"/88.9mm, Outer diameter 5.145"/130.7mm, Inner lip diameter 4.21"/106.9mm) is slightly deeper and wider on the outside than the "KR Indigo", providing the ultimate in plunger sound and intonation. Works great on standard bell size trumpets (for example the Bach 37) as well as larger bell trumpets.

The "KR Indigo" model is for players that prefer a more traditionally sized plunger or have a shorter reach. Height 3.375"/85.7mm, Outer diameter 4.81"/122.2mm, Inner lip diameter (same as MAX) 4.21"/106.9mm.

Retail Price List

All prices are subject to change.

  • $75
    CHICAGO STINGER GEN II TRUMPET MUTE
  • Hornet Resonators™
  • Vortex Corking System™
  • Venturi Pressure Diffusion Disk™
  • Thunderbolt Caplets™
  • BUY @ ART OF SOUND MUSIC
 Dealer NameCity/StateCountry Website Link  
Diefes Instrument RepairSydneyAustraliaClick Here
Schagerl Music GmbHNiedersterreichAustriaClick Here
Polar Brass OsloNorwayClick Here
Phil Parker LtdLondonUnited KingdomClick Here
Prozone MusicLondonUnited KingdomClick Here
Art of Sound MusicPrinceton, NJUnited StatesClick Here
Austin Custom BrassSt. Louis, MOUnited StatesClick Here
Del Quadro Custom TrumpetsLas Vegas, NVUnited StatesClick Here
Dillon MusicWoodbridge, NJUnited StatesClick Here
J.Landress BrassNew York, NYUnited StatesClick Here
Milano Music CenterMesa, AZUnited StatesClick Here
James NewHurricane, UTUnited StatesClick Here
New Orleans TrumpetsNew Orleans, LAUnited StatesClick Here
Osmun MusicActon, MAUnited StatesClick Here


About Pricing

Educational institutions and US Military can request a 10% discount code for orders of 5 or more of the same mute...please contact us. The intention is to provide an even more affordable option to educational and military organizations looking to equip their sections.

Endorsing Artists

The world's most discerning artists play on Hirschman Mutes.

Wycliffe Gordon

International Jazz Artist

“I love this mute! This is a great product for beginner, intermediate and advanced players because you don't have to fight with adjusting your air when you're playing. It has a penny you can use to play open mute or closed mute, depending on the sound that you like. It plays in tune, it stays in tune.

Clarence Banks

The Count Basie Orchestra

“The Hirschman Mutes KR Indigo BIG BLUE plunger mute really speaks!!! It gives me the “Wow’s & Wah-Wah” effects I like! Fits well in my hand. Lightweight! Feels great!!!”

Earl McIntyre

The Mingus Big Band, Arturo O’Farrill & the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra

“After many years playing the plunger (and playing a duffel bag full of different ones), the Hirschman Mutes KR Indigo BIG BLUE plunger is the best! The feel, size and intonation are AWESOME!”

Dave Bargeron

Chicago: The Musical, Blood Sweat and Tears

“I was a faithful user of Kirkhill plungers all of my playing life until now. The KR Indigo BIG BLUE plunger is the perfect size, has the Kenny Penny valve and the feel around the bell is exceptional. It’s absolutely beautiful In color....Rich blue plays rich Blues!! And the squeeze is just right... I really love it!”

Ed Neumeister

The Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Orchestra, Professor at the New School, New York University

“The Hirschman Mutes KR Indigo BIG BLUE plunger mute is the most versatile plunger mute that I have ever played, and I’ve played many. The addition of the “Kenny Penny” valve gives the player flexibility for adjusting colors and timbres as well as intonation. Any brass player who is serious about playing with a plunger mute should have this mute in their arsenal.”

Chris Crenshaw

The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra

“The grip, feel, look, and versatility of the Hirschman Mutes KR Indigo BIG BLUE plunger mute helps with all my plunger needs. It’s useful for solo and section work.”

Dion Tucker

Harry Connick Jr. Big Band

“Having a true 'plunger mute' is a game changer for trombonists! Playing the Hirschman Mutes KR Indigo Big Blue Plunger reminds me to make sure I have my plunger mute with me at all times!”

Dave Taylor

Bass Trombone Legend!

“Closed or open, the Kenny Penny kills!”

Thomas Gansch

Mnozil Brass

Brass players listen: I got this beauty from my good friend Kenny Rampton, a master in the art of plunger playing. He developed the KR Indigo Plunger with Hirschman Mutes and it is an absolute must-have. Only the Indigo has the Kenny Penny!

Marcus Printup

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra

I’ve always had to teach students how to bend pitch in order to play in tune with a plunger. Bending isn't needed with the Hirschman Mutes KR Indigo because it plays PERFECTLY in tune. Great job Kenny...and you get the Kenny Penny!

Scotty Barnhart

Leader - Count Basie Orchestra

Kenny Rampton’s new plunger mute is just great. The intonation is perfect, it fits nicely in my hand, and it’s easy to play in a variety of ways. I love it!

Brandon Lee

Count Basie Orchestra

Wow! This sounds amazing! Thank you Kenny Rampton for supplying the Basie Orchestra with your new KR Indigo MAX Plunger! I'm really digging it.









Frank Greene

Count Basie Orchestra

Kenny Rampton plunger mutes - Your bell's best friend! Count Basie Orchestra Endorsed

Testimonials

Our mutes are played by The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra, The Airmen of Note, The Army Blues, The Count Basie Orchestra, Clayton Hamilton Big Band and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

Arturo Sandoval

Irakere, Dizzy Gillespie and the United Nations Orchestra, GRP All-Star Big Band, Trumpet Virtuoso

“It's the best plunger I've ever tried”

Randy Brecker

The Brecker Brothers, Horace Silver, pretty much everybody...

Hey All!...Great new Kenny Rampton Plunger Mute! Check it out!

Wayne Bergeron

Hollywood Legend, Gordon Goodwin Big Phat Band, Maynard Ferguson

Best ever. Loving mine.

Roger Ingram

Maynard Ferguson, Woody Herman, JLCO, Ray Charles, and Harry Connick Jr.

Comparing with a variety of classic plungers from my collection, the new KR Plunger came out on top with regard to overall pitch and sound.... it scores big on hand comfort, appearance and versatility too.

Tony Kadleck

Broadway Musician, Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra, Buddy Rich Band

This plunger is amazing!

Tom Hooten

Los Angeles Philharmonic

You need one of these! Seriously the best plunger mute I've ever played!

Gábor Tarkövi

Former principal trumpet, Berlin Philharmonic

Thank you for the wonderful mute!

Joshua Kauffman

US Army Band

These are the best plungers I’ve played, so nice to finally have one with trumpet playing in mind!!! And I didn’t have to reject the stick from the clerk!

Dan Miller

Woody Herman Orchestra, Harry Connick Jr.

I love all of the attention to detail paid to developing this mute by Kenny, Ed and all the masters of plunger playing who contributed to its development.

Michael Rodriguez

Grammy Winner, NYU Jazz Department

Great mute Kenny, you nailed it! Thank you!!

Eric Miyashiro

Soloist/clinician, Buddy Rich, Woody Herman

やっと届きました!Kenny Ramptonのプランジャーミュートです!   音色を変えられる装置が付いているので早く本番で使ってみたいです。

Chris Jaudes

Jazz, Lead and Broadway first call player

These are fantastic mutes!

Ryan Kisor

Acclaimed soloist, Lead Trumpet at Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra

Man, I love it. Size is perfect, CT vibe! Really love it.

Bijon Watson

The Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra

Looking forward to getting these to my The Clayton-Hamilton Jazz Orchestra trumpet section mates!

Matthias Kernstock

Principal Trumpet, Vienna Symphony Orchestra

"Finally found the best plunger for this piece (Zimmermann trumpet concerto) 🎺😊 KR Indigo Max plunger!!"

Tom Williams

Duke Ellington Orchestra

Playing around w/ my Hirschman KR (Kenny Rampton) Indigo Plunger MAX. I absolutely love it and thank you Kenny Rampton for developing such a great product!

Matt Hilgenberg

Chico O’Farrill Afro Cuban Jazz Orchestra

Thanks for making the greatest plunger of all time!

Joe Boga

Vince Giordano and The Nighthawks

Thanks so much to Kenny Rampton for sending one my way and for all the thought that was put into its design. It projects great and plays in tune even when it's completely closed!

Dave Banks

Cleveland Jazz Orchestra

You just HAVE to get the Kenny Rampton KR Indigo plunger mute! There really is no comparison.

Trent Austin

Austin Custom Brass

Man, I'm in love. This is the COOLEST mute ever. Thank you Kenny Rampton and Ed Hirschman for creating an absolutely ESSENTIAL part of every trumpeter's toolbox.

Jeff Crouch

Athens, GA

The Kenny Penny is so cool, it changes the sound quality and I’m still experimenting with which way I like it best. I’ll probably keep using this mute until I either die or it gets damaged, in which case, I’d get a new one. I think I’ll die with it still in near perfect condition.

Rashawn Ross

Dave Mathews Band

The KR Indigo plunger is everywhere!!! You guys Definitely did a thing with that mute. I know it's making a significant appearance on a trumpet solo on the upcoming Dave Mathews Band album. Nobody should ever use a regular plunger ever again. Kenny Rampton and Hirschman Mutes changed the game.

Jim Sheffer

Band Director at Medford Middle School, NJ

Love my KR Indigo plunger and have you seen the Chicago Stinger Gen II?! Puts the Buzz-Wow to shame! Killer mutes!