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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000705.txt from 1997/09

From: "David C. Blumberg" <>
Subj: RE: Swabbing the Mouthpiece
Date: Sat, 13 Sep 1997 22:42:26 -0400

Oh, we could banter back and forth on this for weeks........ According to
Anthony Gigliotti (my former teacher for 7 years), swabbing the mouthpiece
does NO DAMAGE. It's a myth to say that it wears anything. How about the
air pressure, or the reed "beating on the rails" to wear down a mouthpiece.
Tony says that there are no measurement, nor performance differences
created by swabbing out the Mouthpiece. I will add and say for students -
the gunk created by not properly cleaning out the mouthpiece WILL make a
difference in the Mouthpiece's performance. I do realize that the
legendary Casper (and I don't mean the friendly ghost) did not share
Gigliotti's opinion on Swabbing out the Mouthpiece. I guess we can put this
discussion in with the "blow out (or non existence) of clarinets, and what
is a "dark american sound", and what the material that a clarinet is made
of making a difference in the sound or NOT. I will also add that a swab
should not be too tight a fit in the Mouthpiece. I prefer a silk swab as it
compresses it's shape. I have students use the Gem Clarinet swab. I still
use my Blue Ribbon style Buffet swab (I bought 5 of em in Nova Scotia
before they totally disappeared 10 years ago) I find that the new Yamaha
chamois swabs, while feeling really good, are too tight a fit for the

David C. Blumberg
Adjunct Woodwind Instructor Univ. of Penn.
Principal Clarinet Riverside Sym.

Roger Wrote:
Date: Sat, 13 Sep 1997 16:17:41 -0500 (CDT)
From: Roger Garrett <>
Subject: Re: A Beginner's Question - Cleaning a mouthpiece

I instruct my students not to swab their mouthpieces.....not only does it
risk scratching the interior, it wears the baffle/tip and gradually
changes the interior dimensions. John Morgan's method
is something that should be done once a month or so. A simple rinse in
lukewarm water is as good a way as any to clean out the mouthpiece weekly.

Roger Garrett

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