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Klarinet Archive - Posting 001435.txt from 1998/04

From: "Jason Hsien" <>
Subj: Re: What is a "darker" clarinet tone?
Date: Sat, 25 Apr 1998 03:47:26 -0400

-----Original Message-----
From: Gene Nibbelin <>
|> Looking for information -
|> I've learned a lot and caught up on a lot of clarinet information in the
|> months or so that I have been on the list and have seen a lot of subjects
|> discussed, but I don't believe that I have seen a definition or much
|> discussion of what a "dark" tone is.

Okay, before I go on, I'll just say that I'm only in High school, so my
response to this question will be from my few years playing. Obviously,
you've played longer, but if this helps, which I hope it does, I hope you
understand better. If I'm wrong, I apologize.

Anyway... a dark tone is hard to describe. The most general way to
distinguish it is the difference quality to the sound between plastic
clarinets and wooden clarinets. The plastic clarinet has a brighter sound,
more chipper. The only way I've known to describe it is "perky". It's got an
edge to it.

The dark tone, more commonly found in wooden ones (not to say that wood ones
can't be bright and plastics can't be dark. These are just general
observations I've noticed) is more mellow. IMO, it sounds more clarinetish,
a fuller sound. When you get a big group of darker players together, it
sounds a bit like a group of violins, opposed to squawking trumpets (no
offense to any trumpet players out there)

There really isn't any other way I can describe tone. the dark tone has a
mellow, soft sound it it. The bright tone has an edgy, chipper sound to it.
Personally, the dark tone sounds better, but some may like the bright tone

hope this helps

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