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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000438.txt from 1999/01

From: Neil Leupold <>
Subj: RE: [kl] re: Tongue speed
Date: Mon, 11 Jan 1999 11:06:39 -0500

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On Mon, 11 Jan 1999, Garrett wrote:

> On Mon, 11 Jan 1999, David Blumberg wrote:
> > Ok. I'll explain. Single tonguing tip, to tip ( slightly below the tip) if
> > defined that way, can also be done with the tongue moving from side to
> > side. The tongue is still hitting the reed for each and every articulation
> > (unlike double tonguing which a syllable is used). Most players tongues do
> > not work that way, and speed is very, very slow. But some can. And those
> > that can do that can tongue cleanly (single) at speeds way above 200
> > "single" sixteenths and never get tired. Speed is not an issue. Most

> David's post regarding side-to-side articulation does not define double
> tonguing (above). Double tonguing is based on the concept of the front and
> the back of the tongue, as David has correctly described above. Brass
> players and flute players - also bassoonists (!) are able to double tongue
> using the tu-ku, or du-gu, etc. syllables that were taught by Herbert
> Clark and Arban at the turn of the 20th Century.

Double tonguing is not defined by a syllable, nor by which part of the tongue
is in use. The "tu-ku" method is one of the more commonly acknowledged
ways of accomplishing the effect, using the tip and back of the tongue,
as well as the back of the throat or the roof of the mouth. David Pino's
"tuttle" method, where only the tip of the tongue is being used, is another
means. Both are bona fide examples of double tonguing, as is the side-
to-side method. The defining factor is the manner in which the tongue is
used to capitalize on a dual motion, rather than having to reset its position
for each attack. Whether using two contact points (i.e.; the "tu-ku" method,
where the second point of contact with the tongue is somewhere other than
the reed itself), or a single contact point (i.e.; the "tuttle" up & down method,
or a side-to-side motion), all of these are examples of double tonguing.

Single tonguing involves making contact with the reed, releasing, and then
approaching the reed for contact again from the same direction as the original
motion. There is no dual motion involved in single tonguing.


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