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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000000.txt from 2000/04

From: (Tony Pay)
Subj: Re: [kl] Reed's mode of vibration
Date: Sat, 1 Apr 2000 00:08:53 -0500

On Fri, 31 Mar 2000 23:40:37 -0500, said:

> At 01:54 PM 3/31/2000 GMT, Tony Pay wrote:
> > I'd be willing to agree with you that *in general* one should have
> > available the sort of sound that is associated with complete reed
> > closure. But that that has to happen *always* in 'normal' playing
> > is a much stronger statement.
> OK, but the other sounds still fall into the "special effects"
> category to me, including such techniques as subtone.

Yes, I understand that. The question is, how often is 'special',

The reason I answered your post in the first place was not that I
disagreed with the substance of what you said. It was rather that I
found, as I find so often here, that I wanted to represent a more
balanced view of the situation than one that might be read as claiming
that 'the reed has to shut against the mouthpiece' is 'the truth'.

If you say what is the more complete truth -- namely that there is a
spectrum of degrees of shutting, and why -- then you encourage
experimentation, and include the possibility that a player may want to
make more 'flute-like' or 'oboe-like' sounds according to the musical
context. (Then 'doux et penetrant' in the Debussy Rhapsodie may make
more sense, for example.)

You could still represent that, by and large, a 'focussed' sound is what
is required; but if you did choose to represent that, you'd be doing it
against a background of understanding rather than a background of dogma.

Different players require different things represented to them at
different times. One player may need to be told that the clarinet is
more 'a tube closed at the top end' than they 'think', while another may
need to be told that they're closing up the reed against the mouthpiece
too much.

In an individual encounter we might get away with giving direct
instruction without explanation.

Here, we need the more balanced view.

> > Your 'observed experimental data' belongs to a highly artificial
> > setup, don't forget, very far from the NORMAL that you capitalise
> > above.
> True enough, but it is rather difficult to observe any other way.
> With modern technology I suppose it COULD be done with tiny cameras
> inside the mouth. Any volunteers?

But again, we would want to *choose* our volunteers quite carefully.
There is an overwhelming preponderance of clarinet players of whom it
would have to be said that detailed knowledge of what goes on inside
their mouths when they play would be of little use for *any* purposes.

(Or detailed knowledge of what goes on inside their heads, for that

_________ Tony Pay
|ony:-) 79 Southmoor Rd
| |ay Oxford OX2 6RE
tel/fax 01865 553339

... The Bible was written by the same people who said the Earth was flat.

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