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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000206.txt from 2000/07

From: Lacy Schroeder <>
Subj: RE: [kl] Vibrations
Date: Wed, 5 Jul 2000 15:21:21 -0400

My clarinet sometimes vibrates when I play, and when this happens, it
actually gets the best sound. It's not an annoying vibration, but actually a
rather solid feel. It usually occurs when I play sustained notes, and I feel
it in my fingers and sometimes in my teeth. Does anyone else have this

Lacy Schroeder

-----Original Message-----
Subject: [kl] Vibrations

On Mon, 3 Jul 2000 09:11:12 +0100 (BST), said:

> I've had a mouthpiece that vibrated - one of those nasty cheap white B
> & H things. Good mouthpieces do not vibrate in that sense. Roger S.

The bodies of woodwind instruments, including mouthpieces, all vibrate
to some extent when played. The effect of this vibration is not at all
theoretically understood. The degree to which it is desirable is a
matter of debate, and constitutes a design decision by the maker. Some
instrument are made in such a way that they vibrate more than others,
and there are good instruments -- in the sense that they are played well
by good players -- of both types.

Extremes of mouthpiece design in this sense would be represented by
mouthpieces of crystal and of wood. There are good players on both.

The fact that your white B & H thing vibrated and that you personally
experienced it as a bad mouthpiece says nothing to all this. It might
even have been bad for quite another reason than that it vibrated.

Since your comment was appended to, and arbitrarily dismissive of the
careful statement that I made:

> On Fri, 30 Jun 2000 19:06:08 -0500 (CDT), said:

> > I have no scientific experimentation to confirm this, but logic
> > tells me that the back of the reed, the part that is in contact with
> > the mouthpiece, will *not* vibrate, or at least that any vibration
> > from that part of the reed will be negligible. Much of the back of
> > the reed will be in contact with the table of the mouthpiece, and at
> > least some of it will also be contacted by the ligature, no matter
> > what kind of ligature it might be.


> Well, I have no idea whether any of this is true. I imagine that the
> vibration of the mouthpiece also comes into it -- even if it doesn't
> broadcast those vibrations, they interact with the vibrations of the
> reed.

...I'm sorry to say that I find it to be an example of the sort of
dogmatic pronouncement that I would very much like to see disappear from
this list.

Actually I lie -- it wasn't 'appended to', it was 'supersedentary upon'
(to pull a phrase out of the air that you can correct me on if I'm
wrong), in that frightful style of posting that leaves everything quoted
in a mess underneath, with instructions on how to unsubscribe from the
list in anything up to quintuplicate.

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

... Boldly going where no modem has gone before...

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