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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000537.txt from 2002/05

From: Glen Shannon <>
Subj: Re: [kl] Perfect pitch
Date: Mon, 20 May 2002 17:45:49 -0400

It's even worse for early musicians who play at pitches other than
A@-----. If you're trying to sing at 415 you have a lot worse time of
it than somebody without perfect pitch. I don't have it but I can
sing a correct interval, so singing at 415 in three flats, I don't
really care what the notes actually are but I can see that it's a
perfect fifth, for example, and sing it correctly.


>I don't have perfect pitch, but went to school with a girl who did. She had
>problems in woodwind class with any of the transposing instruments.
>My understanding is that a person with true perfect pitch would, on the
>clarinet, see a D on the printed page; would finger and play a D on their
>clarinet, but they would "hear" a C, since the clarinet is a Bb transposing
>instrument. It apparently becomes more than just the problem of hearing
>something out of tune, but until (or unless) the individual can develop the
>mind to essentially ignore the difference in what they see/hear.
>Jim Hobby
>PS: I think curiosity only kills cats.
>>From: "Kimber" <>
>>Thanks Bill. Seriously. I knew some of that already, but you have clarified
>>it a bit more. Since you seem so well informed, would you mind explaining
>>why having a voice with perfect pitch is supposed to interfere with my
>>playing?I participate in both band and choir, and, as I am sure you
>>I have perfect pitch. The pro who told me this said that it would probably
>>interfere with my clarinet playing, but in my mind I would think that it
>>would enhance it, because you would know for sure if you played the wrong
>>note or you weren't in tune. Please, explain it, and if not you, then
> >someone else. I need to know! I will die of curiosity otherwise.


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