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 Re: Getta loada dis....
Author: Ken Shaw 2017
Date:   2004-06-08 19:34

Alseg -

The instrument is an Octavin. It's been discussed several times, which you can find with a search on that word. It was an attempt to make a clarinet that overblew at the octave instead of the twelfth by using only a very slightly conical bore. I tried one many years ago. Here's what I wrote in an earlier thread:

The clarinet always vibrates as a closed tube. I have read (in Benade, I believe) that the clarinet reed spends more time sealed against the lay than it does open. This longer time spent closed promotes the closed-tube mode, which is why the clarinet sounds as it does and overblows at the twelfth. During the time the reed is open, the vibration remains in closed-tube mode, since any open-tube vibration is overpowered by the longer-lasting closed tube vibration.

An instrument can produce a stable tone only when it reliably acts as a closed or open pipe. The clarinet is designed to stay firmly in the closed-tube mode, just as the saxophone is designed to stay firmly in open-tube mode. A sax reed seals completely against the mouthpiece just as it does on the clarinet, but for a shorter time.

There have been attempts at an intermediate instrument, with a slightly conical bore that balances the open and closed periods, or falls just barely on the open tube side, but they were unsuccessful. A number of years ago, at the late, great Ponte's music store, Charlie Ponte brought out an early 20th century instrument called "Octavin," which had a clarinet setup but a bore just conical enough to act as an open tube and overblow at the octave. It was difficult to play, and sounded more like a saxophone than a clarinet. When I tried to make a clarinet sound, it quit playing altogether.

Octavins appear on eBay several times a year, usually priced at over $1000. They're uncommon, because they were unsuccessful, and little or no music was written for them. If you bought one, it would be as a collector's item, and to astonish your friends, and not because you might find a way to perform on it.

Best regards.

Ken Shaw

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 Topics Author  Date
 Getta loada dis....  new
Alseg 2004-06-07 01:57 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Don Berger 2004-06-07 02:18 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
contragirl 2004-06-07 03:17 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
contragirl 2004-06-07 04:48 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Don Berger 2004-06-07 13:19 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Alseg 2004-06-07 19:46 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Synonymous Botch 2004-06-07 21:07 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Bob A 2004-06-08 04:00 
 Re: OCTAVIN, a Bass Clarinet?  new
Don Berger 2004-06-08 14:13 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Alseg 2004-06-08 14:21 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Ken Shaw 2004-06-08 19:34 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Don Berger 2004-06-08 21:00 
 A bonafide bent bass clarinet  new
Terry Stibal 2004-06-09 01:27 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Contra 2004-06-09 02:14 
 Re: Getta loada dis....  new
Don Berger 2004-06-09 12:46 

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