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 Reed Brands
Author: InTheBassment 
Date:   2007-09-15 03:03

I am a freshman at VanderCook College of Music (for music education with an emphasis on bass clarinet), and I've been playing on Vandoren 3s. I'm at the point where it would be beneficial to try out different brands, and I was wondering if anybody had any suggestions. I don't want to spend a ton of money, so I won't be making my own reeds any time soon, but I feel like it's time to start exploring my options... before my Junior Recital sneaks up on me :)

-side note- I know there's a ton of controversy on plastic reeds, but I'd love to hear what anybody has to say on that too.

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: RodRubber 
Date:   2007-09-15 05:22

I'd stick with vandoren

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: skygardener 
Date:   2007-09-15 07:54

Imo- here are some of the brands to try. AW Reeds, Rico Grand Concerts, Gonzalez.
I only play Bb/A so I have no idea what the quality of these brands' Bass Cl reeds are.
ps. try tenor sax Vandorens too.

Post Edited (2007-09-15 07:55)

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: Iacuras 
Date:   2007-09-15 10:49

I've used Vandoren, Gigliotti, Rico Grand Concert, and Gonzalez bass clarinet reeds. My personal favorite right now is gonzalez. I would suggest trying a box of these. However, the cane is quite dense, so give it about a week to break in.

"If a pretty poster and a cute saying are all it takes to motivate you, you probably have a very easy job. The kind robots will be doing soon."
"If you can't learn to do something well, learn to enjoy doing it poorly."

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: kilo 
Date:   2007-09-15 12:06

You can find lots of discussion about synthetic reeds on this site. I'm currently very happy with Quebec cut 3.25's which I use on a Grabner K13. If you read through some of these threads you'll see that some like 'em, some don't.


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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: claritoot26 
Date:   2007-09-15 14:48

If you are set against adjusting your own reeds, try the Legerre Quebec Cut, as noted in the post above. Otherwise, stick with Vandoren. You might try a higher strength in the blue box, or a V12.

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: William 
Date:   2007-09-15 15:08

I also prefer to use Legere (regular) 3.0 or 3.25 on my bass clarinet. Set up is: Buffet 1193-2 Prestige, Grabner CXBS mpc, Winslow lig. The Legere is hassel free, always ready to play and lasts almost forever with care. The sound of the Legere reed is just as good as cane--for bass clarinet, that is. And, if you are not satisfied with the reed you have just bought, mail it back to Guy Legere and he will send you a free replacement--try that out with the Vandoran folks.

However, if you and your teachers insist on cane reeds, I agree with Rod--stick with Vandoran. They are the "least bad" on today's cane market.

Post Edited (2007-09-15 15:14)

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: hans 
Date:   2007-09-15 15:33

On clarinet I play Legere for the same reasons as William.

They don't give as good a sound for me on alto sax and I have tried various strengths and cuts. I have not tried them on tenor sax, but intend to.

Before I switched to plastic for clarinet, I found Zonda to be best for me.

Clarinet - Selmer Recital with VD 5RV mouthpiece
Alto sax - Selmer Super Action 80 MarkII with Selmer C* mouthpiece
Tenor sax - Selmer Mark VI - various mouthpieces


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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: Ed 
Date:   2007-09-15 16:18

There are so many brands out there and likely you will find someone who likes each. i have tried many (if not most) of the varieties available. I seem to always come back to Vandoren. There is a particular ring as well as a certain resiliance to the cane that I like. I always seem to get the best results from it.

I have had great results recently in some testing of Rico Grand Concert reeds. (thick blank on Bb) Great sound and nice cane.

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: LarryBocaner 2017
Date:   2007-09-15 17:22

After flirting with Grand Concert Select for a few years, I've now switched to Gonzalez. I find them to be quite uniform (nice finding 4-5 usable reeds to a box of 5, instead of 1-2 for a box of Vandorens), and the cut works well with my Roger Garrett/Zinner mouthpiece. Order about a half-strength stronger than you use for Vandoren -- hence your #3 Vandies would correspond to a #3-1/2 Gonzo.

Post Edited (2007-09-15 18:43)

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: rtmyth 
Date:   2007-09-16 22:34

Vandoren rue 56. Gonzalez FOF were too stiff, for same, 3, strength. Ridenour made some good ones but I believe no longer makes reeds. Legere quebec, with velcro ligature ,are excellent backups.

richard smith

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: InTheBassment 
Date:   2007-09-17 02:03

Thanks... this is all really helpful =)

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 Re: Reed Brands
Author: Mike Blinn 
Date:   2007-09-17 16:27

I've played bass clarinet in over a dozen concerts this summer (mostly outside) using Legere reeds without any problems. They are quite trustworthy. I've tried many brands of cane reeds, some of which sound better, but I rely on Legere not to squeak or chirp unexpectedly.

Presently, I am playing a Legere tenor sax, studio cut, #3.5, and it plays just fine on a Woodwind Company bass clarinet mouthpiece.

Mike Blinn

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