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 Making your own reeds
Author: kdk 2017
Date:   2021-10-09 18:21

I have a probably naïve question about double reed players and their reeds. I had for most of my life assumed that most serious double reed players made their own. But I've always wondered at what point in their training they learn how, since all of the oboists and bassoonists I've ever taught in student bands or orchestras bought their reeds from commercial sources or from pro oboists or bassoonists who made a side-line of making reeds for sale.

Recently, I've run across a couple of adult pro players who also buy their reeds. What I thought was a given, that pros make their own reeds and that serious students at some point learn to make their own as well, turns out maybe not to be so universal. It makes me wonder what the incidence in the world of professional oboists and bassoonists is of players who do and don't make their own reeds.

I ask this as a clarinetist who has never made a reed from scratch. Commercial clarinet reeds just don't cost that much. But double reeds, even lousy ones, are much more expensive and, I assume, subject to the same changes in the cane as clarinet reeds once they're in use.

Karl

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