Hot answers tagged

21

A typical 3-finger valve cluster only has 7 useful combinations. Brass instruments combine that with vibrating the lips at different speeds so that notes in the harmonic series of any one of those valve combinations are sounded. In contrast, reed aerophones only vibrate best at the resonant frequency of the instrument as it is configured with the current ...


10

In this admittedly limited study, they record one oboist using more than double (over 110 cm H2O) the blowing pressure to play fortissimo compared to two different clarinetists (both around 50 cm H2O), also playing fortissimo. The other oboist in the study blew a peak pressure of about 80 cm H2O for fortissimo playing. A better graphical comparison is ...


8

When I am starting a beginner on saxophone or clarinet, I tell the student to align the reed so that it looks like the tip of the reed lines up with the tip of the mouthpiece when the student is holding the mouthpiece with the reed facing them. In doing so, typically, when viewed from the non-reed side of the mouthpiece, the reed will appear to protrude ...


8

For a pipe without any holes, the fundamental pitch of a pipe is determined by f = v/2L, where v is the speed of sound and L is the length of the pipe. But when you start putting holes in, you get a mix of pipe lengths. It gets messy (mathematically) in a big hurry. Placing a hole in the pipe shortens its length, but the new length - the effective length - ...


7

I am assuming for this answer that you are wanting to adjust commercial reeds made from cane (not synthetic materials), and that you are not trying to make your own reeds from blanks or from stalks of cane. I have always felt that my time with the saxophone was too limited as it was. So, I always wanted to keep the reed work as simple and quick as possible ...


7

The main problem is that it's an oversimplified assumption to consider an open hole as a perfect open boundary condition for the air column. In fact such a hole still has a significant impedance. On the other side, the mouthpiece is not a perfect closed (reeds) or open (flutes) boundary condition, and also a closed hole still affects the column somewhat. A ...


6

You can cut the staple shorter, but it depends on the staple. If the staple is the type that doesn't have a rolled or fluted edge at the cork end, you can shorten it with some basic hand tools. Using a sharp knife (such a an x-acto hobby knife) or razor blade, you cut the cork around the staple pipe at the new length distance. After marking the cut you ...


6

Yes and no. First and foremost, the reed should match your jaw strength and stamina; if you can't bite down hard enough on the reed to compress it against the mouthpiece (and then sustain that jaw pressure over time), you'll squeak. Conversely, if you bite down too hard, you'll "pinch off" the sound; it will trend sharp and then in the extreme you'll fail ...


5

Much like the strengths of different brands wooden reeds, plastics reeds also vary - a number 3 is not always a number 3! You'll need to find an appropriate comparison chart (like below) for whichever brand of reed you choose to buy. (I'm not sure what's available in Canada, apologies.) I have two Fibracell reeds, and haven't been especially impressed by ...


4

Your question is very broad, in that you do not even attempt to clarify what purpose it serves. There is an abundance of various reed instruments out there. Why are you interested in the material used? To build your own reed instrument? Are you a double-reed player who needs to make their own reeds? The most common reed material when it comes to Western ...


3

If you have a local music shop, I'd suggest going down there and sampling a few different varieties. I, personally, have found little success with the JAVA series and have seen better consistency in Rico Jazz Select (cheaper, too!).


3

Ugh, got it: approximately 1 mm. If it's closed entirely, i.e. new, put the reed's tip for about 2 minutes into water. Put about a quarter of the reed into your mouth and very lightly squeeze it while blowing. Rated R.


3

In my research, sites that dealt with very maticulous reed care did not mention use of alcohol to disinfect the reed, just precise instructions for how to wet the reed prior to use and in conditioning a reed for playing, then thorough drying and storage of the reed after playing. Where I did encounter mention of alcohol use and hydrogen peroxide solutions ...


2

Rubbing alcohol is used on reeds only when one wants to share the reed with someone else. Disinfecting between playings is not necessary. But in the instance of a teacher/student trading instruments, alcohol is a useful tool. Alcohol has no negative effects on a reed. In my experience, it doesn't even get rid of the dark (mold) spots that gather in the ...


2

I play an Alora Vienna series intermediate grade tenor sax with a generic Usongs #8 metal mouthpiece I found on Amazon for $20, a Rovner leather ligature, and a #5 Fibracell reed. I've found that I have to position the tip of my reed perfectly with the edge of my mouthpiece and I even have to go so far as to re-mount my reed several times to get the ...


2

YES The easy way is on a C/T harmonica with a valve on the 5 hole. This will allow you to play chromatically in the mid range of the diatonic harp.The 5 hole will require a blow bend , giving you a full chromatic scale. If you valve the 2 hole for an additonal blow bend you can play whatever you want. Works for me as I am a full time teacher , studio ...


2

Start by drawing on hole 8 will give you the notes without bending. An octave higher than where you originally want, though. It can also be played on a G harp, starting on hole 6, with a blow. The trouble with the lower holes is there's no 6th note from the scale, so the 7th needs to be bent a whole tone. To make that A). This isn't easy to do exactly in ...


2

I apologize for making this an answer, since I cannot comment due to lack of reputation. I was in various high-school and college orchestras back when I played clarinet (about 4-5 years ago now), so the information I have here for you may be outdated. I tried Legere reeds when they first came out, and have also heard semi-good things about Fibracell. ...


2

I think that you may want to try a piezo pickup even though your comment about "transducers" seems to rule them out. To my knowledge there is no equivalent to guitar pickups for free-reeeds, i.e. some type of pickup that transforms the mechanical motion of the metallic reed into an electrical signal (such a thing would seem to be possible for steel reeds, ...


2

It could be said that it is the same family of wind instruments (aerophone). Suona is considered an international instrument played in more than 30 countries in Asia, Africa and Europe. It is called Shanai in India, other denominations are Shenai or Rhaita, in wikipedia you can find many more denominations: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suona#History https:...


2

I did the experiment, and the answer is yes, it can be done! It ain't really pretty, but you didn't ask for pretty! ;))) I happened to use material from thin surgical type gloves (non-latex but stretchy): You'll need some kind of tube (I used the body of a low D penny whistle, sans the usual whistle head --- just a tube with six finger holes in it), gloves ...


2

I've got a silver guardala studio mouthpiece on my tenor, and I've started using alto reeds on that. It's a very slim mouthpiece.


1

You can just use the wrong reeds. They're not nearly as finicky as some people would have you believe. It's actually pretty common to use one size larger reeds than normal (e.g., tenor sax reeds on alto, or very commonly, Bb clarinet reeds on Eb with a barrel modification so it fits), so going the other way isn't unthinkable.


1

I have a metal selmer mouthpiece for tenor that came with a C Melody horn and the tenor reeds protrude from the side, causing a metal ligature to bend or not completely hug the reed. So I can see his attempt. Gonna go home and try that!


1

My teacher always told me to let the instrument rest on your lower lip, never press it against the top. It gives you a better overall control and it is more relaxing. Especially when breathing you should let it rest on the bottom and lift the top of your mouth over it. So while you need some pressure from both sides when playing consider the bottom the ...


1

No, you don't need to touch the top of the reed in general to play the oboe. If you play off the tip a lot your top lip will probably touch it, but most likely not near the tip since you want it free to vibrate. You don't want the roof of your mouth to touch it and your tongue should always be controlling the bottom of the reed.


1

Metal mouthpieces are slimmer than hard rubber/plastic mouthpieces across the board (for reasons that have to do with tone), so it's not necessarily one specific metal mouthpiece that this would work for.


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible