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Discussion in 'Other Makes and Models' started by bbrandha, Feb 18, 2015.
I am just curious. How many of us have a Mazzeo in working order? I have a Selmer 100 Special.
So have I. I even use it sometimes.
I have a Bundy. The mechanism as been deactivated as there was an adjustment screw, spiral spring and ball (?) missing in the setup as I bought it. But the the extra arm still is *somewhere*.
...and I (for now, at least) have one of the Selmer (Paris) ones, with silver plated keys (done after a rebuild) and intact operating mechanisms. It's a good horn, but only that - not good enough to play all the time.
(Every other Bundy and Signet Mazzeo horn offered for sale that I ever saw, handled, or bought (and returned to the lying bastards that insisted they were "complete and fully operational") had the mechanism disabled, including one that had it mangled but still in the case.)
Now, if I had managed to land Rosario's own full Boehm/Mazzeo horn, I might have felt differently...
I have 2 Bundy Bb - one converted and one intact. Or should I say had, as I loaned them to a member who has had them (and other instruments) for years now and doesn't return them when I ask.
I have known the feeling in the past. I loaned out a Selmer USA bass to one of my sax players, who wanted it for his girlfriend to play in a community band. It was just sitting there, so I figured, why not let him/them use it.
Dumb move on my part. Right after playing a high paying job (and several rehearsals after I asked for it back for a month while my main bass was being overhauled), he disappeared for good. I've seen him once or twice while driving through Tomball, where he works and walks to local bistros as I have driven through), but no response to phone calls or certified letters.
At about $800, it's not worth the trouble to try and recover, even in small claims court. Besides, I think that the girl scarpered on him and she just kept it.
as a result of that instance, I have seldom loaned out horns for the last decade and a half. Better safe than sorry...
I've also had horns "loaned out" that were eventually placed in the "stolen" category. Replacement value of either wasn't high in $, but one horn was my grandfather's.
I have never tried any of the Mazzeo fingerings, but the parts are all there. It plays quite nicely except for the throat (?) A. It is so flat that I either rest or play another note. It's not #1 clarinet, but #1 is in the shop. I don't play it enough to justify the expense to fix it, if it's even possible.
I've never played one of the Signets, but every Bundy that I've ever handled and played was a mess as well, most certainly not up to the Selmer (Paris) standards.
My Maezzo is in tune up and down the horn, at least as far as I ever bother with determining. I'm not one to sit down with an electronic tuner and start jotting down cents, relying instead on my sense of intonation and familiarity with a horn. (I've known players who play every note with a tuner in front of them - perhaps useful for long tones, but a major league distraction in any moving passages.)
What I would love to have seen would have been a dual register key system applied to all clarinets, with the stuff in the clarinet register handled by the standard key, and the Bb in the staff handled by a key that would open the trill key tone hole. I've played any number of dual register key basses over the years, and it's not that hard to handle such a system. And, it corrects the abysmal Bb that even the best of horns possess, for virtually no added weight and very little added complexity.
If oboists can do it, we can...
The Bundy I had was in mint condition and played fairly well, as far as I got along with the system. I tried it for a run of a show, and gave up as it required more mental power to play than I had to spare, so I went to the system I didn't have to think about when playing.
The pair was no big loss, but I do miss the other 2 clarinets I had sent in for overhauls along with the Mazzeo twins.
Mine plays pretty well, but the throat tones are hideous. I have been playing it while #1 was being repaired.
I thought of Terry's post here when I found this today, as is usual I don't know anything of how legitimate the seller is, http://www.ebay.com/itm/Selmer-Mazzeo-Clarinet-Series-9-France-almost-unused-/262818034025?
(and my personal opinion is that they aren't getting that price for it, even if it's full boehm.)
(they use some odd terminology in the listing that I've never seen before, too, "Bb Slip Mechanism," "Series G," and "Version 9/10."
But yeah, interesting horn, but I'm not too sure they'll end up getting that price. Wonder what SOTSDO would have thought of it.
Wow, that's a super high price. You could get a very nice modern instrument for that price.
Well, I'd assume the star that's stamped on the upper joint indicates it's a Series 9*. "Version 9/10" doesn't mean much to me. The 9* has a different bore than the 9.
I thought "Series G" is a reference to the Series 10 Gigliotti model before I looked at the ad, where the seller places the "Series G" well before the Series 9 came out. @Steve might have a better idea. I know Selmer used letters in the serial number, but not G.
I think the "Bb Slip" is referring to the little thingy to engage the Mazzeo mechanism. Take a look at http://woodwindforum.com/forum/index.php?threads/the-mazzeo-system-explained-and-pictured.23658/
I'm far from an expert on clarinets, but I can say that I did some Googling and didn't find many full Boehm Mazzeo horns and no 9*. The other non-full-Boehm Series 9 or 10 horns I saw weren't selling for anywhere near that much.
The slide mechanism is a little push/pull lever that you pull which disables the Mazzeo part of the clarinet.
Many teachers would totally disable this mechanism on lower Signet and Bundy Mazzeo clarinets as they are fine "regular" boehm clarinets too.
This is somewhat odd as the register throat tube is an earlier screw in one that is commonly found on Centered Tones.
I don't have access to my serial numbers list and pictures at the moment.
How does one value this?
The Bundy and Signets would go for far less, even if you could find one that wasn't completely disabled.
The Pro SelmerParis models from 2009 when they were relatively cheap (under $400 USD) to 2012ish when they were approaching $1,000 USD is totally dependent upon finding someone that wants to pay that for a piece of history that simply is not used in any modern group.
$3500 may seem high, but it's better to start high, than start low. These are normally slow sales that can go on for months and months so there's plenty of time to slowly bring the price down.
I abandoned collecting odd mechanism clarinets, even Full and Partial Boehms as students are not aware of them and college professors prefer consistency with Regular Boehms. So the market becomes quite limited/restricted. The Mazzeos are nice players but because they "improved" certain tones throughout the range they don't fit in a group of regular clarinets, if you have a finicky director. So Mazzeo's waned in sales.
I have a Bundy Mazzeo in working order.
My clarinet history powers are slowly increasing ...
It hadn't occurred to me that some folks would dislike a horn playing a note properly. It does make sense. That flat sounds sucky on a lot of clarinets, so there are probably some composers that recognize that fact and/or it might make blending in a group a bit more difficult. Good comment, Steve!
I've never played a Mazzeo, but when I have to play an exposed throat Bb, I always try to use the A key and the third side key. Much cleaner and more in tune. Maybe not in a fast moving passage , but for a "potato" note (thanks, Terry for the nomenclature!), it works great.
Standard Boehm clarinets have been hexxed by this since they were invented. (of course, we can just blame the flute).
Buffet (and Selmer / Leblanc) has moved the register vent, and changed it's dimensions/design over the years. From the late 50s, to the 60s, to the 70s when they moved it to provide a better Bb though losing a bit of color. Yamaha was the best neutral in their designs with a good throat Bb but early on were known for a lack of color in their tone.
The register vent really impacts the tonal quality .. I fiddled around with various lengths, and opening diameters and design a while back. Though I failed to document what I did. It was a quick exercise. I did this when I had a Buffet/Shreiber A clarinet which has this super long (both inside and outside) vent pip. I used it on a Bb, and conversely use a regular one on the A. Then played around with a few I removed from a couple misc. clarinets such as a Noblet and a few others laying around. A lot of engineering goes into the vent tube, design and placement.
Venting of the key has an impact too, as does how vigorously someone plays the note.
Since so many teachers are stuck on the "standard boehm" until the big makers synchronize on new keywork we seem to be stuck with it.
Just play a Full Boehm with the Long Bb (all the keys closed) and compare it to the throat Bb.
It's similar to playing a mid C on a sax with the 0x0-000 versus playing it as a side C x00-0|00 (or how ever that designation is). You can hear the tonal quality difference in most cases dependent upon embouchure/mpc used, etc.
I've found the side trill keys better in fast passages especially if you have to go up to C and back down. But once again, the shortness of the tube for C has a thinner tonal quality than a long C. Thus the reason for a FB.