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Hello one and all

Hey guys,
I first started playing the Clarinet when i was 10 or 11 years old. Played every day for about 2 years and got reasonably good! Then changed schools and the new school didnt have a instrument playing scheme nor did the encourage it! So long story short, I stopped playing!
Some 20+ years later my wife bought me a Clarinet again to help with stress, but having a very busy job, I didnt get back into it!
now another 5 years later im playing again and loving it!
Struggling to learn to read music again, but it will come slowly but surely! Im not taking lessons at the moment because of the world situation with virus pandemic and isolation, however i did sign up for an online course that has helped alot! Im about half way thru that course but struggling now with the upper register! Going over the break is almost as daunting to me as picking up an new instrument altogether! Again it will come with time!

Thanks for having me, looking forward to reading the forum and learning alot more!

Neil
 

TMHeimer

Tom Heimer
Too bad the new school had nothing for you. Music programs just vary so much. Hopefully you can get a good flesh & blood teacher when things get back to normal. For high register play the low fingering then pop on the register key. Squeeze the holes really tightly if you have to at first to get the feeling, then ease up on that. Of course you want to get to where playing the high notes feels just as "normal" as the lower register. Fortunately, you don't still have a 10/11 year old's finger size.....(a problem I often saw when teaching young bands).
 
Thanks for the reply, I think my problem is my thumb and the awkward being that i am!
I think i'm unseating my thumb slightly in the movement to the register key!
Its going to be a slow enough process to get to where i want to be, but i'm playing tunes to the kids and they are singing along now too so its not so bad! Ill be looking for a good teacher when the world reopens for business! Im also waiting for the music shops to reopen so i can get in and choose a new mouth piece, Im not overly happy with mine but i cant actually pin point why! Id have to play a couple to pin point the problem!
Maybe its my ligature, I don't actually know! but cheapish Clarinet mouthpiece isnt going to be great anyway so no harm in changing it!
 
Hey guys,
I first started playing the Clarinet when i was 10 or 11 years old. Played every day for about 2 years and got reasonably good! Then changed schools and the new school didnt have a instrument playing scheme nor did the encourage it! So long story short, I stopped playing!
Some 20+ years later my wife bought me a Clarinet again to help with stress, but having a very busy job, I didnt get back into it!
now another 5 years later im playing again and loving it!
Struggling to learn to read music again, but it will come slowly but surely! Im not taking lessons at the moment because of the world situation with virus pandemic and isolation, however i did sign up for an online course that has helped alot! Im about half way thru that course but struggling now with the upper register! Going over the break is almost as daunting to me as picking up an new instrument altogether! Again it will come with time!

Thanks for having me, looking forward to reading the forum and learning alot more!

Neil
Hi Neil, don't know if you have considered online lessons but I'm able to teach should you wish a Zoom meet? We could do the first session as a free consultation to check out whether the tech works (and also if we actually get on!) for nothing and if you feel like coming back then I'll charge £35 for 30 mins. 30 mins seems to be a good online lesson length and you can choose the regularity of your lessons. Some people have once every two weeks and others prefer and ad hoc one every few months. Hope to hear from you soon.

Hi have a website should you wish to check out my credentials www paulsaundersclarinet co uk

Just remove the spaces and replace with a dot - my attempt at blocking spam.... ATB, Paul
 
Paul Thanks for the offer. I might take you up on the offer.
Im just going to have to check out time availability at my end, and ill come back to you!
Ive just returned to the work place so am out of the house now from 7am to 7pm (rough times)
but definitely i think a few lessons to get me moving the right direction and advice from a pro will help
 
Thanks for getting back, perhaps my email address (same as my profile name @iCloud.com) might be the best method of organising a time. Just to confirm, thinking time zones....I live in the UK. Happy to teach late in the evening if that helps.
 

TMHeimer

Tom Heimer
Yes, I have seen many have problems with the position of the thumb on the hole and then moving it up to the register key. I have seen those who kind of "ark" the thumb up (bending at the knuckle) to hit the key and wind up uncovering the thumb hole a bit.
Another possibility is your thumb is parallel (in line) with the clarinet (straight up & down), as apposed to the correct angle-- pointing somewhat to the right on an angle (maybe not quite at a 45 degree angle). Very little movement should be needed to touch the bottom of the register key.
I use a Vandoren 5RV mouthpiece and Vandoren 2.5 reeds, but that's just me. Many use a 3 or harder reed.
I don't worry about ligatures-- have tried many and don't think it makes a difference to be concerned about. Some will disagree.
 
Yes, I have seen many have problems with the position of the thumb on the hole and then moving it up to the register key. I have seen those who kind of "ark" the thumb up (bending at the knuckle) to hit the key and wind up uncovering the thumb hole a bit.
Another possibility is your thumb is parallel (in line) with the clarinet (straight up & down), as apposed to the correct angle-- pointing somewhat to the right on an angle (maybe not quite at a 45 degree angle). Very little movement should be needed to touch the bottom of the register key.
I use a Vandoren 5RV mouthpiece and Vandoren 2.5 reeds, but that's just me. Many use a 3 or harder reed.
I don't worry about ligatures-- have tried many and don't think it makes a difference to be concerned about. Some will disagree.
Ive read so many reviews on Ligatures and mouth pieces its not even funny. Alot of them support your opinion of ligitures being basically just a fancy or plain way to hold a reed, and some support the "Tone altering" claims made by manufacturers. I have to say tho mine does come loose on occasion and thats why im thinking about changing it! Was looking at Rovner ligitures just cause they look decent and they arent stupidly expensive!
Mouthpieces as far as i can read and ascertain are very personal to a player, and what works for you might not work for me! Or id have bought a lovely Vandoren weeks ago! so for that reason im waiting (with baited breath, chomping at the bit) to get the shops open again to get in and hopefully play test a few! The M13 Profile 88 really caught my attention, but i cant tell you why (cause i am not sure) "maybe it was a review that just caught my attention" either way! nothing will be bought until i can play test them

Thank you for your help!
 
Last edited:

Gandalfe

Admin and all around good guy.
Staff member
Administrator
Ive read so many reviews on Ligatures and mouth pieces its not even funny. Alot of them support your opinion of ligitures being basically just a fancy or plain way to hold a reed, and some support the "Tone altering" claims made by manufacturers. I have to say tho mine does come loose on occasion and thats why im thinking about changing it! Was looking at Rovner ligitures just cause they look decent and they arent stupidly expensive!
Mouthpieces as far as i can read and ascertain are very personal to a player, and what works for you might not work for me! Or id have bought a lovely Vandoren weeks ago! so for that reason im waiting (with baited breath, chomping at the bit) to get the shops open again to get in and hopefully play test a few! The M13 Profile 88 really caught my attention, but i cant tell you why (cause i am not sure) "maybe it was a review that just caught my attention" either way! nothing will be bought until i can play test them

Thank you for your help!
Selecting gear is not for the faint of heart. The best instructors will walk you through that process so that you start on decent equipment. Do be careful you don't get GAS (gear acquisition syndrome), it can be quite expensive and rarely improves your playing as much a practicing does. Welcome to the forum and good luck with your explorations in music.
 
Selecting gear is not for the faint of heart. The best instructors will walk you through that process so that you start on decent equipment. Do be careful you don't get GAS (gear acquisition syndrome), it can be quite expensive and rarely improves your playing as much a practicing does. Welcome to the forum and good luck with your explorations in music.
Absolutely know where your coming from!
Far too easy to say “I need” and rhyme off every possible extra and alternative, where I should be practicing! But truth be told a friend of mine suggested that the 2 need changed! He has the same clarinet as a cheaper travel companion and said there was a massive improvement when he changed the 2!
Thanks Gandalf
 

saxhound

Moderator
Staff member
CE/Moderator
Metal clarinet ligatures (well sax too) can be fragile things. Easily bent out of shape from a drop or putting them on the wrong way. I'm a big fan of the Luyben ligature for clarinet. It is a two screw flexible plastic piece. Been using one for years and I am perfectly satisfied with it. Very reasonable in price as well.
 

TMHeimer

Tom Heimer
I always told my beginning clarinet players in band that if they drop the ligature don't step on it or it's probably history. But I don't think that's an issue for (most) adults. I've used the plastic one (screws on the mouthpice top, not on the reed). Also quite a few others. Russianoff had me doing the waxed string thing in the '70s. They all seemed the same to me. I use a standard Bonade for performing, and a crappy beginner no-name thing practicing--same result (I think).
 
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