Clarinet Talk: Four Tones – Same Player and Equipment

The following audio clip is Four Tones, Same Player and Equipment-

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I took John Peacock up on his challenge awhile back, to demonstrate several different voicings and how they affect tone.

This clip begins with my saying and playing #2, #3, #4, and then #1, because #1 is my own natural voicing and since it is more familiar and comfortable, it would have an unfair advantage.

The point is not that I sound better or worse on each sample, but how different the sound is from the others.

See if you can figure out the school of sound I am attempting in each one. I intended three specific schools of voicing and embouchure with #2, #3 and #4.

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5 comments for “Clarinet Talk: Four Tones – Same Player and Equipment

  1. John Peacock
    February 2, 2011 at

    Hi David. I’m honoured you took the time to respond to my suggestion. My guesses are that 2 is meant to be British and 4 is meant to be German. 3 puzzles me, since it sounds quite like 4 to my ears but the slight vibrato makes it hard to be sure which national school you’re after – Czech, perhaps? Your native sound (1) seems to be a 50-50 mixture of 2 and 4. I’d be interested to hear more on how you achieved these effects. If I’d not been warned this was about “voicing”, I’d have guessed the main difference between 2 & 4 was that 2 used a more relaxed embouchure, whereas 4 is tighter, making the sound more direct and compact. If the embouchure is the same in all cases and the difference comes from tongue and throat alone, that’s impressive. But none of them sound like Brymer!

    • February 5, 2011 at

      Hi John, I am glad you saw this. I wondered why you had not commented yet!

      Agreed that none sound like Brymer. To accomplish that I would need completely different equipment. But many “British” sounding players have that hollow throaty tone, which I accomplished by severely opening my throat in a yawn, dropping my tongue and yes, relaxing the embouchure.

      #3 was double lip, supposedly French. #4 was actually a Marcellus type voicing, with a high tongue and lots of top lip, with the soft palette “passively” high, meaning pushed by the air pressure shooting over the high tongue.

  2. January 31, 2011 at

    David, what were you doing on number 4? K

    • January 31, 2011 at

      Hey Keith, on #4 I’m connecting the air with the tone in a “vocal” way, meaning the intention and voicing come from a singing voicing. I mean literally singing, as in, sing a note then play it. I am NOT voicing in any sense of opening or narrowing or setting the position of tongue and throat. My jaw is very soft, meaning loose and open. I am thinking more “air” than “voicing”.

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