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Thread: Play on reed's tip

  1. #1
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    Default Play on reed's tip

    Hello nice people!

    A single or double reed can be played with the lips on the reed's tip to produce a muffled sound.

    But what is the usual symbol or text for it on a score? Or if none is usual, could you propose a good one?

    I've drawn this so far (click for full size):
    ReedTipStdFar.png
    First line for a bassoon, second line for a single reed, positions are tip / normal / far.

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    why don't you just use english? even after reading you your post I have no idea what that symbol is supposed to represent.

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    Why English rather than Italian? Or German, since so many musicians study in Germany. But the basic reason against a text is that it takes too much room.

    I decided to go on with these symbols, slightly adjusted. They represent a reed. I put explanations in four languages elsewhere in the score's file.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Enthalpy View Post
    Why English rather than Italian? Or German, since so many musicians study in Germany. But the basic reason against a text is that it takes too much room.

    I decided to go on with these symbols, slightly adjusted. They represent a reed. I put explanations in four languages elsewhere in the score's file.
    It looks to me as though the top line symbol is a double reed and the bottom line symbol is a single reed. I'm guessing the darkened areas are where the lip placement is to be. I wonder what the tonal result would be?

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    placement of the lips on the bassoon reed will greatly affect the sound and response...
    playing right at the "tip" means that most of the reed is not vibrating, so you will get sort of a pitchless buzz/blat...there will be pitch, most likely, but lots of reed "noise".

    playing with the lips in "normal" position, on the blades of the reed, will produce the usual sound...

    "far" placement, the lips on the wrapping, not touching the blades at all will produce an effect like that of a bagpipe - loud, raucous, there is no dampening or control of the blades from embouchure [lip] pressure or placement....it is like a crumhorn - a capped reed instrument. pitch will be affected by closing/opening of finger holes and keys, but the intonation will vary wildly.

    an effect used occasionally is to play on just the reed, separate from the instrument and bocal - this is crowing the reed, and different pitches and harmonics are possible....Peter Schickele used this in his 4tet for Bassoons - "Lip My Reeds" - the top two parts play on just the reed, producing high pitches [A/F# IIRC]...it's pretty wild sounding!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by david johnson View Post
    It looks to me as though the top line symbol is a double reed and the bottom line symbol is a single reed. I'm guessing the darkened areas are where the lip placement is to be. I wonder what the tonal result would be?
    Exactly. I had tried to represent a single reed and mouthpiece from the side, but it's too bulky.

    The sound gets very muffled on the bassoon, a saxophone or a clarinet. The musician must decide how far to exaggerate. Intonation can be correct after a bit of specific training. High notes are impossible, fortissimo too. It's not exactly the same effect as the sordino on a violin, but it does make a striking difference in the good direction.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Heck148 View Post
    Placement of the lips on the bassoon reed will greatly affect the sound and response...
    Yes, and this is what I seek. Beginners learn to avoid this "incorrect" lip placement that makes a muffled sound and an uncomfortable response difficult to control. But for low and medium notes, pianissimo to mezzoforte, it's usable.

    I want to experiment recording sound on my computer, so maybe I upload a record in the future.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Enthalpy View Post
    Yes, and this is what I seek. Beginners learn to avoid this "incorrect" lip placement that makes a muffled sound and an uncomfortable response difficult to control. But for low and medium notes, pianissimo to mezzoforte, it's usable.

    I want to experiment recording sound on my computer, so maybe I upload a record in the future.
    Get yourself a clarinet and experiment. You'll find quickly that the standard lip placement is great. Too much and all you get is a squawk, too little and no tone. Perhaps you will have better luck considering lip-pressure against the reed, or embouchure firmness as the factor to vary.

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