Aaron writes “Hi, my names Aaron and have been playing my clarinet for 6 years. I started on a Buffet E 11 and have finally convinced my mom to get me a R 13. I tried it out with a B 45 but, its a little resistant. Could someone makes any suggestions for good mouthpiece reed combos that would get a me a dark sound. I play mainly classical. If you want to know what I need. I need a reed mouthpiece combo so I can play Percy Grainger’s Molly on the Shore without resistance. Thanks”
There are a number of mouthpieces to try. Fobes, Vandoren, etc, etc. You should go to a local music store and try a bunch out. If you don’t live by one, try the Woodwind/Brasswind. They have a reasonable return policy on mouthpieces.
Ken Mills writes “The Vandoren 5JB clarinet mouthpiece, with the side walls filed further apart where they go to the bore, is a hotrod. The Vandoren 2½ reed is not too soft, and the Marca 2 or 2½ are the same style of reed. Now one can go up to double high C. The sound is the most dark in the clarion register and the power is the most so that nobody can stand up to me outdoors unless they play the trumpet. Use it with a large bore clarinet, but it should be sort of a high pitched instrument such as the Selmer, or what is another one? The alto sax is too bright so that we have trouble with treble, except for, of course, Paul Desmond. Get out of my way, because clarinet goes just as low, you sax people.”
An anonymous coward writes “Hey,I’ve been reading articles here and I wanted to ask you, is the Vandorem B45 a student mouthpiece? Which reeds do you prefer for playing jazz?”<p>
Not at all. A B45 is a very good mouthpiece. I used one for a couple of years, and I know a few people out there who still do. When you get more into clarinet, some people like to try to find a different sound that the B45 doesn’t lend itself to. A darker sound. A B45 to me is kind of bright, which is good for Jazz playing in my opinion.
“Thanks for providing such a good forum on the Web with your sax and clarinet forums. I check in on them from time to time.
I was wondering if I could be so forward as to ask you for your opinion. I am an intermediate level tenor saxophone player and clarinet player. I have a good equipment set up on my primary instrument (the saxophone, an old Mark VI that I have owned since 1978), but alas, I am still playing on an old student model Bundy. I am one of these players who played in high school and college, but then quit for some years. However, now for the past six months or so, I have been getting back into playing. When I played clarinet in college it was really just for doubling on parts in the jazz band.
Some day soon, when I have some additional money, I would like to buy a
Buffet or Selmer clarinet. My question for you in the interim though, is that I now need to buy a new clarinet mouthpiece, and I noticed your
recommendation for the Vandoren B45, which my local music store here in
Phoenix carries. However, I was just curious. I know that you like your
Ronald Caravan mouthpiece very much, and I saw that you have an
address/phone link for his mouthpieces. Are these pieces generally
custom-made-type pieces that are higher-end and expensive? I was just
curious, and thought I would ask you. Also, do you feel that the Caravan pieces are far superior to the Vandoren product?
I’d understand if you don’t know much about the Caravan current prices, but I just wanted to see if you REALLY liked it a lot better than the B45? My understanding is that the B45 is a very good student-type mouthpiece.
“Mouthpieces are such a personal thing. I believe I bought the clarinet mouthpiece from Caravan on a whim. It was because I was going to get one of his saxophone mouthpieces, and saw that he had a clarinet mouthpiece, and I had money and……what the hell. It’s actually the only caravan mouthpiece I use, the other two are in a box somewhere in my studio.
The B45 is a good general purpose mouthpiece. I think I was looking for something a little darker and fuller. I just happened that the Caravan fit the bill and I’ve really never wanted to try anything else. Though, I did play a Selmer clarinet with the Caravan and it sounded Bad.
I’d recommend trying a bunch of mouthpieces, and have someone else listen or record yourself playing them. Some others that I hear are good are Clark Fobes and Borbeck mouthpieces.
John Nastos writes “Does anyone know what type of mouthpiece/ligature/reed setup that Eddie Daniels uses? “
Well, if you go to Eddie’s website he seems to maybe use a Rovner EDII ligature, Vandoren #4s or V12 #4s, and LeBlanc clarinets. Good question about the mouthpiece. You could maybe email Eddie Daniels (I’m not brave enough too 🙂 )
Anonymous Coward writes “I’m interested in opinions of Clark Fobes mouthpieces. I’m interested in the San Francisco model. And what would the difference be between symmetrical and asymmetrical facings?”