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  1. #26
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    I feel like I have to throw in a mention of Coppelius - a german metal band featuring not one but two clarinets.

  2. #27
    Professional Dreamer journeybear's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    And cello. And no guitar. (In the clip, anyway.) Now you've done it. Look for Jack White to try this on his next album. And a top hat, too.
    But that's just my opinion. I could be wrong. - Dennis Miller

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  3. #28
    Registered User Rodney Riley's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Quote Originally Posted by journeybear View Post
    And a top hat, too.
    Maybe he could order one from Eva... http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/...ource=facebook

  4. #29
    Registered User CelticDude's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Come on guys, I'm trying to FORGET that I started my musical life on the clarinet... Why do you think I play mandolin? It's about as un-clarinet as I can get. (Well, maybe the electric mandolin is.)

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    Professional Dreamer journeybear's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Maybe you should get into klezmer music. Play some weddings and bar mitzvahs. A least there's a market for that. Then you can use all those earnings to subsidize your mandolin habit.

    PS: I know, RR. I pretty much expected you or Ed to pipe up as soon as I posted that. That would be very cool if he did that, though not in keeping with his minimalism. Besides, it would be too mandolinny. Yes, I said that!
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  6. #31
    Registered User Justus True Waldron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by catmandu2 View Post
    I confess that, I'm never really compelled by the sound of soprano cl...maybe from too much radio, trad jazz, swing music, I don't know...but I love playing sop cl. For all my talk of sound motivating my playing...Im inconsistent here. It takes a jimmy giuffre, don Byron, or Anthony Braxton to make the instrument very listenable, for me. It's a wonderful instrument to hear yourself playing--all woody and organic--and feel the air moving beneath your fingers...but it takes an egghead perhaps to enjoy its sound...perhaps compelling Adolphe sax to conduct his sonic experiments with the conical bore..
    You know, I hate to admit it, but that's kind of true. Most of the jazz I listen to is tenor sax based(sonny rollins, john coltrane, dextor gordon, joshua redman, stan getz) because I really LIKE the sound of it... as do most people. Don Byron is about as close as I've gotten to finding a clarinet player I can really get into. But that's what bugs me, because I think there really is a depth there in the instrument that nobody really has properly used in a unique context. I kind of feel like I have an idea of this sound, but I haven't really had the opportunity to bring it to life yet. One of my life goals is to at some point accomplish what I have in my head... no idea if anyone else will like it, but I at least know I haven't come across anything else like it yet.

    One thing I really want to put together at some point is a modern post-bop type quintet with the main instruments of clarinet and violin. I kind of got this idea from playing with my last girlfriend (fiddle player) and her family band (Journeybear you know who I'm talking about). I had a lot of fun playing in that environment, and sort of styled my playing after this sound:
    Jeff Coffin is playing a soprano sax in the video, but it's close enough. He's actually a beast on clarinet as well... one of my big influences. Sadly, me and the fiddle player have gone our separate ways, so I no longer have that venue to work in. Still, that sound was something really cool to me, and I really want to do something else with it, but go more in this direction:

    My problem now is finding like minded musicians on the right instruments. I'm thinking this may take a few years, but it's definitely one of my goals.

    On a different note, that german metal song with the clarinets was actually... listen able for me! Not usually my cup of tea, but definitely something different. Also, I've been playing cello lately so it's cool on another level. That sort of mash up brings to mind my favourite german jazz metal group with a saxaphone, Panzerballet.


    Wow, we really have strayed far from mando land! I play mandolin, I promise!! Actually, it's kind of weird, right now mandolin is the only instrument I'm playing in a band, and that's for pretty much straight ahead bluegrass. And we've gotten pretty tight, and I have a lot of fun doing it, but it's pretty much the most normal musical thing I've done in my life. I played electric mandolin and clarinet rock in the last band I started, as well as drums in a humour sludge metal band named Bangelthor. [=

    Oh and Klezmer... I actually did play klezmer for about a year with some people and had a lot of fun. I'd really like to take some lessons from Andy Statman at some point, I feel like there is a world of knowledge on tone I could glean from him... plus probably some cool tips on doubling with clarinet and mandolin....
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  7. #32
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Justus True Waldron View Post
    You know, I hate to admit it, but that's kind of true. Most of the jazz I listen to is tenor sax based(sonny rollins, john coltrane, dextor gordon, joshua redman, stan getz) because I really LIKE the sound of it... as do most people. Don Byron is about as close as I've gotten to finding a clarinet player I can really get into.
    I get what you mean. Jazz clarinet's been in abject decline since the '50s, and nowadays it might as well be in the same category as a slide trumpet or something: they bring it out for one number as a gimmick. It usually sounds like it's being played by a sax player using a really soft setup, either really stuffy or really squeal-y. (It may as well be a soprano sax.) There are a few guys who play with great tone and technique, like Eddie Daniels, but the solos just aren't my cup of tea... I liked Don Byron's stuff with the Klezmer Conservatory Band, but his jazz leaves me cold.

    I think it would be great if a clarinet or flute or some kind of horn would show up as a full-time member of some slightly generic NPR-friendly indie band, like the Decemberists or something, just so people could get used to the idea that it can do something besides dixieland licks and the 'This Old House' theme.

  8. #33
    Registered User JH Murray's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Sun Ra always knew how to put on a show. Saw him in Toronto back in 85. I watched Jack White's CD release party concert on YouTube. The same women who were featured in the video performed the first set with him. It was very tastefully done- it was nice to see female musicians treated with respect (as opposed to having to perform in their lingerie). There was a bit of mandolin in the second set which featured JW's earlier material.

  9. #34
    Registered User catmandu2's Avatar
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    Around this time sun had a horn line of, in addition to jacson, John Gilmore, Marshall Allen, Julian Priester, pat Patrick, and James Spaulding
    Last edited by catmandu2; Apr-29-2012 at 9:01am.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by JH Murray View Post
    I watched Jack White's CD release party concert on YouTube. The same women who were featured in the video performed the first set with him. It was very tastefully done- .
    I get the impression that jack white possesses much stylistic and aesthetic wherewithal, cultural and artistic awareness, and love for the music

  11. #36
    Registered User catmandu2's Avatar
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    As products of "TV" and pop culture -- most of us having spent our adolescence with Disney and Hanna-barbera...or power rangers...it may be that our associations with clarinet are just too programmed--its tone being permanently etched into our minds with associations of cliched, cartoonishness. Perhaps the classical player isn't beset with this conditioning as much as regular folks--from a lifetime of pursuing the clarinet more in the abstract. But for me, I can't think of an instrument more associated with zany cartoon hijinx, animal behavior, and cliched "pastoralism." From rhapsody in blue (I love Gershwin, but have we heard anything more often than the opening clarinet salvo?...or Copland, or tony scott'?) to the theme from the little rascals...I'll never escape Peter and the wolf "as told by" symphonic instruments. All instruments suffer to some degree from cultural and media stereotype: whenever there is intimation of "romance" or amorousness of particularly lusty measure--even if between skunks, rabbits, mice, or livestock--swooping sax with wide vibrato, or the muted trumpet device iis often deployed. unrelenting exposure to media is a problem.

    The tenor saxophone, particularly, is an expressive instrument--probably why it is the preeminent jazz instrument; its sonic capabilities are immense. After coltrane, there is a stylistic school of expression--especially on tenor sax--by countless players. Many instrumentalists emulate Coltrane in harmonic form, but aside from his harmonic approach and sonic experiments in extended technique, he was notable for his tone; Coltrane was an incredibly sensitive and lyrical player...in my book, the very best. Other elements beside technique factor into lyricism of course, and it seems often the choice for musicians to express themselves is the tenor sax. We can transcribe sonny Rollins solos on clarinet (or mandolin) but they sound quite different. I play clarinet for several reasons--I have greater technical facility with cl than sax (for some reason, even though I have 100 times more experience on sax, the entire range of the cl is easy for me, whereas I struggle in altissimo on sax, and I particularly enjoy the harmonic freedom this affords me in improvising), but I love the sound of the saxes.

    This is why I need players like Evan Parker and brotzmann and Braxton and giuffre and zorn to deconstruct the instrument (cl) for me--to help me distance and divorce it from the "cartoon," Dixieland, cliched associations.
    Last edited by catmandu2; Apr-29-2012 at 8:48am.

  12. #37
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    Having said all THAT...instead of the soft, mellifluous lines and cartoonish mimicry on cl which the kids readily accept during their weekend tv viewing, this morning I went for tone and subjected my kids to standards on sax...to cries of "dad stop!"

  13. #38
    Registered User catmandu2's Avatar
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    Justus, et al...have you heard the Claudia Quintet?...being an accordian player of sorts, I dig reeds of all kinds. There're probably better clips of Chris's clarinet playing, but just ran across one as I was searching for youtube clips from Deviantics (my avatar image)...didn't find any yet. Don't know if Chris plays cl much with this ensemble--since the accordian has that register covered (here he switches axes at around 4:20" but doesn't solo)...I like the harmony of sax, acc, vibes

    Last edited by catmandu2; Apr-29-2012 at 1:55pm.

  14. #39
    poor excuse for anything Charlieshafer's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    And here's wehere we maybe suggest in the forum menu a topic for non-mandolin related music. There's so much fascinating stuff out there that a bunch of us would like to be made aware of, and who knows, maybe even start a mandolin gypsy jazz band, or mandolin version of the Art Ensemble of Chicago. Here's the stuff I'm looking to try to book for our series, if only either A: I could afford them, or B: they'd travel.


  15. #40
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Then there's this; sorry, no clarinet content:



    I dig the Sun Ra video. The acid was good back in the day.
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  16. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by journeybear View Post
    My first thought was "I Got You Babe" by Sonny And Cher, then I remembered that's an oboe. So I had to rack my brain for a while (my brain that's so full of oh-so-useful information), as this has come up before. You know - what's the only #1 song to feature a weird instrument, like autoharp ("Do You Believe In Magic" by The Lovin' Spoonful, or mandolin ("Maggie May" by Rod Stewart) - see? MC can be worked in if one tries hard enough - and finally it came to me: "Tears Of A Clown" by The Miracles. I think it's more of a featured instrument than a solo (same as IGYB), but this is my guess.
    Tears of a clown is what I was thinking, but you are right--it's not really a solo.
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  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Romkey View Post

    I dig the Sun Ra video. The acid was good back in the day.
    Most accounts I've read I believe are that sun himself abstained--although doubtless that the countless musicians he employed in his long tenure as leader may have dabbled in substance use at some point in their careers, his ensembles were some of the most disciplined and loyal in the business (some original members lived in the original rehearsal space/residental dwelling the band kept in Philadelphia and preserved both the music, aesthetic approach to art, and philosophical persepctive on life until they died), it's unlikely that members were doing their own thing on tours, as the band was tight and responsive to sun's leadership; being black in the US (and born in Brimingham) during the 50s and 60s was likely enough of a consciousness-changing experience, or leading to it, and this appears possibly evident as sun likely adopted his florid personal mythology in response to an oppressive social environment.

    The video is great--the audio lagging behind the video by several seconds contributes even more weirdness. I like the response by the gentlman in the dark shirt in the front row at 4:27"--who appears to be either laughing hysterically, getting physically ill, or freaking out, or possibly all three. And the woman at 4:45" who appears to be covering her ears or scratching her head, or both.

    I hope you check out the John Tchicai ensemble sandwiched between the two dolpy vids (Justus) for some fine clarinet duet harmony

  18. #43
    Registered User catmandu2's Avatar
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    Time for another vid--couple of clarinets, and an awesome cl solo by Ken Vandermark
    ...some folks might hate this, but if you can stand it it renders lots of interesting harmonies and textures, not to mention some big blowing, of course (jeesh Gustaffson gets into it...like a younger broztmann). I like how the music flows, and its stimulating how heightened drama, or climax to use a commonly associable term, can be sustained (Justus you'll want to hang until at least 32:00" for another brotz cl solo)





    And in case you need something a bit more sedate after that (btw, I hope you give this a chance--I think it begins to get particularly lovely at around 5:00")


    Last edited by catmandu2; Apr-30-2012 at 2:02pm.

  19. #44
    poor excuse for anything Charlieshafer's Avatar
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    Well, say what you will about Son Ra's weirdness ( I can take him in small doses before I start wondering why I put the disk in the player) his musicians were top-notch. Other bandleaders would hire anyone who had been with Ra for a couple of years, as the word was out that to play with Ra, you had to be able to play any song, in any key, at the drop of a hat. He had a song book of some 700 pieces, and he'd just call out "#426, E flat" and you'd better be ready.

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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    At a picking party last Saturday evening, the stand out instruments were clarinet and accordion.

  21. #46
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Like many, I started on clarinet. I played alto clarinet mostly after a while, and eventually bassoon in the orchestra.

    As I scan this I don't see mention of the other genre (besides Klezmer) in which the clarinet is a central player. Dixieland. Did I miss it? (I confess to a bit of scanning.)

    My clarinet idols were Sidney Bechet and Pete Fountain.

    First some Pete.



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  22. #47
    Registered User Justus True Waldron's Avatar
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    I think we avoided the Dixieland thing because that's one of the more "cliche" uses for clarinet. That said, one of the first places I played clarinet out was in a big band setting, and it was loads of fun. Sydney Bechet was an early influence of mine as well...I usually listen in small doses, but it's still a blast to play something like "when the Saints" in that heavy Bechet vibrato!

    One of the clarinet players who I think really did make a whole new voice for himself was Tony Scott. I haven't found much of him other than a few youtube videos, but some of his stuff is just incredible. This video was a big influence on me, and I like what he had to say about looking up to giants, I came to a similar conclusion when I started playing playing jazz a lot at age 14 or so
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  23. #48
    Innocent Bystander JeffD's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Justus True Waldron View Post
    I think we avoided the Dixieland thing because that's one of the more "cliche" uses for clarinet.
    True. But things because things become cliche because they are enjoyed so much by so many.
    As much as I post, I pick a whole lot more. Just sayin'
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  24. #49
    Registered User catmandu2's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Justus True Waldron View Post

    One of the clarinet players who I think really did make a whole new voice for himself was Tony Scott.
    Oh Yes, I meant RAYMOND Scott!

    Quote Originally Posted by catmandu2 View Post
    ... have we heard anything more often than the opening clarinet salvo?...or Copland, or tony scott?

    ... unrelenting exposure to media is a problem.



    And the "program" versions..



  25. #50
    Registered User catmandu2's Avatar
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    Default Re: More reasons to disdain ...

    Here's a really nice arrangment on the instrumental (beginning at 4:10") using both clarinet and mandolin


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