Contrabass Digest

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From: "Mats Öljare" <>
Subject: Re: [Contra digest]
Date: Fri, 07 Jan 2000 00:06:15 GMT

>music.  So I just like to play. I consider myself a serious student. I like
>Jazz and Classical, and avant gourde.

Avant Gourd?That´s exactly what my pumpkins are all about...

>About that fungus. Back in the seventies I put away some tenor vandoren
>reeds; some more recently were in plastic (la-voz). The ones in the plastic
>were opened up recently and them and others that wern't in the plastic got
>attcked by this black fungus, kind of like a mold that got into the reeds and
>dicolored them. What is that stuff?

Oh my!It´s Purity!Ever seen the X-Files?Watch out for that stuff i tell
ya.Better keep them shut and give them to an expert that knows how to
dispose of them.

Mats Öljare
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Date: Thu, 6 Jan 2000 10:23:00 -0500
Subject: Contra Bass Klarinet
From: michael c grogg <>

I don't know if anyone has posted this yet, but there is a Leblanc model
342 ContraBass Clarinet on ebay at:

Still has 5 days to go on the auction.


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Date: Fri, 07 Jan 2000 00:17:53 -0800
From: "Timothy J. Tikker" <>
Subject: sarrusophone

you wrote:

>>The contrabass sarrusophone page
( now has Roscoe
Mitchell's "four compositions" (finally got a copy of the CD), which
includes "Prelude" for voice, bass saxophone, contrabass
sarrusophone, and triple contrabass viol<<

I recognize that name.  Is this a reissue of an LP on 1750 Arch Records
(now defunct)?  I recall that album also having a Conn-O-Sax, if it's
the one I'm thinking of...

- Timothy Tikker


Date: Fri, 7 Jan 2000 00:35:17 EST
Subject: Re: Contra Bass Klarinet

accordion to Leblanc Cat the 340 lists for  9250.  and a dealer who buys less
than 3 billion dollars worth of mechandise pays 5087. (which meand it may
sell a big chain for 4950. on special - enough money  to possibly cause a
meltdown. Odly I was told in another question answered by a contra that the
Leblanc contras all have the same bore size and includes the Vito and Holton.

I went to a winter NAMM show in 1987 and saw I believe it was one of the few
straight  Grenadilla Wood Leblanc Contras ever made. The metal bell and bows
were all silver plated and If my pinkeys had any good mamory it shook the
concrete poured steel reinforced floor with a low C. It had I believe six RH
pinkey spatulas.

This sounded like a clarinet all the way up to the sixth octave. Same thing
with the Leblac 400 intermediate Bb one-clef BC one octavekey bass cl. no
need for a soprano clarinet it goes as high and in tune (on a good day).

I hear that the Vito Contra isn't a bad horn but I heard that it sounds like
a tenor sax up high and is hard to tune up there. I would sure like to hear
some experienced players comment about the differences in Contrabas


Subject: Contrabass sound clip.
Date: Fri, 7 Jan 2000 09:16:59 -0000

I have found a contra clarinet sound clip at,5716,31126+asmbly%5Fid,00.html

The sound is very disappointing - I was expecting a richer sound than that.
Is it me, or is it a bad recording?



Subject: Low bass voice parts.
Date: Fri, 7 Jan 2000 10:46:03 -0000

An addition to the recent discussion, there is a low Bb written for bass in
the last movement of Mahler's 2nd Symphony.  Go to for a bit of
the score with it in.

Date: Fri, 07 Jan 2000 15:32:00 -0500
From: John Howell <>
Subject: Carry-on

>From: "Robert S. Howe" <>
>This thread reminds me of the story of the London Symphony, on tour to
>Athens in the 1960s.  Going thru customs in Greece, the second
>bassoonist came to the customs agent and was asked the contents of his
>case.  He replied, "it is a bassoon".  The agent did not believe in or
>know of the bassoon, poked at the parts and said, "no, it is two
>clarinets", made out the paperwork accordingly and passed the player
>A week later, the orchestra returns to England.  On the way out of Greek
>Customs, the agent (a different one) sees the case, asks what is in it,
>and is told, "my bassoon".  "Oh", quoth the agent, "Why is this ppaer
>marked that you came into our country with two clarinets, but you are
>leaving with a bassoon, without declaring your purchase?"
>What can go wrong, will go wrong.
Two stories, both absolutely true.  My wife entered Canada at the
Detroit-Windsor customs, carrying a recorder case with sopranino, soprano,
alto, and tenor all taken apart in their little cubbies.  The Canadian
customs agent wouldn't believe they were what she said they were until,
with a long line of people waiting behind her, she had put together and
PLAYED every one of them!

Which is topped by:  I was in the Air Force Band as a member of The Four
Saints, who toured with an excellent jazz combo called the Top Hats.  One
of the Top Hats was a great vibes player, and carried a set of Musser vibes
on tour all broken down into separate bags and boxes.  When we entered
Saudi Arabia at the Dahrahn Air Base, even though we were military
personnel, we had to go through Saudi customs, and we left him with the
stack of instruments to shepherd them through and get them delivered.  Good
thing it was his turn!  When the customs guys opened the box with the bars
in it and saw what appeared to be a bunch of gold bars wrapped up in black
velvet, they freaked out!  Again, he had to set it up and play for them
before they believed we weren't smuggling gold into the country!!

Agreed, what can go wrong, will go wrong.  Murphy's law, isn't it?


John & Susie Howell
Virginia Tech Department of Music
Blacksburg, Virginia, U.S.A. 24061-0240
Vox (540) 231-8411   Fax (540) 231-5034

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