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Date: Mon, 8 Jan 2001 17:41:57 -0700
From: Grant Green
Subject: Re: [CB] octobass clarinet

Fred said:
>Perhaps the answer is in the quantity of instruments they might sell.  As
>long as we only want to commission a single instrument, it might not be worth
>it to tool up.  However, a larger quantity, say five, might be enough to
>justify their effort.
>I can imagine that a single new instrument might cost over $50,000, while
>five might cost around $15,000 each if built in a single lot. The prospect of
>more orders may be the leverage needed to convince them to  use the prototype
>to generate interest.

I suspect that it would take quite a bit more to get Leblanc
interested in tooling up to make a run of octocontras.  Chip Owen at
Fox probably has the best insight as to what would be feasible or not
for a commercial operation.  I think LA Sax/Orsi has sold something
like 5 contrabass saxophones: I wonder what sort of market projection
Leblanc would require?

A sudden thought: why do we think that Lucien Calliet's octocontralto
was not made by Leblanc?  Didn't he work with Leblanc on their
contrabass and contra-alto design?


Grant Green
Professional Fool ->

From: "Tom Izzo"
Date: Mon, 8 Jan 2001 20:50:55 -0600
Subject: Re: [CB] octobass clarinet

> A sudden thought: why do we think that Lucien Calliet's octocontralto
> was not made by Leblanc?  Didn't he work with Leblanc on their
> contrabass and contra-alto design?

Yes he did. I thought it was a G Leblanc, but as primarily a Brass plasyer,
the memory banks may have slipped over time (mine, not his).



Date: Tue, 09 Jan 2001 10:30:14 -0800
From: Dave Richoux
Subject: [CB] Musician's HAI-KUS   humor  (R Rated)

Hi all

got these from another list and thought you might like them.

Dave Richoux

As posted by Ian Wallace to his DGM diary.  (Ian Wallace is now a
Nashville session drummer;  he was the drummer for King Crimson
circa '71 and later a member of Bob Dylan's band.)

Musician's HAI-KUS

            Money's everything
            Playing any gig that comes
            Whores, we are all whores

            Squeaking and squawking
            All eyes roll to the heavens
            The clarinet speaks

            One beat to change from
            Harmon to cup to bucket
            Hey, who wrote this sh*t?

            The jam session starts
            Somebody calls "Giant Steps"
            Cold fear grips my brain

            Here comes the high note
            The lead trumpeter puckers
            Clam, clam, Crap!, clam, Sh*t!

            Here's the girl singer
            Stepping to the microphone
            Pitch, Time, All gone now

            Gig is going well
            A##hole requests "In the Mood"
            I look at my watch

            I once had a dream
            Big house, new car, big money
            Now I play the bass

            Gorgeous chick tells me
            "You sound just like Kenny G"
            My ego shatters

            Three-eight, eleven-eight
            F%$k you Andrew Lloyd Webber
            Five-eight, seven-eight

            The woodwind doubler
            Practicing the piccolo
            Frustration defined

            Trane, Prez, Bird, Brecker
            Giants of the saxophone
            Eat sh*t Kenny G

            Pit orchestra gig
            Days and nights become as one
            I have no damned life

            Bad intonation
            Strings are sharp and reeds are flat
            Brass too loud again

            Great changes, good groove
            A one-in-a-million gig
            No singer. Yippee!

            An oxymoron:
            "He played the accordion
            With delicacy"

            The accordion
            "Squeeze box," yes, but more often
            "The Stomach Steinway"

            Bassoons forever
            Try in vain not to sound like
            A farting bedpost

            The strings slowly tune
            When they're done the unisons
            Are anything but

            "I can't find my note"
            Bemoans the confused singer
            "Quit now," we all pray

            The contractor calls
            Months of Andrew Lloyd Webber
            "Bird Lives" no longer


Date: Tue, 9 Jan 2001 14:47:58 -0800 (PST)
From: Charles King
Subject: [CB] Contra gig in Chicago, et al.

Hey, I just saw the following blurb in the Chicago
Reader about a show by the Rosenberg Skrontet tomorrow
night, January 10, at the Empty Bottle in Chicago:

"A relatively recent transplant from San Francisco,
reedist Scott Rosenberg spent most of 2000 busting his
ass on behalf of a new generation of Chicago
workaholic improvisers. On top of his own prolific
work -- composing as well as playing -- he operates a
small label, Barely Auditable, and a very small venue,
Brick House. He's best known around here for
small-group or solo work -- Barely Auditable just
released his duets record with Anthony Braxton,
Compositions/Improvisations 2000 -- but his newest
project, the Skronktet, is a quintet with himself on
woodwinds, Jerry Bryerton and Steve Butters on
percussion, Kyle Bruckmann (whose solo debut came out
on Barely Auditable last year) on oboe and English
horn, and violinist Jenn Claire Paulsen. Like Braxton,
Rosenberg aims to erase the increasingly faint line
between jazz and experimental music; these players,
who are well versed in 20th-century classical, should
be game for the challenge."

I'm passing this on to the list because the picture
accompanying this blurb shows Rosenberg behind what I
assume is a big Leblanc paperclip contra.  That's
enough to get me out for the show!  You can check out
the picture for yourself at

And, as long as I'm here, for what it's worth, I would
be willing to participate in the big instrument
foundation if it gets going.  Commissioning a new
octocontra might be a bit ambitious (although I fully
support that goal!) but getting a new mouthpiece made
for the Harvard monster tuba certainly sounds do-able.

When I discovered, I went through and
read all the archives in chronological order, and so I
know that people have been pestering Leblanc about the
octocontras for a while now.  I can see how they might
not be a big priority for the current management, but
I would think that someone there must know something
about them, and given the consistency of inquiries
just from people on this list, the company's continued
dismissal of the big horns is a little puzzling.  Oh
well--at least, being metal, as long as they still
exist they are subject to refurbishment.  Hopefully
someday somebody with a little vision will wind up in
a position at Leblanc to do something with the old

Happy New Year,

Chuck King

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