Contrabass Digest

To subscribe or unsubscribe, email



Date: Mon, 25 Feb 2002 16:34:32 -0800
From: Grant Green
Subject: Re: [CB] tuba power

> While tuba players can only choose between
> C, Bb,G,F,EbCC,BBb,EEb with 1, 3, 4, 5, or 7 valves and sizes
>3/4 - 6/4.
> Something north of 100 choices.

This is exactly the point: there are many more choices available to
the tuba player (or even the trombone player) who wants to facilitate
his or her low register.  You can get an instrument in a lower key,
or with a wider bore, or with extra valves to extend the range
downward, or a combination of the above.  Same for trombones: you can
get wider bores (e.g., bass bone), extra valves (triggers), and even
lower keys (contrabass bone, cimbasso).  And while horn players have
a couple of options for going *up*, there is no option for the horn
player who wants to improve their lower register (other than
practice).  I have to guess that most horn music doesn't require the
bottom register, or that all of those old pre-tuba pre-valve baroque
horn parts have been rearranged for tuba.

>Or maybe we need an axillary wind source with lip control, the old tube in the
>corner of the mouth.  Which runs a danger of messing up you lungs if you
>do not keep the throat locked closed!

I foresee a future full of nosebleeds and burst eardrums...  Perhaps
we need a MIDI-controlled compressor-powered automatic tuba, played
using an EVI (electronic valve instrument) controller.


Grant Green
Sarrusophones, contrabass reeds, &
other brobdignagian acoustic exotica   

Date: Mon, 25 Feb 2002 16:38:16 -0800
From: Grant Green
Subject: Re: [CB] I guess nobody makes a "5/4" F horn for playing

> >I just wondered
> >if anyone bothers to extend or improve the low range of the horn.
> >Other than Roger Bobo, of course ;-)
>Grant, isn't that called a "Wagner Tuba"?

 From what I've heard, I think horn players would disagree.  I thought
they were developed to provide a distinct "non-horn" timbre, although
I couldn't say why they were designed to be played by horn players.
I've never played one myself: is it easier to hit the lower range on
the F WT?


Grant Green
Sarrusophones, contrabass reeds, &
other brobdignagian acoustic exotica   
***End of Contrabass Digest***

Next Digest ->
Previous Digest <-