Legere revisited, for Dave and Carol

Dear Mr. Sherman
I was wondering if you have any experience
with the “legere” clarinet reeds, and if so, what your opinion is of them? I have been trying them for the past year or so, using them for practicing and find that they seem to work well with my setup. Although they took a while to get used to, they seem to play very similar to a V12 Vandoren reed, although they seem somewhat
freer blowing in the lower register, and produce a focused sound quite easily.
I was wondering what your thoughts of these reeds might be? I know they are not a replacement for a good cane reed, but they do give one the
opportunity to play on a reed that lays flat on the mouthpiece facing and stays open, seeming to make it easier to pick a good cane reed.
——————————————————————— Here is another note from another clarinetist:

What do you think of plastic reeds? I like the consistency and ease of play. I find my sound doesn’t “dip” as I tire as much as it does with a wood reed but I’m beginning to feel like I’m cheating myself a bit. I’m not sure if I’m ready to go back to hunting and pecking for a good wood reed that I need to dump soon after I have it just right because it’s had it.


Hi Dave and Carol:
I have had many experiences playing with and on Legere Reeds.ou should look in the index of the site under Legere and you will find a longish article I wrote last year relating the results of a 4 month test of Legere Reeds.
My feelings at the time were not very positive at all,but you should read that article for youself.
As far as the present is concerned I am playing on Legere reeds and finding no difference between the synthetic, (which sounds better than UGH, plastic). That is right no difference.
When I started my survey, I was playing number 2, 3/4 regular cut on a Van Doren M13 mouthpiece and I found the results quite good, however it was at the time necessary to get “used to” them. I then was sent a number of different cuts, some good, some sort of, a few not good at all. I then moved to Quebec cut Legere, # 3 and I started changing mouthpieces with many different results, none really good, or rather assuring. I did not feel as if I could play on this reed in performance.After several months I went back to cane, with very good results, specifically the Gonzalez FOF, and Zonda, both #3 both with good results.
Then I came across an old Gennusa mouthpiece, one that produced what I call, a darker quality of sound, not as bright or trebly as the Van Doren. I began tryig the Gennusa every few days, liking what I was getting.
Then I sent this mouthpiece to Ben Redwine, current pwner and distributor
the Gennusa mouthpiece. He is a very good mouthpiece maker, and he copied the mouthpiece I had sent him, and, though I have tried others, I keep coming back to Bens mouthpiecew, the one he copied for me from the one I had inadvertantly found.
Just a few days or a week ago, I gathered up my Legeres for filing in the round file.
Prior to extermination, I tried a few and was shaken. Why? Because they, (especially the older Legeres, (pre Quebec cut) played like cane, no problems, intune, all ranges, dynamics, everything I want in a reed.
That is where I am now. I have a hard time believing it, but must recommend this Ben Redwine Gennusa mouthpiece for your consideration and Legere reeds as well.
I wouldn’t have believed it, but I think what I want to leave you with is just play the things; don’t get used to anything. Only one thing, or rather
2. Get the right strength, and yes , it is possible that you may have to change your mouthpiece.
I did, and am very happy, and recooment these reeds .
I also want to suggest tat you go to Richards Hawkind website. He is an excellent clarinetist, makes prisitne mouthpieces and has a number of playing examples on his site. The kind of music I play, Brahms, Stravinsky, etc. All of the examples were played on Legere reeds.
That is about as much as I can say. Go with these reeds. They are the future for the clarinet reed. They just play too well.
It is my understanding that Mr. Hawkins has workd with them at Legere in developing the Quebec cut, and further that he will be going to work with them again at the end of May.
Good luck, and play well.

Sherman Friedland

>This update is written after trying the new Forestone reed for 5 days. It is the best synthetic reed I have played , bar none, including Legere, which requires all kinds of changes prior to getting the right cut, the right strength and then, tthe right mouthpiece. The Forestone requires really none of the above and plays like cane on your mouthpiece with no changes of anything , save the reed itself.May 23, 2009.



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