Dear Mr Friedland,
I discovered your site recently and have found it a great source of knowledge. I am a 50 yo beginner (returning after a 30 year break). I bought a used Buffet B12 and and eagerly working my way through my old ‘Learn as you play’ I’m using Van Doren reeds (2) and the mouthpiece that came with the Clarinet.
I have a couple of questions. Firstly, I’ve been having a lot of trouble with a drying mouth. I’ve been finding that after playing for about 15 mins my mouth becomes so dry that I can’t tongue or even blow. I have to keep taking sips of water in order to continue practice. Secondly, I have a full upper denture which sometimes ‘drops’ due to the pressure I am asserting on the mouthpiece. I can’t help but to think that I am just not holding the piece in my mouth correctly. Basically, I try to hold it in such a way that I get a clean as possible tone. This also brings me to my third question. When I purchased the clarinet I also bought a new mouthpiece. It is also a Buffet but it has different numbers on it. It indicates F3A 125 whilst the original indicates W.S -B 440 P.165 116 What do these
Perhaps the best idea is to keep your chin pointed down, which seems to give one a better picture.
The dry mouth may be due to medication, or it could be the denture and the stuff you use to keep it firm.
I must tell you a true story, used to bother me no end.
I was on a pill that took away water, part of another failed diet plan. It used to make me so dry as to be extremely troublesome during concerts when the adrenaline or whatever makes for dry mouth anyway. So, finally I stopped taking the pill prior to a concert and then for all tiem.
You are most probably playing on a terrible mouthpiece. Those Buffets are or can be treacherously bad.
You can get a reaonably priced mouthpiece that will give you good results, much better than the Buffet: a Van Doren, probably an M13 which is free blowing and intune.
Despite what you hear or may read,ligatures have very little if anything to do with the sound you make. What you hear and read is all advertising which will cost you a bundle for no good reason.
As far as playing is concerned a dental appliance of any kind necessitates some kind of embouchure adjustment, and adjustment you must make.
A teacher could help. but still it is a change because it is you who is doing the p[laying.
I could help, but not without hearing and seeing you play.
so good luck. I hope I have been of some help.