The best Selmer clarinet?

Hi Sherman

It is me again The Swede.
I have a couple of questions that you may consider.

1.Is the Selmer Series 9 “the Selmer”

2.What is your experience or opinion of the Conns from the 50´s and 60´s. I have seen 2 for sale,one is model 78 (built in 1967)and the other is NNN something from the 50´s. Somebody said that they were the “poor man´s Selmer 9.

3.I have this 10/10 that is fully restorated. I have not yet the correct mouthpiece but when I blow it ,it reasponds very well with a very nice tone in the low register.However I can´t get it to work with my right hand fingers (after the break) Maybe if I play very slowly.I wonder How can this be???

Sincerely

L K

Dear LK:
By “The Selmer, I take your meaning as THE selmer, the best, the classic. If I’m correct, I would answer NO, it is not the classic Selmer, the best or even second best. The best Selmer in my experience was the Centered Tone Selmer. This CT clarinet was a large scale production and was among the clarinets I played professionally, though I’ve tried many. It had a larger bore than the selmers of today, but not larger in the sense of being unable to control. Iused it to play in a professional symphony orchestra with great success. Currently and since the appearance of the Series 9, their bores are smaller, and I’m curently playing on a Selmer 10S, which was an improvement on the 10, which was a tuneful and pleasant instrument, though limited in its ability to play the long line with a good bit of color. The 10S had that ability, which probably means little. It was agood horn, though I found it to be small in sound and the 10S is capable of more breadth.

I have little to no experience with Conn clarinets, but I do know that the period of time to which you pertain was a good successful time for Conn and the clarinets were probably no exception. The Conn clarinet can be called anything. For specificity you would have to try the individual clarinet. Names can be called for anything, the”poor mans selmer 9” is nonsensical, meaningless, though pleasant sounding.

Te B and H 10/10 has an excellent reputation in the UK, but little here in the US. The main reason for this was the bore necessitated a special mouthpiece, with a matching larger bore for the clarinet. As I recall, the mouthpiece which matched that horn was a 923 or 926 B and H. At the point of buying a special mouthpiece, I lost interest.

As far as your not being able to play in the second register, that is a problem having to do with either your finger placement,or the clarinet being out of adjustment.

Good luck, and keep practicing.
sincerely, Sherman

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