A ” C Clarinet ” – how better to start 2008 !

In my YouTube travels I came across the curiously named Klezmer All Star Clarinet Gang – all very competent well-seasoned professional musicians, and coming together to play a mix of klezmer, classical, jazz etc. The main website has links to all their individual pages. ** Click on this link for “The Clarinet Gang” if you want a larger picture and all the other YouTube options, or if the embedded YouTube picture link to the right of this text doesn’t show or work.** >>>

The featured number spotlights Helmut Eisel playing an Albert System C Clarinet on “The Clarinet Gang” – listening to the clarity and presence you can see why the combination of ‘C’ and the fruitiness of older Albert System clari’s pays off. Naturally most of the sound is from the player, but what a combination !

Plenty more on YouTube from the same band, a couple of my other favourites are King Waldemar, and the very gentle Naftule’s Leave. Some deliciously understated bass clarinet from Michal Beit Halachmi, and I’m still not sure whether David Orlowsky,the clarinettist on the left, plays a ‘C’ as well ? Maybe not… Listen to all three numbers, and I defy you not to be amazed – made the hairs on the back of my neck tingle…

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11 Responses to A ” C Clarinet ” – how better to start 2008 !

  1. ukebert says:

    Absolutely fantastic Alan 😀

    On to my favourite playlist methinks…

  2. Lewis Pelham says:

    Superb…what colour & technique
    Clever also to pitch it up against the mandolin…presumably to shew the inadequacy of the latter, even when played well, or as well as the instrument will allow..

  3. al says:

    He does have a BIG sound, the extra clarity and brightness of the ‘C’ combines with the Hhalls natural echo to give great presence. For small Klezmer bands/groups, there usually either has to be a stringed instrument or an accordian for the chords, so I guess that one (is it a mandolin ?) isn’t a bad choice.

  4. Lewis Pelham says:

    Alan.
    That has to be the apotheosis of the invidious choice…”mandolin or accordion”? Hmmmm
    Seems to work though.

  5. ukebert says:

    Hmm, the scale looks a little long for a normal mando, but it’s certainly one of the family.,

    I still don’t get your objection Lewis :p

  6. Lewis Pelham says:

    Owen.
    Just listen to it; just a monotonous, colourless clanging. There seems to be so little that can be done with it…just a rather pretty rhythm instrument…in my view anyway.
    It is played however, by charming people such as you.

  7. al says:

    Seems it is a mandolin, from the players website. There’ll be a picture of it on the right, in just a short while. FTP isn’t set-up properly from this new PC, so I’ll fire the trusty old steam-driven laptop up shortly – why is it that as technology improves, there always seems to be more effort involved doing what came easy on the old machine, albeit much slower ? Sigh. 😦 There you go, one picture, abracadbra !

    At the risk of fanning the flames of controversy, I quite like the sound of his mandolin, as far as ‘ethnic’ sounds go…

  8. ukebert says:

    Actually I do not play the mandolin, I play the ukulele. I have several friends who do though. I like it, although I can see why others may not 😉

  9. Lewis Pelham says:

    Ukebert.
    We all have our preferences and our dislikes. Absolutely natural & healthy.
    I am reminded of the Bishop of Worcester, who, as recently as 1947, refused to have “the profane voice of the saxophone” in his cathedral.
    Great, give that profanity unto me! In fact, it makes me love the sound of the sax. even more.

  10. soybean says:

    You guys haven’t heard a really good mandolin player. this guy sounds like an intermediate/student type player.

  11. ukebert says:

    For a rhythm mandolinist believe me he isn’t that bad. I’ve heard an awful lot worse.

    Simon Mayor is my favourite player at the moment.

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