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Unauthorized Leaks: the Sneaky and the Wacki-Leaks

One of the most frustrating elements of bassoon playing is the mysterious leakage of air along the 8-foot long bore of the bassoon. Finding these leaks is critical to making your playing predictable be it pianissimo or fortissimo playing, not to mention playing in tune. Leaks in the instrument are by far the biggest problem […]

Arundo Donax

The scientific name for reed cane is Arundo donax L. and commonly known as Giant Reed plant. It is found on all continents and has two distinct varieties. One variety is called Arundo donax Variegata, which is not suitable for reed cane. It is my opinion that there is some genetic variation between plants worldwide. […]

Bassoon Reed Tuning Basics

What are the basics of tuning a bassoon reed? In the simplest terms you manipulate the length, strength, tip opening and tapers of the reed blade. Adjustments of the reed will affect the tuning not only of individual notes but of entire registers and their pitch and response. Another element that effects tuning is how […]

Harvesting and curing Arundo donax for reed cane

Harvesting of reed cane takes place in the wild in many places in the world. Here’s some information and advice for a good harvest that I gave to David Richmond. I did a research project on my own about when to harvest cane after reading in the IDRS that cane is harvested by the moon […]

Electric Bassoon Power

Subject: Electric Amplified Bassoon Setup Dear Mr. Eubanks, I’m sure you’ve gotten this question many times since the release of the second Bassoon Brothers CD, but exactly what kind of setup did you use to produce the electric amplified bassoon effects? I’m really interested in exploring what more can be done with the unique and ultimately verstile instrument (not to mention […]

Miking the Bassoon

Here’s my question: Do you ever use a PA system? And if so, what do you do about microphones? I’m playing in an electrified band (lots of guitars, full drum set, etc.) At present, I’m amplifying my bassoon with a voice mike on a stand, aimed near the top of the boot joint. Someone told me once, years ago, about […]

How many reeds?

Dear S, To answer your question about how many reeds should Daniel have? The reed issue is what our lives as bassoonists is about. The reeds change with the weather and the season and can break if dropped or bumped and crack for no obvious reason. Therefore, one can never have too many reeds. You […]

My Notes Pop Down

Hi. I just recently started playing bassoon this past summer and I have a problem with my notes popping down when I’m not using the whisper key…what’s my problem? Answer: Unstable notes in the second octave is one of the most frustrating problems for beginning bassoonists. Let’s say that is not an easy thing to […]

Buying a Bassoon Reed?

A Guide for the Beginning Player, Parents and Band Directors Warning: Bassoon reeds are fragile, frustrating and expensive. For anyone contemplating taking up the bassoon be aware that it’s going to be more costly than playing sax or clarinet, and for the majority of you, the reeds will be frustrating. Why? Because if you don’t […]