[Dixielandjazz] Clarinet Mikes

LARRY'S Signs and Large Format Printing sign.guy at charter.net
Tue Nov 23 14:56:39 PST 2004

I wanted to add one more thing.  I didn't really like a mike attached to the
horn because you can't get away from it.  The only way you can vary volume
is by playing softer or louder.  Not always the best way.  I like to have
the option to get away from the mike too.
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "LARRY'S Signs and Large Format Printing" <sign.guy at charter.net>
To: "Steve barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>; "DJML"
<dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
Sent: Tuesday, November 23, 2004 3:53 PM
Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Clarinet Mikes

> Steve - It was probably one of those electret mikes from Radio shack.  I
> used one for my tenor but stopped using it because it 1. marred the finish
> and  2. the batteries were always down and they weren't particularly cheap
> but the mike (I had 2) really wasn't shabby.  Electret and condenser mikes
> are very high response mikes. (frequency range) and have the pre amp built
> in.  They are really cheap actually.  They use them for conferences I
> they call them tie clip mikes.  It's been years since I have bought one
> I will guess they are in the $19- $29 range.
> The problem with clarinet mikes is that they have to be really hot if you
> use them away from the end of the horn.  When I pick up my tenor it really
> screams any where near the clarinet mike.  Learning to use a mike is
> something of an art.  Watch singers move the mike in and out while they
> sing.  You have to do that too with horns.
> You might set the clarinet mike high and hold the horn more or less level
> play into it.  The audience will love it.  You know like the guy on the
> Zateran commercial.  Set a sax mike low.  The only problem I have with
> on Soprano is the horn is heavy and the neck strap doesn't lend its self
> that posture very well without an adjustment in length on the strap.  I
> probably need to get a more flexible strap.
> The way I set up the tenor mike is to eat the mike on solos and pull away
> when I'm not playing out.  This sounds very simple but I see guys standing
> three feet away from the mikes playing solos.  If you are gong to do that
> why bother?  Set it so you  have the volume you need at the loudest then
> back away or turn to the side for section work.  It's a bigger problem
> clarinet and somewhat for soprano sax.
> Some years ago Conn made a mike that you drilled a hole in the barrel
> and screwed in a special fitting that held the mike.  They were very good
> but I constantly got the cord tangled in the keys.  I didn't like being
> tethered with a very thin wire that seemed to always be in the way.  I
> think they make them anymore.  You also had a cap to close the hole if you
> weren't using the mike.
> Barcus Berry had made contact mike and it had the same problems as the
> mike but it sounded OK.  As I recall it needed a pre amp.
> to tell you the truth I like the Shure mikes that have been recommended
> Radio Shack has a knock off (I think it's made by Shure) that is pretty
> and not really expensive.
> Some years ago I was trying out speakers and there were two that I was
> interested in. One cost $100 more per cabinet and sounded better.  The
> was built more rugged but didn't sound  quite as good.  You could only
> the difference if they were played alternately in a good room side by
> The lesson is that if you want perfection it's expensive and the people
> there in the audience don't give a rip and can't tell the difference
> unless you tell them and put two mikes side by side.  So don't tell anyone
> and don't put them side by side.  Very easy to do.
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: "Steve barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>
> To: "DJML" <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
> Sent: Tuesday, November 23, 2004 11:13 AM
> Subject: [Dixielandjazz] Clarinet Mikes
> > Being relatively unsophisticated about mikes I offer the following 2
> cents.
> >
> > Mikes like the Shure 57 & 58 work fine. One way to make them work better
> is
> > to move the clarinet up and down to combat the problem Larry mentions
> > the pop you get on B, C and C#, which sound through the bell.
> >
> > If one doesn't have two mikes, one for the holes in the middle of the
> > and one for the bell, then one can move the instrument up and down
> depending
> > upon which notes are being played, so that the mike picks them up
> relatively
> > equally. Not as difficult as it sounds.
> >
> > However, I will never forget a concert I played in Warren PA (Upstate in
> the
> > boonies, south of Jamestown NY) at a beautifully restored theater,
> > about 600 or so. About 6 years ago.
> >
> > The sound man clipped a very small mike about midway up the mike stand,
> > was about the size of an ink pen cap. I have no idea what it was.
> >
> > The sound blew me away. Made me sound like a mixture of Kenny Davern,
> Buddy
> > DeFranco Tony Scott and Jimmie Giuffre. Clear, Crisp and very Mellow.
> > folks in the audience came up afterwards and said. "Wow, I have never
> heard
> > a clarinet sound like that before. Every note was so beautifully
> >
> > What was it? Who knows. Maybe Paul or others have an idea?
> >
> > Cheers,
> > Steve Barbone
> >
> >
> >
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