This blog is written based on the assumption that you’re a beginner. Or a slightly baffled parent who has Woodwind playing offspring.
If neither of these descriptions fit you then you likely know more on this topic than me and I suggest you don’t read this blog. This is a basic – basic – look over reeds and who needs what. At a basic level. Hence the whole ‘for Dummies.’
Reeds are predominately used by those who play the Saxophone, Clarinet and variations there upon. Some instruments, like the Oboe and Bassoon, even use Double Reeds. But that’s another kettle of fish. You’ll have to look elsewhere for information on those strange things.
Oh look, you can find more information here.
Now, back to this blog. The strength tells us about the depth of the Reed. Thick Reeds (higher strengths) create a better tone but are more difficult to produce a sound with. As such, most beginners are better starting with a thinner, lower strength Reed and working their way up.
Here at Normans we think a inexpensive, 1 1/2 strength Reed is a good place to start. In an ideal world you would use a traditional Cane Reed. However – for some younger players – a Plastic Reed lasts far better. This being said, a Plastic Reed really kicks down the quality of the sound. We are not convinced they are the miracle cure all they present themselves as…
Our Beginner Reeds Recommendations are:
If you’re feeling fancy there is always the Rico Royal Collection to have a look at, not to forget the ever popular Vandoren Range. However, it is worth noting that Vandoren Reeds tend to be thinner than their Rico counter parts.
Think you’ve got you’re head around it all? If you want more technical reed, (get it?) we suggest you check out Kerrys Blog: