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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 7:08 am 
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And thank you all for the opportunity to use the word "bandy" in a sentence. I can say "unique" several hundred inappropriate times per day, but "bandy" is a unique term rarely used in polite conversation.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 7:39 am 
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pancelticpiper wrote:
I think of Princess Bride: "your friend is mostly dead..."

Now you've offended all the zombies on the forum by denying the existence of the "living dead". All those members of the Order of Zombies (they seem to call themselves OZ-zies) will be justifiably outraged. :really:

Best wishes.

Steve

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:18 am 
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I don't mean to derail this thread :wink: but since I'm now beholden to the vagaries of the postal service as I anxiously await the arrival of an Alba low D and am looking for an outlet for my excitement, I thought I'd post a very long sentence letting you know that I've just ordered the aforementioned Alba from Big Whistle after reading some of pancelticpiper's comments in this thread.

I've been going round and round on what to get, and the Alba seemed to tick the boxes--tone, intonation, price, and even looks. The best part is that it'll be here in time for a big (as in long--3 hour) St. Paddy's gig my band is playing.

This will be my first low D. Despite decades of flute and (high) whistle playing, I haven't played very many low whistles (possibly due to flute snobbery... :oops: ). But a year ago, I decided to end my 25 year run with the flute in favor of other musical pursuits (bass guitar, to be specific). I've been enjoying still playing the whistle, but I've missed the lower octave, hence the low D. So I'm excited for its arrival!


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:42 am 
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Byll wrote:
I find that the brass Viper has a quality I have not heard anywhere else. it is not a complex a sound like the Goldie or MK... It mimics a human tenor voice quite well

Despite having an essentially soprano range? (You'd need a bass D whistle, bass flute, great bass recorder etc. to give you true tenor range in the flute family, but no low flute will give you tenor-voice-like timbre or projection.)

david_h wrote:
I take your point pancelticpiper, but byll was drawing a comparison between the tone of a specific type of whistle and specific style of human voice.

Which (as explained above) I find the strangest comparison. But then I'd also argue that instruments generally sound like instruments and voices like voices!

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:25 pm 
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Peter Duggan wrote:
Despite having an essentially soprano range? (You'd need a bass D whistle, bass flute, great bass recorder etc. to give you true tenor range in the flute family, but no low flute will give you tenor-voice-like timbre or projection.)
That may depend on ones sense of 'octave equivalence' versus response to timbre. I attempt to sing tenor but if being taught a song by a woman usually prefer it if she sings the octave higher because it seems easier for me to make matching sounds. Unless she has a really strong tenor voice.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:57 pm 
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david_h wrote:
I attempt to sing tenor but if being taught a song by a woman usually prefer it if she sings the octave higher because it seems easier for me to make matching sounds.

But that's different from 'mimicking' the tenor voice, as Byll claimed for the Viper.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:58 pm 
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Peter Duggan wrote:
But that's different from 'mimicking' the tenor voice, as Byll claimed for the Viper.

Byll wrote:
it is not a complex a sound like the Goldie or MK...
I read that as a reference to timbre and so if not taking the pitch as a critcial part of the mimicry then I still think it makes sense.

At least, I think I understand was Byll was intending to convey. I think he was meaning, specifically, the timbral characterstics a male tenor voice. I guess its to do with physiology - moving the pitch into another range (e.g. one singer generating a set of choral parts for a choir to learn from by ear) always sounds odd.

Not a big deal though. And going back to pancelticpiper's point - the violin as the most vocal instrument. Surely not!


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:58 pm 
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Per the OP. I would first ask you whether you want a tunable or non-tunable whistle? Based on your criteria, I would guess you prefer a non-tunable whistle, however Burkes are all tunable. Tunable whistles can certainly be adjusted to suit your needs, per tuning and intonation, but non-tunable, or fixed whistles also have advantages.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 6:18 pm 
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Hi Nicx66, Definitely tunable.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:29 am 
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Tuneable vs non depends a bit your playing context. Non-tuneable offers better bang for the buck, and it's fine if you're playing alone or with other tuneable instruments. But if you play with non-tuneable instruments, a tuning slide might come in handy. Also, if you play in a colder or warmer than usual setting, a tuning slide could be helpful.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 10:06 am 
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foxmusician wrote:
one could also bandy about words like "irrelevant," "obtuse," and "disingenuous"


Not to mention pedantic and potentially annoying. Sorry to say, I'm an annoying pedant. (Is there such a thing as an un-annoying pedant?)

I'll admit to "irrelevant" and "obtuse" but I try not to be disingenuous.

Anyhow I don't think one can make a comparison between any musical instrument and any human voice that would be accepted by most people.

I will say that oftentimes at studio gigs when I'm laying down an uilleann track on a thing with vocals, particularly female vocals, I try to not "step on" the vocal track, and avoid playing unisons with the singer. The range and timbre are close enough to make it an issue. I'm sure sax and clarinet players face the same thing.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 10:17 am 
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tin tin wrote:
I've just ordered the aforementioned Alba from Big Whistle after reading some of pancelticpiper's comments...


Just to me clear, I've not played an Alba Low D.

My first Alba was a Bass A and it's fantastic. Next I got a Low C and though it's a great player the note equivalent to High B is a bit on the stiff side. The same tubing was used for the Bass A and Low C, and I suspect I'd like the way the Low C would play if a slightly narrower tube were used. It's really big tubing!

I'm curious to find out what the ID of the Low D tubing is. I'm guessing that it has a rather smaller ID than my Low C. Many makers' Low Cs are just stretched Low Ds, pretty much.

Most makers run into that issue. I think Burke uses a dedicated tubing for each size, which is why they all play so much alike.

But most makers use fewer tubing sizes than they have whistle sizes, meaning that some might have a bore-to-length ratio that's too wide, or too narrow. I've seen Susato Mezzo A whistles with three different bore sizes.

(Of course what's "too wide" and "too narrow" is a matter of personal taste, and it's a balancing act between the power of the lowest notes and the sweetness of the 2nd octave especially High B.)

Anyhow I'm anxious to hear about your Alba Low D.

What both of my Albas have is exceptionally easy finger-spacing. It will be interesting to see if that carries over to their Low D.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2017 2:35 pm 
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pancelticpiper wrote:
tin tin wrote:
I've just ordered the aforementioned Alba from Big Whistle after reading some of pancelticpiper's comments...

Just to me clear, I've not played an Alba Low D. ... Anyhow I'm anxious to hear about your Alba Low D.

Right! My hope is that the characteristics of your low A (and C) carry over to some degree or another. When I got my shipping notice, Phil at Big Whistle commented that it's a nice player...I'll report back once it's arrived in the next couple of weeks. Maybe it's time for a fresh review or two--some of the existing ones I found are a bit long in the tooth, and it seems Alba's designs have changed over time.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 7:25 am 
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tin tin wrote:
I don't mean to derail this thread :wink: but since I'm now beholden to the vagaries of the postal service as I anxiously await the arrival of an Alba low D and am looking for an outlet for my excitement, I thought I'd post a very long sentence letting you know that I've just ordered the aforementioned Alba from Big Whistle after reading some of pancelticpiper's comments in this thread.

I've been going round and round on what to get, and the Alba seemed to tick the boxes--tone, intonation, price, and even looks. The best part is that it'll be here in time for a big (as in long--3 hour) St. Paddy's gig my band is playing.

This will be my first low D. Despite decades of flute and (high) whistle playing, I haven't played very many low whistles (possibly due to flute snobbery... :oops: ). But a year ago, I decided to end my 25 year run with the flute in favor of other musical pursuits (bass guitar, to be specific). I've been enjoying still playing the whistle, but I've missed the lower octave, hence the low D. So I'm excited for its arrival!


So Tin tin, how did it work out? I hope well, but please let us know!


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 1:11 pm 
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It's a dandy! viewtopic.php?f=1&t=104327


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