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 Post subject: Piccolo
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 4:30 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 05, 2014 5:19 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada
Looking into getting a piccolo, but I have a lot of questions.

I currently play Highland Pipes, flute, and whistle.

A lot of what I've read suggests that a piccolo can be harsh, shrill (and other pejorative terms). Some of the whistles I have fit that description. I am hoping to find a piccolo that has the sound quality of a whistle like a tweaked blackbird.

I am most likely to play in the low register. Are there piccolos that have a strong low register?

Other articles say that a fife or piccolo will overpower other instruments, as well as field artillery. Is that necessarily true?

It seems like a conical bore is important. I would love to get one of Terry McGee's, but, sadly, I can't afford to take that plunge.

From what I have read, there are a lot of piccolo, fife, and flute players in the world. What advice do you have for one who just wants to have some fun with yet another instrument, and play some Irish Traditional Music?

Thanks to all/


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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 6:17 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2003 12:27 pm
Posts: 1458
Location: Kingston WA
Check out the Requintas from Galicia. These are played an octave above the Gaitas in Bb and C and are lots of fun. Here are some examples of music:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9j1GM77oF9E

These flutes are in F and G. You can find antique F flutes that would work an octave above your Highland pipes for a similar effect. Look for the narrower bore French or German ones, since you are pushing up to the 4th and 5th in the 3rd register. The English ones will do this but are a bit more work. However, these also are great in the 1st octaves.

Casey

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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 6:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 12, 2004 4:12 pm
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Location: Malua Bay, on the NSW Nature Coast
Any good with your hands, davidbruce, or have some clever friends? While a conical bore is desirable for the best results, you can have a lot of fun with a simple piccolo made from cylindrical tubing. I haven't explored it, but sites like https://www.instructables.com/id/Making ... VC-Flutes/ might get you going.


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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 9:11 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2002 6:00 pm
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Location: Los Angeles
Would Peter Worrel's piccolos fit within your budget?

http://www.peterworrell.co.uk/simplesystempiccolo.htm

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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2020 10:45 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 29, 2012 11:50 pm
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I was lucky to get an amazing deal on a second hand piccolo made by some character named 'Jem the Flute.' If you see that one becomes available you should definitely grab it!

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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 12:43 am 
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I was inspired by a cassette of John Doonan called John Doonan At the Feis. I don't think his playing was shrill. I do believe he was playing a simple system piccolo in D. But I may be wrong. It is available on Amazon music for less than 10 dollars. But if you are curious what a master can do before you commit, listening to the samples will give you a treat.

Sometimes a nice 6 key antique will turn up at The Irish Flute store.


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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Tue May 26, 2020 1:35 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 14, 2017 5:47 am
Posts: 844
Location: Surrey/Hants border, England
Tony Dixon brass piccolo. :thumbsup:

(Great player, & not very expensive.)

Or, if you want to spend a bit more, Tony Dixon Duo in aluminium, slightly more mellow sound.

(Even their ABS piccolo plays well & sounds great.)

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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2020 7:12 am 
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Joined: Sun May 01, 2016 6:54 am
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Location: Bischberg/Bavaria/Germany
How about a "Miller Browne" marching flute in B flat? They even make them fully keyed for very reasonable prices.


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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Thu May 28, 2020 1:02 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 05, 2005 9:58 am
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Location: Vancouver, BC
I have a keyless piccolo from Peter Worrell that I treat like a flute, not a fife (never go into third octave). It isn't too loud or too shrill, and fellow musos tell me they like it better than a whistle in both octaves. Like all the smaller flutes, it demands a very good embouchure, so I play it from time to time when I think my embouchure needs a tune-up.

Hugh

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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Fri Jun 05, 2020 7:48 am 
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Joined: Sun Jan 05, 2014 5:19 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada
Thanks, everyone for the great information. Now I have a much clearer idea as to what I am looking
for.


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 Post subject: Re: Piccolo
PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2020 7:21 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 23, 2012 7:42 pm
Posts: 285
Location: QC Philippines
Hi,

I got a piccolo in D by Jem Hammond.

It is great. With embouchure control you can reach the first 4 notes of the 3rd octave making its playable range 2 and a half octave.

Ive ask him to make me in C,B and C# since 2016 and make it tunnable, but he is still busy. :lol:

As per the shrillness, its really with the embouchure.
I can make the low notes loud and high notes soft depending on my air stream and lip formations.

This is kinda opposite of Whistle.
I find the Flute much easier than the low whistle but
I find the Tin whistle easier than the Piccolo by a higher degree.

I frequently use it instead of my Tin Whistle.

If you've been playing the piccolo, you'll be surprise to see that it will make your flute playing easier.

Its like playing flute with weights. I can feel more muscle usage in my cheeks, chin and and lips when I play the piccolo.

Regards,

Angel

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