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PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2001 2:11 pm 
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I was wondering if there are any flutes out there that are generally known to be easier to play than others? What I mean by easier to play is not the fingering so much as easy to fill and easy to change octaves. I am learning on a Olwell D and am unable to consistantly hit the upper octave without buzzing or playing both octaves at once. The two flutes I am mainly interested in are Peter Noy's and Coply's.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 26, 2001 4:26 pm 
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Location: Boston, MA.
Of all the flutes I've played - Grinter, Hoza, Healy, Copley, M&E, Dixon 2 piece, Olwell cane - The Copley has been the easiest to play. I've never seen one of Peter Noy's flutes, so I can't comment on that one.

Cheers,

Loren


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2001 8:37 pm 
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It may be that your difficulty in getting the upper octave is just part of the process of learning and developing your embouchure, which can take quite a while. To try to narrow down whether the flute is causing problems, I'd suggest that if possible you get together with another flute player and another flute. By playing eachother's instrument you should be able to shed some light on what is going on.

I would also check the flute out well for air leaks and any other possible problems before thinking about replacing it.

Dave Copley


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2001 8:59 pm 
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I'll wholeheartedly agree with David's statement about embouchure. As a fifer originally, my upper registers were never a problem when I flipped strictly to a wood flute.
Then again, the original question about ease of tone is interesting. Many of today's makers -- correct me if I'm wrong, David -- pay lots more attention to the bottom 1-1/2 octaves for power and tone than the upper reaches of the flute's capability. I'd expect mostly because the flute tunes in Irish/Celtic music stay in that range most of the time and, because of influential players such as Molloy, the strong loud bottom D is a desired element.
Now, strictly for those wanting a pure and easy upper register in the D''' area and above, then it's hard to compete, vintage flute wise, with the German flutes of the day. Their bores are smaller and their upper sounds easier to generate. That's why the Cuban players of Charanga music love those flutes so much more.
Many good Rudalls and Clementi flutes of the day could do it well, but somehow for ease of tone -- not volume -- the German flutes are really standouts.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2001 11:41 pm 
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I went ahead and ordered the Copley flute and look forward to recieving it in 5 months.

I don't expect to be Matt Molloy anytime soon but I think it will be easier to play than my Left-Handed Olwell that I'm playing Right-Handed.

There is no doubt that my playing and embouchure are mostly to blame and I've been working on those. My flute instructor told me I should get another flute that for one was Right-Handed and one that I can be more committed too. He suggested a Healy or Peter Noy.

I decided to go with the Copley based on the positive feedback on this forum and on the woodenflute list.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2001 4:59 am 
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I have to try Dave Copely's flutes! Why? Because I'm a maniac mostly, and I hate when people rave about a flute find that I haven't tried. Never heard one bad comment about a Copely flute. You probably are on the right track with this one! Dave, can you send me one to review for you? :smile:

I've been advised not to tell people about Peter Noy's flutes--I think this guy is flutedom's best kept secret. The epitome of humility. His flutes blew me away, especially the one with the modern headjoint. I was just about to order a 6 key flute from him when I...let's say, encountered a Rudall that also blew me away.

Easy to play? The Noy plays you, even in the upper octave. To my embouchure, the Noy plays like a McGee (I've only played one McGee, so my sample is limited), but better. And the craftsmanship is among the best I've seen.

Very pure tone, if that's what your after, but maybe not as complex a tone that perhaps age brings to the flute. But play it for 50 years, then you'll know.

Just an opinion, of course.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2001 8:15 am 
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Interesting comments from David Migoya about flutes made to have a strong low end, and the effect of this on the higher parts of the range. This is one facet of the many constraints that affect flute design - what aspects are most important, and what trade-offs should be made to achieve them? I agree that there is over-emphasis on getting a strong low D on some flutes, and the trade-off is a slowness of response and lack of clarity in the second octave A and higher notes.

Keeping in mind that this is largely a matter of taste and personal opinion, I think that the ideal flute for Irish music should play well over the range from low D to third octave D (2 octaves plus one tone), and that this can be done at very minor cost to the strength of the low D. As David points out, if you want the instrument to play well up into the third octave, there will definitely be some sacrifices to be made at the low end, but this may well be the best type of instrument for someone who wants to play orchestral or other types of music.

Dave Copley

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: dcopley on 2001-11-29 09:16 ]</font>


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2001 9:55 am 
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Currently I only know a handfull of tunes. I am working on Boys of the Blue Hill and I must say if you can't control the second octave than your only playing half a song. On the flute I have I'll be lucky to get thru that tune once since I'm about passed out after playing the second half. :eek:


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2001 2:19 pm 
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Craig McC writes he is learning The Boys From Bluehill,..... That will give you ability to jump in and out of the second octave a good test.

Now, let me suggest, Craig, that you follow it with "Paddy Kelley's Stump", another real "jumper" of a hornpipe that will make a perfect medley addition to "The Boys From Blue Hill".

Mal


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2001 3:40 pm 
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Thanks Mal,

I'll look into that one.


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