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Tip opening vs. reed strength. Any suggestions?

3365 Views 8 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  avan
Hello -

I have purchased a Meyer 7m mouthpiece for my Bari, and was wondering if anyone could help me with a problem. I bought a Legere plastic reed to save some dough in the long run by not buying cane reeds, but when I put it on the Meyer I struggled to get a sound for the first three minutes. I was playing in my high school band and had to find a solution (I foolishly had no cane reeds on me), and found it in sliding the ligature way up on the reed. I had to put it WAY past the cut to get control of the horn. I have tried 2 strength Rico reeds on the piece with no major problems, and came to the conclusion that the plastic reed was too hard for such a large (for me) mouthpiece tip opening. So what should I do, get a 6m or a 5m mouthpiece Meyer and use my regular reed strength, or use a softer reed strength on the 7m?

Another thing, I have been looking at the Charles Bay Gerry Mulligan model mouthpiece recently, and I am tempted to take the Meyer back a buy this mouthpiece. Does anyone know anything about how it plays? Would it be a good investment?

Thanks for any help you can give
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I can't believe I left that out... The Legere reed strength is a 3. As for my previous mouthpiece, I played on a Meyer 6m with two and a half strength cane reeds for a very short stint (three days), before I realized the Bari I owned before the one I have now had major problems, and I had to take it back. It was a while ago, but I remember the 6m playing well. I've got a different Bari now, and since the 6m worked on the previous Bari, and I play a 7m on my tenor, I thought I would go ahead and get a 7m for the Bari. I also prefer cane reeds, and in a perfect world I wouldn't use anything else. But I'm short on cash, so the plastic reed seemed like a good way to save. I had to special order the Meyer 7m, and my store will not allow me to return it. It will however make a strait trade for another Meyer Bari mouthpiece with a different facing.

As for the Charles Bay piece, I don't think I would be able to find one to play unless I travel to his shop in LA, 1741km's from here.
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Hi all -

I have found a wonderful solution. I was picking my horn up from my tech for a few repairs, and while I was play testing he said that my mouthpiece was too big, and had me try his Bari mouthpiece. I played it, and instantly I was in love. It was an E. Rousseau JDX jazz 6, and it was incredibly easy to play. I also discovered part of my problem with the Meyer 7m. The Meyer is a 'bullet" shaped mouthpiece, and required me to take more mouthpiece than I would have to with a "Duckbill" style mouthpiece. I have a bit of an overbite, so to get my bottom lip to where the reed touches the side rails on the Meyer, I have to open my mouth so far I lose control of my tone. The Rousseau is a "duckbill" style mouthpiece, and does not require me to take nearly as much mouthpiece. I tried many reed brands and sizes with the Meyer 7m, but none seemed to work. The Rousseau is sounding and playing beautifully, and I don’t think I’ll ever need another mouthpiece. The plastic reeds seem to be working now, so I'm quite happy with this mouthpiece.

Thanks for all the helpful advice,

The Kid
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