I sometimes talk to my students about how different oboists can sound from one another. I want to bring attention to this site … go there and look at the number of well known oboists from around the world. Have a listen to the various clips! Can you hear the differences? I’d love to see a picture of the oboists’ reeds next to their names, but that would be asking a lot, wouldn’t it? Fortunately I do own a copy of Oboe Reed Styles, but it’s rather old so the newer players aren’t in it.

I don’t see Pierre Pierlot there. He was my first introduction into a “different” sound. I have an album with him playing Baroque oboe concerti, and I’d pull it out and listen again, but our turntable isn’t really working any longer, or so I’ve been told. (I’d at least put a photo of the ugly album cover here, but since we updated WordPress I can’t put up images. Argh!) It would be interesting to hear him again and see if I am still surprised by his sound. (If I recall, it was closer to soprano sax than anything I’d heard before. Not that it was exactly like it, but closer. But perhaps I’m remembering incorrectly.)

I’m not one to say “only the American sound for me” as I really love the variety. If the player is musical (and in tune) I’m just fine with the differences. Different can be fun.

1 Comment

  1. Hi Patty,

    The Oboe Sound Gallery is a great site. The sound clips are very enlightening.

    There’s also a site at homepage.mac.com/johnwion/vibrato.html
    that although it deals only with flute, is a great resource for understanding the different kinds of vibrato out there. There are sound clips of well-known flautists and a clip of the same excerpt but slowed down enough for you to hear how the vibrato is shaped. The site really helps the oboist understand how to blend with the principal flute which goes beyond just playing in tune.