Buddy DeFranco on the challenge of the clarinet
Now, a Jazz Moment...
MUSIC: "Somebody Loves Me" CD: Oscar Peterson & the Buddy DeFranco Quartet 1953 Live, Jazz Band EBCD2111-2 (cut 6)
NEA Jazz Master Buddy defranco has spent the better part of a lifetime mastering one of the most difficult instruments in jazz... the clarinet.
MUSIC: up for punctuation
Buddy DeFranco: It's treacherous. You're dealing with four different registers
of the instrument. Each register requires a kind of a different fingering system.
Plus the fact you have these six open holes that you cover. And if you miss
one of those holes while you're playing you're gonna get a squeak. So you're
dealing with a precarious situation.
Buddy DeFranco: In that way it inhibits you as far as playing jazz because
jazz is really freedom of expression. And many times, especially in the beginning
of playing jazz, if you go for a certain phrase on the clarinet, you're gonna
miss one of those holes or you're gonna play the wrong register and it's gonna
be wrong. And immediately, if it's wrong, that's the end of the solo. It's
like walking a tightrope on the instrument.
MUSIC: same - up and fades under
This Jazz Moment with clarinetist Buddy DeFranco was produced by the
National Endowment for the Arts. I'm Delfeayo Marsalis.