Topic: European Scrape

I've read that European oboists scrape their reeds differently than American oboists. I wonder what the differences are and how they effect the sound. I also wonder if any oboists have had experiences with both types of reed.

Walter Deinzer

Walter Deinzer
Amateur Oboe and English horn

Re: European Scrape

I use both types of scrape, and both types have advantages and disadvantages. The american scrape is more easy to blow, but is limited in playing very loud. The european style is a bit more difficult to play with a free and relaxed vibrato. Sometimes I cut the longer european style reeds when they loose tension and I put an american scrape on them. Then I can play the reeds for another week.

Re: European Scrape

I also use both types of scrape, the short scrape or european for the oboe, and the long or american on the English Horn, just because i think they work better on each instrument.

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Re: European Scrape

Can someone describe the basics of a European scrape?

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Re: European Scrape

The French Reed is a V scrape from the middle of the Blank toward the tip. The German Reed is a U shape from the middle of the blank toward the tip. I would not recommend interchangeing Reed style's, the embaushure is different from the american style of playing than the europe style of playing. American style think O teeth appart, Europe style think EE almost biting the reed. I hope my spelling is correct.

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Re: European Scrape

As a Swiss, I use a European scrape, my form is a bit more a U than a V, although I think my reeds are a bit more French than German.. ;-)
For me, the difference between the French and the German reeds is more in the sound.. They can look very similar..
What for me is a more-French reed, is a reed that has a very flexible sound, maybe also quite a bright sound, and more-German reeds are a bit more 'stable' (directing, focusing), and the sound is a bit more dark. I try to make my reeds as a mixture in between.. I like flexible reeds, but stability is important as well.. And I like a bright sound, but it hast to be warm in the same time;-)

The most striking differences between the American and European scraping styles are (well, in my experience):
European scraping is much shorter, ca. 10-12 mm long (with the U or V form)
Americans have 'windows' in their scrapes, Europeans don't have that.. European scrape reeds go from thick to thin from the back to the tip, and from the middle to the sides, there are no 'holes' in the scrape.
The European reeds are normally longer: For 47 mm staples, my finished reeds have a length of about 73-74 mm (and we play at 442 Hz in Switzerland)..

I am interested in even more-detailed descriptions of the styles.. Especially, if there are also different American Scraping styles? Or are is the style more or less the same all over the whole continent?

Kathrin Brun
[url=http://www.oboist.ch]http://www.oboist.ch[/url]

Re: European Scrape

It is interesting to review the Ledet book which illustrates different scrape types.

Louie

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