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Interest Check (Middle-eastern Clarinet)

Discussion in 'Tips, Tricks & Talk' started by Matthias Calis, May 3, 2018.


Would you be interested in a middle-eastern style clarinet sample library?

  1. Yes

    0 vote(s)
  2. No

    2 vote(s)
  3. Maybe

    1 vote(s)
  4. Other

    0 vote(s)
  1. A little while ago I recorded a concert with choir, violin, bass, piano, clarinet, ud and some percussion. I was rather impressed by the quality of the clarinet player, ud player, and the percussionist and have been contemplating approaching them to see if they'd be interested in doing a sampling project.

    I've attached a little snippet of the clarinet playing which was recorded during a recital.


    The questions I have are as follows:

    1. Would a clarinet, played in this middle-eastern style, be of interest to you as a sample library?
    2. What are your opinions on the recording quality, space, etc? (Personally I felt the room really complimented the clarinet especially. You can hear a little shuffling and a cough in the background due to there being an entire choir in the room when this was recorded. A sampled recording would obviously be cleaner)

    Since I haven't done a ton of recordings yet I am mostly curious if the sound quality, space a balance is alright. I had one mic set in XY further back into the room and one in ORTF closer to the players. The current balance favours the room (XY) mics so I still have some "headroom" to dry up the sound.

    I also realize that trying to capture the expressiveness displayed here is almost impossible but some of the elements could certainly be integrated into a sample library (such as grace notes, very agressive overblown attacks, that kind of thing...)

    Any thoughts and opinions on this are more than welcome.
  2. Is this just the clarinet mic? I'd clean it up a bit, remove some mud and add some sparkle, then add some compression to tame it. Maybe multiband, I'd have to get dirty with it to know for sure.

    As for the sample library: I personally use SWAM Clarinets. Hands down my favorite clarinet "library". They play well, have a ton of options and sound wonderful. Based on my experience, I think the SWAM Clarinet would have little trouble getting pretty close to this performance.

    They include 3 Bb Clarinets and 3 Bass Clarinets. Perfectly smooth crossfading between I don't know how many "layers" since it's semi-modeled, fully controllable vibrato, perfectly smooth transition with length determined by velocity in legato playing, attack by note velocity, and you can change any of these settings. They have the blowing and key noise controls. Formant volume, breath variation, pitch fluctuation, playable flutter, growl... It can play any style without any keyswitching, just CC. They're also completely dry, meaning you can make them sound in any of a 1000 different ways using IRs and spacing. They're a super small download (can't remember, something like 200mb?) and have a meaningless RAM hit.

    At €170, that's what you're competing with. I don't mean to discourage you at all, if you want to do it and/or there's interest, then by all means. If you think you have something unique to offer, don't hesitate. These are just my personal opinions and I'm unlikely to buy another Bb clarinet library (ever again?).
  3. Well....... I would just echo what you are already thinking later in the post:

    I don't know how this library could be anything other than a "Phrase" library.
    I know very little to nothing about programing sample instruments under the hood.

    It's the players that make the "klezmer" sound.

    Perhaps you could just focus on 1 or two techniques that people could use with the purpose of blending with their own pre-existing library.

    For example --- just the pitch bends back and forth. This way you don't have to re-invent what is already out there.
    Just the expressive part, and not the "instrument" part. Or grace notes. Make it a specialized one trick pony, that piggy-backs on other libraries.

    The other thing, and this would interest me more is the Oud. It's a wonderful instrument. Lastly, I personally have always had a soft spot for the
    Duduk. It sounds more like an Oboe or English horn than clarinet. But I am not aware of any high quality sample library of them

    Rohann van Rensburg likes this.
  4. bingo, that's I think the most painful thing I think some of these library developers miss... can they reliably provide something that is competitive to what is there, for a price that is worth their time.
  5. I don't personally have a need for this, but I can imagine it sure would be a interesting project to undertake as an opportunity to learn a ton. Sounds like a fun challenge. Good luck with it.
  6. I think woodwinds in general are settled. SWAM can do so much so well in so little time with so little hassle (you just play), minus some SFX. I'm still not 100% sold on the flutes, but they've come a long way with the updates.

    BUT there's still the fact that a lot of people don't play keys well and are repelled by the performance requirements of modeled winds and brass instruments - if you want to do them by hand, they suddenly take a lot more time than normal sample based libraries. I think this is one of the main reasons they're not dominating the market. Plus the mixing aspect.

    Doug has a point, maybe do a "playable compilation" of the stuff that's specific to the genre that might compliment some other libraries?

    I say that because scripting it might not be so easy. Percussion is easy to sample, there's not much scripting involved (crossfade only?), percussion always sounds personal and you can't have enough of perc libraries so I'd definitely vote for percussion.

    @Doug Gibson Have you heard of this guy?

    Paul T McGraw likes this.
  7. No ... I have never seen this before. Cool.

    I watched the video. The player with the continuous drone must be dead now. (The one in the background)

    Poor fellow.
    Aaron Venture likes this.
  8. Since I just bought a Duduk and seem to learn it fairly fast I can't keep myself from adding to this thread,
    The Duduk is super super cheap compared to other similar western instruments. With import and transport added I got mine for about 280$, and it has a beautiful sound. An Oboe is like 3000$ or more. I got it from https://ethnictune.com/ you can hear most of their stuff before buying.
    Of course if you have no wind experience it might take a while but it is worth it! I just think that if you are used to using samplemodeling with a breath controller, if you have a decent recording setup you might as well go with a Duduk yourself. And it is fun. Just my two cents. (there is a free youtube series teaching it) The Nay is also in the same price range.
    The frame drum is even cheaper and most used drum patterns in movies are not complicated, a child could learn it. I just study online, buy courses at https://wpa.worldpercussion.net/
    Rohann van Rensburg likes this.
  9. Great advice. I'd be more likely to buy a niche expressive library that rides on more general instrument libraries. General libraries are a dime a dozen and it's hard to beat the stuff out there, but what you can't do with those libraries is fake the expressive nuance of a real player unless you have those recorded.

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