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2 historical short bass clarinets, right instrument made 1848 by Adolphe Sax from boxwood
(Single clarinets with cylindrical bore, with fingerholes)
The bass clarinet is a type of clarinet, and is a woodwind single-reed instrument. The earliest record of a bass clarinet is called a 'bass tube' invented in Paris in 1772 by G. Lott. It usually has a B-flat pitch. It plays an octave lower than the normal clarinet. This means that when a Bass Clarinet makes a note, the note that actually sounds is an octave and a whole tone lower. There are some bass clarinets that have an A or C pitch as well as E flat, but there are not very many of these.
- "Clarinet", The New Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments 3 volumes, ed. Stanley Sadie. London: Macmillan, 1984.