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Do you keep a reed log?

I’m excited to have a guest writer on the blog/newsletter today, my friend Jeff Padgett. I met Jeff at the beginning of my Master’s degree program at DePaul University. He’s b4een passionate about finding the perfect reed ever since I met him, and now he’s developed an app to help oboists (and bassoonists) become more consistent reedmakers: ReedBook. 

Even if you’re not making your own reeds, you might find the photos and audio in the app interesting! Or you might use it to keep track of what you like and dislike about the reeds you buy, that will make it easier to know if your reed brand is meeting your needs! I’ll be back next week with more of my own writing. - Alli 

Why you should keep a reed log…

As oboists, we are constantly searching for the elusive perfect reed.  Reeds are notoriously difficult to make consistently, and even once we are consistent, it is challenging to determine which variables cause which changes in the way a reed behaves.  Over time, it's hard to remember what you did with some reeds in your reed box vs. others, and you will wonder why some of them turned out great and others were total flops.

An Reed Log is one of the tools that helped me grow the most as a reed maker (and therefore, an oboist!).  By tracking details about each reed and keeping comments about how the reed behaved, I was able to learn what was working for my reeds and what was not.  I no longer forgot which cane I used for a particular reed, which shape, or how long I tied the reed on.  With a reed log, it can all be recorded.  

A reed log allows you to be more scientific about your reed making.  Instead of changing multiple things about your next few reeds, just pick one thing to try differently, and record the results in the reed log.  

Over time, you unveil the mysteries of reed making, and you gain insight and experience much faster than you do otherwise.

Recording all of this in a notebook is great, but notebooks don't allows us to record photos or audio of the reed.  Sometimes they get lost.  Sometimes they take too much space.  And they are not easy to share with others.

Enter Reedbook!  An online reed log that you can use to log reeds on your device.  With this modern tool, you can have a sophisticated way to log your reeds (including audio, pictures, and details) online.

Reedbook makes it fun, easy, and fast to log your reeds.   Long after your reeds are dead and gone, you can still see and hear them, so you will always have a record of how they played and why.  You can look back at your reed log and try to imitate your best reeds.  

It's also a great way to see how other people are making their reeds.  Ask your favorite player or teacher to put up a public reed on Reedbook, and you can have examples of their reeds at home to model off.

If you are a teacher, you can log your favorite reeds on Reedbook so that all of your students can have examples of how your reeds look, how your reeds sound, and how your reeds were made.  

Give it a try here for free.

- Jeff


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