Acker Bilk I am not

I have decided to start playing the clarinet again after a 20 year break...

When I was at school I played a Bb clarinet for about 9 years and I loved it, depsite the fact that I really wanted to play a flute and look like a fairy...all 5'7" of me!!!!!

So having been invited to join the local orchestra by it's President; (yet another strange happening in a series of strange things that seem to happen to me), I am now looking to buy a clarinet.

I have found a few but I am confused....what is a Clarinet Sib??? Is this the equivalent of the Bb?

I thought it would be difficult enough to get back up to the standard of playing The Last of the Summer Wine as a duet, (my last concert piece), but I didn't expect to have trouble even knowing what to buy!!

So any experts or clarinetists out there that can advise? I imagine that my school clarinet was a soprano Bb as I'm pretty sure the music budget didn't stretch to anything more exclusive! If I am correct then this is the Sib Soprano that I have found online and wanted to buy...

I shall await any available pearls of wisdom before my mother abuses her credit card unnecessarily...

Many thanks :)


First of all, good on ya for coming back to the clarinet. Some years ago I started playing the trombone again after a layoff of about 25 years. In fact, I went back to college in my 50's and now have a degree so I hope it leads you to satisfying good things as well.

Secondly, here is a link that might be of help in converting key signatures. I recently moved to France from the US and so, like you, had to find out how to translate key signatures. According to this, Sib is in fact Bb in French. I've found many online forums to contain mostly unreliable information so I'd try to have it confirmed by a French musician. But at least the page read the same.

I also know that ebay is very much caveat emptor and there is a lot of cheap Chinese junk floating around (Sorry, I just realized what a cheap pun that is), at least in the US. If you stick with one of the major brands I think you'll be alright.

Good luck.

There certainly is. I have now found a new professional clarinet on Ebay of all places. It was in the sale so I even got some reeds and 3 music books to go with it. I cannot wait to start playing again :)

You might like to look at these vids....

Eddie Daniels is my favourite clarinet player, but there's loads of stuff on here to whet your appetite again, Damaris.

Brilliant! Thank you Roger. I had just found a few on Ebay UK as well. Will go and check it out :)

Found this site offering Bb Clarinets for delivery in France on the anglophone page, (Sib 's only on the Francophone page)

Sib is E flat against B flat, if i understand right :-)

Thanks Roger. Effectively Sib is not Bb then....good job I asked first!! I shall do a search to find out what Bb are called in France.

Did a quick google on Sib And found this link which should help?