Ill woodwind---who said it

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Bernie T

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Apr 5, 1998, 4:00:00 AM4/5/98
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A local journalist made the following remark which he claims is a quote
from Duke Ellington.

"The clarinet is an ill woodwind that no one blows good"

Now knowing that Jimmy Hamilton and Barney Bigard played with Ellington
...I have a tough time believing Ellington would say such a dumb thing !

However over in RMB a couple of guys think that Ogden Nash may have said
the above remark and would have said it about the oboe and not the
clarinet.

To me that sounds very likely but if that is true does anyone know in
what context Nash would have made that remark ? Was it in a poem ? an
article ? etc

One other person attributed the comment to Danny Kaye....written by his
wife Sylvia Nash..

If that is true where would he have uttered such a comment ?

Any info appreciated

Bernie T

Lee Hickling

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Apr 7, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/7/98
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Bernie T <job...@sympatico.ca> asked who originally said

>"The clarinet is an ill woodwind that no one blows good"

The answer is, nobody did. Bernie's local journalist got it wrong. It was
originally said about the oboe,

Fifty miles from the nearest good library, I can't track it down, but I remember
that Sylvia Fine put it in a lyric for Danny Kaye, and it wasn't original with
her. I heard the phrase in the early 1940. Ogden Nash might have said it first,
but I can't find it in any of his poems.

But for sure, the original form of the phrase was about the oboe, not the
clarinet, and whoever said it, it wasn't Duke. That kind of bitchy wit was never
his style.

>
Lee Hickling <hick...@radix.net>


Anne Hamill

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Apr 7, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/7/98
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The orginal quote is: "An oboe is an ill-wind that nobody blows good" and it was
said by one Bennett Cerf in the publication (or book?) "Laughing Stock" published in
1952. I found this in a little book called: "The Music Quotation Book" edited by
Joyce and Maurice Lindsay.

Lee Hickling

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Apr 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/8/98
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Anne Hamill <aha...@mail.wsu.edu> wrote:

>The orginal quote is: "An oboe is an ill-wind that nobody blows good" and it was
>said by one Bennett Cerf in the publication (or book?) "Laughing Stock" published in
>1952. I found this in a little book called: "The Music Quotation Book" edited by
>Joyce and Maurice Lindsay.

Forgive my being pedantic, but it's what I do. Cerf only collected the saying -
he didn't make it up. I heard the line from other musicians as early as 1942 or
1943. It's apparently a bit of musical folklore, and its originator unknown.
There is an old, old adage that "It's an ill wind that blows nobody any good,"
meaning of course that one person's disaster can be good luck for someone else.
The oboe line is a clever switch on that: An oboe is an ill woodwind that nobody
blows good. Of course, oboists may not think it as clever as clarinetists do.


Lee Hickling <hick...@radix.net>


David Blumberg

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Apr 8, 1998, 3:00:00 AM4/8/98
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It's because of the brain damage incurred while playing. ;)

--
David Blumberg
ree...@erols.com
Lee Hickling wrote in message <352b7093...@news1.radix.net>...

Margaret Brisley@hotmail.com

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mbris...@gmail.com

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notw...@gmail.com

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Jun 28, 2020, 1:35:24 PM6/28/20
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Musicologists tell us the young Mozart first heard the clarinet in London in 1776 liking it better than the Austrian oboes and flutes. So can we be Sure there weren't even older wind joked we can now wind up and put to bed since 1961 when Mr Aker Bilks wind through his clarinet
of change and his fans (no Strange -ers s to to his US / UK top Chart ratings )
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