Great Bass Recorder

Great Bass Recorder

Great-Bass Recorder range

The Great-Bass Recorder is pitched one octave below the Tenor.  It is the first recorder we encounter that is not made in an affordable plastic version.  This means that its availability will be rarer than any of the above instruments.  It has a warm and soft sound, but because of its size, its technique is more limited.  In pitch, it is the exact same as the Tenor Flute, and duets between the two instruments can be effective.  Its soft sound makes it harder to hear in larger groups.

The Great Bass is the largest recorder I have personally played, and I found it to be a useful instrument even if just doubling the bass part at the octave.  However, to fully double the bass part an octave lower, the rarer Contrabass Recorder is needed.

Vivaldi Sonata in F on Great Bass Recorder

Bass Recorder

Bass Recorder

Bass Recorder range

This instrument is pitched one octave below the Alto Recorder and is the highest recorder to be notated in the bass clef.  Two standard models now exist.  The plastic version is built with a kink in the body to facilitate ease of play, while wooden models are built straight with a short curved bocal.  The plastic models are generally easier to play and produce a fuller and more direct sound.  Unlike the Tenor, the Bass is always built with four keys and is an easier instrument to play.  This is a wonderful instrument that is often overlooked.  Remember that it is the exact same pitch level as the Violin.  This should give some idea of how much higher the other members of the family are.

Handel Sonata on Bass Recorder