recorder method online : descant/sopranob flat / a sharp
Dr. Brian Blood

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Important: To see and hear our 'live' music examples you will need to install the free Scorch plug-in for PC and MAC systems.

First Octave :: Second Octave: C :: C#/Db :: D :: Eb/D# :: E :: F :: F#/Gb :: G :: G#/Ab :: A :: Bb/A# :: B :: Third Octave

This section gives advice on the following topics:

How To Finger The Note B flat
How To Tongue The Note B flat

How To Finger The Note B flat

The twenty third note we learn, B flat in the second octave on the descant (soprano) recorder, lies above the first leger line above the treble clef. The enharmonic equivalent is A sharp which has the same fingering. Click on the play button in the Sibelius score to hear it. Below that we give the standard fingering for this note, the fingering you would use under normal circumstances.

Legend: = hole covered = hole uncovered = pinched thumbhole


Recorder Thumb 1 2 3 4 5 6b
  -----left hand------ -----right hand-----



Using the standard nomenclature, the fingering for second octave B flat, or for the enharmonic equivalent A sharp, is written X 1 2 5 6a 6b, where X indicates a pinched thumb or vented thumbhole. An alternative fingering for these notes adds the little finger of the right hand and is written X 1 2 5 6a 6b 7a 7b.

How To Tongue The Note B flat in the Second Octave

B flat is one of the least troublesome of the the group of notes from G in the second octave to C in the third octave, top C. If you do have a problem review the technique we discussed in lesson 20 by clicking here.

The best note to start from is A and then dropping the second and third fingers of the right hand on to the recorder you should be able to slur neatly to B flat, if you slightly increase your blowing pressure for the B flat. If the note sounds sharp on your recorder try the alternative fingering given above which uses the second, third and fourth fingers of the right hand instead. If this is slightly too flat try covering only one of the two small holes with the fourth finger of the right hand which will give you a B flat lying between those produced by the two fingerings given in the chart above. Once you have identified the best fingering try the sequence but this time tongue each note. Make sure that you have a small thumbhole opening, that you tongue crisply and that you are 'feeding' sufficient air into your recorder to keep the B flat sounding clearly and at the correct pitch.

Once you are happy with the note B flat try piece no 23.