recorder method online : treble/altoc sharp / d flat
Dr. Brian Blood

home :: resources :: music theory & history :: recorder lessons :: music dictionary :: physics of musical instruments :: e-monographs

contents :: help page :: first things first :: fingering charts :: glossary of recorder terms :: Quick C :: Quick F :: comments or queries?site map :: quick search

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

This section gives advice on the following topics:

How To Finger The Note C sharp
How To Tongue The Note C sharp

How To Finger The Note C sharp

The twenty first note we learn, C sharp in the second octave on the treble (alto) recorder, lies two leger lines above the treble clef, but has a sharp sign in front of it, in front of an earlier C sharp or in the key signature. The enharmonic equivalent is D flat 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 C sharp, or for the enharmonic equivalent D flat, is written X 1 2 4, where X indicates a pinched thumb or vented thumbhole.

How To Tongue The Note C sharp in the Second Octave

Like B flat and B natural discussed in earlier lessons, C# in the second octave, what we will call middle C#, has a fingering very like that for the low C# but with the removal of one finger, in this case the second finger of the right hand. You might like to try playing successively, low C# and middle C#, so that you get used to the basic pattern as well as the single finger and 'pinched' thumb adjustment for the higher note. On most recorders middle C# is a note that causes little difficulties. Unfortunately, on a small number of instruments the note can 'squeak' if the player tongues the note too strongly. This problem is found more usually on large recorders and is very rare on sopraninos. If you have discovered this problem on your recorder it can mean either that the instrument needs revoicing or that the recorder is of inferior quality. Experiment with a softer tonguing stroke, although you must take care not to make the stroke so soft that the C# will not speak at all. As with all 'pinched' notes, take particular notice of the size of the thumbhole opening. This needs to be kept small.

We include an exercise in the next lesson, lesson no. 22, that introduces C sharp and D in the second octave.