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An extremely fine Buffet RC clarinet in A. This instrument is a commission sale for Clarinets Direct. It has an excellent provenance, having originally been owned by Jo Patton, initially of the RLPO, and now co-principal clarinet of the CBSO. The instrument was then bought by a professional player whilst a student of Jo Patton's. He has just collected a Tosca A clarinet from ourselves and this excellent clarinet is now offered to the market. When the American investor Martin Tolchin bought Buffet Crampon he felt that though the R13 sold well in the USA, different models would be more successful in Europe. The S1, Continentale and BC20, which became the RC, were all attempts to make darker, more focused sounding clarinets. This instrument was the finest and most expensive Buffet clarinet of the period, before the introduction of the Prestige range, and was priced at approximately 15% more than the contemporary R13. The RC model did sell very well: It had a more relaxed warm tone than the R13, which attracted many UK players. This instrument would pair well with no.13 on the "clarinets" page.
This A has S/N 223246, which dates to 1982, there is no damage to the wood, which is in superb condition. The Silver plate is also in excellent shape. The instrument has fish skin pads throughout, which, whilst used, are all sealing well. There is no joint wobble, all touch and tenon corks are good. This clarinet plays with a dark, focused sound and excellent evenness and intonation. It was manufactured as Buffet's top professional instrument with unstained Grenadilla wood. Today one would have to spend over 3000 on an RC Prestige instrument, and choose from a large number of examples, to get anything of like quality. The case is a brand new Rosetti double in black, NB not pictured.