Choosing a Method Book

I am new to your site, but really enjoying browsing. My daughter is 13, and beginning clarinet in a band class. We cannot afford private lessons right now, and so I am looking at a method book for her to use on her own, to supplement her Essential Elements band book. I looked at the ones you recommend on your site, but not being able to see the books themselves, I was wondering if you could help me choose the best one. I was looking specifically at the Rubanks and the Alfreds Breeze Easy. My daughter has has piano, so she reads music pretty well, I don't know if that would make a difference with either of the 2 books. Or is one of the other you mentioned even better for her? Thank you so much for your time and effort in this site!

Tina Boyle


Hello Tina,

Thanks for the note. On the Beginning Clarinet Books page, you can click through the links to view the specifics of each book. I realize not having a chance to thumb through the book is a disadvantage.

For your daughter, I'd recommend the Jacobs Learn to Play Clarinet, which has good information specific to the clarinet. The other book I'd recommend is the Rubank Elementary Method (Clarinet). The Rubank books are tried and true classic books.

And, sorry to reiterate the whole "beginning books" page, the Paul Harvey Complete Method for Clarinet has more modern songs in it to learn at a beginning level. Did you know that Mr. Harvey played clarinet with The Beatles?

You would not go wrong with any of these books. Perhaps, the Harvey and Jacobs will grab her attention better than the Rubank.

Best of luck to her and thanks for being a supportive parent of a young musician. If you have a chance, check out the Clarinet Parents page here. By the way, her training on piano will really help her on the clarinet. Have her continue on piano if she can handle the practice demands of each instrument.

Please let me know how she progresses with her music.


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