12th February 2008
Realsamples has released a new sample library of a rare instrument - the Dyson & Sons Dulcitone tuning-fork piano. The library is part of the "Edition Beurmann", a series of instruments out of the renowned historical keyboard instrument collection of Professor Andreas E. Beurmann.
Built around 1910, this unique instrument sports a vibrant, mellow and charming sound reminiscent of a vibraphone, glockenspiel, marimba and a piano - yet a sound of its own full of patina. At that time, it was inspiring to those looking for a new sound - Pjotr Tchaikovsky wrote some parts of his Nutcracker for a celesta like the dulcitone. Being a rather quiet instrument, it seemed inappropriate for orchestral use, so its parts were often played by a glockenspiel instead - luckily, this is not a problem in a sampler.
Back then, no one had ever dreamt that a celesta would be as relevant today as ever - being the acoustic ancestor of the most popular vintage electric pianos, which share the same basic sound principles. Providing a warm and full bass, it carries more weight than a toy piano and is great for any track demanding an unconsumed yet familiar sound.
An original Dulcitone celesta is very hard to play, offering a very rough-running, tight and limited dynamic response.
Capturing the dynamic shades of the instrument, Realsamples recorded every note with eight different samples. The Dyson & Sons owes a huge part of its character and life to the unique release sounds of its keys - Realsamples recorded these sounds as well, providing 4 variations of each key release sound to complete the Dulcitone experience.
These samples are recorded in 192 khz/24 bits resolution, employing vintage Neumann TLM-170 microphones through Crane Song preamps and Universal Audio 2192 converters. The library contains two versions of the instrument recorded with different stereo settings. It consists of nearly 1500 single samples.
The Dulcitone is available in all common sample formats, including presets for HALion, Kontakt, EXS24, Independence, MachFive, Reason NN-XT, VSampler3 and GigaStudio, amongst others.
Pricing starts at $79.95. The sounds can be purchased directly on the Realsamples website on CD and DVD.
Furthermore, the Dulcitone Celesta sample library contains an essay in German from Professor Andreas E. Beurmann. He explains both the historical and musical background of the instrument.