The life and work of John Clinton, cont.
So, when we look at Clinton in light of the above
discussion, what do we find? Simply
a man like any other, failings and all, but one with incredible energy
and a strong sense of purpose, whether misguided or no. A man with a substantial ego, which doubtless drove him on to
ever greater achievements, as large egos usually do. An individual
having definite obsessive tendencies. A musician of considerable talent
both as a player and a composer. A
teacher of repute who for 13 years held the highest teaching post
available to flautists in his day.
A performer who achieved a high level of peer recognition. A
designer who had a clear view of his goals and knew how to achieve them.
Finally, a passionate devotee of the instrument that we all love,
and one who was prepared to go to great lengths and take considerable
risks to pursue the perfection of his instrument in his own estimation.
In summary, a man whom both of the authors would very much like to have known, warts and all, and one who in our view deserves far better at the hands of historians that he has been accorded to date. We hope that our work may start our friend John down that road, even if far too belatedly.
No work of this nature can be completed by two authors working thousands of miles apart without the assistance and advice of others. Both of the present authors freely acknowledge their debt to numerous friends, colleagues, organisations and individuals for their varied contributions to this research.
In particular, we would like to thank the following
(in no special order of priority):
Gregory Brown of Sidney, British Columbia, for
saving the 1851 Clinton flute from the rubbish bin in the first place
and then for kindly passing it on to the authors’ collection for
restoration and study; also for his restoration of the authors’ 1851
Robert Bigio of London, England, for his
ever-helpful provision of advice and information whenever asked;
Tony Bingham of London, England, for assistance in
obtaining relevant literature;
Tatsuoki Koroda for the excellent Auto Tuner
software used in the evaluation process;
Carol Lynn Ward-Bamford
of the Dayton C. Miller collection in Washington, D.C., USA, for
outstanding co-operation in providing access both to relevant literature
and to surviving instruments;
of Los Angeles, California for
providing an opportunity to examine and compare his Equisonant flute
with our 1851 instrument;
Neville Fletcher, Australian National University, and Assoc. Prof. Joe
Wolfe, University of New South Wales, for their advice on matters
relating to musical acoustics.
And lastly, (but by no means leastly!) to our
long-suffering wives Lorna and Jesse for putting up with our
flute-obsessive behaviour, our periodic consumption of Guinness and
Bushmills, the long hours of abandonment while we travelled, tinkered,
tested and otherwise worked on this project and, most of all, for
staying the course of our often-frenetic musical lives and offering
nothing but love and support through it all.
That’s one debt that we can never repay adequately.
But we can try!!