top of page
  • Writer's pictureNathan Coles

Overture Wood Blocks: Brilliant, Bright, Budget Friendly Blocks

Updated: Jun 28, 2023

There's a lot to love about a set of wood blocks that don't break the bank.

While it's true that the woodblocks may seem unassuming at first glance, this seemingly simple instrument can play a crucial role in elevating a musical performance from mediocre to magnificent. Attention to detail and intentional choices that make all the difference, even for a woodblock. Combining impeccable craftsmanship with an eye for affordability, the Overture Woodblocks are a testament to the fact that even the simplest of instruments can be elevated to new heights. So let's take a closer look at what makes these woodblocks so special, and why the deserve a place in every musician's toolkit.




 

Designing Wood Blocks


Overture woodblock set

A different manufacturer might take a simple block of wood for granted, but not at Black Swamp Percussion. We’ve taken great care to design and source lumber for an entry level woodblock that was conceived specifically for the performance of band and orchestral repertoire. While the general shape of a woodblock is hard to make unique, we take pride in a straightforward and effective design that takes the unassuming simplicity of the instrument and showcases the natural beauty it has to offer.



The Overture woodblocks come in three sizes; small, medium, and large. The blocks measure 6.5", 8", and 8.75" perspectively and have distinct pitches between each model. While we do not tune our blocks to a specific set of pitches, we treat these non-pitched instruments with the utmost discretion and keep each block within an interval range that sounds excellent within the full set.

clear rubber feet on the bottom of an Overture wood block

The block also has small rubber feet at the bottom which serve two purposes. Firstly, they raise the block up to avoid and deadening or unwanted resonance from the surface while the block is being played. Secondly, they improve the sound quality and volume when the block is struck against any surface. The rubber feet are carefully placed to make sure they work effectively, and they play an important role in creating a great sound experience for the player and the audience.


 

Materials Matter


The Overture woodblocks are manufactured from solid Rubberwood. This wood is an exotic lumber not found in the Midwest. While Rubberwood is less expensive than the Rock Maple used for our Black Swamp woodblocks it still offers a beautiful look and tone. Contrary to popular belief Rubberwood will not bounce if you drop it.


close up of wood grain on an Overture woodblock

The Rubberwood used in the production of this woodblock exhibits a remarkably tight and compact grain pattern, which contributes to its exceptional density and durability. Despite being categorized as an entry-level instrument, this woodblock is crafted to a high standard of quality and resilience, capable of withstanding prolonged use and handling without sacrificing its structural integrity or sonic characteristics. It serves as a testament to the meticulous attention to detail and craftsmanship that goes into its creation, resulting in an instrument that exceeds expectations and offers a premium playing experience.


 

Authentic Sound


Rubberwood, despite being a more affordable option in comparison to other lumber types, does not compromise on the high standard of sound quality delivered by the Overture woodblocks. These woodblocks are renowned for their exceptional, world-class tone that is characterized by its brightness, focus, and clarity, which enable it to blend harmoniously within any ensemble, regardless of its size. To achieve this level of tonal excellence, each woodblock's slot is machined to a specific depth, thereby enhancing its ability to produce a distinct and high-quality tone that is distinctly woodblock in nature.


Overture wood block

In addition to their superior tonal quality, these Overture woodblocks possess outstanding projection and resonance capabilities. This is largely attributable to the inclusion of small, but significant rubber feet attached to the bottom of each block, which help to isolate external noise and maximize the projection and resonance of the woodblock when struck against any surface.


It is worth noting that the pitch of these Overture woodblocks tends to be higher than the Black Swamp Maple woodblocks, which are known for their warmer, rounder tone. Nevertheless, the Overture woodblocks' unique tonal characteristics, combined with their affordability and superior build quality, make them an excellent choice for musicians seeking a high-quality woodblock that delivers on both performance and value.



 

Wrap Up


One of the primary objectives of the Overture line, including the Overture woodblocks, is to provide students with instruments that they can take pride in playing. This is achieved through a combination of factors that take into account both the aesthetic and functional aspects of the instrument.


As we all know, the look and sound of an instrument are crucial in motivating students to practice and perform. By designing the Overture woodblocks to offer a superior tonal quality and an eye-catching appearance, students are more likely to feel motivated and enthusiastic about playing music with their ensemble.


To fully appreciate the sonic capabilities of the Overture woodblocks and other instruments in the Overture Series, we encourage you to explore our website or YouTube channel. Here, you can access a range of sound samples that showcase the exceptional sound quality and versatility of these instruments, providing a comprehensive overview of the range of musical possibilities that can be achieved with the Overture line.


Here are some helpful links to get you started:



Commentaires


bottom of page