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Beginner Sax Another instrument to practice on.

johnny b.

New Member
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F.N.Q.
Hello all,

i am sorry if this has been answered numerous times before. I bought a sax 2 years ago

and am definitely not happy with my progress. I know what the problem is - not enough

time with the sax in my mouth. I work away a lot and travel a lot. Most of the time it is

impracticable to take the sax ( tenor ) with me. Can anyone suggest another instrument i can travel

with and practice on while away.

Thanks for any suggestions.

Johnny B.
 

Jamesmac

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,872
S
Hello all,

i am sorry if this has been answered numerous times before. I bought a sax 2 years ago

and am definitely not happy with my progress. I know what the problem is - not enough

time with the sax in my mouth. I work away a lot and travel a lot. Most of the time it is

impracticable to take the sax ( tenor ) with me. Can anyone suggest another instrument i can travel

with and practice on while away.

Thanks for any suggestions.

Johnny B.
Soprano......... but Clarinets are cheap and will probably benefit your chops as well as your pocket.
 

BigMartin

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Manchester, UK
Agree about soprano, but I'd have my doubts about trying to learn clarinet and sax at the same time. The embouchures are quite different. Also the different register jumps could be confusing. Once you've learned one fairly thoroughly you could work on the other. So you could just concentrate on clarinet at first, but if it's sax you're really interested in, I'd go for the soprano.
 

johnny b.

New Member
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Ok, thanks for the quick suggestions. Yes, i was looking for something with similar fingering / embouchure.

Maybe something with a little less volume / decibels. I am thinking hotel rooms.
 

Jamesmac

Well-Known Member
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1,872
Ok, thanks for the quick suggestions. Yes, i was looking for something with similar fingering / embouchure.

Maybe something with a little less volume / decibels. I am thinking hotel rooms.

Quite the reason I mentioned Clarinet (ie less vol) . If you were a Concert and Solo performer on Clarinet, well first you wouldn't need my advice, and would agree the different embouchure could be an issue, some cope better than others. But for your purpose to keep your chops working, an ideal solution. I don't want to seem that I am trying to talk you into something that perhaps wouldn't suit , but it is something you won't know, until you try. But in your circumstances, the embouchure is not an issue. Fingering a clarinet is more demanding because you need to cover some holes, and be more accurate in the placement, which will help your sax playing rather than hinder. Some get confused or mix up the fingering, but it's another skill that isn't rocket science.
 

Nick Wyver

noisy
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Minster On Sea
Curved soprano.
Another vote against clarinet.
Quite like the recorder suggestion - but a treble, certainly not a descant.
Saxinet?
 

Jamesmac

Well-Known Member
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1,872
An option with the sop is those practice bags, to keep the sound down.
But a bit expensive, so including a cheap sop, think of spending around £400
 

Hubert OG

Confused Member
Messages
28
A xaphoon (or any similar chalumeau) is great for this very purpose. The fingering and embrochure are a bit different, but the instrument is highly portable and great fun when traveling. Plus, you could use the tenor reeds you already have.


I have mine with me all the time, though this will probably change as now I've got a chromatic harmonica, which is a bit more pocketable. It's a completely different animal, though, so it won't help your chops.
 

johnny b.

New Member
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20
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F.N.Q.
Thanks Jamesmac, Nick, BigMartin.

Looking at Yrt tenor recorder. Ycl 255 clarinet. Hey Nick, just wondering why you

specified Curved sop.
 

Jamesmac

Well-Known Member
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1,872
LOL I don't think so. But you could make your own. Thininsulate , it's the material that most winter gear is made from, (the lining) cover the inside of box, with holes for your forearms
 

jbtsax

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Beautiful Springville, Utah USA
I am convinced that playing a saxophone is 90% mental and 10% physical. With that in mind, one can practice without a saxophone at all. Try hearing the music in your head and playing the "air saxophone". You can do the articulation with your tongue and finger the notes as you go along. For years I drove to gigs playing some of the new tunes I was working on this way fingering the steering wheel of the car and making weird air sounds with my mouth. I would practice the scales that went to the changes of the tune, and then work out improvisations all in my head. If you want to keep your embouchure in shape, you can do the "smile-whistle-smile-whistle" exercise 50 times or hold a soda straw in the center of your lips for as long as you can.

Sometimes it is hard to transport your saxophone, but you take your mind with you wherever you go.
 

Saxdiva

Older, wiser, should know better....
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533
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Burgess Hill, West Sussex
I use a saxmute in my curved sop to play it at work at lunchtime. Strategically placed foam. It definitely reduces the volume. It also slightly increases resistance which is good for breathing. Before that, I did put a sock in the bell!
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
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Burnley bb9 9dn
Whistle , sing, recorder, clarinet especialy a little Eb.... are all very portable. So is just the mouthpiece. A sock in the end won't mute a saxophone. That's not where all the sound comes out.
 

Saxdiva

Older, wiser, should know better....
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Locality
Burgess Hill, West Sussex
Nothing will silence it, I agree. But it reduced the volume considerably.
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
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Burnley bb9 9dn
More lip on the reed to dampen it is more relevant for playing quietly. I can't imagine whipping socks in and out would add to the gravitas of a performance.
 
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