Tutorials

Complete novice looking for advice, guidance and chat with like minded musicians

GCinCT

Seeker of truth and beauty
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I have signed up for an online course and have spent the day absorbing as much info as I can. A few short goes (will take a while to build up the face muscles) and pleased so far. I have been practicing the embouchure and getting nice consistent sounds now. Then did a few scale. I will keep doing that for a few days until the muscle memory is there and then shift onto learning some pentatonic scales.
A quick bit of advice. You should continue doing tone exercises even as you become intermediate and advanced. A regular part of your practice routine. Long tones and overtones. You will build your embouchure and a nice tone but you have to maintain it. I once read an analogy that said long tones are to your tone what water is to plants. You have to water them to make them healthy and beautiful. You have to continue watering them so they stay that way.
I know you are just starting but I wanted to give you a heads up on that,
 

Zugzwang

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Again, do you have any recommendations for support kit? I have a very long history of neck, back and shoulder problems so would rather avoid any issues right from the start. I don’t like the sling that has come with it as it only has a hook on which seems a recipe for disaster sooner or later.
SaxHolder! Literally couldn’t play without one. Removes the weight from the back of your neck out to your shoulders. There are others which do the same - Vandoren and ??? but cost c. 3-4 times as much.
 

Zugzwang

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A quick bit of advice.[…]Long tones and overtones. […] long tones are to your tone what water is to plants.
A lovely analogy. But a heads up if you’re under lockdown with any one else - never tell them those words or show them the “I think I need another mouthp ...” drawing (check it out)- . I did, and now my OH shouts “Long Tones!!” at regular intervals when I’m trying to practice.
 
OP
TBay

TBay

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A quick bit of advice. You should continue doing tone exercises even as you become intermediate and advanced. A regular part of your practice routine. Long tones and overtones. You will build your embouchure and a nice tone but you have to maintain it. I once read an analogy that said long tones are to your tone what water is to plants. You have to water them to make them healthy and beautiful. You have to continue watering them so they stay that way.
I know you are just starting but I wanted to give you a heads up on that,
Thanks, strangely, or perhaps not!, that was the entire focus of one of the tutorials I watched yesterday. I developed a regimented practice system when I started on bass and still use that now (warm up- scales, chromatic runs etc, learn new material, go over known songs then noodle session to finish). I intend to develop a similar system for the saxophone as I learn more about what needs to be done.
 
OP
TBay

TBay

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SaxHolder! Literally couldn’t play without one. Removes the weight from the back of your neck out to your shoulders. There are others which do the same - Vandoren and ??? but cost c. 3-4 times as much.
They look good and very sensible money, do they put any weight on the sternum at all? The reason I ask is I had a motorbike accident many years ago but severely damaged my sternum so can’t take any pressure on it.
 

tenorviol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
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They look good and very sensible money, do they put any weight on the sternum at all? The reason I ask is I had a motorbike accident many years ago but severely damaged my sternum so can’t take any pressure on it.
The Jazzlab Saxholder has three parts: two large "hooks" which go over the shoulders and an extendible rod with a pad that rests on the abdomen just above the waistband, well below the sternum. You can probably (eventually) get to a shop that stocks them and try, or see if someone on here is nearby and prepared to meet up and test? I have one.
 
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OP
TBay

TBay

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Spoke to a very very good friend and colleague of mine who is a superb Flute player, music therapist and general music genius extraordinaire. He has been mixing some songs for one of the bands I play bass in. He was a peripatetic music teacher before taking on his present role and ,unknown to me, one of the instruments he taught was the Saxophone. So cue an impromptu lesson tonight and another scheduled for Tuesday. Even better is that there will be zero cost implication. When in work we meet up for lunch a couple of times a week to jam/ sing/ torture people with multiple harmonicas so once this is all over it can just fall into one of those sessions. It’s funny how you think you know someone and then it turns out they do a whole other instrument you have never heard them mention. I felt a bit foolish asking him if he knew any sax teachers and then he replied ‘yeah me’,
 

tenorviol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
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That's really good news @TBay. I currently have a 1 hour lesson plus half an hour theory so it costs me £45 a shot
 
OP
TBay

TBay

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That's really good news @TBay. I currently have a 1 hour lesson plus half an hour theory so it costs me £45 a shot
When you think of the expertise and time it takes to become a good teacher then that seems excellent value to me. My colleague and I have been friends for nearly twenty years, I provide technical support and repairs for his kit and he Is happy to pass son his expertise which is great. He has the most amazing ear and all of our best work is when he does the mixes. We both work at a school for kids with a wide range of disabilities so having more music is always a good thing!
 

Hammie 1982

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Hey Man,
If your not able to find online lessons anywhere else to get you some basic tuition and get you going! Try UDEMY.
I have my kids learning the Guitar at the moment, Im getting back into Woodwind went back to the Clarinet after a long time away from it and am trying to decide on budget for my first Sax at the moment!
UDEMY gets a bit of a bad rap at times, but ive found their courses handy for some basic information that i can build on elsewhere!
Hope you enjoy the Sax and hope you find the learning experience one as enjoyable as i have starting to play the clarinet again! I just cant wait to pick up a Tenor now too.......
 
OP
TBay

TBay

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First lesson with my mate today over face time which was a first for both of us and worked well overall. It was very helpful to get expert advise early on and was a very productive hour. I have some good things to practice over the week until the next lesson. Very happy with how it went and feeling very positive. I sort of expected it to take a month to get any consistent sound!
 

saxyjt

I have saxophone withdrawal symptoms
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I can see that you're off to a good start. It's great to have a close friend to lead you on the path.

Having prior musical background is a big help from what I can see here. Several sax beguiners with musical backgrounds here proved to be excellent! :D

Enjoy the tenor. It has a great voice!
 
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