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First attempt on soprano

Mark Hancock

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I've had the soprano 3 days now so I think it's about time I posted something. Well, as everyone says - it's not easy! A big change from the tenor. And I was totally cheating by using a tuner clipped onto the bell. This is going to take a bit of time to get used to I guess. I hope long tone practice on the soprano counts for the tenor!??!

 
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Mark Hancock

Mark Hancock

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Won't take you long as you've got good technique and a good ear. Get rid of the tuner and just use your ear as that's your real guide.
Thanks Wade. Yeah, I don't normally practice with a tuner unless I'm actually checking my tuning, but I wanted the post to be more or less tolerable to listen to.

How does it work when practicing more than 1 horn? I practice tenor about 10 hours a week. I can't really increase that. Do tone exercises on soprano cover both horns, because it's the hardest? Should I split it 50/50? Will my progress on tenor slow down?

Anyone?
 

Pete Effamy

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Hi Mark, it's a nice sound - probably the most important thing as the Sop can sound really nasty. Wade is right, you have a good ear but, not surprisingly, you are using your tenor chops and they're a little too loose. Your musculature will improve, but you might need to consider using a little jaw help.
A decent experiment might be two-fold: put you jaw forward a little (forward, not bite). Maybe couple this with lowering the angle of the Sop too - don't let the head go down as this is the same angle otherwise.
Does this make your initial pitching above the break better?
As for keeping two or more horns going, many of the great multi-instrumentalists rotate their instruments in each practice session. And yes, I believe that any practice is beneficial no matter which horn.
You have the makings of a really Sop player so stick with it. I think that it's an easier thing to sort a bit of under-pitching than being too tight.
 
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Mark Hancock

Mark Hancock

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Hi Mark, it's a nice sound - probably the most important thing as the Sop can sound really nasty. Wade is right, you have a good ear but, not surprisingly, you are using your tenor chops and they're a little too loose. Your musculature will improve, but you might need to consider using a little jaw help.
A decent experiment might be two-fold: put you jaw forward a little (forward, not bite). Maybe couple this with lowering the angle of the Sop too - don't let the head go down as this is the same angle otherwise.
Does this make your initial pitching above the break better?
As for keeping two or more horns going, many of the great multi-instrumentalists rotate their instruments in each practice session. And yes, I believe that any practice is beneficial no matter which horn.
You have the makings of a really Sop player so stick with it. I think that it's an easier thing to sort a bit of under-pitching than being too tight.
Thanks for the tips, Pete! I'll give it a go.
 

randulo

Playing alto 2 1/2 years
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The usual adjective is nasal. Even some big names have it, although it may have been intended. But you do not have that, you do have a good sound. I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks so!
 
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Mark Hancock

Mark Hancock

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Hey Mark
How's the soprano coming along? Did your recording use the Yamaha 5C or 6C mouthpiece?
Yes Clive, I recorded that the day after the 5c arrived I think. I'm loving the Soprano, it's a great contrast to the tenor, and compliments it very well I think. It's kind of nice in a way to have "beginner" issues again, and be on the steep part of the learning curve. I also did this month's SOTM and BOTM on the sop - strike while the iron is hot!
 
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Mark Hancock

Mark Hancock

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Speaking of Soprano mouthpieces, look what the postman just delivered...:D
20200526_133726.jpg

Syos Dayna Stevens 6 Signature. Just had a "five minute" blow on it during my "half hour" lunch break (I'm "working" from home).

WOW. that's a very easy mouthpiece to play. I can almost play in tune! :eek:
Low Bb pops out effortlessly, even though there's a nice amount of resistance to it.
The high notes don't sound so shrill and piercing. Looking forward to giving it a proper go this afternoon :banana:
 
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Mark Hancock

Mark Hancock

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Finished work early and got stuck into a proper play test. 100% mind blown. It even looks like a well dressed mouthpiece with the lig and patch. I might have a bit of a crush on this one.... o_O
20200526_160649.jpg
 

Pete Effamy

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Finished work early and got stuck into a proper play test. 100% mind blown. It even looks like a well dressed mouthpiece with the lig and patch. I might have a bit of a crush on this one.... o_O
View attachment 14626
That’s very sexy. Looks like an old 50s piece. What is the Syos thing then - you stipulate bright or dark, length of facing and size of tip and they make to that recipe?
 
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Mark Hancock

Mark Hancock

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314
That’s very sexy. Looks like an old 50s piece. What is the Syos thing then - you stipulate bright or dark, length of facing and size of tip and they make to that recipe?
That's the custom option. I did that with my tenor syos mouthpiece. You give some parameters, they send a prototype, you say a bit more of this, a bit less of that. They send the next version. Repeat until happy or get your money back. Can't go wrong really. And it's a fun process. If you like that sort of thing.

For the soprano mouthpiece I just ordered a signature design. It's a fixed design based on one of their signature artists designs. But you can pick an opening size. It's cheaper. I'm so new to soprano that I just went that way based on listening to all their soprano signature players.
 

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
2,273
That's the custom option. I did that with my tenor syos mouthpiece. You give some parameters, they send a prototype, you say a bit more of this, a bit less of that. They send the next version. Repeat until happy or get your money back. Can't go wrong really. And it's a fun process. If you like that sort of thing.

For the soprano mouthpiece I just ordered a signature design. It's a fixed design based on one of their signature artists designs. But you can pick an opening size. It's cheaper. I'm so new to soprano that I just went that way based on listening to all their soprano signature players.
I didn’t realise about all the prototypes etc. That’s quite something. I looked at their website and the 16 or so adjectives for what you want and I hadn’t much clue other than choosing about 8 rather than the stipulation of 3.
 
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