Grade chaser

Discussion in 'The Doorbell' started by cooljingle, Jul 13, 2017.

  1. cooljingle

    cooljingle New Member

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    Long time lurker, first time poster...

    Firstly it's great to have a community like this and I'm grateful to all the people that have shared their knowledge on these forums. Many times I have searched about saxophone things and a thread here has shed some light on the issue.

    My current goals:
    • Do Grade 7 in the autumn
    • learn more about jazz theory
    Background:
    I started learning last year Feb after a break-up with by then-girlfriend left me with some time to focus on ME (musical entreaties). I bought a Stagg 77st tenor sax from eBay and set about going through the Universal Method for Saxophone book. I have grade 8 in piano and violin so I started with a fairly good grounding in music theory, I jumped to grade 4 in the summer and then grade 6 last November (got a merit in both); in between those I wanted a sax upgrade and got a Buesher New Aristocrat (circa 1935). It plays brilliantly on the low end but in the high register I have trouble with intonation and my embouchure tires super quickly. I took an extended break from it at the start of year but recently got back into it, I sometimes jam with a couple of coworkers who happen to also play which is fun :)

    I almost bought a P Mauriat 66r the other day but the seller inexplicably vanished in between agreement and exchange.. I took it as a sign of karmic retribution for not practising enough! I'm currently trying exercises to improve my tone and make the notes come out a little easier.
     
  2. Jeanette

    Jeanette Organizress Cafe Moderator

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    Welcome to the Café, looking forward to hearing more from you :)

    Jx
     
  3. tenorviol

    tenorviol Full of frets in North Shropshire

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    Hi - if you're tiring easily, then your reed may be too hard
     
  4. nigeld

    nigeld slow learner

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    Welcome to the forum.

    I had a couple of vintage saxophones early on, but I have found that modern ones are easier to play. Some vintage saxophones are happy with any mouthpiece, but others aren't, so if you are struggling, it might be worth trying out some alternatives.
     
  5. kevgermany

    kevgermany ex Landrover Nut Cafe Moderator

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    With older saxes, large chambered shorter mouthpieces often help.

    Big welcome from me.
     
  6. SaxoFREAK

    SaxoFREAK saX on the bEaCH..

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    Big welcome from me, glad you enjoy the forum, there is so much good info here, have fun & enjoy your stay.. ;)
     
  7. trimmy

    trimmy One day i will...

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    Welcome to the Cafe :)
     
  8. Justin Chune

    Justin Chune Well-Known Member

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    Hello and welcome to the cafe.
     
  9. cooljingle

    cooljingle New Member

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    Fair point - I'm currently trying a Rico plasticover 2.5 reed which seems to perform alright but I guess I could drop down to a 2.0 or 1.5 to see if it helps with my endurance.

    I think there is something to this - while rehearsing with my friend who was accompanying me for my Grade 6 exam, he let me try out his Yamaha 275 and I actually ended up using his sax for the exam because it was so much easier to play in the upper range. I've noticed that most tenor exam pieces tend to have the notes camped out in this area which makes it even more important.

    I visited the sax.co.uk shop in London a couple months ago and tried out a bunch of their saxes - personal faves were the P Mauriat 66r and the Trevor James Custom RAW models. Obviously these are top-end pro saxes with a price to match so I've been keeping my eyes open for any second hand deals.

    Do you have any suggestions of any models in particular I should try out? I'm currently using a Yamaha 6C.
     
  10. kevgermany

    kevgermany ex Landrover Nut Cafe Moderator

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    Lelandais, Brilhart, Morgan L models.
     
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