PPT mouthpieces

Beginner Hi everyone-can ask your advice....

Saxy Chrissie

New Member
North East England
....... on a few things

I'm Chris and I am up in the North East. I got my first ever alto sax 10 days ago. I played the trumpet many years ago and can play a little bit piano so can read music. I have 2 sons, one is a guitarist and the other a drummer so I am hoping to have some jammin sessions with them.

Well I assembled the sax and tried to play:eek:squeaks and god knows what came out. Then I realised I had the mouthpiece on the wrong way:(. OK you can stop laughing now. so, now I have learned the notes from bottom C through to high F with a couple of sharps and flats and I am now playing simple tunes.

My main problem is keeping control of the sax. I feel like the hook for the neck strap is too far to the left when holding the sax with the bell pointing away from me, so when I play C# it tends to roll to one side. Is this normal?

My other problem is reeds as I have read on here this is a common problem. I started off with a rico royal 1.5 but they only lasted a day or two. I have bought a 10 pack of Rico jazz 2's which seem much harder to play and I have used about 4 with different results. Is it worth buying plasticote or fibrecell? I would like to get some consistency so I know if it is me or the reed which is causing the problem.

Thanks for listening I have babbled on for a bit, sorry.

See ya later
Chris xx
Welcome and be assured that you are not the first to have tried to play an upside down mouthpiece and I doubt if I was.
You are just having the normal starter problems. As you have already discovered, reeds are delicate. Soak them for a couple of minutes before placing on the mouthpiece, line the tip of the reed and the mouthpiece and tighten the ligature enough to stop the reed moving. How much? Just so.
Enjoy as it sounds like you are making good progress and it will come right as your embouchure improves.
Suggest you go to the Doorbell and introduce yourself.
Are you chewing the reeds?

Get a reed guard - the La Voz one is good, and store them in that after use. Rotate them. Should last a lot longer that way.

I don' know what your problem is with the thumb hook, but it may make things easier if you tell us what sax it is.
Hi Chris,
I got so frustrated with reeds that I changed to a Fibracell one for the very reason you mention - it takes one variable out of the equation.
Now I know that if there is a problem then it's me and not the reed....:(
They last ages, are consistent and IMHO work out cheaper in the long run.
Hope that's helpful.
Oh, and welcome to the forum! :welldone
Hi Chris,

Excuse the pun, but these are teething problems. I love Rico Jazz 2s for alto - it's my favourite and I find that they are quite consistent and durable. The other Chris makes a good point; make sure that you soak them a little before you play and kevgermany also has a good point re: reed guards. It sounds like you are making good progress, enjoy the ride.

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