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Saxophones Number of Buttons (pearls?)

Pi101

New Member
Messages
3
Hi,

Complete newbie just got my first sax 2 days ago, eager to learn so started watching tutorials on notes, fingering, basics etc.

The saxophones on the videos all seem to have 5 buttons at the top and mine is different - excuse the newbie language but mine has a fixed round button that does not move but fixed with cork, then the smaller one, then two more rounds that move, then one oval one in the bunch which i think are all for the pinkie?

Anyways I want to start learning it correctly right from the start but not sure what to do about this slightly different setup, if anyone can let me know (in simple terms!) that would be great

Thanks guys!
Mike
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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Just north of Munich
Can you get a photo to me by email? If so I'll post it for everyone to see
 

saxnik

Member
Messages
381
Locality
Poole, Dorset, United Kingdom
Hiya, good questions!

Firstly, you're right to refer to them as Pearls, though they're not always pearlised.

You're also correct in thinking that the oval one in the 'pinky group' (often called the table keys) is for your little finger. You can more or less discount this for a little while.

Your left index finger should go on the pearl above the little one - it sounds like your sax (unlike my alto, but like my tenor) differs from the videos you have in that the top 'button' is just a lever with no pearl on - you can ignore this for now, and just consider the second one down, above the little key as the first one to use. You say that the first pearl key is fixed with cork, and that shouldn't be the case since it should move like the lower ones - a photo would help because it may be that it's been fixed just for transit and the cork should be removed, or it's been bent in some way, and the cork is necessary to stop playing rattles and shouldn't 'fix' the key at all! Go carefully...

Your middle and ring fingers go on the lower large keys (miss out the little one for now too).

A lesson with a tutor would sort out these problems and set you on your way quickly, but then I'm a bit biased about that! Good luck!

Nick
 
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Pi101

New Member
Messages
3
Thanks for the help guys, here is a photo and you can see the cork, should it be removed? The sax is brand new. Yep really want a tutor but will have to wait till after xmas for the money, want to practice till then though! Any help greatly received, cheers, Mike
 

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griff136

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,056
Locality
I live in Exmouth Devon.
Thanks for the help guys, here is a photo and you can see the cork, should it be removed? The sax is brand new. Yep really want a tutor but will have to wait till after xmas for the money, want to practice till then though! Any help greatly received, cheers, Mike

Mike,
the cork is a wedge used in packing for transport - this should have been removed so just pull it out. - the long metal key that it is under is for altissimo notes( High register notes -I wouldn't bother about those at the moment)
 

aldevis

Surrealist Contributor.
Cafe Moderator
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12,329
Locality
London
Hiya, good questions!

Firstly, you're right to refer to them as Pearls, though they're not always pearlised.

You're also correct in thinking that the oval one in the 'pinky group' (often called the table keys) is for your little finger. You can more or less discount this for a little while.

Your left index finger should go on the pearl above the little one - it sounds like your sax (unlike my alto, but like my tenor) differs from the videos you have in that the top 'button' is just a lever with no pearl on - you can ignore this for now, and just consider the second one down, above the little key as the first one to use. You say that the first pearl key is fixed with cork, and that shouldn't be the case since it should move like the lower ones - a photo would help because it may be that it's been fixed just for transit and the cork should be removed, or it's been bent in some way, and the cork is necessary to stop playing rattles and shouldn't 'fix' the key at all! Go carefully...

Your middle and ring fingers go on the lower large keys (miss out the little one for now too).

A lesson with a tutor would sort out these problems and set you on your way quickly, but then I'm a bit biased about that! Good luck!

Nick

Nick, managing to describe this in writing, really impressed me.
A tutor is quite essential also for this kind of things. I am wondering if the OP has other cork wedges around the instrument....
 

Pi101

New Member
Messages
3
Haha nope no more cork anywhere on the instrument, however the top pearl is a bit sticky after removing the cork, so need to clean that a bit I think. Yes I could do with a tutor, I'm thinking maybe Skype lessons might be best, depending on the price, if you guys know anyone?

Thanks for your help, Mike
 

saxnik

Member
Messages
381
Locality
Poole, Dorset, United Kingdom
Me Mike?! I can do Skype lessons, £21/hr via PayPal (£25/hr in person plus travel, I'm in Poole by the way). As I've just said elsewhere, it's a second-best option compared to actually being in the room, but if needs must it's much better than trying to teach oneself from a book.

Let me know if you fancy it!

Nick
 

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