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Tone Tone of lower Notes

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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OK, I'm getting nice (for me) tones out of my tenor, improving as I go up from the lower G. But below that the tone is more like a foghorn... Especially at D and below.

I need to work on it, I know.

Any tips on how to change my blowing/embouchure to get it into a smooth, dark earthy sound - more like Stan Getz/Plas Johnston for instance?

I don't want to change mouthpieces yet (it's a Rico B5 with Rico Royal #2 reeds).
 

FastFred

Member
Messages
79
Probably 20 years will help with the Getz sound...

Diaphragm is very important on the lower notes, forget blow think air release through the mouthpiece/horn. Bottom notes are always more challenging but it seems to help a lot if the horn is warmed up.
 

Pee Dee

Member
Messages
423
Locality
Dorset
Read a few tips somewhere:
Press extra hard on the keys when playing low notes.
Breathe as if you were trying to steam up the mirror.
Relax the embouchure.
Put two or three corks in the bell.
Some saxophones just won't work well on the low notes.

My tip? Practice!;}
 

DaveW

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160
Locality
Stockport, Cheshire
Pee Dee's tip about breathing as if trying to steam up a mirror works for me Kev. If I try to force it it doesn't work.

I think the experienced players here will say the Getz sound (which I would like to emulate) is .subtoning'.

But as with everything on the sax, it's a case of practice, practice, and more practice!
 

FastFred

Member
Messages
79
Yes, listen to Pete as he can actually play unlike most others on here including me...

Pressing hard will also lead to immobilised fingers which will limit speed long term. Ditto lifting the fingers off the keys too much. Watch the pros on you tube and the fingers barely seem to move.
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Café Supporter
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21,914
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Just north of Munich
Not leaking, according to my home made leak light.

Will keep on trying, bound to come!
 

Luluna

Senior Member
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696
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Vermont, USA
You might try this breathing support "trick" to see if it helps - it always gets me back on track. While seated and playing, lift your feet up off the floor - it engages your diaphragm and the low notes should come easier. Also, maybe the reed isn't soft enough?

Good luck ;}
 

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Café Supporter
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Just north of Munich
Thanks Lori, will try that. Will be interesting. Especially for any onlookers..... :)))

I've found the tenor's a little big to play sitting down, although I've seen people doing it.
 

thehunt

Member
Messages
785
Locality
Studham Bedfordshire
Gruß Gott Kev. Work those abs, i find it helps me to actually think and use the diaphragm, eventually you just do it without thinking about it.
Playing tenor sitting down is easy, just swing it to one side, then the tenor!! lol. No really just put it to one side, swivel crook to accomodate new angle and mp, away you go.
I'll try Lori's tip tonight, feet up. Rgds Phil
 

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