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Beginner What am I doing wrong?! :(

phooesnax

Member
Messages
96
Locality
USA
A great and quick way to get your fingers comfortable with an unfamiliar horn is chromatic scales. up and down...down and up and you will be all set. Once you do a little of this the old horn will feel funny,

Best of Luck
 

Dave M

New Member
Messages
7
Locality
Milton Keynes
Hi
I am glad it not only me having trouble with my MP and embouchure. It's good to here that experienced plays also have trouble from time to time
I have only been playing for a few weeks and seem to get some days of good constant notes and other days not.(hissing air from MP or like a bird warbling).
Also seem to get a tired embouuchure after about 15-20 minutes, not sure if blowing to hard !!
Just have to keep on trying.....
 

rob192

New Member
Messages
19
Locality
Swindon
warbling

i'm sure you don't warble as much as me.... i play jupiter tenor and recently bought a buescher alto.... the thing wouldn't make a decent sound so i concluded it must be the sax... got it "repaired" and set up by pro sax repairer - big expectations when i got it back... even bought a new selmer c* mpc just to be sure. i now get a much better tone of warbling!!! like the car analagy.
good luck.
 

Dave M

New Member
Messages
7
Locality
Milton Keynes
Warbling sounds

This mainly happens when I get down the scale to the lower C
The B,A,G are normally quite constant, but it's when I have to got the lower keys it starts to warble.
I seem to run out of puff and can't seem to be able to take a breath and get the same note back !!

I suppose I just need to practice and pratice more :w00t:
 

chrissieb

Member
Messages
59
Locality
Egham, Surrey
well I'm not an experienced player, been playing for 5 months! All I can conclude is it's a funny ol instrument and we have to believe that it will get better and keep going, and enjoy the sucess when something does get better and not beat ourselves up too much when it sucks... and finding a teacher would probably be good. I sucked for 3 weeks cos I as playing tired old floppy reads. I thought I was the worst player in the world until I finally changed read and sounded decent again- if I'd had a teacher they would have spotted the problem right away.

Dave I get the hissing air thing sometimes too, I found loosening my lig a bit helped, but dunno if that was just a coincidence..

When it sounds good, it's totally worth all the pain we go through to get there!
 

Dave M

New Member
Messages
7
Locality
Milton Keynes
Thanks Chris for the words of encouragement .
You are right I need to find a teacher, will start in a couple of weeks after the holiday period. The reed comment is interesting how do you know when the reed is tired or perhaps you need to change from a 1.5 to a 2 etc.

I will try losing my lips to see if this helps with the hissing noise.

Thanks
 

chrissieb

Member
Messages
59
Locality
Egham, Surrey
lig not lip! I'm going to find a teacher soon too- just waiting until I get used to the new horn. I won't be able to afford a lesson ever week though.

The reeds that had worn out/ split were squeaking horribly. Sometimes before they get to that stage they just sound really dull and lifeless, in my limited experience anyway!

I'm not sure how you know which strength reed to use other than trial and error. I find if I use one too soft it can be squeaky, one too hard is really hard to play and I get hissing like you are talking about. But someone experienced might be able to give you a more coherent answer!
 

ArtyLady

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,028
Locality
Essex
Saxophones certainly seem to be tempermental! The flute was soooo straight forward ;} I love the challenge though - and when it starts to shape up it's worth it :D
 

chrissieb

Member
Messages
59
Locality
Egham, Surrey
ugh I'm not getting on too well- I can play with my link mp, but not my yamaha (back to warbling). The link is knackering to play with. The biggest problem though, is the ergonomics, I can't get the left hand position right at all. Will persevere though. Sounds great when I get it right.
 

Kumimajava

Member
Messages
42
Locality
Oxford, UK
ugh I'm not getting on too well- I can play with my link mp, but not my yamaha (back to warbling). The link is knackering to play with. The biggest problem though, is the ergonomics, I can't get the left hand position right at all. Will persevere though. Sounds great when I get it right.

hi again chris,

i really don't want to sound patronising (i'm certainly not a brilliant player myself), but if at all possible, I would really try to meet up with a teacher as soon as possible - even before you 'get comfortable with the new sax'. Even if it is just a 'kick off lesson' & you don't meet up every week after that (maybe even if it's not a professional teacher, someone who plays actively).

The reason for this is that they'd give you advice on how to get 'familiar' with your sax, explain the really important bits of the basics (& posture, hand positions, etc.), and make sure you don't pick up any bad habits, which you could do inadvertently on your own.

I know there's a lot of good books around & much helpful advice available online (like here and on SOTW), and this makes 'self-help' seem like a very attractive option, but sometimes an experienced player can give you more accurate advice just by looking & listening at your playing. you'll likely find that this will save you hours of frustration & possibly having to work on 'fixing' bad habits later on.

Good luck!
 

chrissieb

Member
Messages
59
Locality
Egham, Surrey
not at all patronising- I've spotted a guy close by, I'm going to see if he can give me some lessons, mayeb once a month (can't aford weekly). I was planning on doing that anyway, even if I didn't have these 'teething troubles' with the new horn.
cheers :)
 

Kumimajava

Member
Messages
42
Locality
Oxford, UK
not at all patronising- I've spotted a guy close by, I'm going to see if he can give me some lessons, mayeb once a month (can't aford weekly). I was planning on doing that anyway, even if I didn't have these 'teething troubles' with the new horn.
cheers :)

that sounds really good :sax: - let us know how it progresses. I hope you can get the warbling sorted - i bet i'm not the only person on the forum who finds it curious that it occurs with the Yamaha MP, but not the Link...
 

chrissieb

Member
Messages
59
Locality
Egham, Surrey
The yamaha has a larger chamber, dunno if that is relevant? It's also a smaller tip opening, so I have to blow the link harder.
 

chrissieb

Member
Messages
59
Locality
Egham, Surrey
tbh I'm more bothered by the left hand position than the warbling, I need to sort that out, it's really uncomfortable at the moment- getting in the right place to press the octave key involves more movement than it should. I'll email this teacher guy tomorrow, hope he can fit me in!
 

Drphil

Member
Messages
45
Hi there just out of interest what was your hire tenor?
I'm just beginning -I've sorted my daughter out with an alto but an looking to rent a tenor for myself, I did buy a tenor (and sell it straight away) and noticed he hand positions were far from comfortable compared to an alto that I'd borowed -are all tenors the same?
best wishes
Phil
 

chrissieb

Member
Messages
59
Locality
Egham, Surrey
Hi there just out of interest what was your hire tenor?
I'm just beginning -I've sorted my daughter out with an alto but an looking to rent a tenor for myself, I did buy a tenor (and sell it straight away) and noticed he hand positions were far from comfortable compared to an alto that I'd borowed -are all tenors the same?
best wishes
Phil

Hi Phil,
The tenor I was renting was I think made by trevor james. I think the Bauhaus is similar in design to a yani, but I can't remember where I read that- it's not something I'd know myself!

No they aren't all the same, from my limited experience of two, the key position varies a fair bit.

On the plus side, I am starting to get used to it. It still not comfortable, but I think it will be when I'm used to it. It's still sliding around and using the octave key is a big challenge, but at least I can play on it now without feeling very stiff and akward.

I'm sure you could find a tenor you'd like, but I guess they all take a bit of getting used to. I think you have to live with them for a bit and persevere.

If you want to rent I'd recommend Richard at saxhire.co.uk, very helpful and friendly, I was renting a s/h tenor from him for 20GBP/month.
 

littleplum

Member
Messages
445
Locality
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
hiring a Tenor

If your looking to hire a tenor sax, one of the best deals is at John Packers at £15 pm. I have had great service from everyone at Packers and their saxes are good. Well worth a look I would say.

Regards

Dave
 

Drphil

Member
Messages
45
thanks
my choice so far seems most likely to be JPs in Taunton -not that far from me in Cornwall, or karacha music in bangor I believe who hire out rebranded selmer preludes for the same price as JP, the shop in wales allows you to keep renting and just keep it after 24 months although I guess You might want to uprade before then?
 

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