The following is an extract from Buescher’s early marketing publication, “The Story of the Saxophone” (1926)
How F.A.Buescher Perfected the Belgian’s Idea
ALTHOUGH invented and first introduced over eighty years ago, the saxophone remained practically dormant for half a century.
It was then that Ferdinand A. Buescher, a young, aspiring mechanic, working away at his obscure bench in Elkhart, Indiana, made with his own hands and with many improvements the first saxophone, perhaps, ever produced in this country.
The Belgian had seen only a new type of musical instrument, while the new genius saw the world gay in rapture of a new style of music, singing, dancing, swaying, prancing to the tune of his perfected saxophone. And along with his vision he had what the Belgian lacked – keen business judgment and the courage to succeed.
Just as the violin made little impression on the music until Stradivarius had perfected it, so with the saxophone
The crude models of Sax offered little temptation or incentive to the musically inclined. They were most faulty in tone quality, not very accurately tuned, extremely hard to blow, cumbersome in key system, and generally unsatisfactory from technical and artistic standpoints.
In common with the instrument makers of his day, Sax left much to the performer, expecting him, by varying lip and wind pressure and skilful manipulation of the reed, to rectify the inherent defects of his saxophones.
F.A.Buescher first took up the models of Sax in much the way that a man following any artistic calling will take up the work of old masters – reverently, and with little thought of possible improvement. But as he got into the work he discovered many scale inaccuracies that might be remedied; many tapers that might be altered to improve tone-quality. He made various improvements in the key system, springing, etc., and with his vast knowledge of the wind instrument making art, his skill at manipulating proportions, bores etc., he soon brought out a quartet of saxophones so far superior to the original invention that there was really no room for comparison.
Eventually the original four Sax models were expanded to the present nine Buescher models. The key system was greatly simplified. The single-acting double octave key was put on. Last, but by no means least, the Buescher Snap-On-Pad was brought to perfection and patented in various countries.
Mr. Buescher’s improvement contributions to the saxophone have been continuous and of increasing importance over a period of forty years. Today the Buescher Band Instrument Company produces the highest grade of saxophones and brass band and orchestral instruments in the world. Every product of his mammoth plant is a testimony and a tribute to the skill of F.A. Buescher, the master craftsman, whose ingenuity and foresight and perseverance have made possible the international popularity of the saxophone and whose contribution to the world of music has brought fame and fortune to so many hundreds of people. Imitations! There are many! But the Buescher True-Tone remains without compare.