Lead Weight in different positions on neck
This was a (single) blindfold test. Although I did could not see the weight, my assistant who placed the weights did know which was which. A more rigorous experiment would have involved double blindfolds, one for each person.
The experiment involved adding a lead weight to three different parts of a saxophone neck. The weight ... Read more…
The internet is a wonderful thing but can bear double-edged sword. Along with all the wonderful information at our fingertips, we also find a lot of misinformation. How can you tell which is which? Very often you can’t. But if someone is giving advice on how to play the saxophone without offering any sound clips of their own playing, ... Read more…
How to get the Best Buying Advice
Don’t just listen to me, there are many different and valid opinions so for a start log in to the Cafe Saxophone discussions, you will also get a lot of useful saxophone information on choosing your first saxophone.
Watch out for the Bad Guys
It’s important to question any online advice. Somebody advising you to buy a saxophone could ... Read more…
Disclaimer: Unlike with many saxophone reviews I do not get paid or receive free instruments in return for reviews on this page.
Very Inexpensive Saxophones
Note that I’m not using the description “Cheap” saxophones. Although the models I intend to review in this category are cheap, many of them are only cheap in the sense of not costing as much as you ... Read more…
What’s a Good Saxophone?
I am often asked to give saxophone recommendations, endorse mouthpieces and big up the retailers. I am not an official endorser of any product apart from Legere Reeds, and so I feel I can give independent advice on most things. I only recommend those that I have personal experience of, but I cannot guarantee that what works ... Read more…
Insuring a valuable instrument
While there are no dedicated saxophone insurance policies, there are several insurance brokers than specialise in musical instrument insurance. If you are not taking the instrument out of your house, you should be able to include it in a normal house contents policy, but check with them first, especially if your saxophone is a more valuable one. ... Read more…
The Early Years of Saxophone History
From the Story of the Saxophone
The Middle Ages gave us a variety of new instruments and gradually the elements of the modern military band were gathered together. The development of these bands was encouraged by all the French kings from Louis XIII on, and by the Revolution they were completely organised and flourishing throughout the Empire.
It ... Read more…
I have chosen to compare five saxophones, three vintage and two modern. The vintage saxophones are my own two tenors, a 1930s Conn 10M (Naked Lady) and a 1950s “The” Martin, along with a 1954 Selmer MKVI which I borrowed. The two modern tenors are a Yanagisawa 901 and one of the new generation of inexpensive Chinese saxophones, a ... Read more…
What Can Serial Numbers Tell Me?
The main thing you learn from serial numbers is the age of the instrument of course. Although the dates in these charts are reasonably accurate, there may be some discrepancies for various reasons. Here are a few things to bear in mind:
Sometimes a company may hold back a batch of instruments and then release them ... Read more…
Are vintage saxophones better than modern ones?
Yes and no, “better” is very often subjective. It used to be the case that you could buy a professional quality vintage horn for much less than a professional quality new one, however the market is now opening up due in part to some very good and inexpensive saxophones being made in Taiwan and ... Read more…
Saxes for Sale – 5 things to watch out for:
1. Asking advice online
People often ask on the forums or social media “what is the best saxophone?” hoping for an answer. Note I said “an answer” (singular). Unfortunately they tend to get a whole raft of different answers and end up being no better off. If you ask “what is the best saxophone?” it can ... Read more…
Here are a few of the strange and unusual instruments and accessories I have collected over the years. Some sound great, others not so. Maybe I’ll record some soundclips one day…
Conn Clar-O-Sax – “A real musical instrument, not a toy”
A few people might dispute that marketing statement as there appear to be no known recordings of any band featuring one ... Read more…
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