Saxophone Forum


by KingNecron
(76 posts)
8 years ago

Buescher Aristocrat Alto

I was hoping I could consult the collective wisdom concerning the Buescher Aristocrat Alto saxophone. There's currently one listed for trade here on SaxQuest for a very good price (you can find it here: www.saxquest.com/tradeDetail.asp?TradeID=3644) The serial number is in the 600,000s. Alto is not my primary horn (tenor is), but I'm interested in taking it up to work on my breath support and just to have a bit more versatility. In other words, high-end, state-of-the-art awesome isn't exactly what I'm going for; I'm more interested in a well-playing but cheap horn that isn't exactly pretty, will get the job done, but won't be totally worthless either. Plus I'm poor, so if this horn is a good deal, I'd like to know. I'm particularly interested to know how old this horn is. I have e-mailed the seller, but I figured I'd go ahead and hear from my colleagues here. Don't hold back on me, folks. I'm eager to learn!

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  1. by saxismyaxe
    (574 posts)

    8 years ago

    Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

    Hi KingNecron, Ed Zentera is a friend of mine, and a terrific, professional mouthpiece re-facer as well. This is a later model Buescher and as such isn't among the most coveted of the Aristocrat line, but if he is selling it as set up and ready to play, that is exactly what you will get. It definitely worth $300.00, and the seller is straight as an arrow, so order without worry. If you can spend a bit more ($850.00 or so), take a look at another friend's horn listed under trades: www.saxquest.com/tradeDetail.asp?TradeID=10185 Phil Brewer is also well known on Sax on the Web (it's listed there as well), and if you take at look at the Marketplace section on that forum, you'll see that I praised this horn highly (would have added it to my own collection for that price, but I've just purchased two other "backup" altos). This is a really good vintage for a great alto at a great price.

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    1. by saxismyaxe
      (574 posts)

      8 years ago

      Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

      Sorry, I forgot to answer one of your main inquiries: Ed's horn dates from about 1970/75 (by this time a student/intermediate horn via Selmer USA), and Phil's horn dates from 1940 (A full pro horn from a choice year). For what each horn represents, they are good value for money.

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      1. by KingNecron
        (76 posts)

        8 years ago

        Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

        Sweet. Thanks for the information on both horns. I'd seen the $850.00 one as well. Both look like great horns. Mr. Zentera has sent me pictures of the horn as well as answering some of my questions about the horn, and thank you, SaxisMyAxe, for the "character testimony." This is what SaxQuest is all about!

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      2. by tim8w
        (1 post)

        2 years ago

        Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

        I have the opportunity to pick up one with a serial number just under 500000 for arounf $250. Is this also a student model or a better one than that?

         

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    2. by bjjazzy
      (5 posts)

      2 years ago

      Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

      I play a Buescher Aristrocrat alto the serial number is in the 400,0000 range and i was tols my horn was in the 1960's . another teacher of mine told me to keep it, It is a gem!!! it plays beutifully for me and never gives me problems, it never acts up and always puts out good sound. They are a keepers. The newer horn and some of the so-called professional horns I heard by other band mates I had, that tried their old Buescher against the new ones , some of them decided to keep their old one instead of buying the new, despite all thir ads swearing about all the new mechanisms on them. Then again, it's also the player and not always the horn..Just don't buy anythingthing listed as a "Student Model" When Buescher was in buisness there was no differences in student models vs. pro models like we go these days.  I bought mine beat up for $ 200.00 from some kid and I had it refurbished, laquered and etched and every thing and now it's appraised at between $1000.00-to-1700.00.....hope this helps anwere your concerns.

      barbara..bjjazzy

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      1. by Saxquest
        (317 posts)

        2 years ago

        Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

        Yes, I agree that a 60's vintage Buescher can be quite nice. Even the ones after the Selmer buy out in 1963 can be very decent saxophones. Without a doubt, a good saxophone for the money. You can generally pick them up in the few hundred dollar range needing some work. Its a different sound than what most all of the manufactures seem to be going after today. One of the things I love about vintage horns is the variety of different sounds and blowing characteristics. Now days, its seems all of the saxophones being manufactured are cut from the same rug (perhaps Keilwerth being the exception).

        Anyway, nice purchase and congratulations on owning a great musical instrument!

        Cheers,
             Mark Overton
             saxquest.com
             saxophone.org

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        1. by bjjazzy
          (5 posts)

          11 months ago

          Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

          it's a great horn. it puts out tons of sound. it never gave me problems. i owned an Indiana Martin tenoe, and i thought it was a piece of crap. the keys were not esiliy activated on it, a hard press, it didn't put out enough sound to not be drowned out in the band. my Selmer Super 80, and my Buescher Aristrocrat puts out a ton of sound. i would never trade them for anything. both are a gem. the Indians, is not. i had the Buescher relaquered, my initials and roses engraved into it, the silver keys i had changed to gold laquer, and brand new totla pad overhawl with i think are jazz type pads, or those roo pads. it puts out the best sound now. i had it reappraised, and they quoted me 1000.00-1500.00 it's worth now, and i only got it for  200.oo beat up. i would never give it up for my life  or over my dead body.,along with my Selmer Super 80 III tenor

          barbara..bjjazzy

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          1. by xpharisee
            (1 post)

            4 months ago

            Re: Buescher Aristocrat Alto

            Dear Bjjazzy, 

            You many not want to write off "Martins" as a whole untill you are sure you have one that does NOT have leaky tone holes. Those old Martins had soldered tone holes, if for some reason the soldering failed, or they were bumped the holes will easily leak. If you are happy with what your doing that is fine, but I had the same opinion as you until I figured out my Indiana had a rough life.

            I am glad to hear that you have a hi opinion of the 200 Buescher as I have one of those too.  

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