Saxophone Forum


by golferguy675
(600 posts)
11 years ago

Ligatures

What's a good jazz ligature other than an Oleg? I've been using one for a while and I'm trying to find something different.

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  1. by sax_maniac
    (984 posts)

    11 years ago

    Re: Ligatures

    Bonades are good bang for the buck. They play very clearly and have a couple rails on them to minimize contact with the reed.

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    1. by sax_maniac
      (984 posts)

      11 years ago

      Re: Ligatures

      I should clarify - Bonade INVERTED ligs. They make the bottom-screw style as well. My experience is with the inverted lig on tenor. I don't know if they put the rails on the standard lig, but I would imagine they do.

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      1. by saxflores
        (18 posts)

        11 years ago

        Re: Ligatures

        Well for jazz on my meyer for alto I really like just the plain metal ligature that came with it. The ultimate ligature by Francois Louis (sp?) is gaining lots of momentum though from jazz players.

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        1. by golferguy675
          (600 posts)

          11 years ago

          Re: Ligatures

          As it would happen, I own an inverted silver bonade lig. It's got a great sound for jazz, good clarity, but it cuts of the really high notes. I tried my optimum lig on my jazz piece just out of curiosity, and it plays all of them fine, it just makes a bad tone for jazz.

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        2. by sax_maniac
          (984 posts)

          11 years ago

          Re: Ligatures

          I'm not sure of what "aftermarket" lig fits this description, but the one-vertical-screw-on-bottom type of lig might be best for isolating the reed from the band. Based on my strange speak, a Rovner would be a "one-horizontal-screw-on-top lig. Otto Link STM ligs are like this as well as an old Selmer lig. I think the key is that the reed is help firmly in place, but not suffocated by the band. I got an ED Rovner for tenor recently, and it has quite a bit of versatility. You might be able to home in on a set-up you like with one of those, too. With my recent SBA "find", there was an adjustable metal strap lig in the case. No screws - you just set the circumference for whatever instrument you are playing and you slide it on. You could use one of these things on a soprano or a tenor as they adjust a lot. These ligs don't fit as tightly as modern ligs, but maybe that's a good thing, eh? I think reed freedom is important for jazz tone as well as reed placement. I pull the reed slightly lower for jazz than I do for classical so there's less contact with the tip. I also keep the lig towards the bottom of the reed - not the center.

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        3. by jaankaden
          (4 posts)

          11 years ago

          Re: Ligatures

          Hi sax_maniac. You seem awfully experienced and I would really love it if you could offer me some advice on this subject matter. I've been playing saxophone for quite some time now, but through all my years of playing, I've never really encountered any serious talk on the positioning of the ligature. It seems that any saxophone resource I can find automatically assumes that we would know how to position a ligature on a saxophone. Some go as far as mentioning that the ligature should be placed below the vamp of the reed, most stop at telling us to tighten the reed. When I saw you mention that you adjust the position of the reed and ligature for jazz, I thought maybe you could give me some insight into your reasons for doing so. Does it improve the tone and response? I currently position my reed to be flush with the tip of the mouthpiece, with the mouthpiece just peeking out. Ligature-wise, I tighten it about half a centimeter below the trough of the vamp. However, after hearing what you said, I'm definitely going to try your method of placement and see if there are any improvements. Also, one last thing. Have you ever come across the FF Padded Tension Ring ligature sold at saxophones.co.uk? Any opinions on it? Thanks!

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        4. by sax_maniac
          (984 posts)

          11 years ago

          Re: Ligatures

          Thanks for the compliment. Though I've been playing for a while, I'm probably more passionate than experienced. Half of this is experience, and half of this is my knowledge of mechanical engineering. For quick response, it's best that there's nothing absorbing the vibrations. So that means reducing mass and transmissability. A heavy fabric lig strapped on tight is going to make that fabric a part of your reed as much as the cane itself. This darkens the tone and can slow the response when doing rapid articulations. So moving the lig away from the vamp helps - so long as you're still fitting the reed properly to the mpc table. If it's too low, your reed will want to lift from the table, which will stuff things up. I majorly botched a solo during rehearsal a few months ago because I had inadvertantly placed my Rovner lig slightly onto the vamp. I was requiring a very dark sound, but this tone was so dark, I though I left my swab in my sax. I'm not familiar with the padded tension ring. Sounds like something out of the gas station bathroom vending machine. What is it supposed to do? I've heard of people putting rubber rings near the vamp for a darkening effect. So for brighter response, I like the screw on top ligs with rails or indentations on the band that minimize contact with the reed. I also tighten it no more than necessary to keep the reed in place so the reed can do it's thing with as little restraint as possible. Ideally, it would be only your embouchre holding the reed in place, but that is impractical. Experiment! You've got nothing to lose but your mind!

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        5. by golferguy675
          (600 posts)

          11 years ago

          Re: Ligatures

          Do you know where I could find an STM lig? It would probably work great since I use an otto link a lot for jazz.

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