Saxophone Forum


by saxman33
(1 post)
5 years ago

low notes on Tenor sax

how do i get a clean attack on low b -Bb

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  1. by saxandbassplayer
    (42 posts)

    5 years ago

    Re: low notes on Tenor sax

    Practice. There are a lot of different things that you can do, but it's a bit of a trial and error thing. You can always argue that there could be a leak or do some kind of equipment change, but really practicing and figuring out what's comfortable for you is the trick. Assuming you're playing on a good horn that's leak free, with a good mouthpiece and a good matched reed... it's just practice. Subtoning can work, and often times it's a more desirable sound over just blasting those low notes. Try practicing, try different changes to your embouchure, and figure out what works best for you. There's no surefire way afterall!

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    1. by kelsey
      (793 posts)

      5 years ago

      Re: low notes on Tenor sax

      saxandbassplayer, a good and thoughtful answer!!!..................Kelsey
      Barry Kelsey

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      1. by saxandbassplayer
        (42 posts)

        5 years ago

        Re: low notes on Tenor sax

        Thanks Kelsey! I guess college is paying off for me! Having a great teacher definitely helps.

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    2. by newreedsyndrome
      (343 posts)

      5 years ago

      Re: low notes on Tenor sax

      Nice comment saxandbassplayer A tendency I've always noticed is that low notes speak better when I hold the horn out a little bit - so the mouthpiece is going straight into my mouth rather than at an angle. This allows the most air into the mouthpiece and keeps the pressure on the reed even so as not to supress any range of overtones in the sound, unless I want to do that for a timbral variation. I would also advise experimentation with the amount of mouthpiece you take in. See how much mouthpiece you can take whilte maintaining tonal control, and how little you can take and still get a full sound. As far as practicing the lower register, I like to do intervallic excersizes in the low register with different dynamics and tone qualities. I start with chromatic patterns and increase the size of the intervals up to 9th based patterns and beyond. This is rigorous - especially small ascending intervals particularly on vintage horns, and large descending intervals - but it does wonders for your control. Hope this helps.

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      1. by blackfrancis
        (396 posts)

        5 years ago

        Re: low notes on Tenor sax

        In addition to all the above, make sure your mouthpiece has a good facing and that your particular brand of reeds works well with that facing.

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