Re: Need recommendations and info on best sax for son
You first need to understand what your son wants to do. If he really wishes to continue playing into the college level then I would consider buying him a professional saxophone. There are many established makers (Selmer, Yamaha, Yanigisawa) and new up in coming makers (P. Mauriat). Choosing makers is all based on personal taste. Try to have your son try out each and he can decide for himself. Saxes are usually divided into 3 level makes (beginner, intermediate, professional) with each of course experiencing better craftsmanship and quality. Whether your son wishes to buy alto or tenor needs to be decided before buying anything especially since he could lose interest in saxophone altogether within the next year. Used saxophones are great but you must make sure they are in good working condition. Just take care in that but there is no shame in buying a used.
Second, Mouthpieces are expensive. You can try getting used ones as well on ebay and such but you just have to be careful with them being in original condition and no damage to the mouthpiece especially where the reed lays against the top and bottom of the piece. Selmer C* are usually the first mouthpiece if not second mouthpiece for many novice players.
Third, playing loud is never a good thing in a band setting! Your son will have to learn with time to blend his sound as saxophones can cut through a band easy. This only comes with experience and maturity in playing the instrument. Tell your son he needs to learn to listen and play with dynamics. Creating a "donut" for your son's sax will also help muffle the sound a bit and even give it a more centered sound. Just get a shower ring and fold with stripes of cloth in a circular motion to create what looks like a donut. It is placed inside the bell and holds against the walls of it.
Anyways good luck to you and your son. Hope I helped.