Saxophone Forum


by maddmax91
(1 post)
10 years ago

scared......

Ive played clarinet for 2 years now and am really good, 2nd chair is good for me. But for x-mas i recieved an alto sax and am joining marching band for next year, i have been practicing my butt off and learned all the notes and all. but it doesent sound very good and im not to sure of how to hold it for marching band, if anyone can give me any tips, information, or nething that can help me with marching band please tell me

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  1. by barisax999
    (400 posts)

    10 years ago

    Re: scared......

    as for getting better sound... the key is long tones. just keep playing the long tones. as for marching band; keep the horn parallel to your body, keep you elbows up, chin up, very clean posture, and a slight lean forward

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    1. by west
      (242 posts)

      10 years ago

      Re: scared......

      Keep your toes at a 45 or 90 degree angle. Long tones help with emboucher. emboucher gives better tone quality. better tone quality gives better placement for second semester. As to holding the sax, it's pretty much like holding the clarinet. It depend on the director, though, if you keep it parallel. You'd be surprised.

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  2. by woutanh
    (19 posts)

    10 years ago

    Re: scared......

    ...try marching with the corps style... becasue thats a heck of a lot easier than show... find talk to the drum majors or your director.... that'll help. as for tone, yes long tones are the best. air support is wonderful too ;o)

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    1. by The_┬žax
      (147 posts)

      9 years ago

      Re: scared......

      Try seeing a professional sax player or a teacher for 1 or 2 one hour lessons. In these he will be able to work with you on tone and embouchure, because thats where i think you would be having problems. Saxophone and clarinet are considered similar, not the same. The embouchure for sax is rather more relaxed than clarinet. An even better teacher to see would be one that plays both sax and clarinet.

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  3. by Cannon
    (23 posts)

    9 years ago

    Re: scared......

    Maddmax...I went through a similar situation. I was given a rental sax for my birthday, spring of my sophmore year. Technically, sax and clarinet are very similar. However, the hardest part is embocure based. With the clarinet, you have a very tight embochure. Your corners are pulled back. A saxophone embochure is completely different. You have to have a very relaxed one, think almost nonexistent. A TEST TO SEE HOW TIGHT YOU ARE: Get by a piano and take off that mouthpiece. Blow into only the mouthpiece and stabalize a sound. See what pitch that is on the piano. It should be an A on the piano (F# on the sax). I, myself, was blowing quite sharp (thus too tight) at first. Also, with the corners of your mouth being pulled back, the bottom lip cushion is not enough to produce a vibrant sound. You will receive a thin sound b/c the reed is unable to vibrate as fully. I'm fortunate enough to have a great private lessons teacher who is almost psychotic about embochure and sound quality. Finally, make sure you are taking enough mouthpiece. You should be taking more mouthpiece than you would for a clarinet. That information is weeks of classical private lessons basically. It took me awhile to fix my embochure...but now it's pretty good. I gotta lot to learn...but learning sax well is so worth it. Jazz=stuff of the gods. I'll be happy to elaborate on information mentioned if you are serious about wanting to play sax. Although private lessons are a good idea.

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    1. by jaggtagg7
      (40 posts)

      9 years ago

      Re: scared......

      i think cannon pretty much covered everything. and lessons is definately a must. As for how to hold it for marching band, i'd suggest to ur director about correct holding + posture as specifics can be different with each band. as to doubling. let me give u a heads up. just make sure that you never stop playing either instrument for any period of time. its very easy to forget any and everything. for me, at first i continued to play both clari and alto, but then i decided i liked alto alot better and started playing only alto in marching and concert band. i stopped playing clarinet all together although i never wanted to quit it. so now i am haveing to go back and relearn alot of stuff. I was called on to double for our musical and it took my a while to adjust back. for the most part i felt like an idiot cuss i pretty much stunk it up.

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