Music Performance, Worship Leading, Saxophones, Things to Think About, More

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Note: Because we manage multiple music sites with some overlapping content, we have divided the discussion topics between the sites' discussion forums, depending on which site has the greater emphasis on a topic.

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  • Vintage Saxophones
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 Post subject: Sharing about Saxophones
PostPosted: Tue Sep 09, 2014 7:30 am 
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Joined: Thu May 15, 2014 6:03 pm
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In 2012-2013, I did some research on vintage saxophones and came to realize that some of the "offbrand" new horns I learned on in the 1960s and 1970s have come to be considered collectibles. On more study, I realized that, apart from the shape and placement of the pinky keys, several of them would outlast and outplay 90% of the so-called "student horns" being made today, including a few with (formerly) impressive brand names attached. For example, my "disposable" first ("Elkhart") tenor saxophone was built using the same tooling as the once-dominant Buescher True-Tone, with some key improvements from Buescher Aristocrat engineering. I recently played a properly set-up first-generation Selmer Bundy tenor (essentially the same horn) with a Selmer C* mouthpiece and got "all kind of sound" out of it, as well as far better intonation than the horns being called "Bundy" today.

Since then, I've recieved lots of replies from folks with similar experiences, in addition to questions about some old piece found in an attic or some such. Not every ancient saxophone is worth restoring, mind you. Some were hard to play or keep in tune when they were new, and many have been damaged beyond the point where it makes sense to sink money into them. But these old horns made major contributions to the development of both Jazz and Rock and Roll, and many of them can still make great music today.

So, this is a good place for comments and questions. Starting in August, 2014, I will be posting reader questions and my reponses here for the benefit of other sax owners/players who may have the same question. If you sign up for the forums, you can help us by adding what you know about some horn or another as well.


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Paul Race playing his Longneck guitar. Click to go to Paul's music home page.A Note from Paul: Whatever else you get out of our pages, I hope you have a blessed day and figure out how to be a blessing to those around you as well.

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