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Discussion Starter #1
I just purchased my first Saxophone, YTS-23, ordered The Saxophone Instruction DVD from Amazon UK. My Embouchure is good, steady but not consistent yet. trying to find books/lessons that are directional more towards a Tenor then an Alto are hard.

Never played in Band in school, I was a Jock.

Look forward to any tips. I do plan to take some lessons but I believe those would be better for advanced beginner or intermediate level.

Does anyone know of a good series of training for a Tenor Saxophone?

Thanks
Leigh
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2011
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Check out my beginning saxophone series of lessons. They are available for alto or tenor, come with written and video instruction, and are geared toward adults interested in learning to play jazz sax. There are some free introductory lessons and an overview of the series at:
wwwbeginningsax.com

Randy
www.randyhunterjazz.com
Online Jazz Lessons and Books
New Lesson: Shaping the Blues Scale
Lessons page: www.beginningsax.com/Jazz Improv Lessons.htm
Podcast Samples: http://www.youtube.com/user/saxtrax
Rhythm Changes Demo: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SrT0Xw_y9d0
 

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Indistinguishable Resident Buescher Bigot and Foru
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Randy's book is good.

Want a tip? Get a local sax teacher to guide you through it.
 

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I do plan to take some lessons but I believe those would be better for advanced beginner or intermediate level.
Lessons are good at any level, but maybe even more important at the very beginning, because whatever habits you get into at the start are going to affect everything you do later. In other words, the earlier you start with lessons, the more time any good advice has to multiply itself through all of your subsequent practice.

Sometimes a teacher can simplify something for you in a couple of minutes that would have taken you a couple of months to work out on your own; or it could be something that you didn't even realise you needed to work out.
 

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Lessons are good at any level, but maybe even more important at the very beginning, because whatever habits you get into at the start are going to affect everything you do later. In other words, the earlier you start with lessons, the more time any good advice has to multiply itself through all of your subsequent practice.

Sometimes a teacher can simplify something for you in a couple of minutes that would have taken you a couple of months to work out on your own; or it could be something that you didn't even realise you needed to work out.
Yup - I would agree with this. I think it is most important to have a teacher when you first start out, so you don't ingrain bad habits. I played clarinet for years, but when I started to play sax, I took a series of group lessons to make sure I got the basics down right.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I actually got my first lesson today, he had a cancellation so I got in early, was a good lesson, I did find my Embouchure was a bit over and we worked on that then ran scales. so does $80.00 monthly for four 30 minute sessions sound about correct?
 

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$40/hr? That's cheap.

FWIW, I paid Jerry Bergonzi $65 for a half hour a few weeks ago ($130/hr).
 

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Good job on the lessons if you are brand new. Agree with most here. They are very very important in the beginning more so than even later. Rates sound about right on the money. BTW...ask him to check your horn by playing it if possible to make sure you don't have 'horn' issues. Some kids think they suck, when really, their horn has a leak or other. I know you just bought it, but have him check it out.
 

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Great to hear that you're getting started with lessons!

Make sure you weight any advice on lesson pricing in favour of people who live close to you (I certainly think $40 an hour sounds like an excellent price, but I'm so far removed geographically that my opinion is practically useless to you.)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks everyone. I've been working on scales the last few days and it seems to be coming along good, did take a bit to get the tongue to be smooth and not wet sounding.

Leigh
 

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Hi Leigh,

I learnt music as a child, but only got serious about learning as an adult, and after a break from playing for a few years.

Don't know how much spare time you have for reading, but following are books that address the process of learning, and I've found them motivating when I've been frustrated with my progress (which happens to everyone on a regular basis). Personally, I've had recurring doubts about my ability to continue learning as an adult and reading this stuff always reassures me that it's just a question of finding the time to practise.

This is stuff that I wished I'd discovered before I hit the wall the first time, so please take this as well meaning advice, rather than a question about your motivation!!

If you can't fit in the reading, in summary our ability to learn new things doesn't diminish by very much at all in adulthood. It's just a question of having a good method of learning and putting in consistent effort at it over a long period. That method basically involves being very focussed on small challenges that are just outside your current capabilities, almost all the time you're practising.

You continue to form new pathways in your brain whenever you face a new challenge, and they are mainly built while you sleep (if your head is throbbing and you feel exhausted after a practice session, you've been productive!)

These books all cover similar material:

The Brain That Changes Itself
Outliers
The Talent Code

(Links are to listings in the SOTW Amazon Store.)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks LindsayW, I have read and own The Talent Code, I'll look into the other two. I hope I take the Sax to my grave, that being said I want to continue to learn as long as I'm alive.

Leigh
 

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that's great you are taking lessons right away. i didn't start until a year on my own, and had a lot of embrochure and fingering work to sort through. those basics made a huge difference in playing ease and sound.
it helps to listen to a lot of music you'd like to play on the sax. i think an hour of active listening is as good as a lesson.
if you find some tunes you like, play with tracks from playalongs, or iphone's ireal b, band in a box, etc... here is a site with some backing tracks
http://www.ralphpatt.com/Backing.html
playing along with music is the most useful practice tool for me.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
that's great you are taking lessons right away. i didn't start until a year on my own, and had a lot of embrochure and fingering work to sort through. those basics made a huge difference in playing ease and sound.
it helps to listen to a lot of music you'd like to play on the sax. i think an hour of active listening is as good as a lesson.
if you find some tunes you like, play with tracks from playalongs, or iphone's ireal b, band in a box, etc... here is a site with some backing tracks
http://www.ralphpatt.com/Backing.html
playing along with music is the most useful practice tool for me.
Madhag, that website is awesome. looking forward to when I can start doing that. I listen to alot and agree it is what keeps me wanting to learn.
 

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Madhag, that website is awesome. looking forward to when I can start doing that. I listen to alot and agree it is what keeps me wanting to learn.
I'm 46 and I started learning the sax about 3 years ago. I feel I've made some good progress since then and other people, including some very good jazz teachers, think the same. I know I still have a long way to go, but here's the secret to what I've achieved so far:

Practice everyday (yes, EVERY day)
Have a clear program/plan of what to do each day/week/month
Be patient with yourself and think long term
Focus intensively on a few things rather than jump from this to that all the time
Find equipment that you're comfortable with and that gives you pleasure in playing

Good luck!
 

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Having a teacher is the best...Well into my 3rd year and his advise and encouragement always gives me a push. I have my horn on a stand ready to play at any given moment. Between commercials while I am watching TV, waiting for my wife to finish getting ready when we go out, waiting for the charcol on the grill....its easy to find a half hour to practice. Find a song you want to play and work on it along with the lessons... mine was "Georgia" it was the first and is still my favorite (after 3 years I am sure my wife is beginnig to detest it). Keep at it man its a good ride!!!
 

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I actually got my first lesson today, he had a cancellation so I got in early, was a good lesson, I did find my Embouchure was a bit over and we worked on that then ran scales. so does $80.00 monthly for four 30 minute sessions sound about correct?
$80.00 sounds very reasonable for that time frame. I pay $100.00 monthly for four 30 minute sessions.
 
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