Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2017
Joined
·
6,086 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Unfortunately I have several gigs in the next few days and am in the middle of a bout with bronchitis...

Normally I’d find a sub, but tomorrow’s gig is too soon, and NYE it’s not likely I can find someone who can do it. Yes - I’ve talked to my doctor. Yes - I’m hydrating and breathing steam, but my breath support sucks, and 20 minutes of playing wipes me out.

I’ve already played one gig this way and it went ok with the help of a hot toddy and and some syrup, but I was wondering if anyone had any other tips? I find I need to breath in unaccustomed places, and my tone is a bit wobbly.

And when I try too hard to correct those things, I lose the groove, hit a clam, and it’s downhill from there. I embarrass myself, start thinking too much and break out in a sweat. More than half my audience tomorrow night are musicians and I could use any edge I can get. I love playing with my musical brothers (and sisters), but it can be a bit unnerving playing for a gathering of them when you’re off your game.
 

·
Forum Contributor 2017
Joined
·
7,491 Posts
I'm sorry to hear that. Been there and I have used a combination of Ibuprofen, Non-Drowsy Cough medicine and drank lots of water.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,537 Posts
I'm sorry you're sick! But I think about how much easier it is for an instrumentalist to work sick than a vocalist- it's amazing what they pull off sometimes.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
TENOR, soprano, alto, baritone
Joined
·
7,431 Posts
I've done it a few times, usually drinking more than I normally would to get through the night. One in particular I remember was 100 miles out of town, in the winter of 1979. I played in a sickly green cardigan sweater over my gig shirt, the same color as the stuff I was coughing up. I also had a fever at the time. However, I've never had any trouble with having enough breath to play. Since that is your main symptom, I'm somewhat concerned you might really be bordering on pneumonia.
Whatever, I hope you blow it out and feel better after the gigs than you did before!
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2017
Joined
·
6,086 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
I'm sorry you're sick! But I think about how much easier it is for an instrumentalist to work sick than a vocalist- it's amazing what they pull off sometimes.
Yes - but there is a price sometimes....I started my musical life in the late 70’s as a vocalist. Like many bands of the time, we toured the country playing music halls and hotels. About 6 years in I got bronchitis and because we needed to eat - I sang on. Four nights in, I lost my voice - and permanently lost about half an octave. I was “replaced” about a month later and never recovered my range...at the time I was heartbroken...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
643 Posts
Yes - I’m hydrating and breathing steam
Well if you have bronchitis and have difficulty breathing, maybe, just maybe, try not to inhale things that will make it worse for you to breathe, like steam. I know, crazy idea right?
Funny story, on a bus stop at night about 4 years ago there was a lady who was having an asthma attack and called the ambulance, so what did she do to naturally calm herself? Grabbed a ciggarrete and smoked. Really smart
 

·
Just a guy who plays saxophone.
Joined
·
3,581 Posts
If you’re saxophoning like a saxophonist should, your vocal chords and health of voice is every bit as important as that of a singer. If you can’t sing the note it’s a feat in compensation to be in tune and have a quality tone. I made the mistake of agreeing to a week of really taxing gigs last year while I had bronchitis and it took a lot time for both my voice and comfort playing saxophone to come all the way back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,310 Posts
Make sure the other band members know so that if you hit a dead spot, somebody can pitch in and bridge. Hey, the lead guitar player might even enjoy the situation :) Na, what I am saying is try to play as efficient as you can, 80% of the notes with 20% of the effort. And somebody will later come and tell you that that was the best they ever heard you play!
 

·
Distinguished SOTW member/, Official SOTW Sister
Joined
·
19,209 Posts
Check with your doctor and see if you need a nebulizer. Those steam treatments really help reduce the inflammation and make breathing so much easier.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
28,511 Posts
I would suggest that you be on an antibiotic for lung and throat infections just incase the cause isn't viral. Also get an inhaler like Ventolin or Atrovent. I use both for my Bronchiectasis when I get choked or have phlegm because if I don't I will get an infection in my lungs and have to take antibiotics. I thought it was bronchitis until I went to a lung specialist and found out what it really is. It's similar to COPD. Anyway, one to three quick inhalations of either inhaler at the end of each number will really help you. It's worked for me at jams.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2017
Joined
·
6,086 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
All good advice. I’ve got an inhaler, I’m taking antibiotics, and while I really like the bourbon method, after about 4 or 5 doses, I have to adjust my playing - some staccatos I hear in my head don’t come out of the sax the way I planned them - The nebulizer sounds like a great idea, but I’m out of time today... Thanks for all the great suggestions!
And the song.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
28,511 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,310 Posts
All good advice. I’ve got an inhaler, I’m taking antibiotics, and while I really like the bourbon method, after about 4 or 5 doses, I have to adjust my playing - some staccatos I hear in my head don’t come out of the sax the way I planned them - The nebulizer sounds like a great idea, but I’m out of time today... Thanks for all the great suggestions!
And the song.
Maybe add a mask over the bell, too so that others won't get exposed! Works especially well with Asian horns!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
30 Posts
What has caused your bronchitis? Have you seen a doctor? This is really the wrong question to be asking on this space!
Some years ago I played at a festival in a ski resort. I had bronchitis caused by a bacterial infection so my doctor prescribed standard asthma medication plus antibiotics plus steroids. Somehow I got the dosage on the steroids wrong, took a double dose by mistake and spent a manic and sleepless 48 hours .... but had no problems with the gigs. People were a little reluctant though to do the 450 km return journey with me at the wheel in Hunter S Thompson mode
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
28,511 Posts
Maybe add a mask over the bell, too so that others won't get exposed! Works especially well with Asian horns!
You mean like this, right?

But not lying down. I don't understand that part since the photo was vertical in my phone and vertical on my Mac but when uploaded here it is suddenly horizontal.


View attachment 250144
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top