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Hello all,

I have an old YAS 61 Yamaha alto saxophone. I desire to generate a dark classical tone, but I certainly do sound too bright. Can anyone recommend a specific mouthpiece that works well for this instrument for a dark sound, and speaking of this, in addition what would you recommend as the best reed for this instrument, for a dark classical sound?
 

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Welcome to the forum! I can't speak for the 61 specifically, but on my 62 tenor and EX alto I really like Rascher and Caravan pieces for a DARK sound. My current preferred tenor piece is a Caravan I had "rebalanced" by Joe Giardullo (Soprano Planet). I got my degree playing Raschers on all horns, briefly switched my alto to the medium chamber Caravan, but have switched back to the Rascher since getting a new V1 neck.

I believe Caravan has a trial policy, and you can get both Caravan and Rascher from Weiner Music, also with trial.
 

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+1 for Caravan, I play one on Baritone sax, it doesn't get any darker than that.

A more mainstream option would be a Vandoren or Selmer. I prefer a round chamber, (Vandoren, Selmer Concept), which I find gives a more focussed sound, but plently of people still like the old square-chamber Selmers. There is a D'addario Reserve model out now too, though I haven't tried it.
 

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Thanks Eulipion!

In fact underneath another forum on this website that is about generating dark sound, someone else highly recommended the Rascher mouthpiece. When this mouthpiece was designed, this person claims that the inventor developed this mouthpiece on a Yamaha saxophone. I am going to also try a caravan plus I may see what is Selmer concept sounds like on this instrument.
 

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Thanks also, Laurjohn! You can see on my previous reply that I am going to also try the Concept, certainly the Vandoren, and maybe the S-80 that is widely used.
 

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Dr. Rousseau played a Rousseau 4R on his.
 

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Thanks also, Laurjohn! You can see on my previous reply that I am going to also try the Concept, certainly the Vandoren, and maybe the S-80 that is widely used.
You might want to try a Yamaha "Custom" hard rubber piece as well. High quality clones of the S-80. I have a 6CM that fits my sound concept on my YAS-52.

I tend to have a bright core sound and the square chamber seems to tone things down a bit.
 

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Dr. Rousseau played a Rousseau 4R on his.
Are these considered "dark"? I've always thought they were toward the brighter end of the classical spectrum. Not saying Dr. Rousseau doesn't sound good on the piece.

You might want to try a Yamaha "Custom" hard rubber piece as well. High quality clones of the S-80. I have a 6CM that fits my sound concept on my YAS-52.

I tend to have a bright core sound and the square chamber seems to tone things down a bit.
I've had the opposite experience with the stock 4CM. It's the brightest "classical" piece I own, but that can vary player to player.

I have a Concept, and it's really nice. A bit brighter than the Caravan and Rascher pieces, but has great response, and a very complex tone. I could get used to it as a classical piece, but it is a touch brighter than I prefer.
 

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Well, a Rousseau is not going to be as dark as, say, a Caravan, but yamahas were designed with Rousseau as a consultant.

IMO, if you want dark, you need a Buescher or perhaps a Keilwerth.
 

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I play a Yamaha Custom 6CM on my YTS-62iii tenor and it has the same tip opening as a Selmer C** S80 (i.e. 1.90 mm). I find these pieces to be easier to play than the S80. Perhaps that is due to the hand facing that each piece gets. The low notes play like silk, but it doesn't seem like altissimo has been sacrificed. Their standard, plastic mouthpieces do not get hand facing so while they seem to have the same design, there could be significant differences with how they play. I think it has a dark, rich but centered tone. I think would be ideal for classical or wind ensembles, but I'm not an expert by a long shot.
 

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Thanks Haku, Airlyte, Euli, JoAnn--I do want to try them all as mentioned. Certainly one never knows until you the player actually sample such MP's directly.
 

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Buescher Aristocrat or True Tone, with Rascher mouthpiece. If you don't want to invest yet, why not take a couple lessons with someone out of that school and ask to play their setup?
 
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