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Discussion Starter #1
Can folks make recommendations of players that use black lacquer selmer paris altos? Or comment on them? There is not much to hear on youtube if you just google black lacquer selmer alto. Also, does anyone known about the white lacquer models and where one might be for sale? Check out the Ornette Coleman documentary on youtube to hear him play his killer low A white alto!
 

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I play a black lacquer Series III alto, but I don't know of any famous players who do. Then again, I haven't ever tried to research the issue. Selmer Paris altos in general (Series III, Series II, and old Mark VIs) are popular among classical players, but classical players as a group appear to be pretty conservative about finish choices. I think it's about how the horns look as much as anything else.

White lacquer Selmers pop up on eBay or Reverb on rare occasions, but since horns with this finish have not been made for many years, they're much, much harder to find than black lacquer models. I think a white alto for sale would most likely be a Series II.

Here's a good video of a saxophone concerto that I like being played on a black lacquer alto (with electric guitar to boot!), but unfortunately, the sax is a Yamaha.

 

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Discussion Starter #3
Cool man - would love ti hear how you found your horn and what the decision process was like for you. I know there have to be players on youtube playing them. Branford Marsalis played on on Just Friends in Ken Burns series can’t find a clip of that though. I’ve been researching the selmer altos and gotten a lot of good intel here. Problem is nowadays it would be impossible to try the multitude of lacquer, series, pre jubilee post jubille etc. Seems like if you wanted a more obscure model you have to order online. Luckily most places have a trail. Another interesting clip on youtube is Branford saying he ordered a new selmer online and people said you should play it first and he said ‘No I’ll like it..and its the horn I played on all Stings albums and so on’ always remembered that.
 

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Cool man - would love ti hear how you found your horn and what the decision process was like for you.
First, I already had an affinity for black lacquer. I have a black Yanagisawa alto that I purchased brand-new in the late 1990s (my current backup horn), and also a black Yany curved soprano that I bought used on eBay. I was playing a gold lacquer Selmer Series II as my main alto. The finish was great (I'm certainly not an "Every horn I have must be black lacquer!" person), but I had some small issues with response and playability that led me to wonder whether a Series III might be better for me. I started looking around, and found a used Jubilee Series III alto in excellent condition for a very appealing "Buy It Now" price. Offers were invited, so I made an offer of a couple hundred dollars below the asking price, and it was accepted. The sax happened to be black lacquer, which for me was a bonus, but not a requirement. But I suppose some other buyers might have thought, "Well, I want a Jubilee alto, and this one looks great, but it's black lacquer, and I don't know about that ...." The finish didn't get in the way at all for me, so I was able to snap up the good deal.

I then tested the Series III against my Series II, as reported in my detailed comparison thread in this subforum.

Did I at any time wonder whether a black lacquer Series III alto might sound different from a gold lacquer or silver-plated Series III? Not really. If I had been seriously concerned about that, the shopping process would have been much more complicated, assuming I wanted to arrange comparisons. My only assumption was that any Series III would be somewhat different from a Series II, and that turned out to be correct.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
First, I already had an affinity for black lacquer. I have a black Yanagisawa alto that I purchased brand-new in the late 1990s (my current backup horn), and also a black Yany curved soprano that I bought used on eBay. I was playing a gold lacquer Selmer Series II as my main alto. The finish was great (I'm certainly not an "Every horn I have must be black lacquer!" person), but I had some small issues with response and playability that led me to wonder whether a Series III might be better for me. I started looking around, and found a used Jubilee Series III alto in excellent condition for a very appealing "Buy It Now" price. Offers were invited, so I made an offer of a couple hundred dollars below the asking price, and it was accepted. The sax happened to be black lacquer, which for me was a bonus, but not a requirement. But I suppose some other buyers might have thought, "Well, I want a Jubilee alto, and this one looks great, but it's black lacquer, and I don't know about that ...." The finish didn't get in the way at all for me, so I was able to snap up the good deal.

I then tested the Series III against my Series II, as reported in my detailed comparison thread in this subforum.

Did I at any time wonder whether a black lacquer Series III alto might sound different from a gold lacquer or silver-plated Series III? Not really. If I had been seriously concerned about that, the shopping process would have been much more complicated, assuming I wanted to arrange comparisons. My only assumption was that any Series III would be somewhat different from a Series II, and that turned out to be correct.
Thanks man very helpful.
I saw a black ii on pm woodwinds website I might call about. Thnking I will stay patient though and look for a good deal like you got. Would love to find a white one!

Anyone else know of a black lacquered horns being played at gigs I can check out on youtube?

So many options out there it can make your head spin. lol.
 
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