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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I was hoping you guys might have some suggestions. I have a problem with high E (palm keys) in that it's hard for me to maintain, let alone even hit without grace-noting. The pitch always drops an octave. I can maintain it much easier if I squeeze (thus making it super sharp), which makes me think that I need a faster airstream or a different voicing (I'm thinking "hey"), but I still can't seem to get it. When I do play it, like during a gig/rehearsal, I have to go up to it from a D or something, and it ends up being sharp.

Front E is easier to play, but is still sharp (which I thnk I just need to work on consciously adjusting), and sounds thin.

Which leads me to my next question... I have a similar issue with front high F#. It is pretty thin sounding, and is really hard for me to hit without gracenoting from front F. Any ideas? Front F, however, is a great note for me and is easy to hit... but I don't even want to think about hitting palm key F.

For added info, palm key D and Eb are better notes for me and the tone is not as thin. Intonation is better also, with Eb being slightly sharp. Do you think my horn needs to be looked at? Last time it was looked at for leaks was probably Christmas.

Any help will be appreciated!
 

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1. Unclench that jaw. You may be tightening up unknowingly as the note approaches.
2. Raise the middle/back of your tongue. Say EEEEE, see how the tongue goes to the top of your mouth... do that.
3. Try constricting your throat, narrowing the path the air takes and speeding it up which makes the reed vibrate faster (higher).
4. Air support. Push air from your belly, not your chest.

Work on your overtones as well...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks buddy lee for the advice! I played some more and I don't believe I am unknowingly tightening as I get up there. But I will work more 2 and 3.

@simon I play on a P. Mauriat 66R tenor with a Phil-Tone hard rubber piece. This has been my setup for a while, and I do work with long tones up high on a pretty consistent basis, so it may very well be that my horn could use some adjusting. But I'm not sure.

Thanks again guys.
 

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That's a killer setup. Have it checked with a repair dude. If that doesn't work, just work on 2 and 3 that buddy lee mentioned.
 
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