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· Registered
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi I am new to this website, and I have a few questions that hopefully can be answered.

I have been playing Alto for about 5 years (6th through 10th grade) in my school's bands. I've never had private lessons, so I don't really have anyone to guide me.

I am looking towards a career in music but I know that my playing is not up to those standards yet. I want to know what I can do to improve.

I currently play an alto made by the brand Hawk, I don't know any more than that. I also play a Yamaha 4c mouthpiece with Vandoren 3 reeds. With this combination i've learned that I have sometimes have trouble with high notes (mostly e and above on the palm keys) and notes below low c. I have also noticed that I sometimes get a very airy sound and I don't know why because on other days I get a clear sound. I don't know much on what I can do to improve my mouthpiece/instrument but I do know that I love playing jazz/rock but can't get that tone. I also play classical, but I want to focus more on the jazz/rock aspect.

I appreciate advice/knowledge anyone has to offer.

~Brittany :treble:

· Distinguished SOTW Member/Forum Contributor 2010
3,388 Posts
Welcome to SOTW, its a great resource and a great online community too.

First step... get a private teacher. Nothing beats having someone experienced who can see and hear what you are doing, check out your horn, offer advice and practice routines etc... SOTW is great, but its not a substitute for a real teacher.

Second step.... while waiting to see the teacher, get your tuner out and practice "long tones"

Think long and hard about what a career in music might mean. Not to rain on anyones parade, but very very few players make a living just from playing, most of those that do make a living from music are teaching or playing a variety of instruments in a variety of circumstances (not necessarily what they would choose, but it pays the bills), and the huge majority of those here just play as a hobby, even some monster players. Making a living from music alone is a career choice with the odds against you.

· Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2007-
5,494 Posts
First, welcome to SOTW!

If you plan to have a career in music, now is probably the perfect time to get a teacher.

I don't know about Hawk brand saxophones, but it is probably an Asian stencil of some type. A saxophone teacher can probably evaluate it better than we can over an internet forum. The standard answer is to upgrade to a used reasonably-priced professional model such as a Yamaha YAS-62.

If you search this forum, you will see that we answer this questions about once a week. I recommend that you start with the teacher and then worry about upgrading equipment as the need arises. The most important piece of equipment is always the player. And a teacher can help the most with that.
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