Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 20 of 25 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I am currently about to enter college for jazz studies. I play on a selmer S80 c** (which i hear has a .85 opening), and i use vandoren V16 reeds in strength 3.
I play a jupiter 889SG tenor sax. I want a more "jazzy" sound. I would be more specific, but so far i have had trouble identifying "bright" sounds as compared to "dark" sounds. I know bright sounds are preferred for jazz, and having a silver sax would lead to brighter sounds anyways.
So if anyone can reccomend some mouthpiece or reed changes I would apprecieate it greatly.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,319 Posts
Most tenor players probably started with an Otto Link since alot of the big name jazz players used to play Otto Links. Start with a 5*or 6 or 6* which are closer to the opening you are used to. I prefer the NY model.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,319 Posts
james nichols said:
Thanks. Should i alter my reeds any? I have read that with metal mouthpieces a softer reed is usually used.
The material of the mouthpiece doesn't matter as far as reed size. What is more important is how easily you can voice the whole range of notes based on the opening size and size of the bore. I can use a size 3 Vandoren ZZ on a 5* but you may need a heavier or lighter reed. Some experimentation is required. Also, don't limit yourself to the metal Otto links- lots of jazz dudes played the rubber ones as well.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2015-
Joined
·
32,949 Posts
james nichols said:
I am currently about to enter college for jazz studies. I play on a selmer S80 c** (which i hear has a .85 opening), and i use vandoren V16 reeds in strength 3.
I play a jupiter 889SG tenor sax. I want a more "jazzy" sound. I would be more specific, but so far i have had trouble identifying "bright" sounds as compared to "dark" sounds. I know bright sounds are preferred for jazz,
Once you define "jazz", you could be correct... or not. I, for one, have been going ever darker in my jazz concept over the last 20+ years.

james nichols said:
and having a silver sax would lead to brighter sounds anyways.
The silver sax is brighter under the lights, that is true, but the color has little impact on the sound. Yes, I have a silver sax. See above regarding preferences for bright vs dark.

james nichols said:
So if anyone can reccomend some mouthpiece or reed changes I would apprecieate it greatly.
As soon as you know what you want, we can help you. What is as example of the sound you think you want to emulate?

G'luck in school!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
886 Posts
Hold your horses. I think one of the worst things a young player can do (and it's certainly something I did) is trying to chase a sound they think they're supposed to have. This usually involves buying equipment. Don't do anything yet. If you're starting college in a jazz studies program, I would have to assume you're going to have a teacher that will be able to work with you to help you find your setup. That's only half the work though. You need to have a good idea of what you're after. I would not suggest that anybody who has difficulty identifying dark sounds vs. bright sounds should buy anything based on what they were told would work. Who are your favorite players? You need a reference point. From there, you can ask for suggestion and work with your teacher to try some different pieces.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,921 Posts
The best thing to do in your situation, would be to look for a neutral setup. SInce you dont completely know what you want, and your concept will probably change, you want something capable of exectiong a little bit of everything. My suggestion: Berg Larsen x/2, Otto Link Tone Edge, or a Vandoren (I haven't played the hard rubber V16 yet, but the other models are great).
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,319 Posts
james nichols said:
Okay. Thanks. Do you have any experience with the vandoren V16 rubber mouthpieces?
James, I've not played the Vandoren rubber V-16 but have played the Metal version. In reality, you can play jazz on any mouthpiece -including a Selmer(Joe Henderson, for example). Jazz is more of a style of playing (includes many styles from dixieland to smooth and everything in between). Do you have any favorite players who's tone you may want to emulate? If so, then we can help you identify dark from light, etc. and maybe make a suggestion on mouthpieces. An Otto Link was suggested because you can use it in many styles and I imagine your instructors in college probably want something like that since they have been used for so many years. They blend well with a band and when miked, they are great for solo work. You want a mouthpiece that is flexible enough to get the sound you hear in your head. Jazz players use all brands of mouthpieces-even Berg Larsens(Sonny Rollins. On his early stuff he played on Otto Links) and even Dukoffs (early Michel Brecker) which were often associated with Rock and Roll. Oops, I just noticed you said you like mellow Sonny Rollins-the Otto Link is still my suggestion for you.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Okay, Sonny Rollins is one of my favorites. I also like the sound of the tenor player with Horace Silver on Song for my Father (Joe Henderson, i think), and i like Joshua Redman's sound also. I hope that helps some.

And Honeyboy, are you talking about the rubber ones or metal ones?
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2008
Joined
·
4,046 Posts
The Vandoren V16 should be fine. It's brighter than a Link, but it's a well made mouthpiece.

If you want to sound like Sonny I would ditch the S80, that just isn't going to cut it. Sonny uses huge tipped mouthpieces. Back in his classic period of the 50's and 60's he was playing on #10 metal links with hard reeds and Bergs later on with tip openings as big as a 130/2. He now plays a metal berg 120/2, but the modern bergs these days are poorly made. I don't suggest tips this large because it takes a lot of strength to control big tips and you'll be huff'n and puff'n trying to get a sound out of this kind of set up.

Joe Henderson uses a Selmer Soloist short shank supposedly a D, but there have been reports that it was opened up and was more like an G or H. Selmer makes a soloist with a long shank these days, a killer mouthpiece, but the stock facings suck big time, it needs to be refaced in order to play imo.

Joshua Redman uses Links. Hard Rubber Links these days, a 7 I believe.

A NY or STM Link in say a 6* might be what you're after. Hard rubber Otto Links in say a 7 or 8 are good to, but there are a lot of dudes that need some TLC from a mouthpiece refacer.
 

·
SOTW Administrator
Joined
·
26,208 Posts
Joe Henderson played on a selmer mouthpiece. It was probably originally a D tip, opened up at one time or another, according to rumors.

See if you can find an old selmer piece (Scrollshank, short or long) in a facing between F and I.

Alternatively, get yourself an Otto Link super tone master 7* and start playing long tones.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,319 Posts
james nichols said:
Okay, Sonny Rollins is one of my favorites. I also like the sound of the tenor player with Horace Silver on Song for my Father (Joe Henderson, i think), and i like Joshua Redman's sound also. I hope that helps some.

And Honeyboy, are you talking about the rubber ones or metal ones?
Either one is fine. The inside shape is what is important, more so than the material.I like the sound of both metal ones and rubber ones. I use a metal one. If you have a local music store, go try some out. if not, if you can, order a few from Woodwind/Brasswind on a trial basis and see which you like. All you pay is shipping charges to try them out. You can try 4 at a time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Once again, thanks for all the advice. Its really nice to have a resource like this online. And i realize that i won't sound like Sonny Rollins!
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
2,319 Posts
james nichols said:
Once again, thanks for all the advice. Its really nice to have a resource like this online. And i realize that i won't sound like Sonny Rollins!
No problem. I'm a retired teacher and I like giving advice!:D I didn't start playing sax until I was 26 so I am happy for you that you are about to get a real musical education. I learned from playing and listening but I could have learned alot more and quicker with some good teachers.Good luck and let us know what you come up with.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
33 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I just thought of this. Where are some good online retailers for mouthpieces. I know of wwbw, but they are currently out of the otto links.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,567 Posts
I would suggest against purchasing online untill you have a better idea of what you're looking for and a general idea of the tip opening you're looking for. Go to somewhere that has a good selection of mouthpieces and try out a bunch and ask questions of the staff(but don't take sales staff as gospel, you need to find what works for you.) Buy some softer reeds than you usually play so that you can try mouthpieces that have larger tip openings than what you're used to without tons of effort.
I'm not sure about the city you're in and what's available but I mapquested your city and it's not that far from Atlanta, which is bound to have a shop with some stock. It would be worth the drive to take some mouthpieces for a test drive. Seek out woodwind/brass specialty shops with repair departments as they'll have a more knowledgable staff than the drummer selling you a mouthpiece at Guitar Mega Mart.
Do keep in mind that your teacher may tell you to change your setup once you start studying, though.
Mouthpieces are a very personal thing and you can only get so much out of recommendations from other players who are physically, experientially and musically different from you.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2008
Joined
·
4,046 Posts
james nichols said:
I just thought of this. Where are some good online retailers for mouthpieces. I know of wwbw, but they are currently out of the otto links.

SamAsh.com has the best deals on metal and rubber links, you can get the NY as well. The shipping is a little steep at $10, but it's not outrages considering they usually have modest tipped Links in stock. Don't go any bigger than a 7 for metal and an 8 for Hard Rubber. A 6* for metal is fine and will be much easier to control, 7 or 7* would be ideal for a rubber link, but the rubber links can play stuffy with out a reface so be warned....another $70 for that to be done.
 
1 - 20 of 25 Posts
Top