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After several decades away from my horn, I've been playing with a concert band and a dance band for the last few years. I have no pretensions of being a soloist in either group -- I just enjoy playing.

Currently, I'm playing a Yamaha YAS-475 with Vandoren 2.5 reeds, and the aforementioned Selmer mouthpiece.

I'd like to find something with a bit brighter tone, as the C* seems muddy. (I'm in my 50s, and so admittedly my embouchure isn't what it was in my 20s.)

I'm looking at going to the S-80 E for concert band, and possibly a Otto Link Super Tone Master 7, as I'd like to try a metal mouthpiece for more jazz oriented playing (mostly for my own pleasure).

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

[Once I figure out a direction, I suspect I'll find a dealer that provides a mouthpiece trial program.]
 

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First, forget the urban myth that metal = more jazzy mouthpiece. Reality just flies in the face of that.
Play one if you wish, but based on the changes it gives you, not because it's metal.

I switched from a C* and eventually wound up with a Rousseau NC5. More sound but still allowed me to perform standard French classical solo literature. Worked well for me in wind ensemble also.

For pop I used first, mainly, a Runyon Custom mouthpiece and settled on a Ponzol HR Classic. Depends on just how bright you want it, but the Runyon was brighter than the Ponzol. I used both in pop and big band lead playing.

I might add that my tenor mpc. was metal, usually slimmer than a HR mpc, and a HR on alto, usually fatter than a metal. I was happy with two mouthpieces that had the least difference in profiles. Since I played both, I wanted the least amount of change between the two.
 

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An E facing strikes me as pretty open for concert band use, but on the other hand, it's not common these days for someone to find the C* insufficiently bright (it's now among the brightest of the standard classical mouthpieces). So if that's the direction in which you want to move, perhaps you can find a single mouthpiece for everything. Why have two that end up pretty close in tip opening and sound? Maybe a try a Selmer Soloist, a Vandoren V5 A35, or a moderate jazz piece such as a Meyer or Jody Jazz HR? Another alto in my concert band uses a JJ HR with blue box reeds. I prefer straight classical mouthpieces myself, but the other approach can work too.
 

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The two places I would go are Meyer (maybe a #5) and Selmer Soloist (either the old ones or the new re-issue), probably no more open than a D.

I definitely would not go metal for an alto MP unless you are an experienced player who knows exactly what they want.

If you can't get an adequately bright sound out of the two MPs I listed above, the issue will be with you not the equipment.

You could also try different reeds, although in my experience the standard Vandorens are pretty bright for me.
 

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turf3 hit on what I was thinking . . . reeds. A reed-change can work wonders on one's sound. And not just changing brands and strengths and cuts, although that is part of it. But the individual reed, even compared to others from the same box. To more equalize those from the same box, teach yourself to adjust them with a knife, sandpaper, or even specialized tools for reed-adjusting.
It can clear up a muddy-sounding piece.

Then, there was gary's mention of the Soloist series mouthpieces. I have both an S-80 C* and a Soloist C*. On certain days, I like the S-80 better, but that is just me and not indicative of your results.

Years ago, an SOTW member sent me a Don Sinta alto piece that he said was designed to mimic an S-80 C*. It sure didn't come close to my S-80 - it was MUCH better FOR ME. I haven't seen those around, though. DAVE
 

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Personally, I keep going back to the C*. This is after the AL3, the Runyon 88, Soloist E, the NC5. The thing that temps me most to change is the Ponzol C*, which I find very good and bright.
 

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Personally, I keep going back to the C*. This is after the AL3, the Runyon 88, Soloist E, the NC5. The thing that temps me most to change is the Ponzol C*, which I find very good and bright.
Yeah, I don't think any of what you've listed would be particularly interesting to me compared to either a S-80 C* or Soloist C*.

Now a Meyer or Brilhart (black or white), that could be interesting.
 

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I have an Ebolin too that I played throughout high school. It has a pesky resistance, dull sound, and doesn't project very well. How I ever did so well on it for years is a mystery to me now. It is the worst playing alto piece I have besides the plastic stock mouthpieces I've gathered from bought horns over the years, and some of those best it too..
 
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