Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,
A bit of background..My late father bought me a yas 23 for my 13th birthday in 1980, to replace a vintage horn that I had played for a year. Back then in school vintage horns were not as well regarded as a new shiny one! Anyway, I still have the yas 23 and it’s served me well. I played it for around 15 years and then took a break from playing until last year. I kept the sax as it has sentimental value. On my 50th birthday I decided to start playing again. I play in a large group playing mostly jazz standards, swing, some Lucky Chops inspired tunes and some 70s funk. When soloing I realise that my sax has less projection and punch than many of those played by other band members. They play a real mix of modern and vintage horns. Obviously volume is not everything but having projection for soloing would be great. I am not a brilliant player but I am ok. I use an old vintage Lafleur mpc (it came with the vintage sax, I chipped the Yamaha plastic mouthpiece) or an Otto Link metal one. Either is ok, the Lafleur gives a more mellow tone. I think the time is right to move onto a better horn and maybe vintage again I would not buy brand new as that would not seem to be money well spent. I am not too concerned about cost, but would like a horn that is fairly straightforward to play given I have smallish hands, so ideally nothing with a long reach for my little fingers (pinky). Any recommendations and also for a mouthpiece too? Thanks
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
14,360 Posts
Htm: Welcome to SOTW. You have many options, one of which is to merely get a different mouthpiece because there is nothing wrong with your 23 (assuming it is in good repair).

But I understand the desire for something new and different. I think the concept that smaller hands require different altos is just a myth - they all are built about the same, have the same tone-hole placement, and key-heighths.

I am NOT a fan of Yamaha saxophones (and yes, I've owned two). My current first-call alto is a Yanagisawa AWO1. I love it. But I have others (vintage) that are nearly as good and in someways better.

If you can afford it, give Kessler in Las Vegas a call and see what he can do for you - Selmer, Yanagisawa, Yamaha - whatever. DAVE
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Htm: Welcome to SOTW. You have many options, one of which is to merely get a different mouthpiece because there is nothing wrong with your 23 (assuming it is in good repair).

But I understand the desire for something new and different. I think the concept that smaller hands require different altos is just a myth - they all are built about the same, have the same tone-hole placement, and key-heighths.

I am NOT a fan of Yamaha saxophones (and yes, I've owned two). My current first-call alto is a Yanagisawa AWO1. I love it. But I have others (vintage) that are nearly as good and in someways better.

If you can afford it, give Kessler in Las Vegas a call and see what he can do for you - Selmer, Yanagisawa, Yamaha - whatever. DAVE
Thanks Dave. I am in the UK so I won’t follow up on Kessler but thanks for your thoughts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
383 Posts
I have not played a YAS-23, but from what I have heard about them, it should not have a problem with projection.

I would look for a different mouthpiece.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
14,360 Posts
Just a suggestion . . . it helps responders if you include your location when you join the site. And, Kessler ships internationally. But, there are good sources in the UK . . . Howarths in London as well as Sax.com. Another superb retailer is Matthews Muziek in The Netherlands near Amsterdam (Edam, to be specific). DAVE
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
I just got an alto from Phil Barone and am trading in my YAS 23 and Buescher 1920's low tone true pitch Alto (currently selling, also already sold a MKVI to get both horns (bought a tenor too :whistle:) upfront) after having the Phil Barone alto a few weeks. It is much more responsive than the YAS 23 and the tone is so much more full. I loved my Buescher due to the tiny left hand table. At 5 ft tall I have tiny hands and the buescher had one of the smallest tables I'd seen and felt so comfortable for me, even more so than the YAS 23. After getting the new alto however, even though the table is a bit bigger, its more responsive than either of my horns. I did some scale/arpeggio work for a few hours today and had no problem with quickly maintaining low notes on the left hand table and loved the full sound I got even from the lowest notes. I may be a bit partial as I now have one of his tenors and most recently an alto (might still be in the honeymoon stage a bit, but I don't think so) but definitely wouldn't hurt to take a look. I think it's more affordable than Kessler and the mouthpieces that came with the alto and tenor were both amazing so you could save on the mouthpiece upgrade there. I'm almost positive he ships international too as I've seen some reviews and comments from posters outside the US.

Thanks!
Kristy
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2014
Super Action 80 Tenor, Yamaha Vito YAS-21 prototype, Kessler Soprano, Superba II Bari, Fender J-Bass
Joined
·
4,909 Posts
Honestly, I'd see a tech and throw some money towards the 23. That horn projects better than most any on the past and present market. If it's in good repair, and you're still not projecting, it may be a mouthpiece/reed combination. If that still doesn't cure it, it's a voicing issue. I'd assume it's the condition of the horn, providing that you haven't had it worked on since it was purchased.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks, the sax player next to me has a 6M . She’s not technically a great player and lacks control so it’s really loud! Needs some taming, but I will ask her if I could have a go.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for all your advice. It sounds as if the thing to do is have the 23 serviced as it was done a couple of times but back in the 1980s/90s . Then I will go and try out some different mouthpieces.
 

·
The most prolific Distinguished SOTW poster, Forum
Joined
·
27,650 Posts
Having problems projecting with a 23? Impossible. The problem lies elsewhere. You either need a different mouthpiece/reed, better amplification, need to work on your sound and projection or a combination.

Want a new, louder horn? That depends on how it feels for you, how it sounds for you, how reactive it is for you. I can list a bunch of horns that will work, all slightly different but all will do the job depending on the preferences of the player. Making a large list, then means that you still have to decide for yourself.

Get out and try out horns from all your friends, acquaintances and music stores, then decide.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,370 Posts
The Cannonball Alcazar would be a step up in terms of features found on professional models that the YAS-23 lacks such as a fully tilting LH table, high F#, and adjustable thumb rest. The keywork is closer together for students and players with smaller hands. I have one as my back up alto for my Selmer SBA and I wouldn't hesitate to play a gig or recital on it. I also second the advice to find a mouthpiece that gives more volume and projection. I really like my Vandoren V16 S (short chamber) which has now gone to S+. I have the A9 facing which takes a huge amount of air. You may want to check out the A7 or A8 to see if they work for you. The Vandoren V16 is a well designed and consistent mouthpiece that won't "break the bank" when you buy one.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
46 Posts
Hello Kristy, I'm 76 yrs old and I was wondering if you are selling any of your saxes? I now play a keilwerth sx90r and it is getting to hard to blow. I spoke to Phil Barone about his classic alto but it was out of my price range...so I thank you in advance for your help..Regards, Dominic
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
158 Posts
Hello Kristy, I'm 76 yrs old and I was wondering if you are selling any of your saxes? I now play a keilwerth sx90r and it is getting to hard to blow. I spoke to Phil Barone about his classic alto but it was out of my price range...so I thank you in advance for your help..Regards, Dominic
Hi Dominic! I'll be posting a buescher true tone low pitch alto (wanted to post it earlier but pics didn't turn out. I'm out of town so have to wait till I get home to get some new pics) shortly on the marketplace.

Thanks!
Kristy
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top