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Forum Contributor 2015-2016
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Discussion Starter #1
I'd really appreciate some advice. Started 6 yrs ago when 50. I Play tenor in a function band. I'd like to play more alto and as luck would have it I was recently given a recording of me playing alto in a practice session with another band about a yr ago_Our band leader (whose opinion I really respect) said it sounded like a soprano. It sounds sooo thinnn and weedy. Setup is a mkvl, morgan and plasticover 2.any tips on thickenning me up!!Here's the practice session no. http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=1141509
 

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It sounds as if it is your reed. I would suggest moving first to a 2 1/2 cane reed, and then later trying a 3. Any reed that is too soft for a mouthpiece will sound like a kazoo---especially a plasticover reed in my experience.

Once you have enough resistance to blow against in your reed/mouthpiece set-up I would recommend the exercise in this video:

Overtone Matching
 

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Forum Contributor 2017
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7,526 Posts
Recordings can be extremely deceptive. My at home studio is less than perfect (iMac garage band and SM58) and no matter what I do my tenor sounds like a baritone at times, and my soprano sounds like an alto. B
 

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Forum Contributor 2015-2016
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Discussion Starter #5
I'd like to think it was the recording as I certainly didn't notice it sounding thin when I played it. Pretty sure that's wishful thinking though.
 

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Get rid of the alto. Stick with the tenor! :) :)

But yeah, try a different reed. That might help. Also, listening to the recording I notice you stick to the higher register mostly. This might seem obvious but the alto is much fatter in the lower register, so you could try utilizing the full range of the instrument. On the sound clip I thought you sounded good, though, and fit the genre on that recording (decidedly not blues!) pretty well.
 

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Forum Contributor 2015-2016
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69 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
OK then, Plasticover is outta here. On 2nd thoughts, I've got some 2 1/2s I'll try before ditching.
 

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I find that a good glass of scotch helps immensely when I play alto.
That might help with the dryness of the recorded sound. :lick: Also, maybe try adding some reverb.

Edit: I should have listened before I commented. :faceinpalm: That sure sounds bright for a morgan. I'd say it's the plasticover that's doing it. I think it sounds nice the way it is, but I guess you're looking for a different sound.
 

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Forum Contributor 2015-2016
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69 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
mmmm Bari. I've got a Bari tenor piece and it does play dark. Maybe an option.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2013
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631 Posts
the recording and setup both have impact on the sound.
but I agree with most of the folks, chief suspect is the reed.
but tone is made up of few components, including mpc, ligature (to me).
if possible, try to test other mpc or reeds too.
 

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Forum Contributor 2017
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7,526 Posts
It doesn't help that it's a 2. Way too soft IMO (unless he's playing a 12* or something).
Gotcha. I play nothing but Plasticovers and use a 2 1/2 Tenor on 8* and up, but on alto I always use 2 1/2 or 3. B
 

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Gotcha. I play nothing but Plasticovers and use a 2 1/2 Tenor on 8* and up, but on alto I always use 2 1/2 or 3. B
Yeah I've used 2.5 Plasticovers on tenor before and thought they were decent, but very buzzy. On an 8* that would be appropriate enough.
 
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