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Discussion Starter #1
OK, it's happened twice now, so I'd like to know if this has happened to anyone else.

I live in Los Angeles, where it is pretty dry, and we generally don't have mosquitos.

But twice, I have been sitting in the back yard in the early evening, and been suddenly set upon by a gang of mosquitos... WHILE I WAS PLAYING MY C-MEL.

This evening, I got five bites – on my hands – within about thirty seconds. The previous time, it was also hands and arms, mostly, multiple bites very rapidly.

The C-Mel seems to be calling them.

Of course, I'm not certain they are mosquitos, I haven't seen them. It's dark. But I don't know of anything else around here that flies and bites like that. Itches so bad it hurts.

Unfortunately, it happened so fast, I don't know what song I was playing. That might be important. It might have military applications.

Anybody else found the horn made him into a Mosquito Pied Piper?

(For anyone who wants to try out this marvelous and rewarding effect for themselves, my setup is Buescher TT, Graftonite C7, Rovner Light lig, Rico Royal reed fairly soft. 4-hour nasal spray applied topically relieves the bites.)
 

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Can't blame them mosquitos (or gnats). I also wanna furiously bite anybody playing a C-mel... :twisted:
 

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Probably less to do with playing the C-Mel and more to do with the fact that you were out in your back yard in "the early evening".... that is when mosquitos commonly come out seeking blood.

Mosquitos: "Hey, this guy is just sitting here! Get him!"

Mosquito population in the U.S. has been unusually high this summer... I hate those little buggers. If there was one creature on this earth that I would be ok with going extinct it would be them. Wasps and spiders are fine... they don't seek you out to bite you... their attacks are circumstantial.

I guess a lot of bats, small birds, and other larger insects and spiders would be sad if mosquitos went extinct though... the buggers feed a lot of things.

When I think of the "Mysterious Power of the C-Mel," I think more of the ability to finger a saxophone C and actually have a C come out of the horn :shock:,

Imagine that!....
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Probably less to do with playing the C-Mel and more to do with the fact that you were out in your back yard in "the early evening".... that is when mosquitos commonly come out seeking blood.
Except that I live in LA, and we don't have mosquitos at all most of the time, and I've been out there in the evening without getting bitten... except when I was playing the horn.

Maybe it was the song. I think it was "Stardust"...
 

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Yes, perhaps its just this year. I recall in the news lately they have been saying mosquito population in the US was rather large this year. They must be coming into LA from one of those nice moist suburbs like Anaheim....

I still wouldn't associate it with the sax... that may be purely incidental. C-Mels do have the power to scare bears away, however, ... :)
 

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Well, I was volunteering at a leadership camp for my 10th year on the staff this summer, and some course participants reported that there was a bear in the lower meadow approaching the camp lumbering along.

I had brought my C-Mel up for practice/entertainment during the week I was up there (Side note: Playing sax in the mountains is an amazing experience, I was able to echo passages off of a mountain some miles away, and play thirds and harmonies to my own passage with the returning echo!) and it was sitting there at the staff barn on a guitar stand :). I grabbed it up and myself and several other staff members began to approach the bear. It was a black bear... probably a good 200-250 lbs (90-113 Kg for the sensible metric users)

And so I started playing random notes as loudly as I could. The passages stopped the bear dead in its tracks, but it didn't reverse course until I bit down on the reed with my teeth and let loose some squeals that surely are painful to sensitive animal ears. The idea was to make the loudest, highest pitch, horrendous squeals a sax can make, and it worked like a charm. The bear turned tail and cantered away... (much faster than the pace it was entering camp at)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Good to know. I've been playing my pocket horn in the woods to scare away a recently sighted mountain lion.
 

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I read those bug repellers that supposedly use frequencies that drive them away don't work, so I suppose certain frequencies wouldn't attract them. When I play sax, I tend to repel any living creature with ears so maybe there is some truth to this though, I mean it can't be me, right?:dontknow:
 

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...They must be coming into LA from one of those nice moist suburbs like Anaheim....
I used to work for a US company based in Anaheim, so for a while it was my second home - if dust is a form of moist, then you might have a point, but I remain unconvinced ...


I still wouldn't associate it with the sax... that may be purely incidental. C-Mels do have the power to scare bears away, however, ... :)

Danny - A sax is just a 'tool of the trade' - it's the players that are scary :yikes!:

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metaphorce - are you sure the 'mozzies' weren't in the case, and have just hatched - or deep in the annals of the sax maybe :scratch:
 

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Surely the solution is to play indoors...free of mosquitoes & avoiding the risk of annoying the neighbours....or bears.
Some years ago I was playing out to sea, sitting on a cliff edge near here, when I discovered that I was surrounded by adders....the first I had ever seen. This taught me to play sax in it's correct environment; a late night club.
I have said before that the sax is a crepuscular instrument....not designed to be played in daylight.
 

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I agree, just play the sax indoors, (unless your visiting an expansive mountain property with no neighbors from a 10 mile radius.)

I am one of the crazy people who thinks that any instrument is welcome in any genre if the player can make it work. I'm talkin ocarina ska, concertina jazz, harpsichord blues, saxophone metal, maybe even banjo rap.

As you know... Adolph invented this wonderful tube long before there were late night jazz clubs. I like to think that his only sincere intention for the thing was for lots of people to enjoy playing it... in whatever form that took/takes :bluewink:
 

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As you know... Adolph invented this wonderful tube long before there were late night jazz clubs. :bluewink:
True, but it was generally ignored for about eighty years, until it was taken up by by players who used them in late night jazz clubs.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
are you sure the 'mozzies' weren't in the case, and have just hatched - or deep in the annals of the sax maybe :scratch:
Well, the case was in the house and closed, so I'd rule out the hibernating mosquito theory. I'm certain they weren't in the "annals" of the sax, because Bueschers don't have an annal, at least, not the pre-snap-on pad Bueschers. Maybe Martins do. I think I once saw the annal of an old Holton in a pawnshop, but it was quite decrepit, and what I saw may just have been corrosion.

I played outside last night with the lights on. No mosquitos, not even for Stardust. The attacks came both times when I had the lights off.

Playing outside is great. It's peaceful. The tone is different, and quite mellow. And I'd rather disturb the neighbors than my own family.
 

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Metaphorce- It has been said before that playing outside is a great way to develop tone... without all the strange reverberations/encapsulations a room may cause. I know some sax players who recommend practicing outside because it really forces you to "listen" to your tone. That being said... I love playing outside. Especially at night... something calming and serene about sending out sound waves to a bright moon and stars....
 

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I remember a similar attack in North Africa in 1942. I was playing C melody for the Axis troops, when a swarm of vicious DeHavlland Mosquitos attacked. It was devastating. Since then, when I play C melody outside, I am accompanied by a loaded Bofurs Gun.
 

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Good precaution JB, you could get a nasty splinter from the plywood D.H. Mosquitoes.
 
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