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Discussion Starter #1
OK,
well I would like to ask for some help or suggestions on playing the Sop..
I finally have a gig where i want to play the straight horn and I have about 2hrs total time on one.I owned one afew years back and just didnt have a need for it with the gigs I had back then so it was a novelty, I played it afew times at home and sold it.
I now have a gig where it will work so I just bought a nice Yani S901(used) and would like some help with Mp & tip opening suggestions and whatever kind practice help/tips you guys with experience can throw my way.
I will be playing mellow jazz based R&B tunes and I am looking at buying 2 Mp's a runyon custom & a van doren V16.I play alexander yellow tin & DC 2.5 & 3 on tenor so thats what I bought for the Sop.My greatest fear is the nasally "snake charmer" tone syndrome and I know there is no magic pill so long tones and shed time are in order....I think the Yani is a good horn choice but hope you guys can give me some guidance on how to ease the learning curve
 

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Konnichiwa my friend...my suggestion is to get a setup that responds well for you and gets you in the ballpark tone wise then spend lots of time with your strobe tuner in front of you--going back and forth looking at it and not looking at it if you know what I mean. For example, put the tuner on your desk and out of your normal line of sight (not on your music stand) then while you are playing, every once in a while, glance over to the tuner to see where you are...kind of like the old 7 second rule with rear-view mirrors and driving. Make sure all your octaves are realy octaves , your fifths are fifths and so forth... (try this Tim Price warm up routine to check your fiths and octaves)

http://www.timpricejazz.com/lessons/sax_warmup.pdf

For me, tuning on the soprano is the my number 1 concern ...after that it's getting a dark warm projecting sound. For me, reeds make a huge difference on tuning a soprano. I like to use a thicker tipped reed on sop to make sure the tuning doesn't get too squirly.

Some players will tell you to play with a firmer embouchure and all that but I actually still cushion quite a bit when playing sop...if you find yourself sounding like a snake charmer, you might be overblowing or need a thicker reed...It shouldn't be noticeably more strenous to play the sop or cause lots of lip hurting and all that...should be free and easy.

Good luck my friend! I know you're gonna kill it dude.

R
 

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Discussion Starter #3
well at least someone had something positive so say...

Thanks Ryan..
 

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I would suggest talking to Joe Giardullo at Soprano Planet. He does nothing but soprano mouthpieces and has been bang on twice when I have told him what horn I had and the tone I wanted. If you try and don't like he will take it back I beleive.
 

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I stop buying soprano mpc after I landed on the Selmer Paris Metal D (classical). very balanced and sweet is how I would describe the tone I get from my own playing.
I do mainly jazz/classical with this setup. in recent times, I have even done rock/funk on this setup.
Lig - Rovner Mk III ("darkest" sounding lig from Rovner)
reeds - Vandoren blue box (size 2 onwards)

if possible, test out a few more mpc if you can!
 

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My suggestion,based on 40+ years playing soprano is to get the largest tip opening you can handle but nothing smaller than .070. and use the hardest reeds you can tolerate. Practice+++. When you've gotten comfortable with this type of set up you will develop the best control of intonation, tonal colors and dynamics. I've recommended this to many players and they've all agreed that after the adjustment to this type of set up controlling the soprano is much easier. The suggestion to talk with Joe at Soprano Planet is also good advice.
 

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My advice based on 40 years of soprano playing is to get a conservative mouthpiece like a Selmer S-90 which is what I use having tried hundreds of pieces. Work on developing the warmth and resonance of the horn by doing things like the Rascher exercises.
I know most guys seem to favor big tips but I have found that a smaller tip opening and the right reed allows me real control of my JK SX90 and a bigger better tone. So my advice is to start there although you may end up somewhere entirely different.
 

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FWIW - I use a V16 S6 if I want a mellow sound like a higher alto and use a Selmer SuperSession I for a brighter sound. The SS is more responsive for me.
 

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I use one of those for jazz on a VI, but it's a G. Great mouthpiece. No quack.
I agree, with 40 some years of playing the older Selmer metal's are just the best (classic or jazz models).

And "Hunk" I think you're to good a player to be worrying about performing on a soprano, as you're getting your chops back on it just get a moderate tip opening mouthpiece and a softer reed and just play...you can make changes later.
i.e. Bari HR .68 or.70 and your choice reed around a #2
 

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Didn't get a yani mpc to go with the horn ?

A yani 7 hr. Or even a yani hr 9 as its about the same as a bari .64

otto te hr 6 or 7 to make it scream

Record yourself to keep an ear on the sound/tone.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I have ordered a new RPC Sop from ron which I hope will be here mid April.Also should be getting a new Soprano Planet "Emergency" piece in the next few days.
 

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I have ordered a new RPC Sop from ron which I hope will be here mid April...
Ron is making soprano pieces now? I thought he stopped making them. Prices of existing RPC sop pieces had gone up the roof. ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I heard he was making them again so I called and sure enough...$235.
 

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Thanks guys, it's good news he's making sop pieces again. Yes al9672, that ebay item was the one I mentioned....priced just after a Lamberson Fmaj7.
And yes BigHunk, please let us know what you think about the RPC, or even the SP Emergency piece, after you tested them. Thanks.
 
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