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I turned 82 last month and decided to play the sax again.I played in the band in the Marine corp for three years.That was a long time ago.My fear with getting old,is the loss of mental capabilities,and I thought picking up the sax would be good for the brain.Started with online lessons,and am surprised at how much I remember.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

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I turned 82 last month and decided to play the sax again.I played in the band in the Marine corp for three years.That was a long time ago.My fear with getting old,is the loss of mental capabilities,and I thought picking up the sax would be good for the brain.Started with online lessons,and am surprised at how much I remember.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
I don't have any advice just a welcome back to the saxophone.
 

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Welcome to SOTW. I'm 79, have been playing for over 63 years. I'm still in good health but the music sure helps. I agree that it is a good thing for staying sharp.

No advice to give, except to keep it going. DAVE
 

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You are doing a wonderful thing for your body and brain. Make a journal of what you practice daily and then a quick note over the days of whats getting better or not. Great to do at any age or any part of developing. Also, the better health you are in the better you will enjoy the horn. So whatever your docs telling you about walking or whatever you are doing do it. Working out is the only way I can do much of my daily routines. K
 

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I took it back up after 40 years off at 59, but I now play with an 85 year old in a sax quartet, another 85 year old in a big band and a 90 year old in a big band. My only advice is to find some appropriate groups to play with. It certainly has kept me interested and practicing.
 

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I thought I might be getting over the hill at 69 years old. Glad to hear some of my seniors are still working at it. Wishing you many more years of playing time.
 

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When I realized that my retirement was coming up in five years, I decided to take up the saxophone once again.

Getting back into sax playing was one of the best decisions I ever made.

Like you, I wanted to do something to stay sharp and stay involved. I think it has worked pretty well.

Like you, I was surprised at how much I remembered. The fingerings were like riding a bike, and reading music almost so.

I contacted a local high school band director, who put me in touch with a tutor.

That was a good move, too.

Best of luck on your renewed life as a musician!
 

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Right up till the pandemic shut everything down I was playing at a jam session every month with a group of musos most of whom are over 80. One retired judge is now at least 95. He doesn't drive any more (vision getting bad) and he has the Lyft guy carry his horn upstairs for him, but he's still playing pretty strong.
 

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I was just short of 60 when I played my first note on sax. Been at it a couple years now and starting to get an idea of what I'm doing. At least a couple times a month I'll hit a local blues jam. Most of the folks there are my age and older, but we have a few hotshots in their teens and early 20s. I love playing with the young hotshots 'cause they'll make me work. I know I'm never gonna sound like Sonny Rollins, but these kids raise my game every time I jam.
 

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...so it might be a good thing that I started playing sax in my mid-50s a few years ago and didn't wait until I'm 82. I hope he's too busy playing to be posting. Or, being 82, he forgot his login.

Speaking of which, after playing my sax a couple years and regularly taking lessons, I went a couple months without picking up the sax at one point. No good reason; I just didn't feel like it. Afterwards, I was shocked by how many fingerings I had forgotten. They came back quickly, but it opened my eyes to a challenge of aging that I'd heard about but never experienced.

The thing is, I had played cornet for a few years beginning in elementary school, quitting in early high school, and I can still visualize the fingerings after not playing for almost 45 years. There's less to forget with only three valves on a cornet, but I think it's more than that. But I enjoy playing sax even at what might be a perpetual beginner level.
 

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The man that started our community band and our big band back in the sixty's now holds sing along's in senior facilities. He maintains that it is important to get the air moving in our lungs. I know one 90 year old fellow that is allowed to practice his tenor sax in a senior apartment near by. I am one of the younger players in our big band at 67. Wonderful hobby/profession/pastime.
 

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I started at age 60 and am now 74. If you haven't already, get into learning music theory. It makes it a lot more fun and it's good for the brain. Also, you will understand what the Youtube guys are telling you.
 

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Bought my first sax 10 years ago at the ripe young age of 65. Old Timer, you are an inspiration.
 
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