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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have been playing soprano for a few years and when I move into the higher range of the instrument, it is not difficult to pump out the sound with power and emotion.

Not so with my Alto! I am playing a Kessler Custom (Selmer copy as many Asian horns are). My current set up is one of two: Runyon Custom #7, Rovner Light, Fibracell 3 and a Kessler 50/50NY, Rico H, Fibracell 3. Both setups are similar in tone and flexibility. My problem is when I move above high C the sound gets alittle thin, the power is gone, and if I push too hard the reed closes.

Any suggestions? New set up? What do I need to change?

I usually play the soprano in Weddings but I have a piece that would really work well with my Alto. The particular song really demands power in the high range.

Thanks in advance,

Glenn
 

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I think you should experiment with reeds to find a slightly harder one because soft reeds will sound thinner and shriller in the higher register. Or you could invest in a Meyer medium chamber cause those seem to have nice and powerful higher notes, but your lower notes might be sacrificed in the process if your used to a larger chambered mouthpiece. Also, work on your overtones because you might be pinching idk your skill level or what not.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Tin Man, You might be right. Because I am used to the Sop, I do tend to pinch a bit. I find if I take in more mouthpiece it is easier to hit the highs without the reed closing. I am not opposed to a tighter chamber if that will get me the power in the high end. When I put the spoiler in the Runyon, it is easier to hit the notes, however, it still sound thin. I know my skill level is suffering, but when I hear what Dave Koz or Danny Jung do with their top end, without Altissimo, it amazes me.

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hi Bruce - I understand the harder reeds. What are your suggestions for a more closed mouthpiece? Is a more closed moupiece going to be brighter and edgier?

Glenn
 

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Of course the answer here is to practice long-tones. That's the best way to fatten up the higher notes no matter what your setup is.
 

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When you use a harder reed, it just won't work if the mouthpiece is too open or you will kill your chops trying. For now, try holding the horn up so the mouthpiece exits more like an alto or tenor and not tilted down like a clarinet. You may be getting too much lower lip (up the reed vamp) and need to get more of a sax angle. The bright/dark thing may be more to the brand and style of the mouthpiece rather than the tip opening. I find I do better on soprano with a more closed tip relative to the alto and on tenor I like a more open tip relative. When I use an open soprano mouthpiece I have trouble with transitions of the registers.
 
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