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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How many people here who regularly double on different saxophones, use radically different embouchure for their different instruments?

Particularly, does anybody use a double-lipped embouchure for one sized sax (e.g. alto) but a more standard embouchure for larger instruments, tenor/baritone?

Michael
 

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I find my bari embouchure needs to be really relaxed in order to make the horn speak well as compared to the other horns.
 

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No, I don't use a double lip for any of them, but I think my soprano embouchure is radically different to baritone. On soprano I take in relatively a LOT more mouthpiece. On baritone I take in very little.

POart of the reason is that there is an optimal amount of mouthpiece in the mouth that helps/hinders with articulation. It is also easier to get more flexibility with less taken in, but you get more flexibility with soprano anyway so I find it not so necessary to have the lip control, as I get more mouth cavity control.
 

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.... radically different embouchure for their different instruments?......
Assuming that you're in the same ballpark in terms of tip opening and reed strength, the basic embouchure is the same on all saxes.
There should only be slight differences because of the different size mouthpieces.
 

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... On soprano I take in relatively a LOT more mouthpiece. On baritone I take in very little.....
Which means I've been doing it wrong all my life. But that doesn't actually surprise me.
Maybe we have different understandings of the words "relatively", "radically", "slightly".....
 

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Maybe we have different understandings of the words "relatively", "radically", "slightly".....
By relatively I mean that say you take in 30% of the beak on a soprano and 30% on a baritone, then relatively speaking it's the same embouchure in respect of the amount of mouthpiece, although the amount in length is obviously much different.

Based on top tooth position I take in about 20% of a baritone mouthpiece and 60%+ of a soprano mouthpiece. I call that radically different if we are speaking in relative terms (ie percentage of mouthpiece) and the embouchure is different because on soprano I will use my mouth cavity for bending and tuning a lot more than my lip, which is more prevalent in my baritone embouchure.

Of course the actual amount of mouthpiece taken in (in length) on either is probably quite similar, as it is important for proper articulation IMO.
 

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Assuming that you're in the same ballpark in terms of tip opening and reed strength, the basic embouchure is the same on all saxes.
There should only be slight differences because of the different size mouthpieces.
I learned long ago for effortless transitions; tip opening, facing curve, chamber type and reed strengths need to be equal (relatively to each) then you will only have minute embouchure differences allowing you to perform equally well on all saxes.
 

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I learned long ago for effortless transitions; tip opening, facing curve, chamber type and reed strengths need to be equal (relatively to each) then you will only have minute embouchure differences allowing you to perform equally well on all saxes.
Again, I'm finding that I don't appear to be normal. I use a very wide tip on tenor (9*), but a narrow tip on soprano (5 or 6)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Assuming that you're in the same ballpark in terms of tip opening and reed strength, the basic embouchure is the same on all saxes.
There should only be slight differences because of the different size mouthpieces.
I'm talking really only about the diferences between a double-lipped embouchure and the more usual tooth-contact embouchure!

Michael
 

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I played alto last night at rehearsal for the first time in months and I was ok and not much transition from Tenor. I played for an hour and a half and then switched back to tenor and my embouchure was a lot different on alto so going back to tenor wasn't so easy to do on the fly. I was using much more jaw pressure on the alto compared to the typical relaxed tenor embouchure. Playing the tenor later on in the evening I was sounding like I was playing the tenor for the first time it was kind of embarassing. It took a much lighter reed and about 30 minutes before I started feeling a bit more comfortable and relaxed back on the tenor. My guitar player was wanting me to switch back and forth between alto and tenor a few times on our upcoming show and I don't think that's going to happen, at least not now.
 

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I use a very wide tip on tenor (9*), but a narrow tip on soprano (5 or 6)
I've gone the opposite way, I think because I mainly play soprano.
My soprano piece has a bigger tip than my tenor ( .088 / .090 on soprano to .080 on tenor).

I worked a long time to find a tenor setup that would feel most like my soprano embouchure and air column.

Most folks seem to want a soprano setup that goes more toward their tenor setup.
 

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My habit is to practice soprano, alto, clarinet, and alternate tenor/bari every day. I use the same embouchure for all with perhaps a little less firmness working from the soprano through bari. Double lip is not a good option IMHO because vibrato is greatly affected. The neck will bob up and down. In teaching though, I often use double lip as a way to show students how much the tone improves when you don't bite. Double lip is a great cure for that.
 

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I adjust my mouth cavity (voicing), but not my the way my teeth, jaw, and and lips are set. I play all saxes equally badly.
 

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Hmmm..... Same embouchure for clarinet, alto, tenor, and bari with only a change in 'firmness'.
Clarinet is quite firm while bari is only firm enough to keep from 'honking'. :)
I tried double lip in my single reed instruments but decided it only really worked best for my oboe.
 

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I change between soprano, alto and tenor song to song in my band. Going between soprano and alto feels more similar and natural than when I switch to tenor as the relative firmness in my jaw needs to be so much less on tenor that I really notice it. But I should also say that for most of the last 30 years or so, I've played almost exclusively soprano and alto; I've only been playing tenor for the last few years (for the first time since the early '70's actually). Now in the band I play with, I'm probably playing tenor 50% of the time, so the differences are newer for me and so feel more significant. But the differences in jaw position seem more significant than the differences in my actual embouchure.
 

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BTW all my mouthpieces are pretty open, and medium/small chambered. Alto and tenor reeds are all typically 2 1/2, soprano reeds need to be much harder for me, 3 1/2 to 4. I have no idea why that's the case.
 

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I'm talking really only about the diferences between a double-lipped embouchure and the more usual tooth-contact embouchure!
I use double lip embouchure where appropriate - bassoon. I guess flute would also count in that regard.

I also differentiate between clarinet and saxophone embouchure as appropriate to the instrument in my face.
 
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