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I just purchased this bari. I had tested available horns in my area and some good and some not so. But the one thing they all had in common was a high price tag. Mysax teacher loves Ynai bari's. She and her husband happened to be taking a trip toLas Vegas and she agreed to test the solist for me. It is advertised as a computer copy of the B901. I must say it is. A dead ringer. She played a couple was so impressed she had Chuck Kessler record the serial # and put the horn on hold. She emailed my and stated, if you want a bari buy it. It is awesome. Being a 65yo student (awesome) doesn't always compute. She clarified that the low register wasvery good and the upper register was excellent. I called the following day and talked to Dave to complete the transaction. The horn arrived within a few days andPLAYED right out of the box. First time without going to the tech for post shipping adjustments. The Kessler experience, great. The price, at least half of local offerings. The horn. Sweet, fun, good looking, well made, AWESOME.
 

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Good afternoon sgtlmm340 and welcome to SoTW if you've not received the "official" welcome yet!

Congrats on the acquisition! I have a Kessler tenor purchased in '07 and had the same experience you had except for the lack of a teacher doing a play test for me. I emailed Dave back and forth and when I called them up I talked to Chuck "The Man" Kessler! (Dave's dad!)

Come back and let us know how it's progressing! It's your obligation & responsibility now that you've posted your initial response. We'd like to hear more after the honeymoon/break-in period. I don't believe we have but a couple of posts regarding the Kessler baris so don't be a stranger.

My tenor played right out of the box as well. Finally had to take it in a year ago (Nov '10) for a tune up and it was in pretty good shape. Nothing major. I don't plan on waiting 3 1/2 years again before taking it in again, more like the suggested yearly check-up! The Kessler's have a great shop and a good thing going. They have an outstanding reputation and will go out of their way to maintain it so don't hesitate to call if questions arise!
 

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This is a potentially very interesting thread. Hopefully others weigh in on this if they have purchased this horn. I just purchased one and as indicated, it played right out of the box which by the way was packed so well, a 20 foot fall off of a building wouldn't have damaged it! It was marked SDBS-2001 which must be the actual stencil maker's model where the Kessler's sourced it. I had contemplated sourcing one myself, either through Ebay (risky) or direct (not much savings). When it comes to a Bari, how cheap does one want to go? It's an awfully large horn to risk poor quality for saving a couple hundred dollars. Given my experience with the Kessler horns I have now, I took the safer slightly more costly route and I feel no regrets. I rehearsed with our community band with it just the other night and other than getting used to the tilting spatula (kept hitting low Bb instead of c#) and the much more fluid keywork, it played lights out better than my old 73 model Bundy Bari. I'll weigh in more after the honeymoon period wears off. One note, the pads had metal resonators as opposed to nylon ones. Undoubtedly a substitution more to my preference. Pisoni pads are decent either way. No regrets!
 

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I would be curious to hear what others have to say about this horn. I'm not in a position to get a bari at the moment, but given the price of this one...it's something to consider in the future.
 

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I saw this forum after I also found the solist bari sax.
I wanna know how it sounds and plays, if someone could post a vid or soundclip that would be great, because I can;t find a video or anything. :)
 

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Mostly elevating keys ! left hand palm keys! Elevating the right hand Bb key! Just making the horn feel better to the hands!!!! I recommend this horn highly!
 

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Ok, thanks.
Just wanna make sure this is a good horn and if I get it it will sound great and
last a long time.

(Still need to find a video clip fo someone playing it.)
 

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Okay, two months with the Solist. I am still happy with it. I had to play it the other night with the temp in the 40s and had to push the MP up the shank all the way so this one is a bit temperature sensitive on the tuning side. I noticed it a bit after warming it up in a comfortable room as well having to change the mouthpiece position on the neck a little. Not a big deal once warmed up. If I can remember, I'll post some audio! No regrets!
 

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How about a "4 month review", or any other updates from owners? I play mostly big band jazz, and have to borrow a bari from the local middle school since I don't have my own yet. Their Yamaha YBS-52 is a fine horn, when the middle schoolers haven't abused it too badly. :| Can any of you offer a comparison between the two horns, or comment on the Kessler's suitability for big band?

A more specific technical question: how's the action for the left pinky on the Kessler? The Yamaha is pretty smooth, but I've played a lot of other horns where my left pinky and hand are worn out if I spend a lot of time "in the basement". Thanks.
 

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My unhappiness with this horn still hasn't shown up yet. It is much like my Kessler Custom Alto and Tenor, it picks up from the case and plays like a saxophone should. It is every bit worth the money, but I am not a pro either. I play for a community band in Alabama and haven't been run off the stage yet:) Dave, I'll take my endorsement check at the bank account in the PM I sent you! LOL! Seriously, I do not regret for an instant buying the horn. Now if only I could remember to record some audio!
 

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How about a "4 month review", or any other updates from owners? I play mostly big band jazz, and have to borrow a bari from the local middle school since I don't have my own yet. Their Yamaha YBS-52 is a fine horn, when the middle schoolers haven't abused it too badly. :| Can any of you offer a comparison between the two horns, or comment on the Kessler's suitability for big band?

A more specific technical question: how's the action for the left pinky on the Kessler? The Yamaha is pretty smooth, but I've played a lot of other horns where my left pinky and hand are worn out if I spend a lot of time "in the basement". Thanks.
Well! I've had my SBS201 bari for just under 120 days...hope that's good enough! :) :)

Only thing about it I don't like...the third register Eb, E, and F [palm keys] are, curiously, flat, not sharp like most baris I've had. Intonation-wise everything else from bottom to top is either right on the button or within a couple of cents.

The sound is fine, but that's the mouthpiece and me so this probably doesn't deserve mention. I will say, though, that I first used an old Link 6* I've had for years and if my memory is correct the Solist sounds no different with it than the Yamaha 62 and Yanagisawa 901 I had some years back. I'm getting better results now than in the past with the Solist with an RPC 110 and Rico Jazz Select 2Hs but that, again, I think has nothing to do with the horn itself.

Not really anything more to add. This is a nice horn and will do well in big band. Take your time finding the right mouthpiece/reed setup. It'll be a couple of years I suspect before it'll be possible to comment on the Solist's longevity.
 

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Edit - oops, posted in wrong thread! Sorry!

Well, okay, while I'm here might as well say something! I've got a five year old tenor Custom Deluxe tenor from Kessler's that is holding up very well thank you. We may debate the subjective quality of the build and tone of some of Taiwanese horns but I've yet to hear of any long-term issues with the Kessler horns not holding up. I foresee mine staying together for quite a while with just a little bit of TLC every couple of years!
 

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A more specific technical question: how's the action for the left pinky on the Kessler? The Yamaha is pretty smooth, but I've played a lot of other horns where my left pinky and hand are worn out if I spend a lot of time "in the basement". Thanks.
...missed this earlier. Again, I'm working on memory about a Yamaha and Yanagisawa I had some years ago but I don't see much difference between them and the Solist. All the lower stack keys on my Solist work smoothly and close easily with "ordinary" pressure...I don't have to almost break my little fingers to get the pads to seal! :) :)

As I said earlier, this is a good horn...the only thing I don't like is the intonation in the third register for the Eb, E, and F palm keys. But when I have time to get the horn to my tech she should be able to fix that by shaving some of the cork bumpers to raise the cups a tad.
 
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