Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
389 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My tenor sound has seemed to take an incremental jump and I'm not just sure why? I have just all of a sudden noticed that I sound better, to me, then ever.

I practiced hard over the winter and primarily noticed an improvement in reading and technical ability. During summer I practice less and only do about 2 gigs a week on tenor. Perhaps it's the fact that I have had the same Link- Shadow setup for a couple years now and the whole is really coming together? Fifty-five years of playing dosen't hurt especially when it comes to doubling or tripling which I do frequently.

The most significant change has been that I have been practicing hard and playing a lot of soprano? My soprano sound has improved greatly as well as I constantly get compliments and even asked if I have a new horn?

Soprano playing improves tenor sound? Go figure!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
594 Posts
Playing another instrument has probably given your ears a workout and you've been concentrating with a critical ear towards tone.

In other words, you're paying attention now!

;-))
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
5,092 Posts
Yeah man, doubling always seems to help me out. Also, I've noticed that sometimes there are periods of a lot of practicing where you don't seem to make much improvement (learning phase), and when you back off a little, it's like all of a sudden you're just getting better (internalizing phase). The trick is not to let this make you think it's better not to practice! The one won't happen without the other, but if you hit a plateau, mix it up a little and see what happens.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Definitely. It's just like exercise - you'll get more out of it if you vary the intensity and content of your practice over time.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2013
Joined
·
2,892 Posts
Critical, (or informed), listening is the key component to musical growth. We all get so hung on the physical technique that we forget that how we listen is crucial. Still, if you don't put in the time on the horn the listening doesn't get better.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31 Posts
It is always a good feeling to have ones sound improve and come together, tonal concept on saxophone is so very important. I've always said, I'd rather listen to a player with good tone play just one note than a player with bad tone play many notes..


Having said that, and more specifically directed to how soprano and tenor playing effect one another, it seems to me (after my modest 20 years in the game) that tenor & sop. go well together chop wise. They actually seem to help one another, as does clarinet playing for some reason also seems to greatly help my tenor chops. But alto (which I started on) playing does not seem to help my tenor / soprano playing as much. Where flute is like a realm all by itself.

I love to play them all, but I don't double on alto as much for the jazz gigs. If I take my tenor I often take the soprano to the gig. But alto, I will concentrate on for a whole gig rather than try and pick it up cold on the jazz gig. For Big Band, it's a different story, you gotta do it all.

Dave
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
439 Posts
You do need a very strong breath support on the sop (especially for the highest notes) in order to get a decent (or even a good) sound.

This improved air support will also give you a better tenor tone...
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
4,544 Posts
I have taken to doing a lot of my practicing with a microphone a few feet away and closed cup headphones on. Lately, I've also been varying the microphone as a lot of my playing is rock and roll into dynamics. An SM57 (which I'm generally stuck with in electric band situations) sounds a lot different than a Rode large diaphragm...it has done two things for me. First, I do my practicing with the Rode most of the time, and second, I carry a Sennheiser 421 with me to electric gigs and use my own mic. The 421 has a color adjustment that allows me to tweak it for tenor or flute (my most common double).

The primary thing, though (now that I've rambled and distracted) is that the listening critically has really helped me develop my sound in ways I never imagined, particularly my flute sound, by overwhelming the direct feedback that I get from blowing and providing me a "listener's" perspective. I can walk across the room (I have an extension cable on the phones) and turn sideways to just get the reverb sound (to see how well my sound is 'filling' the room), etc...
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top