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Discussion Starter #1
hey I'm a relatively new saxophonist, I'm playing a selmer bundy tenor right now and I have two mpc's but I don't like either. My Selmer C* is too bland and I can't hit high notes, while my metal Selmer Jazz E is so loud and I can't control it's dynamics yet. I'm using size 2 reeds. I'm looking for something possibly inbetween these, something with some of the power and brightness of the Jazz E piece but still controlable (for me).

oh one more thing it would be nice if the mpc worked with my rovner lig
 

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Your Selmer Jazz E really shouldn't be that hard to control, the tip opening isn't really that big for a tenor piece. I don't have much experience with the Selmer Jazz pieces, but Selmers usually err on the side of stuffy, not bright, in my experience. Maybe others have different experiences.

If I were you I would try to work with the Selmer Jazz piece until it's comfortable; maybe spend more hours on that than on your C* (but don't tell your classical teacher). You might find that sticking a tooth patch on the top, if you haven't yet, makes the piece more comfortable and easier to control. Make sure you're using a nice, high tongue position ("eeee") with minimal jaw pressure and tons of deep, strong air when you're getting used to it. With time you should find that it does everything you need it to.

If you still think it's out of control, many people have good luck with stock hard rubber Otto Links, particularly if they've been refaced by EZ, Brian Powell, or any of the other reputable mpc techs out there. Links have seldom been accused of being hard to control, particularly if you get a nice, manageable 7 or 7*. They'll usually be too stuffy unless you get them worked on.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
ah, ok...interesting...I've been practicing with my Jazz E mpc lately but I'm used to playing on my C* so I'll give myself some time to adjust. I wish I had a classical teacher, I'm self-taught...
 

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A harder reed like a 2.5 or 3 might darken things up or at least lower the volume on the E Jazz.
 

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How new is "relatively new"? Sounds like you're way to early to start messing with mouthpieces. Time to take a step back. First of all, you're using a #2 reed on your C*. Even beginners probably shouldn't start on anything softer than a 2.5. An increase in reed strength will help tone and solidify your high notes. Too soft a reed will pinch off on high notes. I don't know what reed you're using, but try some 2.5 Vandoren Traditionals (Blue Box). You're probably just ready to move up in reed strength. You need to be eventually be using a #3, or even 3.5 Vandoren Traditional on a C*. I don't have any experience with the Selmer Jazz, but the E facing means it's going to require a slightly softer reed than the C*. I say stick with the C* until you can play Vandoren Traditional #3s comfortably before you start playing around with mouthpieces. You have to be able to play before you can mess with your sound. Good luck.
 

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Although I use a Brilhart or Link vintage, I sell a lot of the S-80 Selmers in an F or G facing. Selmer facing letters are not consistant from alto/soprano to tenor. The C* on tenor is very closed and tends to be stuffy. I find the metals to be a bit "icy". Try the Selmer in an F which should be a good start. I sell them for about $90 and you should get them locally for about that price where you try them. If you run across an old Brilhart, give it a toot.
 

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I had just posted a brilliant response :D to your post WBJC, and then read your profile; adult college student with experience playing guitar. In that case, I would go with gearaholic's advice. This is not to imply that Heavy Weather's is not also solid, it's just that my approach is that you need more time with your horn and a C* is a good starting point (comments about the C* opening on tenors notwithstanding. I happen to agree but he already has the C*).

I don't think you've put enough time into your horn to know what you can or cannot do and what the effect of other mpcs might be so my advice is really basic. Stick with what you've got, work on your long tones and embouchure development for at least six months before even considering any changes. At this point, you just don't have anything really to relate to.
 

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You will have no problems with the C* on the high notes, or even being stuffy if you learn how to use it properly.
 

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I would suggest stepping away from the Selmer Metal, it is simply to early to start using a Metal mouthpiece. I would have to agree to start praticing. You need to get to know your horn, like you do with your Gutiar. Keep using the S80, 'till you feel that it is holding you back, then change.
 

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Or don't change at all, it is probably a good mouthpiece
 

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While the C* is certainly a widely accepted mouthpiece, I agree that for tenor it is a bit closed. I think a C** is a better choice. A D or even E would probably be okay, but I think an F or higher is pushing it for the average player (assuming we're talking about legit). In any event, the C* is an excellent mouthpiece to start on, so, like I said, keep practicing. Gary's suggestion of at least 6 months is a good one. I would say even more. Good luck.
 

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I waited 5 or so years before I started messing with mouthpieces. And the mouthpiece I used always gave great responses, and helped me show results. Keep praticing, and stop looking at other gear!
 

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Actually when you are a beginner, i think it is important to have a mouthpiece you like your sound on (even though your tone is not propperly developed yet). so my advice is to go to a shop that has a good selection of mouthpieces and try a lot for a few hours until you find one you like. Then you stick with it for a couple of years. I have had many students who weren't motivated simply because they didn't like their sound or how their piece was blowing (too resistant etc). Once they found a piece they found easy to blow with a pleasant sound..they progressed much quicker.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I'll go to 2.5 reeds (i've been using vandorens). I suppose I need to actually practice a little more, right now I just jam to my ipod...do some long tones and scales and all of that fun stuff. thanks for the replys
 

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I agree with Selmer. Students generally progress much faster when they enjoy what they're playing. On the other hand, I would never let a beginner pick out his/her own mouthpiece. Everybody likes the sound of a Dukoff!:twisted:

So stick with what you've got.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I think I'll move to 2.5 vandorens...we'll see how that works. thanks 4 the replys. btw I've been playing seriously for about 5 months
 

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please do not choose you mouthpiece based upon the lig you have .....the mouthpiece is 1000% more important than the lig. Find the combination that works for you. As a not very experienced player you shouldn't even be thinking about different sorts of ligs yet...just a plain old lig will do.
 

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I wouldn't play a modern selmer mouthpiece unless it had been refaced.

Selmers facings these days are absolutely horrible and yes the C* is too closed a mouthpiece. I don't know guys there's something really uncool about telling this guy that the C* is going to be an okay jazz piece once he gets used to it.

If you have the money go to a music shop and try out mouthpieces. A metal otto link in say a 6 -7 would be a decent start. Stay away from extreme set ups with too closed or too open a tip. Same with baffle and chamber size. Middle of the road on all these features is going to serve you better long term.

I dig Selmer Soloists once they've been opened up and refaced. They can really sing, but as they come stock with their short facing curves and often times uneven rails they're not exactly a joy to play.
 

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heath said:
I don't know guys there's something really uncool about telling this guy that the C* is going to be an okay jazz piece once he gets used to it.
heath, where does he say he's looking for a jazz piece?
 
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