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Hello,

I am primarily an alto player, and play primarily jazz (a lot of straight-ahead, bop, latin) with occasional funk and pop mixed in. I enjoy an overall bright/lead sound on alto (I play a Beechler hard rubber s6s with a Selmer Paris Serie III alto).

I have been dabbling a bit on tenor and am interested in picking it up as a secondary option for gigging. I want a tenor sound that really contrasts my alto sound, and am aiming for a dark, husky sound (think Dexter Gordon). At the moment I am renting a student-level Yamaha to get a feel for tenor and build some basic chops and quickly threw on an Otto Link STM 6 metal mouthpiece as a starting point. I am pretty satisfied with my results so far, and would like to buy a tenor, but probably a step up from the current horn I am renting, and perhaps play around with the mouthpiece as well (no pun intended).

I am looking for any suggestions regarding setups I should consider for tenor (both horn and mouthpiece). For a horn, I do not think I quite need a top-of-the-line professional model at this point (they are so much more expensive than altos!), but I would certainly like a decent intermediate-level horn, or perhaps a used professional-level. For a mouthpiece, I quickly got the STM Link because it was readily available and I knew it's a flagship piece for a traditional tenor sound. I do like it and think it guides my tone in the direction I want it to, but I also would like to play around and see what other mouthpieces around can help give a nice dark tenor sound. Especially if I do not pay top dollar for the horn, I'd be happy to play around with different mouthpiece options.

All guidance and/or suggestions very welcome - thank you!
 

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I just shot you a PM.

If you are wanting used stuff I have a ton of it I am getting ready to list at prices that average below 200 bucks each for good pieces I have reworked.

I dont have time to mess with used pieces or ebay so Im cleaning house and making shelf space.

Welcome to the forum.

Phil
 

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For a dark and husky sound, you should probably look at vintage horns (assuming you can deal with the different ergos). For good value vintage horns check out what JayePDX on here has for sale - he lists things here, but also has a website: www.2ndending.com. He typically has the slightly-lesser-known but still good quality vintage horns at good prices, and he is good to deal with.
 

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In terms of mouthpiece, I would check out RPC mouthpieces at saxmpc.com

Best pieces I've ever played by far on all four standard saxophones, and custom tailored to your preference by the one man who makes them all by hand. A bit pricey, maybe, but around $300 isn't bad when you see people shelling out thousands of dollars for vintage mouthpieces.
 

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As far as horns go, I'm a professional player and I've used a Selmer Reference 54 for nearly a decade. I love the horn, always have!
 

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One thing to consider when taking on a second sax is the possible differences in feel (resistance, etc.) and projection. This should be considered when you're evaluating possible setups for the tenor. If you're playing with a brighter sound and want a darker sound on tenor, make sure it's comfortable to switch back and forth between the two. This messed with my head for a long time when I got serious about playing tenor (after years of professional experience on alto and baritone).

The mouthpiece and reed combination will have far more influence on your sound than the horn. As long as you get a decent tenor in excellent playing condition, I'd direct most of your attention to the mouthpiece/reed setup.
 

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I would go for a hard rubber tenor piece, a decent tenor like a conn, zephyr or even a good model yamaha and try a few reeds out......
 
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