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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently acquired a YAS23 with Selmer S80 C*. No reeds except for a chipped #3 Vandoren. So I stuck a #3 Fibracell on the piece. Seems to play o.k. Looks to me as though the major difference in the two is that the alto reed's shorter than the tenor by about 1/4". But side to side, the width difference is really small. I ordered a bunch of alto reeds but figured I'd at least try the tenor reed. Seems to work o.k.

I also tried an old cane Rico that I cut down. That one didn't work as well as the Fibracell.

Anybody else tried this?
 

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i play tenor reeds on alto because i like the fullness of tone it gives me. I find i have to use at least a strength higher than i would use on alto to make the altissimo nice and thick!!
 

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I play tenor reeds on alto. It gives me more of the sound I am looking for (full, mellow and easier altissimo), and they last forever (real cane, not synthetics. I used to play fibracells until I heard a recording of myself...). Jeff Coffin also plays tenor reeds on alto.
 

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hmmmm, I am curious about this. For those of you who put a tenor reed on an alto do you use the same strength or a softer strength? I am game for trying this. I know a tenor player who uses a bari reed on his Otto Link metal mpc. I use clarinet reeds on soprano, no special reason except I just always have. Fibracells.............I don't go there, sorry, never have and probably never will.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well I do have lots of tenor cane reeds, mostly Vandoren and orange box Vitos - 2 1/2. I'll give them a try later on. Thanks for the replies to date.

How about something even goofier - an alto reed on a soprano mpc? I have a really nice 1923 Silver plate Buescher soprano to try it on. Maybe someday there will be a universal reed/mpc combo. Don't have any idea how that could happen but we did send guys to the moon ;-)
 

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I've played Tenor reeds on Alto for years. I play Hensche 3 1/2 on a Claude Lakey #7 mouthpiece, Selmer SA II alto. It gives me a more even very slightly warmer tone over the range of the instrument and I find it a little easier to get the low notes to speak. I don't recommend it for my students, as I feel they should most likely start on a more traditional set up, but if any were to try it and it worked for them I'd say go for it. In the end, it's all about whether it sounds any good and feels any good and this setup works for me.
 

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Another thread coming back from the dead, but still an interesting question ... I am curious about that; isn't the heart of the reed in the wrong spot then? The alto mouthpiece window is a lot smaller than the tenor one.
 

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someone gave me a reed trimmer that looked like it was made for alto. So i use it on my alto reeds but now it seems to be made for tenor reeds.
 

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I use to love the way bari reeds responded in my tenor back in collage. I think I'll try tenor reeds on my alto.
 

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someone gave me a reed trimmer that looked like it was made for alto. So i use it on my alto reeds but now it seems to be made for tenor reeds.
Reminds me of the time when I destroyed a nice alto reed with a bari reed trimmer :rolleyes:
 

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A baritone reed on tenor and tenor reed on alto works fine for some players. It has been done through the years. I have never heard of using this setup on classical music or in a concert band but someone probably has over the years. Plas Johnson used a baritone reed on his tenor m/p on the "Pink Panther Theme". Many refer to that song in other posts. Some old school blues players like it due to the flexibility on gliss's and lip bends and a few "big band" players used these setups according to a few players from that era that I have spoken with over the years. I did both for many years and as someone mentioned you normally have to go to 1/2 to 1 strength stronger due to the amount of shaved reed, especially if you do a lot of altissimo work. Give it a try. You may like it or it may not work for you. Takes a little getting used to but will produce a little fuller tone and more volume (y)
 

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I've been using tenor reeds on alto since the Earth was a hot blob of glowing gases... well, since the mid-1980s, at least. Full, deep sound on my Keilwerths, therefore doubly full & deep. I don't do anything special, just blow. Feels totally natural on medium-chamber, medium-tip, medium-low baffle mouthpieces with a dropoff or bullet.

A couple of times I've switched back to alto reeds just to refresh my sensory recall; alto reed tones always strike my ear as gray, missing essential colorations.

From time to time I've used bass clarinet reeds on alto. Maybe a tad less beef & a tad more portamento than tenor reeds, but nearly the same.

The only downside is that not all alto ligatures will accommodate a tenor reed. An Echo Brass alto sax Brilhart replica lig & an alto clarinet Brancher lig serve me well.
 
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