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Selmer MarkVII Tenor
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Discussion Starter #1
As I said before, I am returning to play sax after 37 years off. After buying a tenor sax I picked an Otto Link STM 5* ( metal) because i wanted the sound of Stan Getz. ( In fact Stan used HR Otto Link, not metal).
When I played , I used to play an alto sax, with a Selmer Jazz metal F, an open mouthpiece. I find the Otto Link very close. What should be the proper opening that can give me the possibility to obtain that sound ?
I feel that the search for the best mouthpiece is a kind of Holy Grail quest...

I appreciate your advice.
Thanks
 

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If you feel like it will become a Holy Grail quest, that feeling has hit you rather quickly after picking up a tenor. Sounds more like a conviction than a feeling to me. If that is your disposition, you will find a long and bumpy road ahead for sure. But it does not HAVE to be like that. I played the same metal Link I bought together with my first professional tenor for over 20 years and it is still one of my 3 favorite pieces. My advise: try a few, pick one that feels comfortable and.....start playing before you start experimenting with lots of equipment.
But back to your question: I think for a lot of experienced players a STM 5* would be just perfect to produce a Getzy tone.
 

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I only play one mouthpiece. Once in a great while I play a second. As a maker, refacer, and dealer I have probably have around 80 to 100 pieces to play at any given time.

There is a lot to be said for settling in on one or two quality pieces and really learning your way around them.

I would estimate that 90% or more of the sax players out there never know the potential of the piece they are playing.

You only need so many hammers to build a house. The sound is in you.
 

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You have to work at it, probably for years, like Getz did. If you listen to Stan Getz over his career, he didn't sound the same. Those great players worked at their sound, perfected it, tweaked mouthpieces, changed mouthpieces, in the search for their sound. It doesn't work that when you stick a 5* on your horn you're gonna sound like Getz. Getz was always in the Link factory, getting new mouthpieces, getting existing ones adjusted. And those great players played all the time, that's all they did.
You have to work at it, we all do, and it takes time. A lot of time.
Keep working with your 5* STM, or try a HR piece, but you will get there if that's where you want to go. Good luck.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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Many many mouthpieces and tip openings will allow you to sound like Getz, but only if you have the ability to do so.

At one time Stan tried a Selmer and preferred it to his Link.
 

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the proper opening is the one you find comfortable to play.
If there's a store with lots of otto links in your neighbourhood you could go there and try a couple of sizes. Check out the HR while you're at it too.If you feel 5* is really too close for you, start with a 7 to see if that's too big a difference or not, If so go back in size , if not go up untill you go out of the comfort zone. That way you'll narrow down the options. If you settle on a 7 ish opening for instance decide on which side of the spectrum you feel best: 6* or 7*.

Take home the two sizes you find the most comfy.most stores let you try out the piece for a week.
that should be enough to decide which size is best for you.
 

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Forum Contributor 2011, SOTW's pedantic pet rodent
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I only play one mouthpiece. Once in a great while I play a second. As a maker, refacer, and dealer I have probably have around 80 to 100 pieces to play at any given time.

There is a lot to be said for settling in on one or two quality pieces and really learning your way around them.

I would estimate that 90% or more of the sax players out there never know the potential of the piece they are playing.

You only need so many hammers to build a house. The sound is in you.
Now he tells us.. [rolleyes]

But seriously: that really should be a sticky and that's something i've never said before.
 

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Optimal tip opening choice will vary immensely depending on reed brand and strength. Getting the right combination is something that may take many months, even years for some.
 

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From what I can tell, Getz got his tone by playing a really hard reed on a wider tip piece and made it work through sheer will. You might want to try that. The 5* is a pretty medium to close tipped piece, try a 7* or higher and see if your impression changes any. I personally play on two Links for tenor, as I have two tenors and don't want to go through the "ohh crap I left my mouthpiece at home" feeling ever again. I have an old ToneMaster, stamped a 7 on the table, and I also have a more modern (80's?) STM 8*. Oddly enough, I use the same reeds on both pieces. If I put a harder reed on either piece, Getz starts to come out a bit, but that's not what I'm really going for. As always with mouthpieces, your mileage may vary.
 

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From what I can tell, Getz got his tone by playing a really hard reed on a wider tip piece and made it work through sheer will.


A list of mouthpieces used by Stan Getz,

1945-1950: used a metal 4* Tone Master (Used during his stint with the Benny Goodman Band.)

1950-1954: used a White Streamline Brilhart mouthpiece #7.

1954-1956: used a Rubber Berg Larsen (used during an album Gerry Mulligan.)

1957-1971: began to use an early Florida Model rubber 5* in 1957 because it was easier to play ballads on. Used this model throughout the
Bossa Nova sessions until the 1964 Carnegie Concert with Joao Gilberto where Stan used a rubber Vandoren T-20 mouthpiece because
his sax and mouthpiece were stolen. Stan began using #5 strength reeds during the Bossa Nova years and the Chick Corea sessions in
1967-68.

1971-1974: Getz traded his Link for a modified Bobby Dukoff #5 Hollywood model and an old refaced metal Selmer C**.

1974-1988: Getz returned to his old set-up of the rubber Link by having two custom tailored Links, a refaced 7* Florida Model and a refaced
early Babbitt 5*. The Babbitt was refaced by Ben Harrod.

1989-1991: Dissatisfied with the bulkiness of the Links Getz requested that material be taken off to make the Links skinnier and easier to
play by his standards, until he was advised that taking off material on the beak of the mouthpiece would change its sound and timbre. So, he
controversially switched to a Meyer Rubber 8S which was tailored to his request.



This is from Johannes Gerber.
 

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Selmer MarkVII Tenor
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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all your info. Actually, I am living in South America, in Venezuela, and I do not have any store that carries several mouthpieces , so I can not try them. I have been in search of the right combination reed/mouthpiece and tried my Link 5* STM with Vandoren 2, Vandoren 2 1/2, Vandoren Java 3, Vandoren Jazz 3, Vandoren 3 1/2, , Rico 2, Rico 2 1/2, Rico royal 3 1/2, Rico Royal 4, Ri Yin 2 1/2, and now I am expecting to receive Rico Royal 3... I am feeling that Rico 2 1/2 is a little soft and Rico royal 3 1/2 a little hard...so could be that the Rico Royal 3 could be the solution. In the mean time... Long tones..long tones.. dynamics, scales...and patience.. also...hearing the Samba years...thanks again
 

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Thanks for all your info. Actually, I am living in South America, in Venezuela, and I do not have any store that carries several mouthpieces , so I can not try them. I have been in search of the right combination reed/mouthpiece and tried my Link 5* STM with Vandoren 2, Vandoren 2 1/2, Vandoren Java 3, Vandoren Jazz 3, Vandoren 3 1/2, , Rico 2, Rico 2 1/2, Rico royal 3 1/2, Rico Royal 4, Ri Yin 2 1/2, and now I am expecting to receive Rico Royal 3... I am feeling that Rico 2 1/2 is a little soft and Rico royal 3 1/2 a little hard...so could be that the Rico Royal 3 could be the solution. In the mean time... Long tones..long tones.. dynamics, scales...and patience.. also...hearing the Samba years...thanks again
Get a Vandoren V16 T6 hard rubber (1stopclarinet.com may be the only source for the rare T6 (.97?) new) if you want to come closest to the Getz hard rubber sound. I play one and like it better than any new Link I ever tried (including one that I had custom refaced by Ted Klum, who they say is the best in that biz--in fact, he's kind of legendary now that he's not accepting any more refacing jobs since he makes his own pieces now).

But the V16 hard rubbers are better than anything else I've tried right off the shelf, and are cheap @ around $120. If you want to try a T7 (a .105 I believe?) they're a pretty easy blow and I don't think you'd have a harder time with the larger opening. BTW Getz played about a .105 or .110 (Link 7* or 8) toward the end of his career.

But here's the link to ordering info on the rare T6 on 1stopclarinet.com:

http://1stopclarinet.stores.yahoo.net/vav16harutes.html
 

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Selmer MarkVII Tenor
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Discussion Starter #14
I forgot to add that also I have tried La Voz medium/soft and La voz Medium.... ( I feel that I am spending more money trying different reeds that the cost of a new mouthpiece...) ha ha
 

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personally, the person constitutes to about 70% of the sound with the rest depending on the gear - well, different folks may have different % allocation.
getting the same setup as Stan Getz does not guarantee a similar sound.
continue to try different gear. like what was said, the sound is IN us.
 

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Forget all about this practise for years stuff. Just get the Getz mouthpiece by Drake https://www.drakeceramicinstruments.com/Stan_Getz_Mouthpiece.html
and you'll sound just like him out of the box. The only thing you have to do is to have your front teeth rearranged so they fit in the preformed teeth dents of Stans original mouthpiece.
 

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I play a cheap Brilhart 5 with La Voz med hard reeds. I don't feel the need to "upgrade" from that setup, as it plays very well for me.
 
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