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This is closely related to Vanessa Rae Hasbrook's work entitled "ALTO SAXOPHONE MOUTHPIECE PITCH AND ITS RELATION TO JAZZ AND CLASSICAL TONE QUALITIES" in which she demonstrates that blowing on a lower mouthpiece pitch increases the dynamic range and upper harmonic frequencies that are more characteristic of a jazz concept of tone. I found it interesting that she found the mouthpiece pitch of various jazz players to be as much as a minor third below that of the classical players in the study.
 

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I didn't watch the video yet but I would suggest that the sequence should be

"lowering the pitch"

and THEN

"tuning up".
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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I didn't watch the video yet but I would suggest that the sequence should be

"lowering the pitch"

and THEN

"tuning up".
Not sure I understand that.

I did watch the video and I get the concept of "tuning" sharp and then playing lower. But I have no idea what "throating down" could be.

But I do like to hear players who tune sharp, whiter they pay sharp or not. Sharp is OK a lot of the time (it's better than being out of tune anyway)
 

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Paul Harvey in one of his books said play down into pitch on sax and up to the pitch on clarinet as i recall i think thats what your suggesting .
 

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Not sure I understand that.

I did watch the video and I get the concept of "tuning" sharp and then playing lower. But I have no idea what "throating down" could be.

But I do like to hear players who tune sharp, whiter they pay sharp or not. Sharp is OK a lot of the time (it's better than being out of tune anyway)
Maybe the humor is too dry for me to be certain here, but if serious, how can playing sharp not be (one way of) playing out of tune? Other than playing sharp or flat, is there another way to play out of tune? (Or are you using out of tune to mean something other than off pitch?)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
when you put the mouthpiece farther up the cork you have to really open the air and relax the embouchure to stay in tune playing lines/overtones, long tones songs . Whatever. Its just one technique to open and add color to your tone. K
 

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The intention of my comment is that I believe the best tactic is to "open the throat" (probably not anatomically correct) and lower the input pitch, as the way you play 100% of the time. This will, of course, mean you have to push in the mouthpiece further. Not using it as a "sometimes" technique. In fact, I think it's really important to develop stability in your embouchure and voicing, so going back and forth from "higher" to "lower" would, I think, be a really bad idea.

As noted, I haven't watched the video yet, but this was my reaction to the thread title.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I think we are in agreement Turf3. the goal is to tune sharp and then alter chops so everything you play the rest of your session is in tune. But it will be unstable until the new feeling sinks in. It will tend to go back sharp until the new way feels doable. This does mean dropping the jaw a little and kind of a tow (toe) feeling in your throat. K
 

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I think we are in agreement Turf3. the goal is to tune sharp and then alter chops so everything you play the rest of your session is in tune.
Wouldn't an alternative be to tune normally (ie in tune) using embouchure you intend to use?
 

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For me that was always a sign of constant improvement, especially in the air support.
The stronger the air support gets the more open the throat and the lower tension on the lips and that brings also the pitch down and inevitably the mouthpiece more inside the neck.
The sound becomes bigger rounder fuller etc.
 

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I found it interesting that she found the mouthpiece pitch of various jazz players to be as much as a minor third below that of the classical players in the study.
That is interesting. I'm sure it's different schools or concepts that would dictate that. One of the first things I was taught in first year in college was to push really far in and drop the pitch by opening the throat like when you bend a note down, and I was a classical player. It took a really long time to get the technique down. Anyway, maybe that's why I never liked the tone of classical guys that have that pinched sound. I hear some very prominent players do that today. Again, a concept thing I guess.
 

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Wouldn't an alternative be to tune normally (ie in tune) using embouchure you intend to use?
Sure it would. This is just a concept of producing a different tone. I don't think there is a right or wrong. It's just a player's concept that would dictate which embouchure they want to use.
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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Sure it would. This is just a concept of producing a different tone.
Yes but a different tone to what?

I've heard people say this, ie tune sharp and then relax your embouchure to play "in tune" This sounds like a fine thing to do for people whose embouchure is not relaxed enough. As long as they are able to hear the sharpness that would otherwise be sharp. But plenty of people just play sharp anyway and it can sound great.

I thought this was just what people did. Or have we not been listening to our uncle Phil Barone?

Soundclips?
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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Well, a different tone to people that don't use the technique of pushing in far and throating it down.
I get a bit [type edit] lost though (as I mentioned above) when people talk about throating or throating down. I've never heard that expression before, though I do understand the concept of using your throat for pick manipulation. But for me that only really does anything on the very notes or like when you do mouthpiece exercises. But if I tune sharp, then I will relax my jaw to then make the notes flatter. I don't do anything with my throat. Although no doubt changing your jaw may have a knock on effect on your throat, but that would be secondary and not the cause of pitch change over the whole range.
 

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Yes but a different tone to what?

I've heard people say this, ie tune sharp and then relax your embouchure to play "in tune" This sounds like a fine thing to do for people whose embouchure is not relaxed enough. As long as they are able to hear the sharpness that would otherwise be sharp. But plenty of people just play sharp anyway and it can sound great.




Soundclips?
I agree. I switched to this style of tuning (further in) and relaxed my embouchure about 10 years ago - it made a big difference in that it's easier to bend a note up than down for me, so I am able to be more expressive. I also agree that being a bit sharp is ok - Especially when playing with stringed instruments. Guitarists tune on an open string, and the simple act of fretting a note pushes it slightly sharp.

....and playing flat generally sounds horrible no matter what...
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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I agree. I switched to this style of tuning (further in) and relaxed my embouchure about 10 years ago - it made a big difference in that it's easier to bend a note up than down for me, so I am able to be more expressive. I also agree that being a bit sharp is ok - Especially when playing with stringed instruments. Guitarists tune on an open string, and the simple act of fretting a note pushes it slightly sharp.
Yes, exactly. I understand the terms relaxing your embouchure, or lipping down (because you can't really lip up). It's the throating thing that confuses me.
 
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