Choosing A Mouthpiece


I have been playing on my tenor sax for a year now. When I bought I also purchased a V16 T9 Vandoren mouthpiece, which I played for nearly 7 months. During that time I have also used a Guardala Brecker II mouthpiece which I’ve had for over 20 years.

I didn’t sound very good with either mouthpiece, but, the longer I played the better I started to sound with the Vandoren mouthpiece. To this date, I have not been able to regain the sound I used to get with the Guardala mouthpiece. Ever now and then with the right reed, I find it but it is not consistent enough to give it any more time.

I recently purchased another Vandoren mouthpiece; the Jumbo Java T55.  It has a pretty high baffle in it and it plays really well for me. I get plenty of volume and a really nice tenor sound with it. It works more consistently with the reeds I have available right now. In fact, right now, I like the sound much more so than the sound I get with the Guardala or the Vandoren V16.

I have not given up on the Guardala. I think it requires different reeds than the ones I have now. I have a significant stash of Java greens, which worked great when I was playing the Navy’s Yamaha Custom tenors. They haven’t worked well with the Guardala/Allora Paris tenor combination. And then again, it could be that I simply need to develop my embouchure further.

For now, though, the Vandoren Jumbo Java will do. I hope to post another recording using it soon.


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