Mouthpieces, Saxes, & Practice

Yesterday I received a new mouthpiece for my tenor sax, and another one today. I know, right? More mouthpieces. Well, it happens, especially when you can’t get your shit together. Your embouchure is weak and you can’t seem to get the sound you want, and on it goes until you finally decide to put some work in.

The mouthpiece I bought while in the navy to use with the Yamaha YTS-62 they provided does not really work with the sax I was able to afford in the here and now. The mouthpiece was a Dave Guardala, Brecker II. It sounded great with the Yamaha; not so much with the Allora Paris Series sax, I have now. Again, it could be my chops, or, lack thereof.

The mouthpieces I bought and received yesterday and today are by Aaron Drake (Drake NY Jazz) and Vandoren (Java T-75). I heard about the Drake mouthpiece on YouTube, heard a few players and decided to give it a shot. I am already familiar with Vandoren.

The Drake mouthpiece gave me a more open sound, easy projection, but difficult access to the altissimo register. The Vandoren mouthpiece, while having less projection, gave me easy access to the altissimo register. Both mouthpieces have a great tone and give me a tenor sax sound that I like.

I do believe that all would be better or different if I had a different or better saxophone. And of course, if I could manage to put in some work developing my chops and embouchure strength, things would be 100% better.

I hope to post a better video demonstrating these mouthpieces at some point.


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