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Members Saxophone Music Videos #3

By October 28, 2013 March 22nd, 2015 members saxophone videos

sax-videoDue to the number of video uploads and comments we have to start this new and 3rd blog page for posting your videos! C’mon and upload your own performance video.

For those that haven’t done this yet, you only need to put your video URL and any other information about the song, your sax and set up etc that you want others to know about. I will then get the embed code for the video so it will show here as an actual embeded video we can all watch.

The video you record can be uploaded to any video site such as Youtube. The embed code can only be put in from the backend admin area which I have access to, that’s why you only need to put the URL of the video in the comment box and let me do the rest.

147 Comments

  • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

    Well, again me with the first upload on the new (3rd) part.
    It’s an edute out of Fred Lipsius worksheet.
    Had some difficulties to keep the rythm, but I’m working on it 🙂

  • Kevin Kevin says:

    Klaus, another challenging piece. I like hearing these Lipsius Etudes. I haven’t found in the blog where you shared what Model Tenor you’re playing? Was this your Yamaha MP (with #2 Vandoren Jazz reed)?
    I liked the tone this time, the lower notes in particularly, but the higher notes as well.

    • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

      Hi Kevin, sorry my late reply. Yes, it’s my oldfashioned Yamaha MP with 2,5 vandoren Jazz reed. I recently tried some different MP and got me an Otto Link (Metal) MP but finally I was not satisfied and I came back to the original Yamaha. Still searching to find the real nasty blues and rock n roll tone.

  • Hey Klaus–I’m definitely seeing improvements in your playing here and that’s what it’s all about. Keep it up and keep those videos coming. Yeah, I too was wondering what model of Tenor you play with? The horn on your Sax sounds really nice 🙂
    This aspect of Johnny’s site is a real plus; he graciously added it so that we can all get better. His valuable insights helped me to avoid a mistake that crept in on me from becoming a bad habit that would have been 10 times as hard to break. Without the blog, that’s exactly what would have happened to me. Thank you Johnny!

  • Warren Bye says:

    Hey guys, here is my first recording. I have only been playing for three months, so please bear with me. I could have kept recording different takes and merge the best ones together, but I want you to hear my playing in it’s natural state. Therefore, there are timing and musical errors, as well as a long break where I have to turn the page. Either way, please let me know your thoughts.

  • Johnny Johnny says:

    How long have you been playing?

  • great job Warren. You’ve only been playing for 3 months? Wow, this is great for only 3 months of playing. You’ll find this blog to be a great learning tool, as it really helps to monitor your progress. Keep those videos coming!

    • Warren Bye says:

      Thank you, Michael. I’m already finding this blog and whole website very beneficial and rewarding! The tips from Johnny and all the users are extraordinary.

      Am looking forward to hearing other users play their sax too, so will keep checking this section!

  • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

    Here comes another quick one, Imagine by John Lennon.
    Backing tracks only the Drum computer..

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      good loud bright sound Klaus. I think I suggested to you in another video to try and have the sax more in front of you and not to put it off to the side of your face. I’m not sure how much it will change your tone but why don’t you record it again this time face straight at the music, you can hold the sax slightly to the side of the body but keep the neck inline with your nose. What I fear for you is that you may not be getting as much embouchure strength and control with it off to the side like you are doing.

  • Hey Klaus, great sound…..holding the Sax in front of you like Johnny is saying here will greatly improve you tone for sure and make your awesome playing even better 🙂
    HEY WARREN: Look forward to hearing/seeing more from you–your feelings about this site/Johnny’s insights pretty much echo all of our thoughts and feelings. He’s a first-class act, he’s the real deal. I will try to upload to the blog before the end of this month, my school schedule is tough between now and Jan. I’m going to really, really try to upload to the blog some of the Awesome holiday music Johnny just released. Think a good number of members are planning to do the same. Keep those videos coming for us to see and just remember there will be many mistakes that you make, but that’s all part of the learning process. That’s why Johnny added the blog, so that he can help us get better.

  • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

    Johnny, true , you already mentioned it. I will try it in this way. Thanks for the hint !

  • Lee Dove says:

    Klaus,
    Don’t forget you can rotate the neck in the body to get a more comfortable angle, which should enable you to get the mouthpiece straight in your mouth but have the sax to one side.

  • Ever have one of those really long, long days/weeks where all you want to do is just come home, take your shoes off and realize how good it feels to just take a seat? It’s been one of those long days for me where your feet hurt from standing on them all day and I could listen to the Saxophone versions of these songs that Johnny has done for hours on end.
    I had planned to come home and work on “tonguing” notes and Improvisation, but that will come tomorrow as it’s an off day, so here’s one of those beautiful saxophone songs that Johnny has done that helps me just to settle down and relax for the day. Being in the final part of my medical training, the schedule is crazy between now and Jan., you’ll notice I’m even playing in my medical scrubs, yikes!
    The first time I ever uploaded to the blog-when I got the courage to do it-I played this very song while reading along with Johnny’s sheet music. The thought of playing anything along with a backtrack seemed completely out of the question. I haven’t looked at the sheet music since then and it’s been exactly 6 months of learning to play the Saxophone; so here we go. I didn’t warm up or anything before filming this with my webcam, just played it and see how it comes out; please forgive me if a couple of the notes fall of near the end, it’s been a long day. I’m working on tonguing them, as Johnny brought out on my last blog upload and I’m noticing a major difference in being able to hold the notes longer and more full all the way through. I’m working on something right now that I’ll upload soon that absolutely forces you to tongue the notes and if you don’t then you know it right away. I’ll make sure I do that on an off day when I’m well rested 🙂 I noticed that I no longer have those “puffy cheeks” while playing; which hurts the embouchure. Have a great weekend one and all!

    • Warren Bye says:

      Great job! It looks like your sight reading is coming on really well, too.

      Am looking forward to hearing you play that piece you describe about tonguing notes.

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Michael, this song is quite involved for a beginner so it’s very good that you’re working on it! You need to take a closer look at the notes before moving forward on memorizing because you’re not playing the low F’s.
      Sounds like every time you play those low F’s you hit an F#.

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Michael, heard some improvement on how you’re holding the notes out, and it’s better that you got the USB mic.
      As Johnny said this song is pretty involved. I remember my attempt at it how hard is was for me to find places to take a breath. But allow me to also give you feedback on another element of this performance- you were starting the beginning of the phrases pretty much on the beat, but would then get ahead of the beat and end the phrase ahead of it’s place on the beat with the backing track. That’s part of the challenge with playing with backing tracks- the “band” can’t adjust to your sense of rhythm.
      In this song that probably did in fact help with giving you chances to take a breath, but musically this is another one of those fundamentals that you need to nail down as you progress…
      It would be good practice to play along with Johnny’s recording of this, then you can get the sense of his tempo and phrasing to the backing track.
      Hope these comments are helpful…

  • Oh yeah….looking at the video I was hitting F# instead of low F; my mistake—I did the video at the end of a very, very, very long week and just wanted to “unwind” from it all. Your Saxophone versions of these songs help me to just take off my shoes, put the feet up on the recliner and relax Johnny 🙂 I’ve noticed that the webcam I have isn’t the greatest in the world when it comes to recording sound, whether it’s a human voice or a musical instrument; when it records it’s very “spotty”. So my son had an idea to go get a modest microphone that plugs into the USB port and try recording my playing with it…it was amazing! It will help me out greatly in terms of listening to my saxophone playing and listen to what I’m doing right and wrong.
    WARREN: Thanks, I was in your shoes a few months back and everything Johnny has to teach works; plain and simple. But we have to apply ourselves to what he has to teach us. If you notice the comments he left for me here, it’s an example of him bringing something out that I didn’t even realize I had done; benefit of the blog. So now I can go back, re-analyze what I did wrong and correct it. Each and every time I upload; he’ll bring out something I didn’t know or didn’t realize; that’s how we grow and get better. I finally got the “courage” to book a private lesson with him here shortly LOL–just don’t be too hard on me Johnny! I’m a beginner LOL Thanks much for your awesome insights Johnny, keep them coming!

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Yes, even a modest USB mic will out perform a cheap webcam or computer mic so you should be a step above with your sound quality moving forward…just watch out for those wrong notes now, even the best mics can’t fix those!

  • It AMAZES me that you’re able to hear the difference between that low F and an low F# though a webcam recording, WOW. Why I played a middle F natural and a low F# I don’t know, the scale for that song doesn’t even call for F#. Just another example of why I’m so glad you added this members videos to your site–I was caught red-handed making a mistake! LOL As a beginner, it can be easy for me to get down on myself for making an honest mistake. Over the years in bmx racing, I learned to laugh at myself, not take myself too seriously, learn from my mistake and move on. I made literally thousands of mistakes; probably way more than thousands. Same thing has happened now in my Medical training with Instructors who could have held their own with Sir Isaac Newton! LOL 🙂 Live and learn and have fun doing it. Thank you Johnny!

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Whenever we tackle a new song or any piece of music or exercise, take note of the key signature, this is very important. Since Killing Me Softly is in F for you on alto, playing an F# as part of a simple pop melody like this would never happen. As we get more used to keys these types of mistakes become more rare. Also, listen carefully to yourself, hitting an F# instead of an F should be obvious that there is a “sour” note in the melody… just be more aware.

  • Kevin Kevin says:

    Hey, anyone have a soprano sax that they can play a video post with? I would especially like to hear one on a Christmas piece! “Variety- the spice of Life…”

    • Kevin,

      i got one from a friend of mine.

      I played about an hour yesterday and it sound not so bad.

      I will try to send some “Ho Ho Ho” stuff 😀

      BTW: It is a very big difference between vintage saxes an new ones.
      The soprano is a modern yamaha and it is very easy to play. I am used to play with a lot of air on my alto and tenor and i have problems with it now on the soprano.

  • Thanks Kevin 🙂 Your’s, Johnny’s, and other members insights help me to learn. Some members have sent me messages of encouragement to tell me how far they think I’ve come in 6 months of plyaing. I just tell them that I’ve learned a lot from Johnny; but we have to apply ourselves to what he teaches.
    As I listened to myself playing I too noticed myself getting ahead as you mentioned here; I was playing a little bit too fast. I’ll make sure the next time I do a blog upload it will be on my off day v.s. coming home after being exhausted and doing one. I didn’t use the USB mic here on this video; I bought one the following day. With the webcam, it’s hard to see what the tone really sounds like. It’s great for capturing HD video but not so great with sound. With the USB mic it sounds just like your standing right next to me; will help me in monitoring my tone, pitch, etc., with more accuracy. I don’t plan on using it each and every time I practice, but will use it to evaluate my progress. I’ll use it the next time I upload to the blog; hopefully with some of the holiday music Johnny just released. In terms of this song I attempted, I didn’t feel like it was difficult in terms of not getting a chance to take a breath but certainly is a challenge playing along with backtracks. Thanks for your insights Kevin and Johnny, I warmly welcome them!

  • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

    Ok, here comes ‘Fly me to the moon’
    Nice tune, I like the swing feeling.
    On the video I found that I hold the Sax still at the side of the mouth but I’m working on it ..

  • Warren Bye says:

    Here’s my attempt at playing Samba Pa Ti. I can only play the first part at the moment as the rest is far too hard. Let me know what you think and how to improve. Thanks 🙂

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Warren, your doing well! I took this word for word excerpt from Johnny’s first comment to me-
      “When you practice, play twice as loud as you’re playing now. Some notes have a waver which tend to go a bit flat…this is your sax telling you “give me more air”.
      That extra air has got to come from the diaphragm. Once you get this going be more dominating with how you handle your notes, specifically how you end them. Don’t let them disappear or fade out on their own, make sure to stop them when YOU want with the tip of your tongue. It’s these little things that can make a big difference in how you’re coming across as an instrumentalist… keep good air going right until you end it with your tongue.”
      I think you’re doing better than I was with delivering air to the sax, but take Johnnys comments to task about starting and ending the notes…

  • Adrian Eßer Adrian Eßer says:

    Me playing Bourré from J.S. Bach on my Alto Sax.
    It tok some time to practice the high tones. I wanted them to be clear and well and not only high an loud.

    • Hi Adrian,

      very good! You have a nice tone and a good feeling for the rythm.

      For how long do you play alto?

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      You’re well on your way Adrian… watch your fingers, they are coming up pretty high off the keys, this can slow you down. We should all try to keep them as close to the keys as possible… I’m bad at it too but I don’t do much really fast stuff. If you are or will be doing more classical stuff you will need to increase speed at some point and having your fingers so far off the keys will make it hard to play fast passages.

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Adrian, Glad to have a new “blogger”. Yes, nice tone and note playing… But I’m hearing a transposition key thing going on between you and the backing piano. Unless I’m wrong(it wouldn’t be the 1st time!) you need to be playing in a key a minor 3rd(3 half tones) lower than the key of the backing track.
      Someone else please comment on this as well…

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Hey Adrian, Yes Kevin has a good point which I didn’t have time to get into the other day but…
      Check your chart, the concert key is D minor I believe, and you’re playing it in C minor concert (your A minor on alto)
      You need to transpose your chart up one whole tone, so instead of your first 3 notes being ABC the way they are now, they should be BC#D

  • O.K. here is the first one on soprano. I have chosen “What a wonderful world” because i have not selected a nice christmas song Keven is waiting for.

    It is my third session on the soprano, so please be polite 😉

    • HEY DIRK: That was fantastic–I believe this is the first upload to the blog with someone playing the Soprano. I actually was thinking about that about a month back about how cool it would be to see one of the members upload something with the Soprano. Now it would awesome to see you play that song with the backtrack, would raise some eyebrows for sure! Soprano has such a great sound to it. What type of recording device did you use for your upload? A suggestion for your next upload, if possible, is to put the camera where you can stand back and we can see all of you and your Soprano Saxophone.
      Great job to everyone; Adrian, Warren and Klaus. Keep those uploads coming.

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Dirk, good to hear you return back with a video! And thanks for the variety of breaking out a Soprano Sax. I thought you did very well with it for a 3rd session. Your intonation and musicality were good, and I thought the tone results throughout were good. some notes may have “thinned” out a bit, but they were few.. and for us students (for sure in my case) it is a lengthy process to dial in the right MP/Reed combo and get it working with that particular instrument!
      Looking forward to the Christmas piece! Will be considering a backing track? Your playing is certainly solid enough to add that to your video!
      Lastly regarding your vibrato- It was improved this time. I want to ask if I’m hearing something correctly in how you are doing it- Am I hearing a Lip(and/or lower jaw) vibrato
      at times, then when ending a phrase do you at times use a “pulsating” air flow? For me the Lip vibrato is coming across good though your control of it is still developing (for me too!), but the pulsating vibrato sound I think is detracting from an otherwise pretty solid performance…
      (Disclaimer- I hope that my comments will be accepted as constructive feedback when I do comment, I by no means intend to assert myself as one who has achieved a level of proficiency on the sax to be able to “instruct” others. I have taught students on other instruments, so I do have it in me to offer what I hope and intend to be helpful/candid comments to aid another for improvement purposes.)

    • Thank you for the comments.

      Michael, at the moment i am using an iphone for both video and sound. I need some more time to spend more money on my equipment (two saxes within one year is enough i think). Changing the position of the device is planed for the next few weeks. I need another stand for that but i have an idea to do this withthings i have at home.

      Kevin, thank you for the warm words. It is true that finding the right MP/reed combination is one of the hardest things. I am on a good way with my alto and tenor and i was surprised that i could play on the soprano. The most surprising thing is that it is normally harder to play the higher notes, but on the soprano it is the opposite for me. Upeatds from the middle register the intonation ist very easy on low and high volume. From low G downwards i have to blow harder to hit the right tone.

      What to say to the vibrato … i can’t tell you if im using only the lips or the yaws! If i wan’t to do a bigger vibrato i am definitly using the yaws. I thing normally it is more the tension of my lower lip like on bending notes up and down.

      Definitely i am not using a pulsating air flow from my loungs/stomach. The air is always flowing straight through my body.

      The next time i will try to play with a backing track. In music school i play once a month whith another student to learn playing duets or trios (with our teacher) which helps. lot.

      Kevin, on your disclaimer! I think it is very important to always tell truely what we think of what we can see and hear her! Everybody has an individual feeling for music and so i think it is good to tell what we think. Nobody want’s to hurt anyone but if we think there is a mistake we should say it. If we are wrong with it we will learn that our feeling is not correct and if we are right it helps the one who did the mistakes. That is what we are here for, right?

    • Adrian Eßer Adrian Eßer says:

      Hey Dirk,
      You did a great job too.
      Thank you for your comment, i started playing Alto in 2010.
      And since Juli 2013 i´m playing a Tenor too.

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Nice tone Dirk, keep rockin that soprano!

  • Here we go,

    Winter Wonderland …

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Dirk, thanks again for the video posts with the soprano. Both songs are ones that I like to hear, and you played them well…
      I had an aha moment practicing the other day regarding vibrato- I learned something that I think could help you as well- I took in less mouthpiece than normal because I was trying to use the lip and embrochure to control and mute the tone a bit. I then tried to add some vibrato and did it with too wide of a sine wave pattern, and the result was clearly a pulsating air sound due to the lip closing off the reed opening a bit too much.
      So when producing a vibrato it takes way more control and a much smaller “sine wave” if you are not taking in much of the mouthpiece.
      Listening to a metronome when hearing your vibrato there are times it reaches 320 bpm, which is very fast. I can’t get my lip to respond that fast, so in that respect you have a unique gift! If you can tongue notes at that speed as well, then you are well ahead of me!
      Learning vibrato on long tones as you have mentioned and with a metronome starting with slow bpm’s is something I’m trying. Though it’s coming slowly, I am seeing more control of the vibrato as the months go by…

      • Johnny Johnny says:

        Ya right Kevin, doing those exaggerations is a good way to learn how to better develop and finally control your vibrato. We all end up doing it differently and it’s all a matter of taste but a vibrato that’s too fast usually is less pleasing as a general rule.

    • After playing the soprano for a while now i can put more light on the “vibrato” stuff!

      Kevin what you have heared (about five hertz pulsating) is of course not a controled vibrato! It is more an intonation problem because the straight soprano is very difficult to handle!

      The MP is so damned small that controlling what the lips are doing is realy hard.

      On alto and tenor i am able to control the vibrato, if beat me to do that. When i play with my stomach feelings i fall into vibrato with nearly every long note which is not what i want in my mind.

      I think have to practice a lot more but Johnny is also right. I definitly is a matter of taste. I like vibrato but not as much as it comes out at the moment.

  • http://youtu.be/7kGjVkHp8GI A couple of posts ago, Johnny encouraged me to start working on tonguing to hold the notes nice/clean so that they don’t fall off at the end and this song FORCES you to tongue those notes. If you don’t then you know it right away. Kevin also brought out for me to be aware of the tempo of the backtrack, seems to be better this time. KEVIN: I always welcome your comments/insights; they really help me out a lot. This is the first upload of using a USB mic-just a simple one I got from Walmart, we don’t need anything elaborate for the blog. It still is not perfect but better than using the webcam without a mic of any kind. I just realized as I was uploading this to youtube that I was holding the Sax a little sideways; I usually don’t do that. I hadn’t planned on uploading anything till later this month, doing a couple of the songs at the end of Johnny’s ebook–but seeing everyone’s awesome videos encouaraged me to go ahead and do this. A couple of my high notes “swayed” a little due to working on tonguing/holding those higher notes, so please forgive me. It’s growing pains 🙂

  • jake jake says:

    Wasn’t gonna post a video quite yet but figured it has been awhile since last one so why not… This is a classic with sax in it, hope I did it some justice. After listening I can see one area I need for improvement. At the end of the song I was working in the upper register and hit the F# for the first time in a performance. With that being said, the note was pretty weak and empty sounding. By the time I got to the note, I was pretty winded from the previous notes working up to the ending. I just played along with a live version and played over the sax that was in it. I added the famous intro at various stages in the song to highlite my playing without the sax from the song in it. The backing sound is also pretty low in comparison to my sax. The rest of the song I took the root notes of the chords and tried to blend them in with the guitar. Would love to play this on the tenor but will be awhile before I can get up to the altissimo A!! I started playing with a friend that plays guitar and it sounds pretty cool together. Let me know your thoughts/criticisms. Thanks!!

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Jake, Good song choice and good job playing it! Your sound on the alto sounds fuller than your last video- What a Wonderful World. I bet learning to play the Tenor is helping with how your air delivery and sound on the alto is developing! Good sustain on the notes with steady tone and pitch. I did hear some notes that I thought were the sax on your tape- 2:06 thru 2:20 that you chose not to play?
      Good progress!

  • Hey Everyone: Someone had hacked into my youtube account and I had to temporarily remove some videos from my home page which included a few videos of bmx racing, some videos our kids made and Saxophone videos. We did that until youtube can find out what happened. The good news is that I have my videos on file on my cpu, so if you try and click on one and see nothing, this is why. Yes Jake, great job!

    • jake jake says:

      Thanks for the comments Kevin and Michael. Yea Kevin, I noticed on the live version there is some sax that plays along near the end of the song. I like the mix but haven’t got around to figuring it out quite yet. That is on my list things to do.

  • Adrian Eßer Adrian Eßer says:

    I did my first record on my Expression X-Old Tenorsax.
    I love this horn.

    • Adrian, well done! I love “Franky and Johnny” very much. I play it on tenor and alto but i think it sounds much better on the big horn!

      Your Expression sound cool!

      Maybe it is your kind to play it, but if you do it more swing-style it has more groove. A pause after a quarter-note means that you should play the quarter much shorter.

      Not Tu Ta, but Tu Wap.

      At the beginning In soundspeach not

      Da da di du da di da da

      but

      Da da di du da di da dap

    • jake jake says:

      I agree, very well done. You have a nice mellow tone developing on those low notes. You are playing them well and they sound nice to the ears. I’ve never heard that song before and found it catchy. I agree with Dirk as well, that could have been played to be much more groovin, (not sure of the original nature of the song) I found myself getting into the beat. Keep up the good work!!

  • James James says:

    Hey! Very nice, Adrian. Great tune, too!

  • jake jake says:

    Got my new Berg MP. Getting used to the openness of it but so far I am liking it. I was playing along with this video of CCR on youtube. I listened and transposed the song by ear, trying to develop that part now and laying off some of the sheet music. I’m finding the growls harder to play on this piece. I seem to lose my mouths grips on the mouthpiece and the notes get lost. Some embellishments would definitely make this song a ton better than I did it here. Its still a work in progress. Hopefully it will all come together some day.

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Jake, sounding better and better. I particularly liked the full tone on that lowest note. Playing with more confidence!
      Something I’m hearing (that I’m also striving to work to improve) is that the start of the notes need to “pop” more. Klaus does pretty good in that regard, so I listen closely for that when he plays, and certainly revisit Johnny’s videos to hear how he starts his notes.

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Yes Jake, there is a very noticeable difference in your tone when you get up to the high octave. This is a VERY common thing among many saxophonists. The saxophone requires something different up there to produce the same big full and in tune sound that it was producing in the lower range. We need to blow more air, open up the throat, and even make adjustments in our embouchure, such as opening up the oral cavity and adjusting the lip pressure as well. Practice the slow and boring octave exercise; blow a long and strong middle C, then high C. Focus on ensuring proper intonation and note strength by doing some or all the things I pointed out…. experiment with all of them and act on the ones that you notice make a difference.

  • Kevin Kevin says:

    Well Santa dropped by early at our house. I now have a new AX… and am anxious to get some songs learned on it! Had it now for 2-3 weeks and am starting on a tenor version of one of the three selections from Johnny’s Christmas Saxophone Music.
    Chomping at the bit(mouthpiece?) to play something for the blog, so I threw together this short video doing a first attempt at improvising. My digital recorder has a built in drum track, so I picked a drum pattern, got out my acoustic guitar and layed down the backing track to jam with. This uses a simple repeating I, IV chord pattern, and is pretty easy and cool to improvise over it with the pentatonic scale.
    The new(used) tenor sax is a Gary Sugal Series III. I’m using a #2 Alexander NY reed on a David Hite MP. The MP came with a .078″ tip opening, but I have refaced it now 4 times (for my educational and experimental purposes) so that it now is at .090″.
    Not yet a very open tip for a bigger sound, but my chops and air delivery will have to mature to grow into something larger… Still getting used to the finger key placements, keep slightly grazing palm keys and such getting those occasional “squeeks”. But I must say the Tenor is addicting to play! My Alto’s gonna feel abandoned… (My Alto feels really small now, and the low notes don’t go low enough anymore?)
    Anyway here’s my first video with a tenor. Had to let my sleeves out a bit to play this bigger horn, and my back muscles are complaining about how much heavier it is!

    • Kevin, very nice! I love the sound! Your sound is realy good for playing only three weeks on that instrument! Yes, it ist different and a lot heavier than the alto! My alto had to rest for six months until i played it again! The funny thing is that it feels like a toy when you play tenor but it also is a lot easyer to play then.

      Your tone is very good! All notes have the same loudness and clearness so your are very close to feel familliar with it.

      To help your neck and back a good strap is very important. I was happy that i chose a good one before i bought the tenor.

      I am lookig forward to another video with your new “friend”!

    • jake jake says:

      Wow, nice transition from the alto to the tenor. I agree, having the tenor is addicting. I want more time to play it! You have a nice full sound, especially after only playing it for 2-3 weeks. I agree with Dirk about a good sax holder. I played my tenor quite a bit this week and jammed for a few hours with my guitar buddy and my back is feeling it. I was thinking about checking out one the the back harnesses I have seen. It seems as thought it would help with equally distributing the weight of the sax.

    • BTW: nice vibrato on the long tones 😀

    • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

      Hi Kevin sounds just great. I like how you hold the long notes.
      Merry christmas to you and your family !

  • Looks like you got a solid deal on your Tenor Kevin, good for you. For sure, something about the sound on the Tenor that lots of players find addicting. Your comments reminded me of a video Johnny posted about players who ask which saxophone should they play, and there’s some great points Johnny makes on this video regarding transitioning from the alto to the tenor. As he mentions on this video, it’s nothing that, with practice, you can’t overcome. Keep that improvisation coming, that’s what I’m focusing on now in 2014. I’m starting Johnny’s ebook on player Killer Blues now during the winter break–my goal was to start killer blues ebook by Jan 1 and I met that goal 🙂
    http://youtu.be/eObeoCFgPTk
    JAKE: Great job on your video, that’s a real plus of being able to hear the tone and play it (I believe they call it “perfect pitch” for players who can transpose music by hearing it). This is a great step for you, as developing that ability can help you to break down and play some of those famous sax solos that is hard to find sheet music for. Great job, keep em coming!

  • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

    Here comes ‘Rocking around…` including xmas greetings

    Merry christmas to everbody !!

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Great work Klaus! On my current tour I’ve been playing this song along with a Brenda Lee tribute artist and I get to play this every night. I’ve finally memorized the Boots Randolph solo and it gets applause every night. It’s such a memorable solo and a big part of this great hit song… try and play it along with the backing track that doesn’t have the solo on it now that you are able to play it.

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Wow, good job playing what was the hardest of the 3 Christmas download songs of Johnny’s. I’ve been working on this one and know the fingering through the solo section isn’t easy to get through cleanly, so hat’s off to you for setting the bar pretty high on that part of the song. Just got to bust out a “dirty growl” on some of those phrases now!! You still have tell us what model of tenor sax you’re playing. Great sounding horn.

    • paddy jordan says:

      makeing progress Klaus thats what this is all about keep it going

    • jake jake says:

      Nice job Klaus!! You have shown much improvement! You have a nice bright sound going on. I even heard some growls in there. Man, that solo sounds rather tricky and fast, you did a good job keeping up with the backing track. Merry Christmas to you too!!

  • Back at you brother! Nice way to end your video Klaus. Regardless of whether it’s the holiday season or not, that’s just a great song, really nice swing going there.

  • James James says:

    Merry Christmas to you, Klaus. Great job on that tune!


  • I recently switched to a 6C mouthpiece and I’ve been curious to see the difference between the 4C and 6C, using a 2.5 Vandoreen reed—so I played Johnny’s “Greensleeves” back-to-back, once with the 4C and the 2nd time with the 6C. It’s hard, as were playing, to really tell what the difference is between the 2, so there’s no better way to see what’s going on than to upload to the blog. Listen carefully, you’ll hear a little bit of Vibrato–it’s just a little bit but it’s a start and adds a little “spice”. I’m happy about starting Glissandos, this song was a great opportunity to use them. I wanted to upload “Over the Rainbow” with this song, which is also at the end of Johnny’s ebook. I wanted to play the last few measures an Octave higher than the sheet music shows but the high F# kept me from that….for now (bear in mind I’m talking high F#, not high F). The great news is that I have a private lesson with Johnny tomorrow and he can see what I’m doing right/wrong.

    As sax players, we can think that we need to be playing “on the edge of our seats” to sound good. Some of the best songs out there are the simplest ones, and this song Johnny has put at the end of his ebook–that I just finished :)– is a prime example. It’s got beautiful “swing” to it and you can feel it as your playing. I even caught myself here on video “swaying” side-to-side a little bit. My wife/kids do the same thing LOL. Near the end of the 2nd take my finger accidentally touched one of the palm keys and you’ll hear it near the very end.

    • jake jake says:

      nice improvement you are showing on your tone. You are playing a lot smoother and have better control over the sax. Keep up the work on your glissandos to make them even smoother. I couldn’t really tell a difference between the 2 different mp’s. I hear ya about that F#, it still can be a bear for me to hit. When I do hit it, it doesn’t sound as full as the lower notes. Have a happy holidays!!

    • James James says:

      Very nice job, Michael. I replayed the two takes but these old ears couldn’t discern any difference. Hey, you’re sounding great! Merry Christmas!

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Michael has only been playing for about half a year! Wile I try to inspire people I think the best inspiration may come from some of these self uploaded videos. I do remember Michael’s first video and noticed it’s not available anymore… Michael, can you repost those earlier videos? It’s very beneficial to see your progress, for you and others so it would be a real shame if you have lost them forever!!??

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Michael, showing good improvement! And your song choice fit the season as well! (Green Sleeves tune is used in Christmas Hymn- “What Child is This”). I think the Christmas version comes to mind for me more so than the original lyrics. Nicely played. Can’t wait to hear that Selmer Tenor…

    • Michael, you become better now! The sound is much brighter now and the sond flows a lot more.

      I also can’t hear any difference between the MPs. Which one is better in your mind? I know that one can here more differences than listeners of a recording.

  • jake jake says:

    Merry Christmas!!

    I used a backing track for this song that leaves the middle of the song blank for improvisation purposes. Thanks to Johnny’s instruction, I was able to put a nice sounding solo together for this. As the video states, I used a F# minor pentatonic scale for the majoriy of it! Hope you enjoy!!

  • Merry christmas everybody and a happy saxophonic 2014!

    I have no time to add a new video but i have a second voice for Johnny’s Jingle Bell Rock my friend and i use for duet training.

    http://musescore.com/user/110923/scores/150654

    It was written for tenor and transposed it to alto to become flexible.

  • Great job everyone on your music–thanks Jake. Had a great private lesson with Johnny today. I would STRONGLY encourage anyone to book a private lesson with him, as he helped me to see what I’m doing right and wrong with the high F#. While I still have a way to go, the high F# was already trying to come out much better and with a little practice of applying what he told me today, I should be able to play it shortly. The No.6 MP I was using is a Yamaha, but in the Spring (with our tax return) I’m getting a Meyer Mouthpiece. Now that Johnny knows I have a Tenor Sax, I’ll be uploading to the blog next time with it LOL

  • Hey Johnny–I have those original videos on my cpu and can upload them again. You may recall that I mentioned someone had hacked into my youtube account a while back (the good news is that youtube found who did it) and so for my protection I removed some videos from my channel. They tampered with some of my bmx racing videos/posted some things on other’s bmx racing channels I have subscribed to; which caused my bmx racing friends to freak. The good news is that they knew me better than the comments posted and youtube was very helpful in finding out what had happened. So I removed some Saxophone-bmx videos from my channel but still have them all on the cpu, I WAS NOT going to have anyone tamper with them. BY THE WAY GUYS: It’s always good to make sure on your youtube channel to change your password from time-to-time.
    As for my progress in Saxophone playing, the only thing I can say to everyone is that Johnny has provided all the tools we need right here, and if there’s something that we need he works hard to provide that instruction (right now we need something on overtones/altissimo here on this site–hint to you Johnny LOL) It’s a matter of applying ourselves to his teachings. To be able to take someone who had never even held a saxophone before back in the spring–I didn’t even know what a ligature was–to what’s starting to happen now, should say that what he teaches WORKS! I’m staring the first exercise in Killer blues tomorrow and I’m REALLY looking forward to this book 🙂 And I’ll learn it the same way I did his first ebook. I don’t want to be just stuck on memorizing notes to songs 100% of the time=learning Improvisation! 🙂

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      I’m pretty sure the way youtube works is that you must upload those vids again, but if you still have them on your computer just go ahead and we can get them up on the same blog posts once they are up on youtube again.

  • we’ll do Johnny, thanks for your help today 🙂 With just a little practice on what you told me I don’t think I should have a problem with the high F#, but now you see why I went to a 6C. My alto sax has lately had some pads sticking to it after a couple hours of not being used and this probably accounts for a leak or 2 somewhere. When I get a Meyer MP in the Spring(I’ll make sure I go through the links here on the blog along with the book on increasing our range of the sax-didn’t know we could benefit your site by doing that) is when the alto will head to the shop to have the pads replaced.
    KEVIN: Thanks, I wanted to upload some of the holiday music Johnny just released but finding the time to learn it was another thing, so playing Greensleeves at the end of Johnny’s ebook was the perfect solution. I do plan on learning those songs, at least next year I won’t have any excuses LOL

  • Kevin Kevin says:

    Had planned to get an upload sooner, but an ice storm had my services out for the last 2-3 days, so just got power and internet back in the last hour or so.
    We’re definitely having a white Christmas here!
    Merry Christmas to all !!!

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Very nicely done Kevin! Sharp looking horn too. You’re starting to develop a very nice warm tone. I’m noticing your intonation is slightly flater than on your alto… try pushing the mp in a shade. Also, your growling is great!!

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Yes, my intonation was a bit flat. My shop heater is in need of repair, so this take was a bit hasty since it was at best 48deg. You might be able to make out some breath fog coming from the horn if you look close (just kidding)…
      I am seeing that when I push the volume particularly on the lower notes I tend to go flat, so I have that to work on…

    • jake jake says:

      Very nice Kevin!! You made an awesome transition to the tenor. You have a nice warm relaxing sound!!!! Have a happy holidays!!

    • Kevin, verry cool sound! Also some nice changes and trills in there.

      You are familiar with this horn verry quickly!

  • Great job Kevin! 🙂 You got a nice, jazzy sound going for you. That’s the great thing about so many of the songs Johnny makes available here is that whether we have a hard-rubber MP that gives the horn that smooth-jazz style of sound, or you have the the Guardala MP that he’s got with a rockin’, edgy sound; it doesn’t seem to matter. They sound great either way. What type of Mouthpiece are you using on your Tenor?
    You guys stay safe and warm!

  • Kevin Kevin says:

    I wanted to learn this song. Went thru it on my alto last Christmas 2012, but didn’t have recorder, this site or have it down well, so took another crack at it this season with my new Tenor.
    Was a bit dismayed to have to wait a whole year to post another Christmas song, so hope all will indulge me this 2nd upload…
    Hopefully next year it will be improved from what I hope to learn in 2014!

  • Wow, very nice Kevin–there’s a real warmth in your tone, your Saxophone kept all bundled up and warm, just like the rest of us, makes a real difference LOL I would be interested to see in time, when you feel your ready for it, what your Tenor would sound like with the Dave Guardala mouthpiece uses. Sorry you had to wait a whole year, but now you know this song that much better than before and it shows in your playing!


  • Here’s a tribute to one of my all-time favorite characters/movie; perfect for the Tenor Saxophone. This is a 1967 Selmer Bundy Tenor with a hard-rubber Mouthpiece that I’m playing with; perfect for that vintage jazz sound needed for this song. As I get more experienced, I’ll get a mouthpiece that gives the Saxophones that edgy sound that we all love so much. The good news is that lots of songs that Johnny has here in his music selection sound great with a jazz-type sound. I have no plans on stopping to play the alto, my wife got it for our anniversary this past spring and she would never forgive me for not playing it 🙂
    Now in January makes 8 months of learning to play the Saxophone and this song is not the easiest song in the world to play by memory, so please forgive me for missing a note or so. Thanks to my son’s video editing, he made this upload a little more entertaining to watch, so that should make up for what I lack in playing LOL. I just started Johnny’s Killer Blues ebook and I don’t want to be just memorizing notes to songs all the time. So, over the next few months I will uploading Improvisations using Johnny’s backtracks. I had one I wanted to show him, based off of part 1 of the Improvisation lesson here on his lessons page during our private lesson, but time didn’t permit. The good news is that the high F# that he helped me with is coming along much better and this gives me something else to add to my improvisation.

  • When watching the Pink Panther song that I did above, this microphone that plugs into my USB port was located in front of me/under the bottom of the Sax. Whenever I swayed back/up a little the sound that got recorded was a little bit faint because of which direction the sound coming out of the Sax is directed, but if you notice when I was faced down a little lower, facing closer to the mic, the sound is much better and is what the horn/tone actually sounds like. I’ll have to position myself/the mic a little better next time.

  • I’m playing by a musical chart/backtrack I was given–I’m playing exactly the sheet music I was given.

  • I got the sheet music I was given and followed along with it as I watched myself playing, very carefully, on video. I watched Henri Mancini’s version of this song, the sheet music for the Sax solo that I’m playing here is a little different than his original version, There’s a couple of keys that missed as I mentioned earlier-I didn’t normally miss those when practicing it; stage fright LOL and in the middle of the song you’ll see a portion of the solo where my fingers held one of the notes a little too long, it turned 2 8th notes on the sheet music into a half note that is too flat here on video and with the microphone being in a bad postion that didn’t help any. Key signature is correct.

  • I’m going to have to try and find sheet music for the ORIGINAL version to Henri Mancini’s song of the Pink Panther. I contacted the man who gave me the backtrack/sheet music for this song–was really cool of him to do that–and he told me the Saxophone solo in the middle of this song is an Improvised version he created himself. I watched the original version of Henri Mancini playing it and followed along with the sheet music very carefully. Seems like he used too many accidentals in his Improvised version, but the beginning and end of the song in the sheet music is exactly right. I don’t have the ability to transpose a song by ear right now. Anyone know where I can find sheet music for the ORIGINAL version of this song?

    • jake jake says:

      I found a site that has solos. It is saxsolos.com
      The site charges 50cents per page and the solos I have downloaded from them match right up to the originals. Check em out. Just make sure you download the solo for the right sax, some are for alto and others for tenor. Good luck!

  • Johnny Johnny says:

    Thanks for sending the chart… so like I said, you’re missing at least one of the sharps. It’s in A major so all G’s will be sharp and right off the top you’re playing a G natural (3rd note in). This is what I mean about really paying attention to the key signature before you start.

    • Thanks Johnny and I see what happened–I had my wife write down the sheet music from the chart as our printer wasn’t working and the way she wrote the sharp it looked like an F#, she didn’t write it high enough up for me to distinguish that it was a G#; glad you saw this; thanks and I’ll fix it. Other than that everything else is okay? (Other than the couple squeaks I had, tried to blow into the horn before the fingers were in position like I did when I practiced the high F# with you on my lesson)

  • Dirk McCall Dirk McCall says:

    Here is some video from a few days ago, Watermelon Man on my 1925 Buscher C-Melody. It is a jazz jam, and hours on a click track are just not quite the same as “live”. Then I missed some of the head as well, but it was great to do anyway.

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Great and rare to hear a C melody so thanks for that. A few “questionable” notes there. I will have a version of this tune out maybe in the very near future as recorded by King Curtis which may interest you.

    • SaxoKlaus SaxoKlaus says:

      Hi Dirk ! Sound’s cool ! Well done !

      @Johnny, would be nice to get this tune with backing tracks.

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Dirk, thank’s for posting the “watermelon man” video. Great song choice, and you had a good groove goin’ and good bunch of guys to play with. Stand up Bass, Drums, Keys, Sax… A good combination for a 4pc Band! Enjoy as much of it as you can! It shows in the video…

  • Dirk McCall Dirk McCall says:

    For Christmas music here is a video from a year ago this time…six months into the bari at that point. I like this one because I really felt something while playing it. Student model Antigua bari recording on iphone.

  • Guto Santana says:

    Hi Johnny,

    Happy new attitude!

    This is my first sax video:

    Please tell me what you think about, ok?

    Take care and thanks is advance!

    Regards from Brazil!

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Well, for someone who is going for a rock/blues sound I’d say you’re well on your way! Very good tone and growl. I can see that you are breathing properly because you have demonstrated a strong “soft” volume as well…this is only possible to do well if you’re using the proper breathing technique from the diaphragm. Keep going!

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Guto Santana, Cool name, cool Sax, and good(cool) start to playing… the growl especially! Anticipate hearing more from you!

  • Johnny Johnny says:

    Ok, as for Dirk’s Watermelon Man, I do have a version of this kicking around in my studio somewhere and so I will dig it up and make it available for you guys as soon as I can. This is a great instrumental and I remember was a lot of fun to play live with my band.


  • Here’s the re-take of the Pink Panther theme song. On the first one I did, we filmed with the webcam in a different area of the house and we couldn’t get the USB microphone in a good position. I returned to my usually spot LOL Combined with some tweaks that my Tenor needed, which surprised me because it had been completely serviced, but the guys at the repair shop are great and emphasized to me that with the Tenor being a bigger sax, even a modest bump on the sax when sitting down with it take a seat, as an example, can cause this to happen. I’ve also been really conscious of having my fingers in position before delivering air into the saxophone, as Johnny brought out during our lesson. It can be challenging to do when were hitting lots of 8th/16th notes. So there was no squeaks in this take v.s. the first take with a couple of the notes. I may have missed a note/hit it one time too many near the end of the song on this take.
    This version of the Pink Panther, in the middle of the song, IS NOT an exact copy of Henry Mancini’s original version. The middle of the song is an Improvised version given to me with the backtrack; the guy was nice enough to give this chart/backtrack together. My cpu wouldn’t print the chart very large, don’t know why, so it was a little difficult writing it all out on sheet music.
    Now it’s back to learning Johnny’s ebook on Killer Blues 🙂 Working on 1 exercise per month to make sure I really learn the in’s-and-out’s of Killer Blues well.

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      That’s better Michael, still gotta get some “knots” worked out and we’ll work on those “falls”!
      This is not a typical beginner tune to learn because of it’s intricacies but you are making good strides… keep going!
      In general, blow louder when you play, it will help to develop your tone… if you’re not making some enemies in the family and from the neighbours you’re just not practicing loud enough!

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Michael, You definitely selected a difficult song to learn for your first Tenor Sax video! But applying yourself to those harder technical fingerings and embellishments and memorization will certainly payoff and it is showing.
      I’m still striving to heed Johnny’s “blow harder” instruction myself, and continue to find myself hearing the recorded sound, sound less full than it feels that I’m blowing air into the horn. So “Grip it and Rip it” for next video!

  • Much better Michael. You are on a good way!

    I know that we all want to play well known pieces, but they are mostly to complicated for beginners. We are all fighting with our fingers and lips and i think it is better to play simple songs well.

    Keep on!

    • Thanks guys–there were some problems in the first recording with the USB mic in a bad position as mentioned and a couple of keys the got knocked out of adjustment as mentioned.
      Thanks Dirk 🙂 I’ve, too, have always talked about playing simple songs that are within our ability, and the great thing about a number of the songs Johnny has made available; including “Fly Me to the Moon” and “Mack the Knife” that I’ll be uploading soon and what he just released yesterday–I hear Alto Saxophone written all over it 🙂 is that they’re really not any more difficult than “Over the Rainbow” that he has put at the end of his book. I’m actually focusing more this year on putting into practice what I’m learning from Johnny’s ebook on Killer Blues, so the BULK of what I upload here to the blog will be Blues/Improvisation this year.
      But every once in a while, it’s good to stretch ourselves, just a little bit, as it helps us improve and magnify our errors; what’s going right and wrong. With regard to the Pink Panther, with the exception of some of the intricacies that Johnny mentions in his comment to me and the Sax solo in the middle (I got one lead to the original Sax solo by Henri Mancini!) it isn’t any harder than any of the songs mentioned above. I’ll play it about once every 6 months or so, great way to monitor progress by playing the same songs over the course of time (I’m actually doing that right now with some of the ones I’ve already done before here on the blog LOL)

  • Cool—yeah, I know I could have blown harder on this one as I went back to my usually spot and my says jokingly that she had to shut 2 of the doors of bedrooms leading to where I was playing at. Talking about making enemies, it was 10:00 pm over here and my wife trying to get the kids ready for bed….I’ll just leave it at that LOL. At the end of this song, where I think I may have hit a note one time too many or something, there’s a certain “rhythm” that those notes have; kind of like a blues-swing of sorts. I had it in my mind before playing this but it didn’t come out while playing. I actually think you’ve got something in your killer blues book regarding riffs at the end that will help me improve in this regard.
    I was going to start re-uploading the videos to youtube of my saxophone playing/progress over the past 8 months that I had on my cpu(recall I said someone messed with my youtube account). Do I just upload them and e-mail you the youtube links? I actually watched some of them yesterday….pretty funny to see and encouraging at the same time 🙂

    • jake jake says:

      Very nice improvement from the other version. I agree with Kevin. When I play my tenor I feel that I am blowing the heck out of hit yet my notes, especially over high D are thin and of poor quality. I addressed this with Johnny and he made some suggestions that I am going to put to work. If you look up on this 3rd blog page a little bit under my “have you ever seen the rain ” video, you will see the recommendations.
      Yea, 10 pm mite be a little hard to practice. without making other people mad. haha, but you gotta get time in when you can. I have the luxury of working the night shift so I usually have the daytime to myself=less angry people although that after much improvement from the start, I have gotten compliments as to an improvement in sound while practicing. Unfortunately when we practice its not always beautiful songs, it is the long tones and octave exercises that we need to do to improve our tone!! Keep up the work!!

  • Kevin Kevin says:

    tryin to learn the “growl” and Rock-n-Roll Sax repertoire…
    this song is alot of fun. I’m still making reed and MP changes to get that edgy tone, so let me know what you think and what the tone needs “more of”?
    I find myself struggling to keep the reed from shutting off when pushing the air hard for this type of playing.
    It is also a challenge to manage the growl and all the other things a sax player has to do to!

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      You’re doing a lot of things right Kevin, good going. Growl coming along very nicely…slight note fades every once in a while and that’s because a lot of energy goes into growling so this is natural because the growling takes up so much air. When I do it live I constantly face bouts of almost passing out if I do a lot of this stuff…seriously. My advice for you at this point, do it standing up!

    • jake jake says:

      Wow. Amazing. Nice way to hit the low note! I’m still having trouble getting them cleanly! It sounds to me that you are on your way to that edgy tone. I can’t get mine yet. I’m still hearing the basic sax sound when I play mine. I recently upgraded my setup. I’m now using an open Berg MP with 2.5 vandoren reeds. How do you get that sound? Is it the way we blow into the sax? The berg I got is a bright and I’m still lacking the edgey sound. Keep up the work and videos!!

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Jake, for the sound and tone that resulted for this video I did the following-
      My MP is a David Hite hard plastic student level MP that I got on ebay for $25. It came with a small tip opening(.078″) and played easily, but kinda weak. Having a CNC milling machine and the desire to learn about Mouthpiece design, I have been milling various tip openings, curves, curve lengths and I have gradually recut this MP to where it is now at .096″ tip opening with a “medium-long” curve. I also milled away a fair amount of the plastic body with the thought that it would play brighter(which I think it does), and put on my favored ligature that is quicker and simpler to use. It also tends to contribute a brighter tone than say the Rovner ligs I had been using. Lastly with the MP I noticed that the mouthpieces like the metal Gaurdalas, Bergs, etc. for “edgy” rock tones have a long narrow ramping baffle for the air entering from the tip to speed up the air. So for my Hite MP that didn’t have such a baffle I made me an “L-shaped” sheet metal piece to replicate that and filed each side until it wedged neatly in place. It actually blew easier and was noticeably brighter, so my plastic MP with metal baffle insert experiment resulted in what was played for this video.
      My Reed is a #2 Alexander NY. It is my first time to try these reeds, but I do like what I hear. Out of a 5 pack all played very well with hardly any differentiation in tone and feel. They do have a slightly “reedier buzz” than a Rico Royal reed I bought to compare with.
      My Gary Sugal Tenor Sax does exhibit a characteristic that my YAS-52 doesn’t do so much- when I push hard with air the reed buzz resonates more, and the low notes really come out full and are surprisingly easy to play on this horn (maybe easier than my alto).
      Now the main contributing factor IMO to the sound in this video is the “growl” that I’m using. I’m using more of a “gargle” type growl technique, not a “humm” or a “flutter tongue”. And I did try to use the growl continuously throughout most of the song except for the bridge solo, which I chose to play clean to contrast the harder driving sound throughout the rest of the song.
      It was(IS) hard to keep the growl going and still manage all the other aspects- intonation, tongueing, embellishments, etc.. But I began trying to develop that by playing my scales with a continuous growl.
      Anxious to get my hands on a metal mouthpiece to try though, so I know what to ask for for my birthday!
      So hope these comments are helpful…

    • jake jake says:

      Again, Amazing. Yep, don’t think I am doing any milling on my pieces. That is pretty cool that you can do that and try out various settings. I am curious as to how it would compare to my Berg I am using. I just ordered some #2 reeds to try. The Berg is open and I have to give a ton of breath support to it. Hopefully these #2’s will make it a little easier.
      Here’s a question for Johnny: Will my tone improve by working on the various exercises in your videos? I chose a Berg MP because that is the type of MP used in Thorogoods band. The sound Carter produces is what I would like to sound like at some point. It seems as though I have a decent MP, but what gets me to the next level of sound improvement? Is it something that just eventually happens over time? Do we have to do more than just “blow” into the saxophone?

      • Johnny Johnny says:

        Yes Jake, your tone will improve a lot that’s why I record the lessons. You should be paying extra close attention to the high note lesson I posted on the blog a few days ago as your high register is thin and flat, this is the point to these exercises; to improve this poor tone quality. There is no magic mp to fix this. You are looking for a specific tone, that’s good, at least you have a focused goal. As you continue, keep this in mind; you can use the exact same reeds and mp as someone else and still NOT sound the same. (*hint, I use the Michael Brecker mp and same reeds he used and my sound is nothing like his!) Yes this is something that happens over time and YES we need to do more than just blow into the saxophone. The things we need to focus on while blowing into the sax are the points I made in the high note video mentioned above, you should go over it again and make sure to focus on the few points there on a daily basis. It’s not very technical like working out blazing fast scales but it’s focusing on what your body is doing with your saxophone, ya, very personal stuff for a very personal sound.

    • jake jake says:

      thanks for for feedback! It is truly appreciated. Ya, I watched the video and it is something that I am working on daily!! Thanks so much for your support and insights!

  • Nice Job Kevin and great sound 🙂 I’ve seen your tone improve already on the Tenor just from the few uploads you’e done here on the blog with it, awesome. Have you tried doing a “turn-a-round” using your bis key (the one we use for Bb)? For this song, when you go from Db to Bb (right here, between Bb and G is where we use the turn-a-round) G then F? Adds even more color to it 🙂

  • Hey Johnny here’s a video I put on you tube almost a year ago hopefully ill get more feedback than youtube that was zero!!!!!!
    Regards Fergus

    • Johnny Johnny says:

      Thanks Fergus, you have started to develop a nice sweet tone on your tenor. I would have you focus your attention now on intonation more. As I said in a recent lesson video, sit at your keyboard and hit a note then play it on your sax. Long notes….play around within the note, go up (sharp) go down (flat) try to find the sweeet spot that is as close to the intonation of the piano as possible. Many days and weeks of this exercise will have you more in tune.

    • Kevin Kevin says:

      Fergus, great playing! Love the tone, and the recording quality was very good! What mic did you use?
      You ended up at the end of the 3rd Blog page just before a 4th one was created, so you may not see as many comments as you normally would. Hope you get another uploaded soon, really enjoyed the song choice and how it was played!

  • Here’s a really, really cool southern-style of saxophone tune played by Johnny he calls “Sax in the Country” and the name he has given it is SO appropriate. We live here in the Ozarks and I REALLY wish he had a extended backtrack/sheet music available for this one, as it hits so well with locals. I have had some friends over to the house for dinner together and showed them this tune and they LOVED it; and then they asked me if I could play it for them! LOL, sorry guys but I’m not THAT good 🙂
    Video credit/edit goes to my son—I made sure he spelled Johnny’s name right before posting it here. So you guys can tell my son what you think of the video footage he picked/edited to go with Johnny’s tune? This great little song is available for download on his site johnnyferreira.com, there’s another great song called “Mexico” available to download. You’ll also find links where you can purchase Johnny’s Music on CD; awesome saxophone music.
    Speaking of your other site Johnny, have you had any newsletters sent out to your subscribers from there lately? In about a year we’ll be looking to set up a modest home recording studio when we buy our own place and saw you have some great info there on how to get started–that is when my saxophone playing skills dictate that I’m ready for a modest home recording studio LOL

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