The saxophone first gained popularity in the niche it was designed for: the military band. Although the instrument was studiously ignored in Germany, French and Belgian military bands took full advantage of the instrument that Sax had designed specifically for military bands. Most French and Belgian military bands incorporate at least a quartet of saxophones comprising at least the E♭ baritone, B♭ tenor, E♭ alto and B♭ soprano. These four...
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The birth of the saxophone starts with a Belgian instrument maker named Adolphe Sax (1814-1894). While working at his father’s instrument shop, he began to work on an instrument that was a cross between a clarinet and a brass instrument. He used the brass body of the ophicleide, the conical bore of the oboe and the fingering of the flute, with a single reed mouthpiece like the clarinet. Henceforth, the saxophone was born.
He wanted to create an instrument that would be the most powerful and vocal of the woodwinds, and the most adaptive of the brass, that would fill the vacant middle ground between the two sections. Sax applied for, and received a 15 year patent on the saxophone on June 28, 1846 in Paris, France. The patent encompassed 14 versions of the fundamental design, split into two categories of seven instruments each and ranging from sopranino to contrabass.Learn More
Buying a professional saxophone is typically a substantial investment in an instrument you could be playing for decades to come. As professional-level saxophones usually start at a few thousand US Dollars (USD) and can run into the tens of thousands, this is never a decision to be taken lightly. Quality is naturally a factor, but selecting the best saxophone may not always necessarily mean you have to buy the most expensive one on the market. Choosing the right instrument should ultimately be decided by what sounds and feels the best to you.
The first step is to think about what you are seeking in terms of performance. Ask yourself what’s most important to you: Action? Tuning? Tone? Most professional saxophone players agree that no matter how high quality the horn itself is, tone comes from the player more than it does from the instrument.