“It’s an instrument of passion, lad, you need to love it and relish it as if, you are not going to hear its notes ever again. You need to love it, and have the urge to gain it and set it free, both at the same time. What nonsense are you playacting as if you are repulsed by it…”
A classical music and Jazz enthusiast, my wrinkled, 80 year old music teacher Ruben was not just fond of the music that came out of woodwind or brass instruments, but he would cradle the instruments with a loving and burning passion, as if the instruments were his lover. Though he spent much more time banging down the keys of an old beaten-up piano, Ruben wound go up into heaven whenever he took up a saxophone or clarinet or even a violin. This former army man seldom performed, and imbibed the belief in us that music should first please your heart and soul and the performance ‘nonsense’ comes later. 5 years have passed since I broke down beside his coffin and realized that for the first time that I would never again hear his rusty annoyed voice and never again will his saxophone’s notes drift out from that old stone house set in the lane which was laden with wild plants and weeds.
When any person comes up to me, and asks, what instrument should I buy, I always recommend, ‘buy whatever you like, buy what you are comfortable with, you should love the sound and it should touch your heart and soul…’. After all music is nothing but your emotions softly speaking out.
Some of the Best Saxophone Brands
The saxophone family was invented by Adolphe Sax in 1846 as a more powerful instrument than the woodwinds and the brass. Today, saxophones are manufactured in 8 different types, which are classified into varieties, depending upon their pitch and the value of notes which are played on it. From the highest to the lowest (note value and pitch wise) these include, Sopranino, Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Baritone, Bass, Contrabass and the Subcontrabass. Now almost all companies manufacture these saxophones, however the Subcontrabass or the Sopranino are a little rare, and one may have to specially order it. The usual ones alto, soprano and tenor are quite commonly used and also manufactured.
When you buy a saxophone, at the beginner stage, it is often advisable, that one buys a cheap one. Cheap as in inexpensive or second hand, as one gets used to the instrument and conformable with the reeds and the knobs. Later on, on the advice of your teacher, you can go in for a really expensive one.
This is the best instrument brand for all beginners and non-professional enthusiasts who want to thoroughly enjoy the beauty of the instrument. Yamaha gives you the entire package, warm and expressive tone, great intonation, a lovely production of notes and perfect accuracy of scales. Yamaha manufactures, tenor, soprano, alto and baritone saxophones. One of the best thing about these instruments is that, apart from being well priced, you tend to fall in love with the tone and notes of the instrument. Quality, durability, efficiency and perfection are unquestionable. A really great brand and instrument family to start on, but make sure that you take care of it. There are several professional artists who have used Yamaha saxophones for decades together.
Want a lovely, sounding brass? Jupiter is one brand that you don’t want to ignore. A great brand for learners, which in fact is also preferred by several pros. Personally, given a choice, I would go for Jupiter any day. Like Yamaha., Jupiter also manufactures, alto, tenor, soprano and baritones. One of the great things about this brand is that the majestic and microscopic finishing that is machined on its saxophones. The finishing and beautifully crafted shape gives the saxophones a soulful look to go with its tone.
This company offers probably the most soulful saxophones there are. Selmer’s engineering of these wind instruments, is highly sophisticated and enables players to produce a pronounced and intensely beautiful sound, with are mystically emotional and deeply sensitive. Selmer saxophones are available in a variety of tonal and pitch ranges and are often finished to perfection, giving the player an unmatched fluidity in notes which is even finer than flowing water
The Julius Keilwerth saxophone brand is a member of the Buffet-Crampon family. The history of the instruments of this company can be traced back to 1820’s when the production of finely crafted wind instruments began. The saxophones from this brand have a beautifully finished surface and the quality in the manufacturing process is maintained right down to the finest bit. Passion of the player is all it takes to bring out that very beautiful sound that, flows out like brook though a forest.
LeBlac, a Wisconsin based instrument, manufacturer, dealer and assembler is noted for its ‘Vito’, saxophone brand. The Vito saxophones are not manufactured by LeBlac but are rather assembled with the help of several finely crafted parts from different companies. In some cases and entire saxophone is also crafted by the supplier. The maintained quality make these saxophones very reliable and the strong sturdy finish of the saxophone makes it an ideal instrument for students.
Like I mentioned above, it is good to buy what you like and the sound of which nourishes your soul and keeps the worldly things worthwhile. So intense is the power of this beautiful music that often on a rainy day when I take a walk down that very green lane, I can almost hear Ruben’s Selmer singing out ‘Coming Back to Life‘, by Pink Floyd. Music is after all the language of souls.