Saxophone Forum

by Tom Pearson
(5 posts)
8 years ago

Aquilla Tenor Sax

I played a nickle plated Conn tenor sax all through high school 1951-1955 in the HS band and also in a big band for dances, weddings, etc. where I made enough money to pay for four years of room and board at college (typically $650/year during 1955-1959).  It is I believe a Conn New Invention Serial 33372 from 1914-15.  At that time that was all my family could afford to buy.  When my grandson wanted to start playing the sax, he soon switched to the tenor as there were far too many altos in the GS band.   I had my old Conn serviced and gave it to him.  His teacher promptly said he should rent/buy a modern sax as the old Conn would handicap him too much!  I was dismayed!!!   He rented a Yamaha student model and later bought a P Mauriat tenor despite the band director pushing the Cannon Ball brand.  Any comments on all this would be appreciated.

I view of all this since I was going to play in a community concert band, I purchased a Aquilla nickle plated tenor from New Zealand (made in China) which I had briefly played while vacationing in NZ.  Seems to this old coot to play pretty well but I see it is not on the list of recommended brands.   Comments anyone?

Just for fooling around, I also have and play a nickle (Yes I like nickle plating) Conn C Melody serial 110078, 1923-24 that came off eBay and is in beautiful condition.  Nice to be able to play off piano music with out the agony of transposing.

For more fooling around, a Chinese American friend that is a sax player just brought me and himself a Chinese Alto and straight Soprano (mine are nickle of course!) that are unmarked as to name or serial number.  He got these in China at the factory and test played all four.  All do play well.  My grandson snatched the Soprano immediately and my grand daughter has been making noises about getting my Alto for her own use.  Each cost about $300 American at the factory and supposedly had been handselected before my friend tried them out and played them to his satisfaction. So far so good on all four of them. 

Any helpful comments on the above would be appreciated.   


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