Saxophone Forum


by HenryB
(1 post)
6 months ago

Saxophone Middle D

I play a 1939 Holton Collegiate alto saxophone. I have been practicing tuning a lot, and I have heard that it is good to keep a very loose bottom lip. However when I do this and I play middle D, I can relax my lip enough to play it in tune without it dropping down to a low D. Is there a problem with my horn, or should I pull my mouthpiece out, (making my play with more lip pressure)? Is this a problem that can be fixed with voicing?

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  1. by historicsaxwhisperer
    (525 posts)

    6 months ago

    Re: Saxophone Middle D

    I have no idea what "I have heard that it is good to keep a very loose bottom lip" means.

    Your embachure should be a circular hold to the mouthpiece. Not loose. Not biting down.

    Your horn is old. How new is the setup?

    Too many unanswered questions here to state why you cant play a middle D correctly.

    Try being a bit more specific or have a tech run a leak light through your horn.

    Good Luck

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  2. by mijderf
    (264 posts)

    6 months ago

    Re: Saxophone Middle D

    You need to describe your problem a little better.  Is the problem that you can't drop the tone down from D2 to D1 with the octave key held?  Or are you saying that after playing D2 with octave key, you cannot seem to drop down to D1, even with the octave key released?

    Not sure about the loose bottom lip comment.  You do not want to bite down on the reed, but you don't need to be too loose on an alto.  The embouchure advice in the response above is good advice. 

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