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Saxophone background



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  • 1. Saxophone
    Background knowledge on your instrument.
  • 2. History
    Developed in 1840’s by Adolphe sax
    Adolphe was a instrument maker
    Created an instrument with a single reed much like the clarinet but with a predominantly brass body and acoustic properties much like a clarinet and French-horn.
  • 3. He created several different sizes of saxophone
    Ranging from soprano to contrabass
    Adolphe sax’s patent ran out in 1866 there after saxophonist and instrument makers implemented their own enhancements.
  • 4. Description
    The saxophone consists of:
    • conical tube of thin metal, most commonly brass and sometimes plated with silver, gold, and nickel
    • 5. It has a flared at the tip to form a bell.
    • 6. At intervals along the tube are between 20 and 23 tone holes of varying size.
    • 7. These holes are covered by keys , containing soft leather pads, which are closed to produce an airtight seal; at rest some of the holes stand open and others are closed.
    • 8. This U-shape has become an iconic feature of the saxophone family.
  • Parts of the Alto saxophone
  • Features
    Woodwind instrument because the sound waves are produced by an oscillating reed, not the player's lips
    Different pitches are produced by opening and closing keys.
    Brass is used to make the body of the instrument; the pad cups; the rods that connect the pads to the keys; the keys themselves and the posts that hold the rods and keys in place.
    Since 1920, most saxophones have 'key touches' (smooth decorative pieces placed where the fingers touch the instrument) made from either plastic or mother of pearl.
    uses a single-reed mouthpiece similar to that of the clarinet
    Reeds made from Arundodonax cane.
  • 20. Uses
    Originally used in Military bands
    Most well know for it’s role in big band music and Jazz music.
    Usually used as a soloing instrument but some times can be found in a saxophone quartet.
  • 21. Summary
    Hopefully this introduction to the Saxophone has given you the background information you needed to begin your learning journey on this instrument.