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  • Saxophonist Greg Chambers Interview

    Name: G​reg Chambers
    Location: S​an Francisco, CA
    Profession: S​axophonist and Music Teacher
    Years Playing: 2​0
    School/Major/Degree: U​CLA, Master of Music in Saxophone

    When did you first begin seriously studying your instrument?

    I began really listening to jazz, practicing regularly, and taking lessons when I was 14 years old. In middle school, I rotated between first and second chair in the band depending on the results of each seating test, but I didn’t practice regularly or often (I still don’t even know how I ended up sitting in those chairs!). It wasn’t really until high school and getting the rejection letter from the honor band I tried out for during my freshman year that I really decided to dedicate myself and put an honest effort into practicing and studying.

    Who are your greatest influences? Who did you study with?

    I like to say I “studied” with Charlie Parker, Grover Washington, Gerald Albright and Warren Hill. I used to put on CDs of theirs and play alongside them for hours during my teenage years. I’d learn tunes out of the Omnibook and work them up to full speed with the recordings and, for the other saxophonists, would find transcriptions (or try to create them myself) for the tunes I wanted to learn. I grew up in Gilroy, which is a really small town in northern CA. I would drive to Santa Cruz to take actual lessons with Bill Trimble, who was one of the most respected classical saxophonists in the Bay Area and certainly the reason I developed a love for classical saxophone. I did take a couple jazz lessons with a local pro names Les Pierce as well (who was the saxophonist for just about every rock, blues, country, oldies, or Top 40 band in the South Bay), although it wasn’t until college and the experience of being in Los Angeles that I really had the chance to explore the jazz scene and also take some lessons with one of my idols­ Eric Marienthal.

    Who or what gave you the confidence to pursue music as a career?

    I believe that my parents, as well as my college saxophone teacher (Doug Masek), were certainly the most supportive and important people in terms of this decision. My parents were both part-­time musicians and understood the struggles of being a performer­ the hours and lifestyle, amount of dedication and personal entrepreneurial skills needed, etc. They had always encouraged me to make a living by combining performing and teaching (which they had done for many years out of college and most of the professional musicians they associated with had also done). I do believe it was my college teacher and the environment at UCLA that encouraged me to take lots of risks in my classical career­ I was lucky enough to audition and win orchestral stints with the Aspen Music Festival, New World Symphony in Miami, and Spoleto Festival in South Carolina. I definitely believe that the confidence I gained participating in these ensembles enabled me to apply that same risky spirit to my jazz career.

    What are your thoughts on what it takes to be successful as a performer?​D​o you think any other skills are needed aside from the ability to play ​y​our instrument well?

    Absolutely! There are a thousands of great saxophonists out there­ I do freelance in the Bay Area and work with some amazing players all the time. Also, being that you and I just returned from NAMM, we’re very aware of how many incredible and proficient sax players attend the convention to try out instruments and be heard­ many of whom don’t have household names. I believe that a lot of things contribute to becoming a successful performer­ branding, image, marketing/promotion, the ability to connect with an audience, and the ability to have your own “voice” (on your instrument, in your songwriting, and as a person).

    What are some of the things you did before your career as a performer ​b​ecame as successful as it is today?

    I’ve done everything from being a busboy at a Sushi restaurant to working at a theme park to working for a Police Station in their records department. In college, I worked for UCLA Live ushering and assistant house managing at the concert hall­ the great thing was I was actually getting paid to see all the shows! I lived in London for half a year as well and worked on a student visa. I ended up working for a catering company at the Natural History Museum and played saxophone at a nightclub with a DJ on weekends (usually from midnight until ­3am). After grad school, I took a job working for Mission Bell Manufacturing, which built specialty cabinets and did custom projects for companies all over the Bay Area­ had it not been for the economic crash in 2008 which prompted layoffs, I might not have been forced back into music full­-time.

    What are some of your goals musically for the future?

    I am very pleased and grateful for how everything is unfolding with this latest album. As far as the immediate future, I certainly want to tour, entertain and connect with new audiences, and promote this music as much as possible over the next year or two! At some point, I do look forward to getting to work on another album and certainly want to collaborate with some new friends/artists as well as continue working with many of the people I have thus far. I do love the creative process of writing, recording, building and layering parts, and exchanging ideas with other creative instrumentalists.

    What inspires you to continue to pursue music? Have you ever come close​ t​o ​g​iving up and if you did, how did you overcome it?

    Absolutely­ there are so many times where you feel like you just keep hitting the same roadblocks or just feel like can’t get ahead or that things are stagnant! For me, playing shows and hearing from fans about how much they love my music or how they discovered my music on Pandora or Music Choice or radio always reminds me of the fact that my reason for making music isn’t about personal success­ it’s about creating music that others enjoy and about putting the creative ideas I have to disc. I’ve taken time off from writing/recording every now and again, and always find that I’m drawn to starting another project at some point. It must be encoded in my DNA or something!

    What are some of the things you enjoy most about your career as a ​performer/recording artist?

    As a performer, I enjoy seeing people get up to dance, or smile and do the side­-to-­side neck bob, or put their head down and clap along, or just close their eyes and listen. For me, it’s about connecting with people and bringing them into the experience. I absolutely love chatting with people after the show. As a recording artist, I most enjoy the creative process of building drum patterns with sampled sounds and scratch tracks for other parts, writing and recording sax lines, and working with other instrumentalists­ it’s always exciting to see what other people come up with. Sometimes it’s exactly what you were thinking and other times it’s something better than you could have ever thought of!

    Do you write music? Where do you get your inspiration?

    I do­ it always varies. Sometimes I just get an idea for a tune in my head. On the title track of this CD, “Can’t Help Myself”, the keyboard figure and melody lines for basically the whole song came to me on a drive home from a day of teaching sax lessons. I got home and, within 30 or 45 min, had most of the tune committed to recording. Other times, I’ll build a tune up from a drum pattern I create. On “Come A Little Closer”, I started with the kick, snare, and thought up a sandpaper part (in place of a shaker or cabasa), and then sketched out some Fender Rhodes parts before passing it off to Matt Godina to get some input. On “Wait Awhile”, the bass line (played on an EWI) came first and was the grounding for everything else in the song. I listen to everything from smooth jazz to classical music (my wife is an orchestral clarinetist) to R&B so it seems like ideas come from anywhere and everywhere.
    KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

    What was your lamest gig and how did you learn from it? What was the ​b​est?

    I’ve played on some pretty bad gigs in my time­ from sketchy bars to nightclubs to jazz quartet gigs where you are more or less expected to be “musical wallpaper” (although I still do weddings and corporate events from time to time, since the pay is usually hard to pass up). I will say that I’ve learned that my true passion isn’t playing background music for events or restaurants. I have definitely also learned not to play in places where the environment or ambiance isn’t appropriate for jazz. I don’t know if I could pinpoint a single best gig. I feel immense satisfaction every time I get the chance to perform my own music and feel the same excitement, enthusiasm, and connection with the audience at every show.

    Where can we find more information?

    My website is gregchambersmusic.com and I try to keep it as updated as possible­ for all the info on new releases and concert schedule, I’d suggest joining the mailing list on the homepage (I try to send 4­5 emails per year to keep people in the know). I am on Facebook as well with both a personal and an artist page.

    New releases and projects coming up

    Nothing yet since “Can’t Help Myself” just came out. I do have some ideas on paper (and some scratch recordings in Logic) already for the next project, but it’ll definitely be a while.

     

    February 9, 2015 • Interviews • Views: 1783

  • Saxophonist Ahkeem Hopkins | Teen Jazz Artist

    Why did you begin studying music?

    Music has always been something that just “came to me.” Never had to study it, I just knew how to do it. I taught myself many instruments at a young age including piano, guitar, drums, bass, trumpet, and euphonium.

    What are you doing with music now?

    Right now, I have a jazz group and we are playing locally here in Florida.

    Saxophonist Akheem Hopkins

    Located in Pensacola, FL, USA

    • Saxophonist
    • 7 years of playing

    Teen Jazz Artist Badge

    [What’s this?]

    Who are some of your influences?

    Chick Corea is my biggest influence. I also like Bill Evans but Chick Corea has been the only person I have watched repeatedly and tried to imitate.

    Who have you studied with?

    Dr. Michael Coleman
    Dr. Sandy Spivey
    Dr. Joseph Spaniola

    What would you like to do with music in the future?

    Playing music, help others learn to play an instrument. Get others to see the joy in playing music.

     

    Interested in having your profile featured on our site?

    Teen Jazz is also looking for young Jazz Artist features, so you could become a feature if you apply. You will be notified by email of the status of your application.

    Terms and Conditions:

    (A) You cannot submit one sentence answers to the Teen Jazz Artist Application form questions, they must be a short paragraph.

    (B) You must respond to the confirmation email that you receive from Shannon Kennedy after you submit your profile or your profile will not be published on Teen Jazz.

    (C) Pictures and Contact Information on your page are optional, but let us at Teen Jazz know if you would like to have both or either on your profile.

    Apply Here

    January 26, 2015 • Up and Coming Musicians • Views: 904

  • Saxophonist Richard Silva | Teen Jazz Artist

    Why did you begin studying music?

    I started playing saxophone because I wanted to continue the tradition of my grandpa. He played saxophone and so did one of his sons (Joe Silva). I basically was raised in a musical family, with my dad (Reggie Silva) being the guitarist, composer, vocalist, producer, and musical mentor.

    What is your instrument setup?

    Alto Saxophone – Julius Keilwerth SX90 / mouth piece S 90 / 3 reed Vandoren
    Tenor Sax – Collegiate / 3 Vandoren / mouth piece Dukoff D 5
    Flute – Pear PF -501
    Shure – cordless microphone
    Congas – LP Galaxy M. Cohen

    Saxophonist Richard Silva

    Located in Fresno, CA, USA

    • Saxophonist
    • Doubles on flute and congas
    • 19 years of playing

    Contact: 559-824-5170 | theblujz@yahoo.com
    www.theblujz.com | facebook.com/theblujz | twitter.com/theblujz


    Teen Jazz Artist Badge

    [What’s this?]

    What are you doing with music now?

    Currently I am still very active in playing my saxophone and other instruments I could put my hands on. Other than playing, since 2011 my dad has given me the responsibility to promote his band (The Blu J’z) that I am currently performing in. By promoting, I mean finding gigs and promoting his Cd “Feelin’ the Moment.” From then to now with God’s help The Blu J’z has been recognized by various smooth jazz media sources (magazine, airplay, interview, Cd review, and more) and have also been given the opportunity to open up for renowned smooth jazz artists such as Boney James, David Sanborn with Bob James, Brian Culbertson, Keiko Matsui, Fredric Yonnet, Patrick Lamb, Paul Taylor and Marion Meadows. To this day, I still promote my dad’s music because I strongly believe his music is very unique. Currently, we both are working on The Blu J’z second album, in which it is father and son collaboration.

    Who are some of your influences?

    My first influence comes from God, who has given me the gift of music to share to others. My dad plays a vital part as a father figure and musical mentor. A musician who made a strong impact on me is Maceo Parker (Saxophonist), in which I’ve transcribed many of his songs. His energetic funk style has awakened me as musician and performer, “I know now what I must do.” Also, I have come to find that, whatever influences me as a person is best expressed through my saxophone.

    Who have you studied with?

    In high school (Roosevelt High School) I received private lessons from saxophonist Gene Doi who is a highly respected and sought out musician. In college (California State University, Fresno) I received private lessons from Doctor Alan Durst, who is also highly respected and sought out musician and professor.

    What do you plan on doing with music in the future?

    My future plans are to finish the second Blu J’z album and to hopelly be an established band who performs at well known Jazz and Smooth Jazz related festivals, concerts, and venues.

    Where can we find your music?

    On CDBaby, iTunes, and Amazon.

    Album title: Feelin’ the Moment
    Artist: The Blu J’z
    Date: Released 2001
    Genre: Jazz, Latin, Funk, Pop, R & B
    Label: Independent

     

    Any additional information you would like to add?

    These words, “I will never give up” is what I told myself in first grade which continues to inspire me to this day in everything I do and experience, but it is ultimately the belief that through God anything is possible.

    Saxophonist Richard Silva | Teen Jazz Artist

    The family-originated band The Blu J’z began as the vision of Reggie Silva. He grew up in a family of musicians, so it’s no coincidence that he chose to make music his life. As a guitarist, composer, and vocalist, Reggie’s influences came from performing and listening to bands and artists of the seventy’s era, like Earth Wind Fire, Chicago, Carlos Santana, Wes Montgomery, George Benson, Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Tower Power, Andre Crouch, The Winans, and many others. In 1998 Reggie’s vision in creating The Blu J’z sound originated from a dream, a dream of hooky melodies that paved a way in creating their first Cd in 2001, “Feelin’ the moment.” Reggie felt a connection with the album’s title because “it came from the heart.”

    Originally starting out as a five piece band, his son Richard Silva (saxophonist) joined the band during his sophomore year in high school. Since then they became popular around Fresno’s jazz music scene, performing familiar cover tunes, and along with promoting their original material that overall gave a smooth jazz vibe. Their unique sound that attracted listeners consisted of styles of Funk, Rock, Jazz, Pop, Latin, and Rhythm and Blues.

    In 2000, a newspaper writer from the Fresno Bee stumbled upon one of their performances at an Indian Casino named Table Mountain. Afterwards, he was compelled to write an article in which he titled “Family Band,” which was a full front page article on the Life Section displayed on Thursday, April 20, 2000. The original band members included: Reggie Silva (Band leader, guitarist), Joe Silva (Saxophonist, vocalist, percussion, brother), Richard Silva (Saxophonist, percussion, son), Julian Molina (Bass), Ricky Gonzalez (Rhythm guitar), and Juan Chevalier (Drummer, vocalist).

    In addition to performing at Fresno’s hot spots, they got a chance to perform twice (2001 and 2002) at the Sacramento Jazz Festival, which in 2001 was the year The Blu J’z debut their first Cd. Another big event was in 2004 when they were asked to open for Fresno’s own Smooth Jazz Festival at Coombs Riverbend Ranch.

    Within 4 years of the article, the band decided to break from the entertainment business. During this break many changes occurred in the structure of the band to include original members’ passing and moving away. Around mid-2010 Reggie was diagnosed with throat cancer. As a cancer survivor, in mid -2011 Reggie was ready for a comeback and this time his aspirations would lead him to rely on the abilities of his son Richard Silva. Richard Silva began to promote stronger for the Smooth Jazz sound that Fresno had slowly been lacking in the music scene since the departure of Smooth Jazz music from the local radio station 96.7.

    Since Richard Silva took over the promoting of the band they have gained national radio attention by way of internet and have been recently nominated for Best Indie Smooth Jazz Group from GHP from Texas. The promotion of our originals has helped us gain recognition worldwide not only through airplay but also interviews. The Blu J’z has since been recognized by major magazine companies both in California (Coffee Talk Jazz Network) and Texas (Jazz In M.E.E.) By the watchful eye of promoters and diligent hard work they had been asked to be an opening act for smooth jazz artist Boney James in concert at Woodward Park Fresno, California in 2012. It was this performance that has helped opened the door to many other opportunities including opening for other well-known smooth jazz artists to include Fred Yonnett, David Sanborn with Bob James, and Brian Culbertson, and Patrick Lamb. To this day Richard is very much determined in spreading the word about The Blu J’z. Recently from Jazz In M.E.E’s April Magazine (2014) they referenced our Cd and wrote this, “Buyer beware, the melodies will grab your attention and provide an intense form of musical expression. Watch out! This band is creating a buzz.

    “Our goal is to express what we feel, while giving the audience an entertaining experience.” Reggie Silva


     

    Interested in having your profile featured on our site?

    Teen Jazz is also looking for young Jazz Artist features, so you could become a feature if you apply. You will be notified by email of the status of your application.

    Terms and Conditions:

    (A) You cannot submit one sentence answers to the Teen Jazz Artist Application form questions, they must be a short paragraph.

    (B) You must respond to the confirmation email that you receive from Shannon Kennedy after you submit your profile or your profile will not be published on Teen Jazz.

    (C) Pictures and Contact Information on your page are optional, but let us at Teen Jazz know if you would like to have both or either on your profile.

    Apply Here

    January 21, 2015 • Up and Coming Musicians • Views: 1183

  • Groove LTD feat. U-Nam and Shannon Kennedy

    I try not to use this space [Teen Jazz] for shameless self-promotion. I have my own website to do that, but every once in a while I have a project that I am a part of that I am just to excited about not to share.

    Over the past few months, guitarist U-Nam and I have been working on a new collaboration – Groove LTD. This past week we released our first single “It’s Only Love”, a cover of the Barry White classic made popular by Simply Red.

    The single is currently going for adds at smooth jazz radio stations around the country and we would be absolutely thrilled if you called in to your favorite local station to request the song. Just ask for “It’s Only Love” by Groove LTD.

    In the meantime, you can pick up a copy of the song on either iTunes or Amazon OR you can get an exclusive, limited edition copy signed by both U-Nam and I here.

    Thank you again so much for all of your support. Happy New Year!

    Groove LTD can be found here:

    January 14, 2015 • Reviews • Views: 984

  • Saxophonist Tavis Yearwood | Teen Jazz Artist

    Why did you begin studying music?

    With me being a freshman in high school I can’t say that i’m studying music but its what i want to do with my life and I’m extremely serious about it. It is my favorite thing to do in the entire world and I look forward to being a music major once i reach college.

    What are you doing with music now?

    Right now I’m trying to get my name out in the music world in my area by playing at jam sessions, auditioning for every honor band and other audition entry band around, and school concerts.

    Saxophonist Tavis Yearwood

    Located in Orlando, FL, USA

    • Saxophonist
    • Doubles on Flute
    • 4 years of playing

    Teen Jazz Artist Badge

    [What’s this?]

    What is your instrument setup?

    Cannonball Big Bell Stone Series Black Nickel Tenor, Otto Link Super Tone Master 6, Rico Royal Blue Box 3

    Who are some of your influences?

    Kenny G, Dave Koz, Gerald Albright, Grover Washington Jr., Eric Marienthal, David Sanborn, Michael Brecker, Jeff Lorber, Brian Culbertson.

    Who have you studied with?

    Christina Hart, Kimberly Zipoli, Ryan Davenport, Corey Futrell, Billy Meether

    What would you like to do with music in the future?

    My dream is to become a professional musician creating my own solo studio albums and to share my music with the rest of the world.

     Any additional information you would like to add?

    I am a Soprano, Alto, Tenor saxophonist as well as a flutist. I’ve been apart of the All-County Honor Band twice and the All-County Honor Jazz Band once.

     

    Interested in having your profile featured on our site?

    Teen Jazz is also looking for young Jazz Artist features, so you could become a feature if you apply. You will be notified by email of the status of your application.

    Terms and Conditions:

    (A) You cannot submit one sentence answers to the Teen Jazz Artist Application form questions, they must be a short paragraph.

    (B) You must respond to the confirmation email that you receive from Shannon Kennedy after you submit your profile or your profile will not be published on Teen Jazz.

    (C) Pictures and Contact Information on your page are optional, but let us at Teen Jazz know if you would like to have both or either on your profile.

    Apply Here

    December 29, 2014 • Up and Coming Musicians • Views: 918

  • Saxophonist Isaiah Moregrass | Teen Jazz Artist

    Why did you begin studying music?

    Music was something that grasped me for as long as I remember. I knew I wanted to study it because of the passion I had for the magic behind music.

    What are you doing with music now?

    I play in ensembles at my high school and gig around Philly with my school’s small band.

    Saxophonist Isaiah Moregrass

    Located in Philadelphia, PA, USA

    • Saxophonist
    • 7 years of playing

    Teen Jazz Artist Badge

    [What’s this?]

    What is your instrument setup?

    Premier by Hire mp
    Vandoreen 3s
    Bundy Sax

    Who are some of your influences?

    Johnny Hodges
    Pepper Adams
    Gerry Mulligan
    Billie Holiday
    Ella Fitzgerald

    Who have you studied with?

    Temple CMSP program
    CAPA high school

    What would you like to do with music in the future?

    Gigging in Manhattan and being a music teacher.

     


     

    Interested in having your profile featured on our site?

    Teen Jazz is also looking for young Jazz Artist features, so you could become a feature if you apply. You will be notified by email of the status of your application.

    Terms and Conditions:

    (A) You cannot submit one sentence answers to the Teen Jazz Artist Application form questions, they must be a short paragraph.

    (B) You must respond to the confirmation email that you receive from Shannon Kennedy after you submit your profile or your profile will not be published on Teen Jazz.

    (C) Pictures and Contact Information on your page are optional, but let us at Teen Jazz know if you would like to have both or either on your profile.

    Apply Here

    December 23, 2014 • Up and Coming Musicians • Views: 844

  • Tenor High G Adjustments

    Hi guys, Rheuben again. Today I’d like to talk to you about the first altissimo G on the tenor saxophone – what can be done and what can’t be done to help that note come in. It’s a problem note on the tenor sax, so there are several things we can do and a lot of things we can’t do.

    First, the most important thing we can do is check the adjustment to make sure that when you push the harmonic key, the front F, it holds down the B key and this little key [points]. Now this adjustment must be in place for the altissimo G to work.

    Now if you play that G and the instrument doesn’t work and doesn’t respond as well as you like it to, on most modern saxophones, right here by the harmonic key there’s a screw [shows]. You can loosen the screw, slide it back and forth, and it will allow you to change the opening of the high F key. There’s quite a bit of distance that you can change here to make that note come in.

    So now, when you get that when the note comes in, remember you’re sliding this back and forth and changing the high F, you’re also changing it so that it will effect your high F and high E when using the fork fingerings. When you make that adjustment, keep in mind that it will change these notes also.

    Now if you’re playing a saxophone that has a high F# key, you can play the high F# key like this and open the F# key with a button [shows] and that works for some people depending on the mouthpiece and everything or you can play the B key and the high F# key [shows]. That tends to be a little flat but it has a great color. So if you’re going to do it quick, this is great. If you’re going from a B to a G, all you do is hit this key and you go from a high B to a high G and back.

    So that’s pretty much all you can do to adjust the saxophone to help with the first altissimo G. And I think that’s it… Later!!

    November 24, 2014 • Repair Tips • Views: 1121

  • Advice for Saxophonists: Article Roundup

    As a saxophone player I tend to write quite a few articles for sax players here on Teen Jazz. Here’s a roundup of all the saxophone advice you can find on the site so far.

    General Saxophone Advice

    College Audition Preparation for Saxophonists – guest post by sax player and Cal State Long Beach professor James Barrera

    Sax Mouthpiece Buying Tips – looking to buy a new mouthpiece? here’s a great place to start

    Sax Playing Tips – just a few general tips

    Tips for the Advanced Saxophonist – a bit of advice for the high school aged sax player

    Tips for the Beginning Saxophonist – a bit of advice for someone just starting to play sax

    Words of Wisdom from Phil Sobel – tips taken from an interview with saxophonist and educator Phil Sobel

    The Difference Between Tenor Saxophones With and Without the High F# Key – advice from Rheuben Allen on making a saxophone purchase

    My Tenor Sax Setup – what’s yours? share in the comments

    Repair Tips

    Emergency Saxophone Repair – written by repairman Rheuben Allen

    Basic Saxophone Repair – written by repairman Rheuben Allen

    How to Adjust the G-Sharp Spring Tension on a Saxophone

    Lessons

    Video Sax Lessons – from saxophonist Bob Reynolds

    Up and Coming Sax Players on Teen Jazz

    Interviews with Established Sax Players

    November 3, 2014 • Music and Career Advice • Views: 1144

  • Replacing Saxophone Neck Cork with Rheuben Allen

    I’d like to talk a little bit about the neck cork. Now this is a Selmer Mark VI neck and as you can see over time, the neck cork has been lengthened quite a bit. It should stop right about here (shows where) but you have another half inch that was done on this.

    So what happens is, whenever you go to put on a neck cork, you try not to lengthen it at all. So in the case of this though, you can see all the marks and things, so I put the cork just to here and there’s going to be a big ugly piece coming out of that neck. So what we have to do once the cork is cut, we must go that same length with the new neck cork.

    Now I use contact cement when I’m putting on a neck cork. So what you want to do to prepare the neck cork is, I usually cut the cork sheet down the middle, then you cut a tapered angle on one end (demonstrates) so that it’s tapered underneath, then you apply the contact cement.

    Okay, normally when I put the contact cement on, I use a pipe cleaner because it’s easier, but I’m out so today I’m using a q-tip. You simply go over your tapered area first. You don’t want it to be too thick at all, but you have to make sure that it covers everything (demonstrates applying contact cement to the tapered area and the back of the cork). Put the contact on.

    Just want to make sure you cover all of the cork you’ll be applying and you want to make sure you far enough. It doesn’t matter if you go past where the wraps going to be. You just have to make sure you put enough on there for where the wraps going to be. So I go a little extra.

    Put [the glue on], then that’s that part for the moment. Simply lay the cork on something to give the glue time to get tacky.

    The next step, of course, is to put the contact glue on the neck. I’m doing this tenor neck. So I simply take the contact glue and place it around the neck. Now you want to make sure you get it on this seam right here (shows) and on the top because in this little seam [you need to make sure the cork sticks]. Again, you want to make sure you cover everything. If it doesn’t get covered, it won’t stick. And it’s very important to cover the end because that has to be cut a little thinner than the rest of the cork.

    And as I’ve said before, this particular neck is a little long, so there’s a little extra room you have to do here. Make sure you don’t put it on too thick or with any clumpy spots or it will take a long time to dry. You want the glue to be fairly even.

    It’s generally easier with a pipe cleaner, the q-tip is a little limited. Get it all around the neck cork area. Then put it somewhere for the glue to get tacky without it touching anything.

    It will take a while for the tenor cork I just prepared to be ready to sand, so I have here an alto cork that I’ve already put on. It’s already been wrapped and everything, so I’ll show you how to sand it. It’s fairly simple to sand. Simply lay it down. I get these sanders (shows) at the 99 cent store. I get three of them for $1. And by hand, I sand the cork.

    Now contrary to many things that I’ve heard, the saxophone neck is not a cylinder, it is tapered. So the back end of the cork must be thinner than the front of the cork in order to make the cork a cylinder to the mouthpiece to slide onto and seal properly. So you must take a little more off the backend. And the cork seam, of course, should always be placed on the bottom of the neck (shows) so that it’s not seen. When the mouthpiece is on, you don’t see the seam.

    And you just start sanding. Turn the neck a little [as you go]. And hand sand it until it’s the right [thickness] for the mouthpiece you’re going to fit to this neck.

    Okay, now I’m getting ready to put the neck cork on this tenor neck and one of the things you need to do, as I used contact cement, is that you need have a place to put it while the contact cement is drying. So at the end of my work bench, I drilled two holes. One is 1 1/8 inch for the tenor necks and one is 1 inch for the alto neck. So that’s where they can sit while you’re waiting for the glue to dry and there’s no chance of knocking it off the bench or any of the kind of stuff because it’s actually in a hole and setup.

    [To put the cork on the neck, the side of the cork with glue goes against the neck. I start the tapered end at the bottom of the saxophone neck cork area so that when it’s all said and done, the seam isn’t visible. If I have extra cork after I wrap it around the neck cork area, I cut it so that it lines up seamlessly with the tapered edge. Be careful not to cut the actual saxophone neck. Press the cork down against the neck to get a nice seal and let the glue dry before you begin sanding.]

    [Goes back to alto neck] So now I have sanded the neck cork so that it’s a complete cylinder and very smooth and now’s the time to put the mouthpiece on and make sure that it fits. So you want to put a lot of cork grease on the neck. And then the mouthpiece that I use to test putting it on is one that I manufacture that has a metal ring around it so that it’s less likely to crack. So then you simply put the mouthpiece on the neck and get it on as far as you can get it on and [as you can see] that’s a very nice fit, a very nice distance. The player can put it there or out here, he’s got a lot of room and the cork is very snug. So at this point, I look at the back of the cork here (shows) and if it’s thicker in the back here than where you put the mouthpiece on, then I just simply sand that piece down a little more until it gets to be completely a cylinder so you don’t have that big bump at the back end. Now you’re finished and the cork is ready to be used.

    October 29, 2014 • Repair Tips • Views: 1154

  • Claude Lakey // Sponsor Love

    Today I’d like to spotlight Claude Lakey, one of our our wonderful Teen Jazz Sponsors!

    We have a number of sponsors without whom, we would be unable to do what we do here at Teen Jazz. As a big thanks to each of these fantastic companies and artists, I’d like to begin introducing a few of them to you.

    For those of you unfamiliar with the company, Claude Lakey is a mouthpiece and ligature company that has over 50 years of experience in the industry. In the 1955, saxophonist Claude Lakey began working on the design for what would become the “Original Claude Lakey.” In the 1960s, he began to make his own molds to create products that were up to his standards and in the 1970s his designs began to grow in popularity. According to the website, “Claude Lakey Mouthpieces is now one of the most recognized names in the music industry. The company exports to over 20 countries around the world and works with 4 US distributors to ensure that our mouthpieces are available to all musicians, no matter where they are.”

    Some of the popular Claude Lakey products include the “Original” mouthpiece, a versatile hard rubber mouthpiece and the “Compass” ligature with its innovative design.

    COMPASS LIGATURE from Claude Lakey Inc. on Vimeo.

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    Want to be featured on Teen Jazz? Check out our sponsorship options here.

    October 15, 2014 • Teen Jazz • Views: 1286