About the Instrument:

    If Adolphe Sax could see how important his invention became to the world of music, he would be a happy guy. Invented around 1841 as a cross between a brass (loud) and woodwind (expressive) instrument, it worked well for the military bands for which it was designed. But the sax’s popularity really took off with the development of early swing and jazz. There are not many styles of music that have not used saxophone. It is also an instrument that allows the player to develop their own unique sound. While it is easy to pick up the basics of the instrument, you can spend a lifetime trying to master it.


Purchase Price: $750-11,000.00

Rental Price: $35-60 per month

How Loud Is It?: 95 dbl.

Difficulty Level: 6

Can the Sound be Muted?: No

Weight: 12 lbs. with case, 5 lbs. without

Additional costs, What else you’ll need:

    Pads will start to leak and need replacing, horn may go out of alignment.

    Reeds - Cut pieces of bamboo that attach to the Mouthpiece which vibrate to create sound. Come in many strengths and different brands.

    Mouthpiece - Attached to the top of the saxophone, a variety to choose from.

    Ligature - Holds the reed onto the mouthpiece.

    Neckstrap - Attaches to a ring at about the middle of the saxophone. Hangs around neck to distribute weight off of hands.

Scholarship Opportunities: Yes

Performing Opportunities:

    Jazz Groups, Rock Bands, R&B Music, Latin Music, Classical Music, Marching Band, Cruise Ship Bands.

    Used extensively in Television, Film, and Album recordings.

Related Instruments:

Tenor Saxophone, Baritone Saxophone,

Soprano Saxophone

Pros: Fun, easy, expressive instrument. Many opportunities for playing in many different bands. Smaller than Tenor Sax, takes less air.

Cons: A nice sound will take time to develop. Horns can be knocked out of alignment. Reeds can be problematic.

Why play the Alto Saxophone? Click on the movie below.

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