So I dropped my sax …

I was notified that our principal saxophonist (in the WCB) wasn’t going to make it to practice, so I pulled out my Selmer Ref 54 hummingbird to work on the lovely but gnarly alto sax solo in Armenian Dances. It’s a 5/8 and 6/8 time signature. It counted 1-2-3, 4-5 and then 1-2, 3-4-5, alternating almost on whim and then a random 6/8 time and a couple of 3/8. Checkout the at the 4:11 minute mark:

As I went to lower the case, my beautiful, perfect sax dropped about six inches onto a carpet. Oh nosssss! I picked it up and gave it a try, but the whole scale was wonky. Checking the keyworks I note that a couple of the bell pads are not closing and some of the linkage is bent. Sigh …

So I am taking it to my fav tech today, dunno how much that will cost. Fortunately I had my wife’s Ref 54 as a backup but imagine my surprise when I found that the inherent intonation on her instrument was *much* different than mine. And I’m going to be sharing a duet with an oboe. Zutt alors!


Turns out the low C# cup was bent and there was a cracked high F spring. The Eb pad was going bad anyway, I’m guessing here, so two pads (low C# and Eb) were replaced. It took two hours to suss this out. My baby is back home now. Thank you John at Union Hill Winds! It nice to be able to play down to a low Bb and at a whisper.

About Gandalfe

Just an itinerant saxophonist trying to find life between the changes. I have retired from the Corps of Engineers and Microsoft. I am an admin on the Woodwind Forum, run the Seattle Solid GOLD Big Band (formerly the Microsoft Jumpin' Jive Orchestra) a GOLD sax quartet, and enjoy time with family and friends.
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