How to Tune Up a Saxophone

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When tuning a saxophone, the basic idea is to move the mouthpiece in or out, depending on if the horn should be sharper or more flat. Find out why it's so important to tune saxophones for a performance with help from a professional saxophonist in this free video on music and instruments.

Part of the Video Series: Music Lessons
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Video Transcript

Hey, my name's Brian Medeiros. I'm a saxophonist, and I'm going to explain how to tune a saxophone. It's important to wear a neck strap when you're tuning your saxophone, because you're using both hands to push and pull on the sax, and you don't want to drop it cause' that could be expensive. When you're tuning a sax the basic idea, saxophone length determines the pitch of the instrument. And up here by the top of the instrument, the the neckpiece and the mouthpiece determines, it's a lot more important, the length of the horn than the bottom of it. So, to tune the saxophone you basically move the the mouthpiece in or out, depending on where you want to go. Now, if my saxophone; let's say I began playin' my sax and it was sharp. If it was sharp I'd pull the mouthpiece out actually making the horn longer, and that makes the pitch of the horn a little bit lower. Not very noticeable, but in a in a live setting when you're playing with a bunch of other people if your horn is sharp or flat it's it's it's noticeable, and you, that's how you tune the sax just by pulling or pushing the mouthpiece in or out. And that's how you tune-up your saxophone.

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