- Be aware of hygiene and germs – use your mouthpiece and reed to play other saxophones.
- Always have clean hands and mouth.
- Wipe mouthpiece after each playing.
- Remember saliva and sweat are acidic and will damage the saxophone if not cleaned.
- Carefully remove dust and saliva periodically,
- A pad saver and crook pull-through help (a handkerchief on a boot lace works fine).
- Always use a mouth-piece cap when not playing.
- Remove reed after each playing and store on a flat clean surface.
- Never hold the saxophone by the keys.
- Guard against knocks, scrapes, and vibration.
- Have the saxophone checked twice yearly.
- Use oil and polish very sparingly – only on older instruments.
- Make sure the saxophone is secure on sling or stand – a good sling and stand can save expensive repair bills.
- Avoid extreme temperature change – e.g. radiators, trunk of car
- Regularly brush out or vacuum the case.
- Most cases have bad or unsuitable straps, edges, hinges and padding.
- Not all saxophones fit in all cases – check the fit.
- Always keep a copy of the registration number somewhere safe and make sure your instrument is properly insured.
- Many simple emergency or temporary repairs can be done with a screwdriver, pliers, tape, elastic bands and cardboard before bringing the saxophone for professional repair.
Joe Hatherill plays alto saxophone – Etudes Nos. 13 & 5 (from ’15 Etudes – Koechlin) at the Heritage Playhouse Theatre Accompanied by Joy McLeod:
Your library and librarians are a great free resource for recorded music, music history books, and print music. Throughout the year, library book sales offer an economical way to acquire books and print resources to help your music practice and provide inspiration.
Check this site for updates on the latest book sales in Victoria: http://www.gvplfriends.ca/booksales/