The (Very) Extended Saxophone Family
Post by: Becca Kronyak
The saxophone is a very well-recognized instrument, known for its smooth tone and shiny golden body. The invention of the saxophone came from the desire to improve upon the bass clarinet by creating an instrument that combined the delicacy and virtuosity of woodwinds with the strength and power of brass. In 1846, inventor and musician Adolphe Sax received a patent for his design of the alto saxophone that we are familiar with today. In addition to the alto–the most commonly seen member of the saxophone family–many people are also familiar with the soprano, tenor, and baritone saxophones as well. However, the saxophone family has come a long way in its evolution since the 1840s, resulting in some very interesting and often unheard of extended family members.
In this video, we get to meet the members of the saxophone quartet from the US Army Field Band, one of our country's most premiere military ensembles. Here the quartet meets with Dr. Paul Cohen, professor of saxophone at Rutgers University, to get an in-depth tour of his historical saxophone collection. While watching, keep your eye out for my favorites–the slide saxophone, the keyless saxophone, and the Eb contrabass saxophone.
Video link: Unheard of Instruments in the Saxophone Family