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Saxophone/highschool band-alto sax player


My son has been playing a bundy by selmer alto sax for about 4 years It was a rental, student model.  We never changed out the mouthpiece but will be purchasing a valdoren as recommended by his high school band teacher.  My son would like to upgrade to a better instrument but we don't know if we should look for a used one in the better brands (Yamaha) or try and find a new one.  We are looking at spending no more than 1500$.  Any input is appreciated.

Cathy, sorry for the delay in responding.

You should be able to get a nice 'step up' used Yamaha.  I would approach your local music shop (especially if it is the one that supplies goods and services to the schools in your area).  Let them know you're looking and in no hurry... but ask them to keep eyes and ears out for a better horn.  You can also ask them to include a service agreement.  

Buying a used horn online is an option and there are deals to be had.  However, you might spend less on the front end but wind up spending more to get the horn into solid playing condition once it arrives.

FYI - the most basic Yamaha is the 23 model - you may want to check in to a 300 or an Allegro (580).  

Good luck!


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Eugene Cantera


I have been a music educator for over 25 years and have taught on many levels from young children and school agers on through to college level, professional players and senior citizens. My main areas of expertise are saxophone(s) though I have taught many instruments including, guitar, bass, piano, oboe and drums to name a few. I have also done research on horns both vintage and new.


I have been in music education for 25 years and I have written and published in the subject of professional music education.

The Dallas Morning News, Dallas Business Journal, Marketing and Higher Education Newsletter.

Bachelor of Music Education, Hartt School of Music - The University of Hartford.

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