as I went to rent a tenor today (YTS-275) I saw a barely used Barone Vintage Tenor, after reading so much about Barone sax I was quite excited at the chance to try one!
I'm just a beginner mind you, coming back after many years off. I had to wait for a room to become free and had the opportunity to listen to a pro play testing adjustement to his Keilwerth SX-90R, a tenor also. I was VERY impressed by his sound by the way, he was playing a SR Tech (didn't tell me the model though).
Off I go to try the Barone and wow the tone was very smooth and BIG, much bigger anyway than my tone with the YTS-275. I used a JJ HR 7* with Jazz 3 reed.
After enjoying myself some I came back to see the pro was still there chatting. I mentionned how impressed I was with the Barone and he become curious and gave it a try. Let's just say that with him on it the sound was HUGE, the Keilwerth had more spread but still the Vintage impressed me a lot. Dumbfounded the tech passed him a MK VI they had for sale to AB the tone. The core was very intense, too intense. Mind you he was playing the same mouthpiece than he use on his Keilwerth.
Given the rarity of Barone up here I was in heaven to have a chance to try one. To hear a pro making a Mk VI, a SX-90R and the Vintage side by side was very informative.
I may not know WHEN I'll have the dough but after today I discovered 2 things:
First, my next sax will be a Vintage Tenor without ANY second thoughts; I much prefer a big tone than a big name
Second, I may have played an alto all my life but I felt something really special playing the tenor, it felt like it was easier to "open up". Feeling those note vibrate inside drove me nuts.
Kuddo to you Mr Barone, that instrument was more than impressive, the keywork, the finition but more importantly the tone was incredible.
P.S. The finish was Vintage Laquer and it was stunning.
P.P.S. I have gas!