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  1. #1

    Default Sonny Rollins Set-up

    Hi, does anyone know what make / model etc.. Sonny Rollins Saxophone is ?

  2. #2
    Chris Mickel's Avatar
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    I believe that Sonny Rollins plays on a Selmer Mark VI and always has as far as I know. As far as mouthpiece setup he used to play Otto Link's but I think Phil Barone made him a mouthpiece a few years back but I don't think he still plays that piece. I think now he plays a very open Berg Larsen metal.

    Chris

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    I have seen older pictures with a hard rubber Berg Larsen but for the past decades I believe it is stainless steel Berg larsen 130/2. This is on MKVI although he apperent decades ago also had an inexpensive Bundy that he enjoyed. There is some info on players'set-up here: http://www.du.edu/lamont/Mpce.html (I don't know how accurate this is).
    Palo Tung/www.Justsaxes.com also has some info.

  4. #4

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    It was a long time ago, but I liked his sound when he was playing a short shank Soloist. These mouthpieces have a something that make you sound like yourself. Check out the clips on youtube with Jim Hall.

  5. #5

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    I believe he recorded Saxophone Colossus on a Big B and I think I've seen a picture of him with a Super 20 as well.

  6. #6

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    Thanks guys

    I wondered was it a MarkVI, its helping me decide between buying a Ref36 or 54, I guess it will be the 54 then. I'm hoping the 54 will be in the same ball park as the MarkVI. Gorgeous big fat centred sound. I'm not really worried about the mouthpiece, i have a yani metal that produces beautiful tone.
    Thanks for that lads. If you wisk to add/advise on my purchase don't hesitate.

    Jose

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    Chris Mickel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jose90
    Thanks guys

    I wondered was it a MarkVI, its helping me decide between buying a Ref36 or 54, I guess it will be the 54 then. I'm hoping the 54 will be in the same ball park as the MarkVI. Gorgeous big fat centred sound. I'm not really worried about the mouthpiece, i have a yani metal that produces beautiful tone.
    Thanks for that lads. If you wisk to add/advise on my purchase don't hesitate.

    Jose
    The refrence 54 and 36 are both great horns but the 54 is closer to a Mark VI. I have tried them both and I like the 54. But when you get to horns of this quality you are talking apples and oranges, it's a personal thing.

    My advice would be to try out as many different horns as you can. Since you are investing that much money you want to get a horn that you are really comfortable with. Check out the Keilwerth SX90R, The high end Yamahas and Yanigisawas as well as the Selmers if you can. All are great horns but are different. Like I said it's a personal thing.

    Chris

  8. #8

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    With all due respect, I think of all the reasons to buy or not buy a Ref54, the fact that Rollins plays a Mark VI is by far the worst.

    Just try the horns man.

    Besides, he rocked the planet on a super 20 too

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    Quote Originally Posted by Super20Duper
    With all due respect, I think of all the reasons to buy or not buy a Ref54, the fact that Rollins plays a Mark VI is by far the worst.

    Just try the horns man.

    Besides, he rocked the planet on a super 20 too
    Sonny was rumored to have something like well over 100 tenors back in the late sixties. Supposedly, he went to Africa to pick up a Buescher. I had one of his Mark VI's, 79XXX. Long story. Great horn but just a horn. The magic comes from you. As a great sage once said " A sword in the hands of a coward is useless. If you want to emulate the Rollins sound... fine... but don't buy any horn just because Sonny plays a VI.

  10. #10
    Saxplayer67's Avatar
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    I maintain a player will sound the same on most horns and most setups. That's proven by Sonny using a Bundy for a while. You mustn't be influenced by gear - that leads to an expensive case of GAS. I love Sonny but I wouldn't have to get the same gear.

    Here's an another example I use a lot - if you want to sound like David Sanborn, buying his type of Dukoff Superpower Chamber D7 and Vandoren reeds and Selmer Mark VI - complete with loose crook! - will not necessarily make you sound like him. By experimenting, you can approach his sound but you might end up with a completely different piece to get even closer to his sound. Same with Sonny - don't forget , his sound has changed over the years, not necessarily due to his setup.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jose90
    Gorgeous big fat centred sound.
    Jose
    As others have implied here, I don't think Sonny's sound was the direct result of playing a MK VI. Of course it's 90% up to you the player, but if you want to get a gorgeous big fat centered sound, you might get closer with the Buescher Big B (did Sonny really play one of these on "Colossus"?--I wouldn't be surprised) than a MK VI or 54. Still, the horn is only a small part of the equation, assuming it's a decent horn to begin with.

  12. #12

    Smile

    Hi,
    Thanks for all the posts. After reading my second post again, I know it sounds ridiculous. I was just drawing the comparsion to the fact that some(well one anyway) of my idols played this kind of Selmer. I'm just buying a quality sax for me after trying some of them out. Not just because sonny plays a VI. This is not an expensive experiment. I know what I am doing. Now that I can afford it. I used to play a MarkVI and loved it, but I don't want an old second hand machine, i'd rather a brand new model with the latest technology. According to Selmer themselves its being built in the spirit of the MarkVI, incorporating the famous "Mark VI" design. Tried it out today and i found it not to be identical but not a million miles away either.
    Sound is fantastic . It has a lovely feel to it and is quite comfortable on. No problems. It will also take some time of the first year getting the setup right for me before it beds down. Selmer's are not built with the same build quality of the Yani's, so it will take some time. But it is the sound for me. I love it. Not the idols, thats just interesting, what they use and how they use them.

    Also I don't believe that every player will sound the same irrespective of the instrument, thats why there are some many models by different company. Granted the player will generate the majority of the sound him/herself but not all. There are lots of factors evolved.
    Last edited by Jose90; 11-23-2006 at 08:24 AM.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Sonny Rollins Set-up

    Quote Originally Posted by whaler View Post
    It was a long time ago, but I liked his sound when he was playing a short shank Soloist. These mouthpieces have a something that make you sound like yourself. Check out the clips on youtube with Jim Hall.
    Hi whaler
    I've always been fashinated by these sonny rollins/jim hall videos.
    Is that short shank Soloist?
    Could I buy somethign similar here? http://www.thomann.de/gb/selmer_d_so...mundstueck.htm
    Wich one is the nearest of sonny's setup, C, D, E?
    thanks
    marco[Impnt]

  14. #14
    Distinguished SOTW Member SaxPlayer1004's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sonny Rollins Set-up

    Saw him last Thursday on what looked like an Otto Link STM on a VI. It may be the piece Barone made for him. Dear lord was that a long winded concert though...

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    Default Re: Sonny Rollins Set-up

    Unless he changed very recently, to my knowledge Sonny has been playing a metal Berg Larsen for quite a while now. I don't remember the tip size, something like 130/0?? Also, I think Barone modified his biteplate, not the mpc, but of course I don't know for sure.
    Helpful, right?

  16. #16
    Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2010 magical pig's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sonny Rollins Set-up

    Quote Originally Posted by saxguy1953 View Post
    Helpful, right?
    I'm not sure...

    Victor.

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    Default Re: Sonny Rollins Set-up

    Quote Originally Posted by aristotele View Post
    Is that short shank Soloist?
    Could I buy somethign similar here? http://www.thomann.de/gb/selmer_d_so...mundstueck.htm
    Wich one is the nearest of sonny's setup, C, D, E?
    thanks
    marco[Impnt]

    I think Sonny played a very open soloist. I'm guessing about a G or H tip opening. It may also have been worked on. I'm allmost certain he couldn't get that sound out of a soloist C, D, or E opening.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Sonny Rollins Set-up

    Quote Originally Posted by LiAm84 View Post
    I think Sonny played a very open soloist. I'm guessing about a G or H tip opening. It may also have been worked on. I'm allmost certain he couldn't get that sound out of a soloist C, D, or E opening.
    Yeah LiAM I was in the fact asking about htese 1962 recordings.
    So you mean it should be more then a E.
    Is "short shrank" a value one can consider with mordern Soloist models?

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