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JSngry

Prez' Horn

53 posts in this topic

Way COOL.

Two wonderful people. . . a nice pairing.

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Why are all the pads on the top side of the horn?

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Combination of how they have the horn angled and the way the Conns were designed.

Here's a Conn from the other side:

conn%20chewberry%202.jpg

Edited by JSngry

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I wonder how many horns they have. I've always wondered, for example, who has Bird's horns or Sonny Stitt's horns? I wonder where they are.

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Excellent, thanks for posting this.

Jim, how common/popular were Conn tenors with players in that era? My dad used to have a Conn "naked lady" alto and it seems like I remember him saying their altos were pretty widely played when he was young (late 50's), but I never heard him say anything about the tenors.

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One of Bird's horns is in Kansas City, right?

Right, at the American Jazz Museum. A plastic alto said to be the Massey Hall horn.

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Man, this is fantastic. So much history in few pieces of metal.

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How wonderful!

Will have to visit that Institute if and when I travel next to Newark.

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As wonderful as this is - shouldn't these instruments be played to stay in shape? I know that classical violins deteriorate pretty fast when they are just lying around.

And didn't Dexter Gordon inherit Ben Webster's main horn?

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Some gin and wine should be breathed genly into jazz horns every day. . . .

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Yes, and some single malts, for very special horns, such as Prez'...

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It's great to look at that horn. Conns have great sound, if difficult action. It's no exaggeration to say that the older horns sounded different - many required less pressure to blow, which is related to the older sound - other horns like Martins have much better action and a similar, dark sound - I love'em and will play nothing but. Yamahas sound like Kazoos -

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Excellent, thanks for posting this.

Jim, how common/popular were Conn tenors with players in that era? My dad used to have a Conn "naked lady" alto and it seems like I remember him saying their altos were pretty widely played when he was young (late 50's), but I never heard him say anything about the tenors.

Do a search for "Conn Naked Lady" on eBay and you'll see. They are pretty desirable, although tenor moreso than alto.

My dream horn? A 1950s King Super 20 Silversonic. OH YEAH!

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Jim, how common/popular were Conn tenors with players in that era? My dad used to have a Conn "naked lady" alto and it seems like I remember him saying their altos were pretty widely played when he was young (late 50's), but I never heard him say anything about the tenors.

Very popular, actually. Conns were the horn of choice for many a fine player. In fact, one model is known today as the "Chu Berry model".

Conns had a great sound, big and full. It wasn't until Selmer introduced the Balanced Action, followed relatively quickly by the (rightly) legendary Mark VI, that Selmer began to pull away from the pack. This was due mainly to Selmer's design re: key layout that facilitated rapid fingering, as well as the refinements they made to the horn's basic intonation and evenness of sound.

Those old horns (King as well as Conn, and even Buescher, which was Ike Quebec's horn of choice) often need a little extra "attention" when playing them, and the key layout at first seems ridiculously spread out and unnatural), but the attention is rewarded by a sound that is simply beautiful. I had a chance to play an old Selmer "cigar cutter" once, about 25 years ago, and althought the intonation was hairy, to put it mildly, the tone was to die for.Which was what I was hoping the owner would do... ;)

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As wonderful as this is - shouldn't these instruments be played to stay in shape? I know that classical violins deteriorate pretty fast when they are just lying around.

Well, yeah, any horn is meant to be played. But this type of display is a worthy one, I think.

If the rods and screws are oiled regularly, the only real cause for concern would be the pads drying and cracking. And if the pads are kept oiled or otherwise treated, it's good to go at any time.

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This old King certainly looks nice! When I bought an alto (a Mark VII, used, almost a decade older than the king himself...) I also had an opportunity to try out new King and Conn altos. First, being used to Selmer, I found it very very strange to handle, in fact, very uncomfortable. Second, the 30+ year old Selmer had such a GREAT sound, even with that standard stoopid A* mouthpiece I checked it out with... (I've got a Meyer mouthpiece now)

ubu

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Way cool ... I went to the "Collection Home" link on that site to see what else they had, and the descriptions indicated Roy Eldridge's trumpet had a "rhinestone-studded" mouthpiece and Don Byas' horn has "a unique octave key in the shape of a snake."

Any other players known for "customizing" their instruments?

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The Naked Lady Conn alto was sometimes known as the Charlie Parker model - Bird played one for a while - it had a tuning apparatus near the mouthpiece - best alto I ever played -

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Sngry 

Posted: Dec 21 2004, 09:35 AM

Report PostQuote Post

QUOTE (DrJ @ Dec 20 2004, 11:40 PM)

Jim, how common/popular were Conn tenors with players in that era? My dad used to have a Conn "naked lady" alto and it seems like I remember him saying their altos were pretty widely played when he was young (late 50's), but I never heard him say anything about the tenors.

Very popular, actually. Conns were the horn of choice for many a fine player. In fact, one model is known today as the "Chu Berry model".

AllenLowe  Posted on Dec 21 2004, 11:43 AM

  The Naked Lady Conn alto was sometimes known as the Charlie Parker model - Bird played one for a while - it had a tuning apparatus near the mouthpiece - best alto I ever played -

Thanks for the additional information, you guys - this place is so cool, amazing to be able to tap into the minds and collective experience of musicians, producers, etc!

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even Buescher, which was Ike Quebec's horn of choice)

Jim, that's an interesting tidbit too - my father also had a Buescher tenor! Never knew that was Ike's horn, he'll be interested to hear that.

There was a time in the late 50's where my dad played in little amateur pick up rock 'n' roll and R&B groups and given the popularity of tenor tried to pick it up...but he's a physically small guy and never really got an approach down, plus started to get into jazz, thus the later focus on alto and the Conn Naked Lady. BTW still strictly amateur on that horn too, but we still have a lot of fun occasionally playing fractured alto/guitar duet arrangements of standards (picture dogs howling, family running, you get the idea...)

Edited by DrJ

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Very popular, actually. Conns were the horn of choice for many a fine player. In fact, one model is known today as the "Chu Berry model".

I think Pres played that Conn as well according to various biographical materials on him. But it can be after this particular horn exposed here.

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