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Hardbopjazz

Prez not using a strap.

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I never played the saxophone, but I would think this would not be an easy task playing without a strap. Is this common? Prez seems to be resting his arm on the chair. 
 

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Looks like it's on the set of Jammin' The Blues. 

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I am a saxophone player. I currently have a Selmer Mark VI tenor and a Series II soprano. My first saxophone was a Super Action alto.

It would be very awkward to play any size of saxophone from alto or larger without a sling. A tenor is heavy, and even though Pres is seated, it would not leave the hands very free to move. This picture might just be a publicity shot.

In the 1970s, I had a Mark VI soprano (bought in Paris, France, where I was served by none other than Jaques Selmer). It didn't have a ring to hold a sling, and I felt that it was a bit heavy on the right thumb to hold, so I ran a bit of plastic-coated electrical wire around the thumb strap and always used a sling. It felt a lot more comfortable that way. Apparently Selmer agreed, because my Series II came with a sling ring.

I have three slings now, one each for the cases of the tenor, soprano and my bass clarinet (which also needs a sling). My favorite is from the 1960s, called a Selmer Jiffy. It is the best one ever, very quick and easy to adjust on the job. I wish I could get two more, but I can't find them online anymore. I have seen many pictures of famous players using one.

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Prez appears to be wearing a strap but not using it.  Either it's a publicity shot or he just picked it up for a minute to try something and isn't intending to play for any length of time.  Even sitting down playing without a strap is awkward and distracting, believe me I've tried.

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7 hours ago, danasgoodstuff said:

  Even sitting down playing without a strap is awkward and distracting, believe me I've tried.

I've had to try...back in the days of cheap srtaps (made with basic cord or chain), it was not uncommon for one to break, If that happened at school or at home, no problem, just rush out and get another one. But on a gig look out! And never mind it happening in a marching band in a parade...It's easier with an alto, but only somewhat. And with a tenor...yikes!

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13 hours ago, danasgoodstuff said:

Either it's a publicity shot or he just picked it up for a minute to try something and isn't intending to play for any length of time.  

He's also smoking a cigarette while he's playing, further indicating the above. 

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23 hours ago, Jim Duckworth said:

I love Marie Bryant in that film!

 

.... and she looks great in that photo!

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