Showing all 19 results
Buescher Big B Tenor Saxophone 293523 Original Lacquer Fresh Full Overhaul Excellent!$ 3,500
Price JUST reduced mid May 2020! This is an excellent deal!
This is an original lacquer Buescher Aristocrat Big B tenor with the desirable small bell. It’s one of the most beautiful vintage Bueschers, with extensive engraving and gorgeously translucent, dark nitrocellulose lacquer. They don’t make them like this anymore.
This tenor just got a full mechanical overhaul, and I mean the works! When I got it, it had new pads, but the pad work was not that good, so now it has a really great overhaul and plays excellently. The keywork is in great condition – nice and tight. The missing lacquer on the back of the bow doesn’t show when you play, and is from a small dent that was removed a bit to vigorously at some point. That is now fixed, and the rest of the horn is quite nice. Neck is in good condition also. There are no dents or dings. It is hard to find this desirable version of the vintage Buescher tenor in good shape, and this one is better than all but a few. It has the snaps and spuds intact, but has correct style ‘real’ pad work that works around the spuds. (If you watch Matt Stohrer’s video on Buescher overhauls, you’ll see what I mean. This is extra work, but worth it to do right the first time.)
Playing wise, it’s tons of fun. It has a centered, warm tone with excellent response and intonation. It would be pretty hard to sound bad on this tenor. It has that classic American straight-ahead projection that fills a room whether you are amplified or not. And it’s just pleasant to listent to. So many of the modern options I hear people playing are different flavors of bland and rather hollow-sounding. This tenor is rich and full of color. Bueschers like this tune well with a wide range of mouthpieces, and they can do anything from classical to jazz to R&B.
Only one available.
Buescher True Tone Soprano Original Gold Plate Overhauled 183067$ 3,350
Beautiful original satin gold plate Buescher True Tone soprano saxophone! This is one of the desirable later versions of the True Tone and plays really nicely in tune with a warm, round tone. You won’t go wrong with this soprano. It has a recent overhaul done by one of the best repairmen in Canada and it is in quite good shape. It had a couple of posts resoldered – one at the top of the upper stack and one under the pinky table. These posts always seem to be resoldered on Buescher sopranos. I think they just pop off and have to be stuck back on, on most of these. The gold plate is in great shape. The tone is unlike anything you can buy today – the True Tone is not thin and nasal like a Selmer Mark VI. It’s much more balanced, pleasant, and dare-I-say ‘modern’ sounding! Only one available!
Conn Chu Berry New Wonder 1 Tenor Saxophone Burnished Gold Plate Portrait 1924$ 4,350
Just freshly overhauled! New photos posted late June 2020!
Conns from the 1920’s like this have an enthusiastic following these days. I’m told that it’s now more common to see a tenor player in NYC playing a Conn than a Selmer, which is hard to believe if true. I have definitely noticed a large and growing amount of interest and enthusiasm for Conns like this over the last 5 years at least.
The way I think about vintage Conn tenors is this. They are all built quite well, and they are all good players once you get them all fixed up and overhauled. So if you have the choice, and budget allows, you might as well buy the nicest one you can to fix up. This is for a couple of reasons. First, resale value will always be better the more beautiful the horn is, and the rarer the finish. Second, you get to experience the satisfaction, even joy, of owning such a beautiful piece of craftsmanship from the world’s greatest musical instrument factory of the 20’s and 30’s, which is undoubtedly Conn. Conn set the standard for musical instrument manufacturing during that time. Its designs were copied by all the other makers, from France to Germany, Italy, and even eventually Japan. They are still being copied today in fact!
If your goal is to get the best, most beautiful, rarest Conn that you can, it would be hard to do better than this beautiful burnished gold Conn New Wonder 1 ‘Chu Berry’ tenor saxophone from 1924. The finish is a bit tarnished at present, because I haven’t had time to get it disassembled, cleaned, and polished yet, but there’s a lot of original gold plate there, and not a whole lot of finish wear. The burnished (bright) gold Conns like this are incredibly rare. Much rarer than the satin gold examples, which are themselves very rare. The engraving is striking. Each burnished gold Conn had the option for a custom portrait. I wonder whose sweetheart this is! Some stylish flapper 20’s lady in any case. This would almost definitely have been pro-owned by the tenor player from a big band. I got the horn from Ohio, if there’s anyone who can connect the dots at all. I have never seen any other Conn tenor with engraving like this, so it has some historical value as well, to me at least.
This tenor comes in pretty good playing condition. It was tuned up before I got it, and I’ll probably spend some more money on pad work before I sell it. It also includes a nice Hiscox case with my favorite, the red interior, which is no longer offered. Much better than the blue for a gold saxophone.
Just for fun, here’s Lester Young on his New Wonder 1 tenor just like this one, also gold plated. The wide, lush, spread, medium dark tone is just gorgeous.
Couf Superba 1 Alto Original Lacquer Fresh High-End Overhaul Plays Great
The H. Couf Superba 1 is one of my favorite vintage saxophones. They remain one of the best options for a great sounding alto sax with modern keywork and a rich, interesting tone. Darker and fatter sounding than a Yamaha, with rich, wide upper register, and a full, projecting low register, this alto will do it all. If you are looking for a great all-purpose alto, or even for an ideal smooth jazz or commercial sounding alto, the Couf Superba 1 fits the bill. I just sold one of these to a smooth jazz player who loves the fat sound that stays warm when brightened up with a bright mouthpiece. And he loves the comfort of the keywork. These are among the only saxophones that sound this full and rich and also have modern keywork. (Modern saxophones have, as a rule, moved towards a clearer, rounder, more contained sound, and can’t deal with as much air as a Superba 1 can take.)
This alto came with its original pads still intact, and it is getting a full mechanical overhaul right now, which means it will be back to like new, or better-than-new condition mechanically, and playing wise. If you’re not used to used saxophone lingo, that means that a highly-skilled woodwind repairman is going to be spending about 30 hours of labor on this horn going over every detail, and replacing everything that can be replaced, (all new pads, corks, felts, mechanical work, setup, play testing, neck fit, full disassembly, cleaning, fresh oil etc.) so that it’s totally rebuilt and ready for its next many years of playing. That’s a big added value for you, because you don’t have to worry about the horn needing more than minor occasional maintenance to play its best for many years to come. It also means that it will play effortlessly, and saturatedly at low volumes, in the low register. Low Bb is just another note, even if you want to play it at pp.
I have no trouble selling a Couf Superba 1 alto as soon as anyone plays one with the fresh overhaul. It’s really hard to beat, regardless of price. And at this price, it is really hard to beat.
Only one available!
Couf Superba 1 Tenor Original Gold Plate Saxophone 68059 Matt Stohrer Overhaul One of the best ever!$ 7,950
This is my personal Couf Superba 1 tenor in original gold plate, overhauled by Matt Stohrer. It’s pretty much unbeatable for the Keilwerth enthusiast. To me the Superba 1 plays more like a Selmer SBA than the later Keilwerths do. I absolutely love this horn. It’s so powerful and loud, that it tells you what to play! You can of course play effortlessly quietly on it with a fully saturated tone. That’s the beauty of Matt’s precision pad work. It is just tops. Gold plate Keilwerths are exceedingly rare. The Superba 1 is one of the only ones that got the expensive real gold finish. I’m sure you know, but just gold plating a sax now costs around $4000+ to have done aftermarket, and it’s better to have it be factory original. There’s no lacquer on top to dull the sound, and gold is a very durable finish that doesn’t tarnish at all quickly either, and is of course beautiful as well. It’s a very special horn, and one I have had for a decade. I’m sorry to see it go!
Grafton Alto Saxophone Excellent Original Condition Restored and Playable 10591$ 4,750
Ah, the Grafton “plastic” (actually its acrylic) saxophone. Famously played by Charlie Parker and David Bowie, crafted by an English company, designed by an Italian, it is, according to sales literature of the time, a “tone poem in ivory and gold”.
This particular example has actually been repadded by some enterprising repairer (I say it this way because they are notoriously challenging to work on) and it has been done rather well. It plays, as you may or may not expect, very much like a saxophone and there is not much in the playing of it to convey that the instrument you are playing is wholly unique, with new methods of manufacture and the completely singular keywork mechanisms that its injection molded acrylic body required. It is comfortable under the fingers, responsive, weighs about what a normal sax weighs, and plays with a warm, if somewhat uncomplex, tone. It is in fact quite an amazing instrument when taken as a whole, and the experience of playing it leaves me with wonder and respect for the company that made it.
These are famously known for being delicate, and not many have survived to this day. This example is in quite good shape, with the only body repair that I can see being the bell to body brace looks to have been shored up with epoxy where a crack was forming. There are some small hairline cracks near the tenon receiver, but they are minor and do not appear to be spreading. The finish on the keys is original, and the neck is in very good shape with no evidence of past repair or pulldown. The keyguard is complete and undamaged, and it comes with its original Dallas case.
Ishimori Woodstone New Vintage Tenor VL with F# NEW Dark Lacquer Tenor Saxophone$ 4,700
Only one available of these highly-desirable New Vintage tenor saxophones from Ishimori, Japan’s premiere saxophone repair shop. These tenors stand out from the crowd with their excellent new horn setup done in the Ishimori workshop. The Ishimori New Vintage tenors hold up extremely well over time, and every detail of construction and assembly is optimized for ease of play. The tone on this Ishimori tenor is meant to remind you of a vintage Selmer – to my ear, it plays like a late SBA – not as loud and wide open as some later Mark VI’s, but more focused than earlier Selmers also. The neck and the engraving both are meant to evoke the Selmer Super Balanced Action, so I suspect that the neck is an SBA bore. The tuning is excellent. This body tube is designed to have the high F# tone hole present, so it tunes well with the high F#, and that’s also just a convenient feature. Lacquer is gorgeous, as is the hand engraving.
Ishimori New Vintage tenors play so effortlessly, they sell themselves. Every time one comes in the shop, it sells almost immediately. I have one in stock coming next week. Get it now!
King Soprano Saxophone Gold Plate Fresh Overhaul Amazing! 99847$ 3,600
Just freshly overhauled!! This got a full restoration, so it’s back to like new mechanical condition.This is the vintage soprano you should get!
This amazing gold plated King soprano saxophone will blow the walls down. It is in excellent condition, with nearly all the original gold plate intact. It has just received a full overhaul and restoration, which is not a small job on a 90 year old instrument. It is now back in like-new playing condition and ready to make music for many many years to come.
King sopranos are rare, and were only made in low pitch (regular concert pitch). They tune nicely, and have a big, warm, medium-focused tone that is less polite sounding than a Buescher, and really fills a room with ease. This example in gold plate and in such amazingly good condition is extremely rare. The great depression in 1929 spelled the end of most of the saxophone market, and marked the end of most makers building sopranos in any kind of quantities. So it’s not surprising that you don’t see a King soprano later than this serial. This is one of the very last ones made, and the latest serial I have seen. The later the better is my motto on vintage sopranos generally speaking, so getting a late one also in gold plate is really exceptional.
Only one available!
Powell Silver Eagle SE10 Alto One of 18 Made – all options solid silver +Matt Stohrer Overhau$ 12,000
For your viewing pleasure, this is one of the 18 Powell Silver Eagle saxophones made. Powell conceived of an ambitious project to bring back an American-made saxophone of the highest quality. Inspired by the Super 20 SilverSonic, the Silver Eagle reproduces the bore while adding solid silver soldered tone holes and modern keywork. Powell sadly ended their project after making only 18 saxophones, despite high demand, due to the high cost of production. This horn plays like a good super 20 but a little more evenly, and has been completely overhauled by Matt Stohrer. This is the ultimate collectible among modern saxophones, and it is also a burning player. Asking price is just what these cost new, plus a little extra since it got a $1500 overhaul on top of that! It’s not even inflated for the collectibility value, which is probably not smart of me, but there it is. If you want to discuss all the details of this project, I can put you in touch with the people who built it. These were most definitely a new saxophone bore and neck design, inspired by the best King Super 20 SilverSonic altos, both according to them and according to the folks who bought the tooling and mandrels when the project ended. The keywork is modified from tooling bought from B&S, which accounts for the pinky table that sticks out farther than it would on something like a Yamaha.
There is most certainly only one available. This one has all the possible factory options, which only a subset of Powell Silver Eagles had – including the solid silver tone holes and even cryo treatment. Of the 18 saxophones built, I know at least a couple of them were brass bell, and some others lacked other of these features. This is one of the ones with everything, which makes it even more collectible. Includes the original accessories, case, and paperwork.
Just for fun, here’s Matt Stohrer’s repairman’s overview from when he overhauled it.
Selmer Mark VI Alto Saxophone 1955 58119 Price Includes Overhaul! Relacquered Great Deal$ 5,250
This 5-digit Selmer Mark VI Alto from 1955 just got a complete overhaul! It’s an excellent player, and it represents a very good value in an alto. For way less than a Reference 54, you can get an actual ’55 Selmer Mark VI with a complete restoration just finished. These first year Mark VI altos play dark, with a lot of focus and warmth, and they are punchy when pushed. They project well with a higher baffle mouthpiece. Effortless response in the low register. They’re just fantastic, and they are better built than most modern altos including modern Selmer. Plus this comes with a better pad job than any new horn you can currently buy, and it will stay in adjustment well for many years with only the most routine of maintenance. You save thousands of dollars because this horn got a new coat of ‘paint’ at some point along the way. That makes a lot of sense to me. It comes in a nice BAM contoured alto case that is similar to the Selmer Flight Cases that come with the Ref 54. Fits the horn hand in glove.
Only one available!
Selmer Mark VI Alto Saxophone 1970 184973 Original Lacquer American Engraved Fresh Overhaul!$ 6,000
This is a sweet deal on a freshly-overhauled original lacquer Selmer Mark VI alto saxophone from 1970 serial 184973. This was a one-owner alto before I got it, and the guy was a pro player in the NYC/NJ area. He took great care of it, and now that it’s freshly overhauled, it is all ready for its second life. If you read around on here, you’ll see that I really love the Mark VI altos from the late 60’s and early 70’s like this. They finally got everything right on the Mark VI alto at this serial, after making incremental changes to the bore, bow length, and neck from 1957-1967 or so. By ’67 the alto hits its stride, and the 1970 is basically the same horn. Because the market is not fully rational, you can get some of the best Selmer Mark VI altos for this sort of price, even with a full overhaul, where some of the earlier serial ones will cost much more. That makes this one a great deal.
If you have the cash, I think you might as well buy the nicest alto you can, and enjoy playing it. Pro altos are easier to play than student and intermediate ones, and the Mark VI is among the easiest vintage saxophones to play and to own. It’s easy to get worked on, well-built, and stays in adjustment well over time. The keywork design set the standard for all modern saxophones and feels great under the fingers. The tone is gorgeous, and the intonation is good. It’s the one horn that does everything the best on average, which is why it is so popular.
This particular alto has a tone that is medium between bright and dark, and is a nice, balaced player. Not brash and bold like a 220k VI, and not dark and laser-focused like a 60k VI. It’s flexible, dynamic, and easy to take where you want it to go tonally with the right setup. The intonation is good, and the pads feel nice and snappy under the fingers, as they should on a good overhaul. The neck is in good condition and the neck ‘fit’ is all perfectly sealing in the tenon, which is one of those small but important things to have done on a vintage horn to take it from good to great. Cosmetically, you can see this horn has been played, and has some honest wear throughout. After all, it was lovingly pro-owned for many years, but aside from that, it’s very nice. The only past repairs are a resoldered foot of the low C guard that popped loose as it does on so many VI’s, and a few small dents removed from the back of the bow, which is now dent-free. Neck is beautiful, bell flare is in great shape. Tone holes are all great of course.
It’s a very good deal on a solid Selmer Mark VI alto. This would be, to me, much preferable to spending $6700 on a new Reference 54 alto, which, unfortunately, will probably need an overhaul on top of the purcahse price in order to play its best. This will go up in value, hold up better to prolonged use, and get you your money back should you ever want to sell it. It comes in the new BAM case in the photos.
Only one available!
Selmer Mark VI Alto Saxophone 1973 Original Lacquer Near Mint Fresh Overhaul! 208796$ 6,350
Price now includes a fresh full overhaul! Great deal on a big sounding late VI alto that came with original pads and is now completely overhauled and in really clean shape. The late VI’s like this are among the best of the VI altos, because they tune great, they have an even scale, and they have lots of projection. If you want a VI that projects, has body to the sound, is mid-priced, and has a high end overhaul, this is it! It will be cheap and easy to maintain, because everything is dialed in perfectly and everything that can be fixed or replaced has been, so it’s totally fresh, clean, and feels like it’s new from the factory. This alto is in simply beautiful condition with no dents, no dings, and no past repairs at all.
Only one available!
Selmer Mark VI Tenor Saxophone Original Lacquer American Engraved Just Overhauled Plays Effortlessly 195xxx$ 6,350
Full description coming soon! This is an effortless player! A nice, clean original lacquer American-engraved Selmer Mark VI tenor saxophone that also just got a complete overhaul. If you’re looking for a nice tenor to play and keep and just enjoy, this would be hard to beat!
Selmer Radio Improved Tenor Saxophone Original Silver Plate Excellent Condition Fresh Overhaul$ 9,500
One of only 490 Selmer Radio Improved tenors that were made! And certainly one of the nicest surviving examples. The Radio Improved is a personal favorite vintage saxophone of mine. The tone is just very hard to beat. Wide and warm like a Conn, but with a delicate, focused ‘French’ Selmer core to it. The keywork has its own mojo, and you get used to it. It’s fast, but not as fast as a modern horn. If you can only play a Yamaha’s spatula keys, look elsewhere, or take a deep breath and dive down the rabbit hole of vintage saxophone tone!
What you get: Beautiful silver plated Selmer Radio Improved tenor in excellent condition. The only significant cosmetic issue on this horn is the moved strap hook. I had the bare brass spot plated where the strap hook used to be attached. It was moved down for balance, so the horn hangs more comfortably on a neck strap and spares your right thumb some effort. All in all, not a bad move. The silver was pretty tarnished when I bought this Radio Improved, so it was a job to remove the tarnish by hand and get it back looking nice and shiny again. It has a a couple of key guards resoldered (Eb, F#), and the pinky keys have had the plating touched up where the silver had worn off.
It just got a complete high end overhaul using Pisoni (italian leather) pads and reusable slightly domed metal resonators which I love on Selmers. It feels nice and ‘dry’ and snappy under the fingers, and plays with a beautiful, warm, medium dark tone. The response is quick and effortless in all registers. Low Bb is ‘just another note’ and even subtone is nice and saturated all the way down at pp.
I think this horn is going to make someone really happy! If I didn’t already have my own Radio Improved, I’d be keeping this one! Includes a BAM Softpack (hard) case with nice, protective foam and backpack straps. These cases work well for RI tenors.
Selmer Series II Alto 655634 Excellent Condition Original Lacquer Fresh Overhaul!$ 4,250
Tenor Madness Custom 500SL Tenor Saxophone Cognac Lacquer High F# Effortless Player Newest Model L01110$ 4,500
This is the best TM Custom tenor that I have played so far. It is brand new, plus it got a new horn setup on top of that. This is the new light body tube version of the 500SL model, and it is a truly effortless player. The intonation is excellent throughout. This bore is designed to have the F# tone hole present, so the tuning is excellent and altissimo is easy including the handy high F# key. The low notes are nice and saturated even at pp, and the horn will shake in your hands if you push it to ff. The palm key tone stays more full and rich than on most Taiwanese tenors that I have played (like P Mauriat etc.). The neck on this tenor is modeled on an early Mark VI tenor neck, and you do in fact get a Selmer-ish tone on it. I am impressed that you can get a horn this good for this price that has been thoroughly setup in the USA by TenorMadness pre-sale.
The hand engraving is inspired by 50’s Selmer engraving, and it is of course gorgeous. The lacquer color is as well. This is one of the best looking tenors on the market today for sure. It comes in a contoured case that should be good for shipping and gigging.
If you’re looking for an easy, turn-key purchase for a high-quality modern horn that is darker and more complex than some other new horns on the market, and that is really dependably easy to play, this would be a great choice. Really no matter what style of music you play, this horn gets the job done.
Only one available!
Yamaha YAS-62 Purple Logo Alto 1980’s Warm, Beautiful Tone Incl Full Overhaul$ 2,550
Just completely overhauled to effortless perfection! This 1980’s ‘Purple Logo’ Yamaha 62 alto saxophone is just so nice to play. The Purple Logo 62s are a sweet spot for alto saxophones in general, because they combine the comfort and ease of modern keywork with a more warm, complex tone than you find on other later Yamahas. This vintage of 62 is more like a vintage Selmer, where the later Yamahas went for a clearer, rounder, brighter tone. This is more middle of the road on the bright/dark spectrum, and it’s not as clear, but more warm and has more complexity to the basic tone. It feels more like a vintage horn also – easier to bend notes around, where more recent ones are just slotted in what-you-get-is-what-you-yet tonally and pitch wise. This lets you do more. It’s a Yamaha with the training wheels off.
The full overhaul spared no detail of restoring this alto to perfect mechanical and playing condition. There’s just a bit of cosmetic wear from use, and that’s really it for the description of the condition. It’s effortless to play. Low register produces a saturated pianissimo without any trouble. Low Bb is just another note. These usually sell about $400-500 higher, but I’m discounting this one for quick sale to be a great deal for some lucky player. If you get this alto, you never need to upgrade. It will be beautifully performing for you for as long as you want to play it, and with the fresh, high-end overhaul, it will stay in great adjustment with only the most minimal of maintenance! It’s an easy, turn-key purchase on a beautifully playing horn.
Only one available!
Yamaha YAS-875 Custom Alto Professional – Fresh Overhaul!$ 3,150
Yamaha YTS-52 Tenor Saxophone 1980’s Fresh Overhaul Excellent Condition 5474$ 2,350
This early 1980’s Yamaha 52 tenor is hard to beat for the price. The 80’s ‘purple logo’ 62 saxophones are prized for their warm, more complex tone, and they are among my favorite modern saxophones. The 52 from the same era is virtually the identical saxophone, with the same bore, neck, body tube and everything. It lacks a few higher end features that the 62 has (the ‘fat starfish’ engraving, ribs under some posts), but these don’t matter to most people, so it remains an excellent value. You get all the tone, comfortable ergonomics, dependability and ease of playing of a 62 for less money. Plus, this tenor just got a complete overhaul and is all freshly repadded and ready to go for a nice long time. It won’t need anything more than minor upkeep for the next several years, and it is super easy and responsive across all registers.
It can be hard to find a tenor that plays this well for anything like this price. And Yamahas like this are also really easy to get worked on down the road and to keep in good adjustment. Compared to later Yamahas, this one is warmer, more complex, and more like a vintage Selmer (which was Yamaha’s starting point for the early 62 it seems to me), but with better intonation and a more even scale. No wonder these continue to be such popular saxophones.
Only one available!