There were some great new products and amazing jam sessions at NAMM 2018 in Anaheim.
Here are some of my highlights:
Trevor James Saxophones
The saxophones from Trevor James were outstanding. Artists such as Andy Snitzer, Brian Miller and Steve Cole perform on them.
These horns sound great – many have said to me that they sound like a Mark VI but are more in tune. After trying them out, I tend to agree. In fact so much so that I bought one!
The tone is consistent and in tune throughout the range of the horn. The horn feels very similar to my Mark VI too.
The Signature Custom Series comes in a few different finishes as well as Raw and Raw XL. Hear the difference between the models at their site here.
P. Mauriat Saxophones
Last year, I was really curious to try out these horns because I heard a number of people raving about them. But I was really disappointed because every horn I tried was unplayable. They were not set up properly, which was shocking to me especially at such a high-level conference such as NAMM.
It turned me off to these horns until this year. The horns were set up properly and sounded great.
The Influence Series impressed me the most. The sound was rich and full throughout the range of the horn. Part of that could be the raw brass finish.
The key work felt good – similar to my Mark VI.
These horns are definitely worth looking at, and you can find out more here.
Jody Espina, from JodyJazz has always created top-quality mouthpieces. I remember meeting Jody in NY when he first started out.
There are many models of mouthpieces from Jody, but his newest ones are the Giant, Jet and SuperJet.
The new SuperJet is an amazing mouthpiece with a ton of power and projection. You can hear the power of this mouthpiece from Brian Miller on alto in this video below from an impromptu jam on the NAMM floor.
I have been using Rovner ligatures for many years because they are reliable, durable, easy to use and give me a consistent tone.
For the past few years, I have been touting the Van Gogh ligature, the mammoth-sized ligature that you would think would dampen the tone but does the exact opposite.
In addition to the Van Gogh on my Gaia tenor mouthpice, I have also been using the Versa X on my alto sax Durga 3 mouthpiece.
And with my recent purchase of the amazing MOAM mouthpiece from WestCoast Sax's Matt Lee, I have been using the Star ligature, which makes the reed resonate much more.
You can learn more about Rovner products by clicking here.
Here's George, Lynn and I after my performance at the Legere/JodyJazz/Rovner Jazz Jam and at the booth.
PEAK Music Stands
When I tested out these saxophone stands I was pleasantly surprised to see how compact and sturdy they were.
They fold up into a small pouch that easily fits into your case.
In addition to these stands (both single, double and triple), PEAK also has great music stands and microphone stands.
Their portable stands are durable and fold up into easy-to-carry equipment for when you are on the go.
Their microphone stands have easy to open levers instead of knobs that tend to get stripped after being tightened too much.
You can find out more here.
Musician Wellness Boxes
Nobody likes getting sick, especially before a show or on the road.
Enter Musician Wellness…This company, which has created VocalEze and LipEze, has a new monthly care package that keeps you on your physical and mental game all the time.
All the products are top-quality supplements and products. Each package is based upon your particular health needs.
A great feature is that if you are on tour and are starting to experience symptoms of getting sick, your care package can be sent to your hotel or place where you are staying. This is priceless especially when away from home.
Watch the video below and click here for more info.
This was a sheer blast. With over 30 amazing saxophone players backed by an A-List rhythm section, the talent was over the top.
Some of the musicians (besides myself) included Tim Price, Andy Snitzer, Jeff Kashiwa, Derek Brown, Brian Miller and many others.
Here is a snippet of Derek' Brown's performance:
And here are some pictures afterwards:
There were so many other great products and shows at NAMM that I have not included here, like the new ReedGeek Bullet.
Be on the lookout for some mouthpiece reviews and product reviews in the near future.
Which TJ horn did you end up purchasing?
Custom Signature Raw – tenor
Great to know…you’ll need to do some sort of video review 🙂
I only wish they had some dealers set up here in Canada. It seems the only place to go check them out is at the distributor in BC, or take a trip to England (though I guess I need an excuse to go on a trip anyway 🙂