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The Steve Turre Collection - Artist Transcription for Trombone
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Selmer Paris Reference 54 Alto SaxophoneInspired by the legendary Selmer Mark VI, which was released in 1954, the Selmer Paris 72 Reference 54 alto is a professional saxophone that integrates the Mark VI's legendary acoustic characteristics with innovative modern key work and better intonation. Since its introduction, the Selmer Paris 72 Reference 54 has become a favorite among jazz saxophonists. The Reference 54 alto saxophone offers a rich, throaty sound that even "barks" well in the lower register. The keywork of the Selmer 72 alto saxophone is extremely fluid and reacts well to even the most brisk, nimble playing.The Reference 54 comes with a shaped flight case, Selmer Paris Super Session mouthpiece, cap and ligature, and care products. Join the jazz saxophonists who have rediscovered the sound of the legendary Mark VI, and have made the Selmer 72 Reference 54 alto saxophone their horn of choice. The Reference 54 alto takes its inspiration from a 1958 mid-70,000 serial number Mark VI. It plays, feels, and looks like a vintage Selmer, but includes a longer bell to improve intonation, and a dark lacquer finish. It is a very special instrument. If you are seeking a primary professional horn, you owe it to yourself to consider the Reference 54.
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The Reference 54 saxophone by Selmer Paris i s a remake of the earlier Mark VI instrument. The Best Saxophone of its time. My story is simple. I went to Woodwind and Brasswind. The company staff set me up with a practice room and some saxophones for me to try out. After about 4 i found this model. I loved how it sounded. The voice is deep and rich. The sound projection is magnificent. You can go from loud to soft on this horn as if you were talking. The keys are perfect for maneuverabiltiy when there are those spots in your music when you just can't move fast enough. The tone is set easily. I thought that i should try another horn but i always came back to that one. Eventually i ended up just buying it and taking it home with me. I have tried it in every style of playing. From Jazz to classical. From Boroque to Blues and it adjusts to anything. I thought I might have just picked a lucky horn but no. I played the horn of a teacher of mine and it was just the same. The horn has a wonderful way to allow you to speak through the horn. It does what you want it to with absolutely no resistance and with a finess that can only be described as angelic. If that is what you want and more then this is the Saxophone for you.
First off i would like to say that i bought a Reference two years ago and it plays better than anything i ever played. (and believe me Ive tried a lot) Right off the bat the horn responds amazingly, the horn was built with an enlarged bow and body to improve the response and projection, which is important especially for jazz work. The key work is light and "snappy" and fits right under your hands. The palm keys are slightly different so you have to adjust. The side keys are flat like a mark vi as opposed to the raised keys on most modern horns. It is overall a very vintage feeling and sounding horn. The weight and tone and projection is parallel to the mark vi. It was patterned after a great 5-digit Mark VI and was designed by Selmer in conjunction with Pierrick Pedron. The one down side is the price, but if u r willing to go the extra mile for an amazing horn that is completely made in France, then the Reference is right for you.
This horn has an amazing response. It has a free blowing low registered, and a singing like upper register. It is a beautiful horn also. The engraving is superb. This horn paired with a Selmer Soloist D is a great combo for any professional or college student. The overtones are easily produced on this horn. The few complaints I have is that it does not come with metal resonators. It also has some tuning issues from middle C sharp down to the A. Overall this is an amazing horn
This saxophone is amazing. I used to play an Olds, and moving to this is like a dream come true. I tried many Saxes, like the Series III, Yamaha Custom and Professional, and few Cannonballs. None of them measured up to this one. This sax has an amazing altissimo range. I play on a Jody Jazz 7 and ZZ reeds. For classical I play on a Selmer S-80 and GCS reeds. It produces an amazing sound throughout the whole range of the sax. Even my private instructor is jealous. Aside from the price, this sax is a must. It is amazing, and will last me through college.
I bought this horn at the WWBW last June for college and it still amazes me...The intonation and tonal color are simply amazing on the 54. I tried out the Keilwerth shadow, Yamaha 875ex and custom z, and the Selmer series 2 and 3. The closest runners up were the Custom z and the Selmer Paris 2. I felt that the sound of the reference was much darker than the super action 80 so it got put back. The Custom z took some time to bust through; I liked the key work of it until I picked up the reference again.
Finally, a response and sound like I had when I was in college with a Mark VI. The Reference 54 has a wonderful response all over the range of the instrument. I previously played a Serie III but, have always been disappointed with the response in the lower range, and intonation problems in the upper range. The Ref 54 solves all of those issues, with a smooth sound top to bottom. I use the Selmer Super Session D mouthpiece, Rovner ligature, and a Vandoren V16 3 1/2 strength reed for a great tone and intonation that rivals all others.
I bought this horn in 2005 and have used it as my main horn ever since. I love the velvety tone, smooth action and overall superior performance of this horn. I don't experience the normal intonation quirks of most altos, either. Resistance is even throughout the horn, making the low end and high end very easy to play in tune and at all volumes from ppp to FFF without issue.
This horn, you will not be disappointed in. If you're a vintage only player, I don't know if this could lure you away from your Mark VI, but you'll definitely be tempted. As for modern horns, it beats the majority of what is out there on the market in modern horns.
The super session mouthpiece that comes with the horn works well with the horn, which surprised me. I usually opt for an after market piece, but I actually like the super session with this horn.
(I have overly large hands, so I installed the usual key risers on the left stack, a simple/cheap/reversible modification.)
The Reference Flight case however, is junk as for as any serious protection goes. Sure it looks cool, but it's just an overpriced, glorified gig bag. It offers little protection, other than scratch protection. With the case empty, you can actually TWIST the thing and with little effort, you can cave the case in, not good for such an investment. Also, the plastic accessories compartment cover and compartment itself are a botch job. Placed under the body of the horn... if there is ever any substantial pressure placed on the case the hard plastic cover could easily bend/dent/harm the horn. Don't get me started on if you would ever drop your horn while it's in this case... Repair headaches, to say the least.
The case is flimsy and not worthy the horn that's placed inside it!!!
I never understood Selmer putting this great horn in such a junker of a case. Go with a Selmer Light, Selmer Vanguard, Pro Tec or another hard shell case.
If you have the money to drop on this horn, it's well worth it and if you're buying this horn as an investment in your college/professional career you won't be disappointed.
I started playing R&R in 1956. I spent 20 years in night clubs and have played just about all types of music including classical and big band. These days I am with party bands playing party music for wedding receptions and private parties. I have played and owned several altos including the VI but needed a horn that would scream and went to the VII. It kicks and has the volume that I need. That was until I tried the ref 54 alto this year. I have never played an alto that responds like this horn. I use a Rover "Deep V" gold model 40 #9 m/p and Rico tenor plasticover reed. However, I just purchased the Rovner "mass-loaded" metal ligature and that has done the trick. With this setup there is nothing that will get in the way of some enjoyable playing. Intense volume when needed and sweet sounds when required. Fat tone from top to bottom! Selmer has done it again and the trick is to find the m/p and lig that takes it to another level.
I love this saxophone. I've had it for over a year now and I can't believe how well I can get it to play. It still amazes me when I get it out to play how beautiful the tone is.
HOWEVER, I do have a few problems with this horn. The pads are so sticky especially during the hot weather. I took it to Florida in the winter and I couldn't believe how sticky the pads got. It's also very bad in the summer and is almost impossible to play. Also, I have had several felts fall off already.
I would definitely still have gotten this horn while knowing these things, I just wish that I would've known that it would have been this big of a problem to get my pads treated. I was told that I would get reimbursed for any problems it had during the first year or two I had the saxophone. I have yet to receive that money or someone who can help me or give me an answer to my question.
the selmer reference 54 alto saxophone is selmer's attempt to remake the selmer mark VI, but with the action and advancements of a new modern horn. I have played a couple selmer reference 54 altos and have to say that some of them are amazing and have all the characteristics you would want in a new saxophone. The one thing I would recommend to anyone who is going to buy this saxophone or who plans on ordering one is that the necks that come with the selmers are not consistent in being very free blowing with each reference horn. I found that yamahas, keilwerths, and yanagisawas are very consistent and have there own unique sound. Even though these other horn companys may be more consistent with each horn they make, the selmer saxophones will produce a sound that will just blow the competitors away. I would recommend this horn to any serious musician mainly based on the price of the horn and because I feel that he or she will most appreciate this horn if they are a advanced player.