Improve Your Tone

Tone is the one thing that all saxophonists need to work on.

Every saxophone player needs to work on their tone.  Right from the school student putting the saxophone together for the first time, up to the top players in the world such as Branford Marsalis, Chris Potter and Joshua Redman, everyone needs to spend time on long tones, mouthpiece exercises and most importantly of all, their breathing.

In this course of lessons on tone I will take you through many different strategies and lessons that I have learnt from many of the world’s best players.  Your objective is to reach that ‘Gold Medal’ of your own, personal distinctive tone.   All the great players have their own tone, their own ‘sound.


10 Click Long Tones

This is one of the easiest, but most effective Long Tone exercises that you can work on.

Improve your tone with Branford Marsalis

As a follow up to last weeks lesson on improving your tone with Branford Marsalis, this week we have a look at Ravel’s Pavane pour un infante défunte (a dance for a dead princess.)

Use slow melodies to improve your tone – lesson 1

I’ll let you in on a little secret, I’m not the best and practicing long tones on my saxophone. In fact for many years I didn’t really work that hard on them, because, to be honest I found the exercises my teacher gave me boring.

Eric Alexander Nose Breath

I often teach this to beginners in their first lesson as it is such a useful way of working on your embouchure formation. And this is not just for those of us starting out, EVERYONE needs to keep working on their embouchure so that the tone you want is within your reach!

The best way to tune your sax

Even the best saxophones are difficult to keep in tune. In this lesson I show you the best way to improve your tuning, by HEARING when notes are in tune!

Embouchure Formation

Forming the correct embouchure on the saxophone is critical. You can not hope to gain full control of the instrument, nor make the most of your mouthpiece and reed setup without the correct interaction between the instrument and you.

Tone Matching Overtones

Gaining control over overtones is critical in establishing a good tone on the saxophone. Your tonal palette is the like the brushes and paint which a painter uses – the greater the subtleties you can bring out in your playing.

Overblowing Overtones

Overtones are a very important method of improving your embouchure. This is a short video to show you how to work on long tones focusing on the harmonic series.


Dan Forshaw

I'm passionate about creating inspirational experiences through music and other arts. A life changing experience under the influence of the music of John Coltrane lead to study in New York and London. My thesis was on the Theology of John Coltrane as expressed through A Love Supreme. I perform across Europe with various jazz groups and teach through my innovative website, I'm a total Apple Geek, Cricket, Rugby, F1 and Football fan and I'm learning to listen opinions before giving my own!