Saxophone Instrument Information Click here to view image in larger size

The youngest member of the woodwind family, the saxophone, was invented in 1840 by Adolphe Sax, whose inventive mind and mechanical skill contributed to improvements of many brass instruments. The saxophone has an unusually wide range of tonal quality, from flutelike tones through cello timbre to the metallic brilliance of a bass instrument.

This tonal variability intrigued the late 19th century composers. Bizet featured the instrument in several of his symphonies scores. Introduced to America in 1869 by the famous Patrick Conway band, the instrument seemed especially designed for American ears and during the following years saxophone soloist and ensembles were featured on vaudeville programs from coast to coast. By 1915 it became a part of the dance or jazz band scene. 

It's versatility, robust tone and  adaptability to small musical combinations has given the saxophone its greatest popularity. 

The saxophone is a single reed instrument that has its place in everything from pop and big band to jazz and classical. Depending on the player, it can sound mellow or strong.
The saxophone is a complex instrument. It is a woodwind instrument, yet is made of brass. The saxophone relies on a mouthpiece and single reed (just like a clarinet) to produce the vibration that becomes the saxophone's tone.

The saxophone was invented by the Belgian instrument maker Adolphe Sax in 1846. He wanted to create an instrument that would be the most powerful and vocal of the woodwinds, and the most adaptive of the brass—that would fill the vacant middle ground between the two sections. He patented the saxophone on June 24, 1846 in two groups of seven instruments each.

Each series consisted of instruments of various sizes in alternating transposition. The series pitched in B? and E?, designed for military bands, has proved extremely popular and most saxophones encountered today are from this series. Instruments from the so-called "orchestral" series pitched in C and F never gained a foothold, and the Bflat and Eflat instruments have now replaced the C and F instruments in classical music.