How to stop wobbling notes on the saxophone

Feeling frustrated because your notes keep wobbling out of control?

As a beginner saxophonist, it is normal to experience wobbling notes or what is commonly referred to as vibrato.



Vibrato is a musical effect created by shaking or pulsing a note to create a pleasing sound. However, it can also happen unconsciously, which can be frustrating for beginner players. In this article, we will provide tips on how to stop wobbling notes on saxophone.


Muscle Training

The first step in stopping wobbling notes is muscle training. In the beginning, the muscles around your mouth are not ready yet, and there are tricks to bring your note from being wobbly to being straight. You need to train your muscles to bring them to a nice and good strength so that you can hold the saxophone in your mouth comfortably. When starting out, it is crucial to practice mouth exercises, such as long tones, to strengthen the muscles around the mouth and develop a steady embouchure.

You should practice long notes with the saxophone neck only as well as with the whole saxophone.


Conscious Control

Vibrato is a conscious technique that is used to create more expressiveness in music. However, if it happens unconsciously, it is not vibrato; rather, it is just a wobbling note. The first step to stop wobbling notes is to control your note consciously. Aim to achieve a straight note without any wobbles before you can start adding vibrato consciously.

I know the temptation to add vibrato is big but you first want to build a great sound and then add the vibrato to spicy things up.


Slow Practice

Slow practice is a technique that can help you develop muscle memory and control over your tone. Start by playing a single note just using the saxophone neck and focus on producing a clear and consistent tone without any wobbles.


Final Thoughts

Playing the saxophone is a journey that requires consistent practice and dedication. The key to mastering any musical instrument is to start with the basics and build from there.

With consistent practice and dedication, you can develop a stable and consistent tone, making your music more expressive and enjoyable to listen to.

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