I play saxophone. So did my dad, and his sisters. When I first started, I played the sax that my dad played. It’s pretty old and not much to look at. When I first picked it up, I remember thinking, “This is one ugly sax.” My dad had me try to play a couple of notes on it and I failed epically. It basically sounded like a dying seal being run over by a 200-pound truck. I wanted to give up right away but I could see how much it meant to him, so I kept trying.
When school started and I actually could play notes, my dad was so proud. I still didn’t want to play, but I kept trying for him. When i got to the 7th grade, I was getting pretty good; I was in second chair ( for you non-band folk, that’s like being second best) but I still thought it was an ugly sax. The time came later on in the year to get a new one though, and I was quite happy. I remember my dad going out to Tulsa and getting it while I was at school. I came home and saw a shiny new sax waiting for me in a hard brown case. I loved that sax the minute I saw it.
I still play on that sax and and I’m also still in second chair, although I have had my share of first. My dad is still pushing me, to be in All-County Honor Band, to be in All-District Honor Band, but I don’t really care about any of those things. I just want to make sure my dad is proud. But I’m mostly happy that I’m doing something he used to do and loved, and even though I didn’t like the old sax, it still played really well, and it does have some history to it. So I guess I learned you can’t judge a sax by its cover, or shinyness.
But just for the record, I still think it’s one ugly sax.