I get asked about Jody Jazz Baritone Sax mouthpieces all the time from subscribers. Recently I’ve been familiarizing myself with them and I have to say, I’ve very impressed.
Today, I’m going to showcase great 4 Jody Jazz baritone sax mouthpieces that each one fill it’s own stylistic niche.
Each of these is a 7 tip opening. I play the same Rigotti 3 light reed on all of them for the sake of consistency.
Play Test Selections
I play 4 musical examples on each mouthpiece hopefully demonstrating how they perform in different contexts.
The first selection is from a George Benson tune called the Cooker. He recorded this tune with the great Baritone saxophonist Ronnie Cuber.
Then I’ll play a couple of bari sax lines from well known Tower of Power tunes as played by The Funky Doctor.
I used to play bari in a band that did a lot of TOP covers. This is the sort of thing you will get asked to play on bari in horn bands. In those kinds of sections, the bari needs to be crisp, powerful and cut through the mix.
Some mouthpieces are better at producing that sound than others.
Finally, I’ll play a jazz ballad to show you how these pieces handle that kind of situation.
Please let me know in the comments which one of these is your favorite, and if you have a JodyJazz mouthpiece, let us know your experience with it.
Jody Jazz HR* Baritone Sax Mouthpiece
Let’s begin with the HR* which is probably the best known and most popular mouthpiece from Jody Jazz.
I love this mouthpiece on bari sax. For me it is really a jack of all trades and can handle every situation. Listening back I feel like the HR* sounds good on all the examples.
This mouthpiece is fun to play, has an easy and immediate response, is easy to play in tune and is very flexible when it comes to styles.
It sells for $229 and I think at that price, you really get your money’s worth. This is a mouthpiece I’d recommend for anyone who’s looking to get a great all around piece that can do everything, but I think it performs particularly well in a jazz setting.
Jody Jazz Jet Baritone Sax Mouthpiece
Next up is the Jody Jazz Jet again in a 7 tip opening.
The Jet is a mouthpiece that is really perfect for that TOP sound. If you are playing bari sax in any kind of horn band this will make your life easier. I wish I had one of these back when I was playing in those bands. I used to struggle getting the crisp attacks and punchy sound that is so easy to produce on the Jet.
This gives you lots of power yet still the notes speak easily across the entire range. Again it’s easy to play in tune on this mouthpiece and overall it’s just fun to play.
This sells for $229 and again I think the price point is great considering the quality and versatility of this piece. I recommend this for anyone who plays bari in a horn band or needs a cutting crispy, powerful sound without having to fight the mouthpiece.
While it does have the versatility to play expressively if needed, that’s not the strong point of the jet for me.
Now let’s move on to the metal mouthpieces starting with the Super Jet
Jody Jazz SuperJet Baritone Saxophone Mouthpiece
First let’s take a close look at this thing since it really is a beautiful mouthpiece. I love that it’s all silver, that’s a rare thing and you can tell that it is really well plated.
I’ve got a lot of gold plated mouthpieces, and often, the gold plating wears away pretty quick on them. I can’t really say since this one is still brand new, but I get the impression that it has a decent amount of plating on there and it’s not going to wear through to the brass for a long time.
If anyone has a Jody Jazz Super Jet, let us know in the comments how the plating holds up over time.
For me the Super Jet for bari sax is a lot like the Jet, but enhanced. There is a bit more complexity in the sound and bit more warmth. It does all the things the Jet does, in terms of crisp attack, power and a cutting sound, but it takes things to another level.
The Super Jet sells for $450 so I would recommend this mouthpiece to the same people I mentioned for the Jet but who have a slightly larger budget. If you don’t want to spend that much on a mouthpiece, the hard rubber jet can do everything this can do. Of course it’s important to try these out for yourself to know which one is the best match for you.
One thing Jody mentions on his website about these is how easy the altissimo range is to play. I didn’t want to subject you to my bari altissimo playing, but I can say that all the altissimo notes speak easily for me on all of these mouthpieces. I basically use the same fingerings as I do on alto and had no problem playing up to altissimo Eb.
Personally, I find the bigger the horn, the easier the altissimo is so honestly I don’t feel the need to get a special mouthpiece just to play altissimo notes on bari sax, but I don’t feel the need to go up there very often either.
Jody Jazz DV Baritone Saxophone Mouthpiece
Now I’ve saved my favorite for last. The Jody Jazz DV baritone sax mouthpiece. I don’t remember what I thought this would play like before I tried it, but I remember thinking it wouldn’t be for me. I don’t know why.
Well this thing blew me away from the first note and I can’t get enough of it.
I know, when you’re listening back in these videos it’s not always easy to convey the differences between various mouthpieces since you only get the sound part.
From the player’s point of view there is a lot of other things going on, and some mouthpieces just seem to play themselves. You know how some mouthpieces make you feel like you’re working really hard to get what you’re looking for? The Jody Jazz DV is the opposite of that. When I’m playing this, it’s like an easy button has been installed on my bari sax.
I feel like I’m cheating because it’s never been this easy to play the saxophone before certainly not the bari sax.
It’s just a joy to play and I feel like I play better with this mouthpiece and enjoy playing more.
Now at $650 it better feel like that because that is crazy expensive for a mouthpiece.
Do I Need to Spend So Much on a Mouthpiece?
I was never an expensive mouthpiece guy before. I always believed, or wanted to believe that you could get great results without spending a fortune. Well, that is true, you can, and for most people, it doesn’t make sense to spend so much on a mouthpiece.
But, if you find a mouthpiece that matches up with what you’re trying to do on the saxophone so well that it makes everything easier and more fun, as long as you can afford it, I think it can be a purchase you’ll feel good about.
I recommend this piece for players who are serious about the saxophone and want the best mouthpiece out there. If it’s out of your budget, I would go for the HR* since for me at least, it ticks a lot of the same boxes as the DV.
Beautiful sound, easy to play or free blowing, very good intonation, speaks well in all registers, complexity in the sound, wide dynamic range, power.
The Jody Jazz DV is going to be my bari sax mouthpiece for the foreseeable future.
Now let me add my standard mouthpiece disclaimer.
You cannot buy a good sound. that only comes with putting the hours in on the horn.
Once you’ve put the work in though, you can buy a mouthpiece that makes everything you’re trying to do easier and more fun on the saxophone.
Problem is, the best mouthpiece for each individual is going to be different, that’s why there are so many to choose from and each one comes in a range of tip openings.
The Jody Jazz DV may be the ideal mouthpiece for me right now based on the sound I’m going for and the way I play the saxophone. The ideal mouthpiece for you may be something very different.
If I sound better on one of these to your ears, that doesn’t necessarily mean that that is the better mouthpiece for you too. Another player could do the exact same test as me and sound better on one of the other mouthpieces. It’s always best to try things out yourself and not just go by what other people tell you.
If you’re in the earlier stages of developing your sound, I recommend you go for something that is kind of middle of the road and easy to play but not necessarily the most expensive thing out there since your preferences are likely to evolve over time.
That’s why for most players I think the HR* is an excellent bari sax upgrade choice. Of all of these mouthpieces, I think the Jody Jazz HR* is my choice. Unless you are playing in a funk band, then you should get the jet. If you have a lot of money and want to go for it, get the DV or the Super Jet. Just keep in mind the hard rubber versions get the job done very nicely for much less.