I saw an old Majestic tenor saxophone on the German eBay site the other day that caught my eye. Majestic is a name we usually associate with Eugen Schuster, but this horn has none of the features generally associated with the brand.
Since I have not yet written about Eugen Schuster saxophones, I decided this would be a good time to try and further my research into this rather obscure German saxophone company. I had hoped that I could determine if this Majestic tenor saxophone was indeed a Eugen Schuster horn. Sadly I could not positively conclude one way or another the origins of this vintage sax.
What we do know about this Majestic tenor saxophone:
- It doesn’t have rolled tone holes.
- The serial number doesn’t fit with known Eugen Schuster or Franz Köhler horns. (Köhler supplied the saxophones to the Schuster Company after 1937.)
- It does have a nail file G#, a fork Eb, and a G# trill key.
- It has a bis Bb and a front F key.
- It is keyed from low Bb to high F.
- The low C key guard is very ornate.
- The neck either had a repair, or was constructed with a strange seam on the right side.
eBay description of this Majestic tenor saxophone
Very rare and age-appropriate well-preserved Eugen Schuster?? tenor saxophone model MAJESTIC . A hand-build tips saxophone made by master craftsmen … Kleinserie- individual production number see picture !!!!! Very collectable vintage saxophone and well worth the restoration.
key guards pads and screw-in springs all look to be there. The pads look old but not that bad of condition and most it, all keys open and close as they should, all springs working. No large dents just some scratches and a few dings here and there but again nothing too bad, lacquer is worn and pitted as to be expected but looks original to me with clear engraving, showing no
This is highly unusual tenor saxophon mark Maestic in and of itself as it is the . Eugen Schuster?,,??Look at the Nail file G # key, that is just like a CONN , still trying to figure .
Washers some are old needs to be replaced but not otherwise looks good
saxophon not tested . The body tube is , there are no dents or significant dings, keywork and rollers are free and easy, and there is a fair amount of spotting particularly on the back of the body tube. Some typical scratching here and there, nothing significant or unusual for a 40+ year old horn. Some small bare patches. There are some very small and minor dings here and there, but you really have to look for ’em.Majestic saxophone looks pretty cool saxophone is a silver- not nickel, pads old , you will need to adjust. neck saxophone professionally repaired good… see picture
There is no mouthpice, The case is old not serviceable.
This saxophon can be restored by anyone with the patience to do so.
OK then, so the seller is just as confused as we are about the origins of this horn.
Who made this vintage horn?
Here’s a question for all you Buescher players: Does this horn remind you of either a True Tone or an Aristocrat? The reason I ask is before the Eugen Schuster Company started making saxophones in 1937, they imported Bueschers from the US. To me it doesn’t look like a Buescher in the slightest, but YMMV. If it does, let me know via a comment below what makes you think so.
If the Majestic tenor saxophone currently on eBay is indeed an Eugen Schuster, the other possible source could have been Franz Köhler, since that company was the source of the Schuster horns post-1937. If that were the case, it would have to be a very early version, since later Köhler horns have the features we associate with the Schuster horns—mostly notably the Conn-like left pinkie cluster and rolled tone holes. (Check out this article about a Köhler Empor tenor sax if you’d like to see all the pics of this Conn inspired horn.)
Unfortunately I don’t have any early version Köhler saxophone images in my collection to compare this Majestic tenor saxophone to. So ATM this horn remains a bit of an enigma.
The auction for this Majestic tenor saxophone ends on October 8. The asking price is €800.00 BIN, or you could make an offer. So far it seems no one has done so. My prediction: no one will.
This horn is such an oddity, and the price so high, that people are not going to spend that amount of money on a chance, when they can spend the same amount of cash on a sure thing. That’s just MHO of course. YMMV, and likely does. Let’s see what the other 8 watchers of the auction do. Maybe one of them know something I don’t, and someone will swoop in and scoop this baby up.
What this auction has done is made me aware that I need to finish the Franz Köhler and Eugen Schuster sections of my website. They are intricately connected, and now that I have amassed enough photos to illustrate them, I should get the last of the research finished, and the pages published. I realize also that my Saxpix galleries of Köhler and Eugen Schuster saxophones is woefully outdated as well. I’ll get all these sections done in the next couple of weeks and post an article here when everything’s finished.
© 2015, Helen. All rights reserved.