Well That’s A Wrap

Just before we pop the cork on 2019, I thought it was worth a quick look back at what 2018 was like here in Bassic Sax.info land.

The Bassic Sax Blog hits a milestone

2018 was really a milestone year. In May, the Bassic Sax Blog celebrated its 10th anniversary. Although I was too busy juggling 2 bari saxes, a soprano, as well as a clarinet in The Music Man to even acknowledge the date, May 13 was the date this section of my site switched from being The News portion of Bassic Sax, to being its own thing.

The first post was nothing exciting. It took some time for the Bassic Sax Blog to find its footing, and certainly over the past decade the site has evolved in both content and appearance.  Nonetheless, 2018 was a milestone year for one of the first—if not the first—saxophone weblogs ever created, which as of December 26, 2018, had reached 1,153,437 readers in the last 5 years alone.

Although long gone are the days when I published daily articles, now I am extremely proud of the research that goes into each article I do publish, and the important topics that I delve into. My goal has always been to look at stuff that is not explored on other sites. 2018 was no exception.

Of the 42 articles I published this year, the following are the ones that I’m the most proud of: Compare/Contrast 5 Orsi Bass Saxophones; An Unusual F.X. Hüller Standard Tenor; A [Presumably] Max Keilwerth-made President; A Globemaster Luxus by Max Keilwerth; and perhaps most important: Dave Guardala Saxes Are Not All Created Equal.

Bassic Sax Pix & The Sax.info Gallery are now one

screen shot, Bassic Sax Pix & The Sax.info Gallery, saxophone gallery

Well known saxophone historian, and all around really nice guy, Pete Hales, and I have been working together on a number of projects for years. A couple of years ago when it became obvious that both of our websites would benefit from VPS space, we decided to become virtual room mates.

The next logical step was to combine our efforts, and rather than duplicate much of the information in our saxophone galleries, we opted to combine our galleries into one large one. With that rather simple decision, Bassic Sax Pix & The Sax.info Gallery was born.

Bassic Sax Pix & The Sax.info Gallery is a catalogue of images that Pete and I have chosen that represent some of the most interesting, unique, beautiful, or important saxophones ever made. As of December 26, 2018, that gallery is home to 43,846 images in 4246 albums, with lots more on the way.

Although my old Bassic Sax Pix gallery still exists, my goal for 2019 to make a serious effort to transfer the bulk of my images from my old to my new gallery. This is really a ton of work that has to be manually, which is why I have been rather AWOL from the whole task of late, and why Pete has been stuck doing much of the heavy lifting.

My New Year’s resolution around my gallery is to get my ass in gear and actually get it done before 2020.

The Bassic Sax website just keeps getting bigger, and more inclusive

bassic-sax.info, home page, screen shot, bari sax, Thanks to my partnership with German saxophone historian, tech, and pro player Uwe Ladwig, I have been able to bring the history of many German saxophone brands to English reading/speaking audiences for a number of years now.

Over the years this has led to Bassic Sax becoming the number 1 site on the Net when it comes to brands like: HammerschmidtDörfler & Jörka, the Hohner PresidentMax KeilwerthAkustikWeltklangB&S AKA Blue Label, as well as the  modern horns of B&S—just to name some.

As of last week  H. Couf saxophones can be added to that lofty list, with a couple more Couf pages coming in the coming months.

As always there are a great many pages on interesting or unusual sax-shaped “things” people are always interested in, with the most popular by far and away being the Sax-A-Boom.

Thanks Jack Black, you really made this sax-shaped electronic children’s toy the hot sax collectible. I just keep wishing my partner hadn’t given mine away by accident while I was away on a trip, thinking it was intended as a gift for our friend’s daughter. If I still had it today, I could incorporate the Sax-A-Boom into the sounds of the Bassic Sax Jazz Ensemble. :mrgreen:

All totalled, as of December 28, 2018, there are 348 pages on the bassic-sax.info website, which by all accounts, is a very large website dedicated to [mostly vintage] saxophones.

Plans for 2019

  1. Get the H. Couf pages on the Superba I, II, & Royalist horns written.
  2. Start the process of moving the images from my old Bassic Sax Pix to the new Bassic Sax Pix & The Sax.info Gallery.
  3. Write reviews on the saxophones that I own.

This last one, is something that I have wanted to do for years. I have written a few reviews for The Bassic Sax Blog already—like those on the Seawind bari and tenor, the C-pitched tenor made by A.E. Sax, and the Jinyin-made bass sax—and those got me thinking: Why haven’t I written reviews for my own horns?

With that in mind, I bought a Shure X2U XLR-to-USB Signal Adapter just over a year ago, and have used it a few times to record some horns’ sounds already. I did record the Olds Super tenor prior to it being overhauled, and did record the Medusa bari before I sold it.

My goal is to record a sound sample of the horns I review, so people get an idea of what they each sound like. Since I’m a bari player, I’ll likely start with my baris first, and then go from there. For me the biggest challenge has been trying to find a piece of recording software that doesn’t require a sound engineer to operate. If anyone has any suggestions, please drop me an email or leave a comment below. Thanks!

So to wrap this up then…

So that about does it for news from around here for 2018.

As we wrap up the last few days of 2018, all I can say is: thank f*#! this one’s over and done with. Between all the natural and man-made disasters we need a freakin’ break! I wish us all, and the planet, a kinder and gentler 2019.

Cheers folks, we certainly deserve a drink!

© 2018, Helen. All rights reserved.


Helen Kahlke is a professional horn player and sax teacher who lives in Abbotsford, British Columbia. She plays soprano, alto, C melody, tenor, baritone, and bass saxophones.


  1. It’s the only heavy lifting my doctors allow me to do :).

    The “base” of our new gallery is my old Piwigo gallery, so all those pics are already “migrated.” Migrating Helen’s 4images gallery has been more challenging, but I’ll conservatively estimate that 75% of it has been migrated. There are a few areas that have been completely finished, except for a comment or two:

    Dörfler & Jörka
    Max Keilwerth
    Julius Keilwerth

    And many, many more. In a general sense, almost all of Helen’s pics of non-US horns. I’ve also added lots of new content. Hey, it gets boring looking at the same make and model for a week.

    I’ve also added some permalinks. As an example, I can get to German-made horns with http://bassic-sax.info/pixs/german. French? http://bassic-sax.info/pixs/french. You get the idea.

    Finally, do also remember that both Helen and I have lots of new stuff that we haven’t properly categorized.

    Have a great new year!

    • Um, don’t know quite how to tell you this, but the permalinks don’t work.

      Edit: I figured it out. You had typed pics instead of pix in the links. You must have experienced a flashback Thursday. 😉

    • > As of December 26, 2018, that gallery is home to 43,846 images in 4246 albums, with lots more on the way.
      As of today, 56,296 photos and 5,313 albums, now. 10.7 million page views over 4 years. 11.3gb of space used. And I still have a couple hundred horns and things to upload, too.

      All of the horns from Helen’s old gallery have been moved to the new one, but comments generally haven’t, so, if you’re missing a comment, please go there.

      • You’re a crazy man Pete! Words cannot adequately express my thanks to you for all the work you have done on our joint project.

        Meanwhile, I’m just busy playing my new Couf bari in a swing band all the time. You need to play this horn Pete. You will love it!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.