Rico/D’Addario Alto Sax Reeds


A few months ago we talked about how important it is for a reed player to have a good, well-made reed.  It is one of the most integral parts to their set-up to get the sound they are looking for.  At that time we discussed all of the different reed cuts that Vandoren makes.  This time we are going to look at the other major reed brand, Rico/D’addario.

D’addario purchased Rico in 2004 and in that time they have worked tirelessly to provide the reeds that players need to get their “voice”.   They have invested heavily in new technology to make the reeds better and more consistent than they ever have been before.  D’addario grows 100 percent of their own cane which gives them control of the materials throughout the entire process.  Below we have laid out the different models of Rico/D’addario reeds that we stock and the features of them.

Rico This is the standard orange box that we have seen for years.  This reed is unfiled and has thinner profile and blank.  They are cut from the most flexible grade of cane.  They vibrate easy which make them a great reed for Jazz players and students that are just learning how to play.

Rico Royal– This reed combines the features of the standard Rico reed with a French File.  The filing gives it an increased response, especially in the lower register.  This is designed for an advancing player as it offers an even response across all of the registers. 

Hemke– The Frederick L. Hemke reeds are filed and have a thinner tip and shorter vamp.  This gives the player an easier time in getting a good response out of the reed.  They shorter vamp also provides the player with a darker tone which make it a favorite of many classical players. 

Reserve– A premium, filed reed with a thick blank that provides a rich, warm tone.  It features a heavy spine that promotes dynamic flexibility and exceptional tone in all registers.  It also has a traditional tip thickness for ease of articulation.

La Voz– La Voz reeds are similar to the Rico cut.  It is unfiled and has a thinner profile and blank.  They have a deep powerful tone, due to the stronger spine, which gives greater resistance.

Select Jazz– This reed offers the thickest spine and blank of the D’addario reed line.  They have a traditional tip as well.  A well-defined heart and longer vamp gives the Select Jazz great projection, focus, a vibrant sound, and fast response.  They are offered in both filed and unfiled models.

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