#91 Ultimate Tenor Sax Altissimo Fingering Chart

technique Oct 11, 2020

Ever wondered what fingerings to use when you play in the altissimo register on tenor sax? Well, I've saved you a lot of hard work by sifting through hundreds of fingerings from videos, websites and books to bring you the top six for every altissimo note up to double F. I also demonstrate every fingering just so that you know they all work (although it's pretty pretty challenging listening!)

Before you even attempt any of these fingerings you should watch my Ultimate Guide To Altissimo video, which explains, in detail, the mechanism of the instrument in terms of the high notes, and what you have to do with your vocal tract to get the high notes working. If you don't, it's quite likely that instead of a clarion high note you'll just get a low moan like a dying camel. Not good!

Be sure to pick up your Free Tenor Altissimo Finger Chart PDF, which you can print off and keep as a reference guide. If you play alto, don't worry, last week featured the fingerings for alto sax. Clicking on the time stamps for these notes will take you straight to the fingerings on the video on YouTube (in a separate tab). Full Time stamps for the video and a complete transcript are available at the bottom of the blog.


What is the fingering for altissimo notes on tenor sax?

The fingerings for these notes can be found by click the timestamp link.


So hopefully this guide will help you "get upstairs" on tenor sax. Don't forget your Free Tenor Altissimo Finger Chart PDF and remember last week featured fingerings for the altissimo notes for alto sax, although many of the fingerings work on any sax. Next week I'll be seeing if you can get a Reed Geek tool for a few dollars that does the same job as the regular expensive one. Until then, stay safe, enjoy your music, and I'll see you later!

Jamie :-)



0:00 - intro and titles

0:35 - free PDF and free one hour Masterclass

1:17 - why fingerings alone won’t work

2:17 - credits for fingerings

3:14 - my set up


3:42 - F#

4:09 - G

4:39 - G#

5:08 - A

5:33 - Bb

5:58 - B

6:23 - C

6:48 - C#

7:12 - D

7:35 - Eb

8:01 - E

8:26 - F

8:52 - outro

9:41 - end music and bloopers


Video Transcript

Hi, I’m pro saxophonist Jamie Anderson and you’re watching Get Your Sax Together. Following up on last week’s alto version, this Sunday I bring you the ultimate tenor saxophone altissimo finger chart. Just like the alto video, you’re gonna get no less than SIX different fingerings for every note, all the way up to double F. Get that ice bath ready for your bottom lip, cos we’re takin’ it upstairs!


This tenor sax altissimo finger chart is more of a reference guide than a lesson, so I’ll try and keep this intro as short as I can, starting with the obligatory Parish Notices. There’s a fabulous free PDF for you to download and print off, featuring every fingering demonstrated in today’s show. Just click the link in the description or go to the URL below, Get Your Sax Together dot com, forward slash alto chart. And if you haven’t already done so, be sure to go and check out my one hour Saxophone Success Masterclass, which is an awesome FREE lesson with me covering a whole load of stuff that will get you sounding instantly better on sax. Just use the URL below, or click the link in the description. 

[STING: An Important Note]

As I mentioned last week, before we get into the altissimo fingering chart, there’s something very important that you need to understand. If you’re not proficient at the high notes yet, you MUST watch my Altissimo video linked on the card above BEFORE you try these fingerings. If you’re using these fingerings but you’re just getting notes that sound like a dying donkey, then this important video will explain why, AND show you what to do about it. The fingering diagrams themselves should self explanatory, but be sure to get your free reference PDF from the link in the description, as that lists and explains everything. You can print that off and keep it on your music stand, then pass it down to your kids as a treasured heirloom. Maybe even laminate it if you’re feeling crazy. I would. I probably will actually, I bloody love my laminator. Anyway, I’ve provided fingerings for saxes with AND without a high F# key, and I’m extremely grateful to my pupil Emma Francis, who loaned me her high F# Trevor James tenor sax for this video. Yup, I swapped out my 6,000 quid Selmer mark six for a 700 quid tenor and it worked just as well, if not better! Chew on THAT one if you’re thinking of spending a lot of money on a top end sax. Now, as I mentioned last week, I’m ashamed to say that I can’t always remember who’s fingering was who’s, so I haven’t included any acknowledgements. Quite a few are just well worn favourites that we all use, but for those cool ones that you might have come up with and I haven’t name checked you, I apologise profusely. Anyway, I’d like to collectively big up all my past and present teachers and colleagues, plus, Wally Wallace, Jay Metcalf at Better Sax, Ed Barker, Claude Delange, Tim McAllister, Sigurd Rascher, Mark Charette’s Woodwind Fingering Guide website, Music Education For All, Mosax, London Sax School, Steve Bone, Scott Paddock, Nigel McGill, Sean Hurlburt and especially  SirValorSax for his detailed and insightful series of videos on tenor altissimo. Links for all these people are in the description. Some fingerings work better than others, but it depends on your unique set up, so you should experiment yourself, work out your favourites, and also work out which ones flow best into each other. For your information, I used a USA Florida model 8* Ottolink mouthpiece with a Vandoren Java Red Box 3.5 reed. There are timestamps in the description so you can quickly go to any note you want. Right, here we go, here’s six different fingerings for every altissimo note on tenor up to a double F. It might not be pleasant listening now, but you’ll be glad of it next time you’re taking a solo and you can let rip with a proper fire-in-a-pet shop high note!

[STING: The Fingerings]

[STING: Before You Go]

So that’s it for this week. Hopefully this free online saxophone lesson showing you a compendium of tenor sax altissimo fingerings was useful. Don’t forget to pick up your free PDF using the link in the description, and if you wanna learn some more in-depth sax stuff go to double-u double-u double-u dot get your sax together dot com, forward slash masterclass, to get your free one hour lesson with me. As always, thank you so much for watching and supporting the channel. If you haven’t already, please go ahead and give the video a thumbs up, leave me a comment, subscribe to the channel, click the bell icon to be notified when I upload new content and check out my Insta and Facebook pages. Until I sax up your Sunday next week, practice hard and practice smart, but above all, enjoy your music. See ya later!



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