Randy is definitely the guy to see if you're looking to find a great horn or want to get your horn set-up in absolutely top shape. His selection of beautiful instruments is like nothing I've seen in my life (I tried so many amazing tenors, my head was spinning!) His passion and knowledge about the saxophone is immense, and every horn I tried that he had worked on played like a perfect gem. Also, Randy and his family and everyone at the shop are just really friendly, straight ahead people, I had a great time hanging out with them. Trust me, it's worth the schlep to Iowa!
Randy Jones has got to be one of the foremost sax experts in the world. Randy helped me find an incredible tenor. . . . and then he and his first-rate team managed to make that horn play even better than I would have ever thought possible. I think one of the things that sets Randy apart is that he not only has the knowledge and the experience, but also the enthusiasm and the passion to take each instrument to the next level. Randy truly loves saxophones. He cares enough to bring out the full potential of every great horn.
I recently flew out to Iowa to spend an afternoon at Tenor Madness, and it was well worth the trip. Randy had one of the largest collections of top-tier vintage Selmers I have ever seen, and after playing every one of them I bought a tenor that is basically my dream horn. Randy, Jim, and the rest of the Tenor Madness family are true artists at what they do, and I have never met anyone as genuinely committed as these guys to helping me find the horn and sound Iʼve been looking for. I must also say that Randyʼs pad work is some of the best out there. If you are looking for a new or vintage horn these are the people to go to.
Ho acquistato da Tenormadness un sax alto Selmer Super balanced action, quando è arrivato ho constatato con mio grande piacere che la descrizione fattami da Jim sul sax era stata fedele alla realtà: veramente un gran bel sax! In più molto gentilmente Randy prima di spedirmelo ha fatto una messa appunto completa
del sax ed ha sostituito alcuni tamponi, ora praticamente per farlo suonare "basta solo lo sguardo!". Spero in futuro di poter fare ancora affari con loro.
Tenor Madness it's a unique place. It's a saxophonist haven! I never saw so much beautiful instruments all at the same time. Randy is an absolute genius, and he has the unique gift to immediately understand everything about a saxophone player. And Jim is a very expert and solar presence. I found a dream horn and also beautiful persons, there in Iowa....
Thank you guys, I'll be back!
Randy and the gang at Tenor Madness have been incredibly kind, accommodating, and absolute surgical wizards with my horns. Whenever I make the trip out to their shop, I am always completely confident that my saxophones are in the best hands, and inevitably they are returned to me in a condition that inspires my best music-making. Tenor Madness is truly a diamond in the fields of Iowa. www.joelvanderheyden.com
Just a note to tell your clients how much fun I had at your store last week...it was a blast. Where can you play so many great horns that have been worked on by a real artist!!!
Randy is as passionate about working on these horns as I am playing them.
And thanks for helping to find my favorite tenors Randy!!!!
All the best,
I always look forward to my visits to Randy Jones. Randy is an astute judge of instruments and an absolute wizard at getting the most sound from any given saxophone. I went to Randy looking for my last horn and came home with two fantastic tenors. (My wife was forgiving.)
Randy's dedication to saxophone repair is well-known. He never allows a horn to leave his shop until he is 100% satisfied with everything, even if that affects the turnaround time - that's one of the reasons why his work is superior and his set-ups last for years with no need of adjustments. He is passionate about vintage horns and knows how to bring the best out of them. His attention to detail, his wealth of information and his honesty and sincerity makes him a true pleasure to deal with.
It takes a while to find someone who has the same passion and love for the saxophone as the people out there playing them. Randy is the man. He is a perfectionist. He knows the history of the saxophone and all its models. All the idiosyncrasies of all the models and what they need is just the beginning with him. Good thing I don't live next door or I would never leave him alone.
I knew of Randy through several of my colleagues. But I thought that there was no reason to go to Iowa to buy anything, including a horn, if you live in NY city!. But lately I was looking for a special horn, because after recording 2 albums for Universal Jazz France, I wanted to find a real extension of my inner voice. So I decided to make the trip in july 2008. I called it my pilgrimage. Once I arrived to Tenor Madness in the middle of Iowa's flat farmland, I was greeted by great human beings: Randy with his warm Dr. Doolittle demeanor, Jim with his brotherly spirit, and Shirley, who struck me as a bouncing ball of pure energy. I was quickly directed "downstairs", where all the horns are. Over a period of two days, I must have tried 30 horns... Among those, to my surprise, I found about 10 that sounded as good or better than my 85xxx Mark VI. But moreover, I found not one but two very special horns. The one that I am presently playing is a 45xxx SBA. It has a unique mixture of amazing clarity and warmth. The resonance is such that it gives the feeling of holding a large mystical flute inside a huge cave. This trip was all I wanted and more. I left with a new extension to my voice and a feeling of warmth and humanity. If you go there, please take the time to meet the Echo, the psychic dog, and also take a second to admire the galaxies of fireflies hovering over the fields by night.
If you are looking for the best in saxophone repair or for a vintage saxophone, Randy is the man to see. Randy has overhauled a couple of my horns and each time his work was very impressive. He is a perfectionist and sets up the horn with attention to the smallest detail, making it play to it's fullest potential. I recently made the trip to see Randy looking for a tenor and I have never played that many great horns in one day. Thank you Randy for keeping my horns playing right and helping me find the best tenors.
Simply the worlds best source for new and vintage saxophones. Randy's been supplying great instruments for my students since 1988, and my own personal instruments are from Tenor Madness.
Greg Keel, Saxophone Instructor
MacPhail Center for Music, Minneapolis
Macalester College, St. Paul
I've had the pleasure and privilege of knowing Randy Jones both as a friend and from working with him professionally for nearly 20 years. This enduring and valued relationship could not have existed or endured if I did not have the utmost respect for Randy's personal honesty and integrity and his unsurpassed technical skills in his craft. I have entrusted all of my most valued personal saxophones to him for everything from a minor "tweak" to a total restoration since I know he shares my personal philosophy that "Good Enough - ISN'T" in our respective crafts. I recommend his work and experienced, knowledgeable advice and service to any discriminating woodwind player.
Paul 'Doc' Tenney
Since the mainstream of my business is reconstruction of good vintage saxophones and mouthpieces, Tenor Madness is at the top of my list. I take every horn I can get that they have detailed. Over the last two years at least 25 complete jobs. If a horn comes up for sale, and they have done the work, I usually try and buy it if it's one I feel has my MO. Randy Jones and I have worked together now for at least 15 years, you don't last that long with someone if things are not right. Having the in house ability to critique the work that all three gentleman do gives Randy a tremendous advantage. I am a strong believer in a second and third opinion. My whole operation is dependent on the quality that they (Tenor Madness) stand for.
First of all, I must thank Randy, Jim, Shirley and everybody at Tenor Madness. I know about Randy from my colleagues Joel Frahm and Jay Thomas. I tried almost 40 SBA's and 5 digit Mark VI's in one day. Here's a crazy story: Randy covered the serial numbers with tape so that I couldn't guess which horn I was playing. He really wanted me to find "the" one. Out of 35 horns, I ended up choosing 2 Mark VI's over my 56K Mark VI tenor. The two horns I fell in love with happened to be 65k serial numbers and just 130 numbers away from each other! We were so amazed and laughed out loud. On the same day Randy stayed up so late setting up my horns. It was almost midnight when I left. This shows how dedicated he is to his work and what a great person Randy is. He is Yoda in the saxophone world! My website is: www.yukiteimusic.com
I just recently purchased a horn through Randy by means of traveling to the Selmer factory. The whole experience was extremely enjoyable. Working with James Bunte and Randy, we were able to find a Reference 54 combined with a Series III copper neck that played great. Between the horn we found and Randys exceptional fine tuning on it, I am leaving here very excited. It is always a joy to work with him. Thanks a bunch!
I just received my SBA you overhauled.
Well worth the money and the wait. Thank you.
I just want to say that I had arrived at the point with my Selmer Mark VI Tenor Saxophone (serial number 99xxx) where I was going to sell it because the sound quality of the horn did not match or come close enough to my expectations of a good Selmer Mark VI Saxophone sound. I figured that I would sell it and then go find a really good Selmer Mark VI saxophone that I liked. With one last cry of hope, I decided to try Randy Jones of Tenor Madness as one last attempt to improve the sound of my Mark VI. I knew that if this repair did not work, that I was going probably sell my horn.
Boy am I glad, I sent my horn to him. All I can say is Wow!! I had previously taken my horn to two different, very respectable repair technicians. Randy, however, was the only person to completely evolve the tone, evenness of scale, intonation, and overall feel of the horn to the "true optimum Selmer Mark VI sound". My tone is so even and centered now. It is so easy to hear the accuracy of intonation. Truly, he improved it so much, that it is like I am playing a different horn, a "way" better horn. Sincerely, Michael Swan
I purchased my first tenor saxophone, a Mark VI, more than 15 years ago from Tenor Madness. The horn served me well throughout high school, college and beyond. A couple of years ago, I decided it was time to consider trading it for something more versatile - a horn that could perform in both jazz and R&B situations. I called Randy Jones and later made the trip down to Cedar Falls, IA. Upon my return to the Twin Cities, I had a new Yamaha tenor saxophone. Since, I have had my Mark VI alto and Rampone & Cazzani soprano professionally setup by Randy. It is my belief that one could search far and wide and not find a finer saxophone technician.
Keep on swingin!
Feel free to use anything because any testimonial I give is very heartfelt. What you guys did was AMAZING! Let's see, the horn had been on the road almost continuously for its 30 years. It stayed out of its case in the carribean salt air for 5 years. It got knocked off a piano, kicked over by dancers, had a wrench thrown at it by an angry roady, was shipped uninsured on a commercial jet liner without my permission, and was in an equipment trailer that came unhitched from the van and crashed. It has suffered absolutely every indignity imaginable. These guys rebuilt it so it plays as good or better than it ever did and I will be able to play it another 30 years. I couldn't be happier, the horn is like my muse and I just couldn't find a replacement.
Gary K Jones
Wow what a screaming tenor! I’ve played a bunch of the horns from Taiwan and loved a few of them, but always found them to be lacking in terms of refinement. Many also don’t have much “core” or character to the sound. This one has plenty. It just resonates in your hands. It speaks effortlessly up and down the horn – and, crucially, it thrives at all dynamic levels. Subtone for days! Knowing Randy Jones’ repair and restoration work, I expected the horn to be well regulated, but even there the Custom went beyond – it’s tight, and fast, an absolute joy to play. Thanks! - Tom Moon, NYC
" Randy Jones' new line of otto link hard rubber mouthpieces is what saxophonists have been waiting for; a new production mouthpiece that responds as easily as the best vintage jazz mouthpieces, but with a profound depth and roundness of tone that I've never found in another modern mouthpiece. My tone is my biggest concern, and Randy has come up with a mouthpiece that completely fulfills my needs. I love it!"
"I have played hundreds of mouthpieces that try to replicate the Otto Link saxophone tone. The Tenor Madness Hard Rubber Otto Link mouthpiece has the quick response, projection and tonal colors reminiscent of the Otto Link Slant Signature/Early Babbitt model. The consistency and quality control is extremely high…there is no longer a true need to buy vintage hard rubber Links…Tenor Madness has you covered for horns and now mouthpieces! " - Xavier Perez, NYC saxophonist.
"These are great pieces, with excellent consistency from piece to piece. They play great time, and there's even response and consistent tone and intonation throughout the full range of the horn. An awesome "new" Link is finally here." - Dan Pratt.
"Randy Jones' new TM Custom Early Babbitt Link tenor pieces are tremendous sax mouthpieces! They are as good or better than any vintage pieces I've played over the years, in fact it has replaced the vintage piece I played for the past 7 years. Furthermore, having had the chance to play-test about a dozen "out-of-the-box" pieces, I am struck by the complete consistency in quality. They ALL play great! The search for that one great piece is over! - Kim Bock.