For modern guys that have the merlot vibe: think Bergonzi, Frahm, Potter, Mintzer, Seamus Blake, Mark Turner, etc.. You can also get a Steve Grossman or Bob Berg vibe from it too, if you have those guys in your head.
10mfan set out to make a warm, full sounding piece that wasn’t dark or stuffy at all, and did just that. With Alexander NY or Vandoren Traditional reeds, it will play its darkest but never stuffy or dull. The Merlot has a beautiful core sound and is incredibly flexible with all the sound spectrum it can offer! It can open up and let loose without getting bright. It does not have the tubbiness or stuffiness often associated with hard rubber vintage mouthpieces! He made this to sound warm yet with plenty of power when you push it. It has the lowest baffle of the 10mfan mouthpieces.
10mfan's goal to make a warm playing tenor mouthpiece that didn’t sound just like a 60's slant is very clear with this mouthpiece. It does everything they can do, and much more. The MERLOT doesn’t put you in a “sound corner” and make you sound one-way. It offers plenty of flexibility, depth, and clarity to the sound—–and with meaning! Joel Frahm is as picky as they come for achieving the perfect sound for himself, and he has gigged on and recorded with the Merlot and Robusto hard rubber models for a year now. The merlot simply offers him more than his slant sig can possibly offer. The sound can be very clean or fluffy depending on how you want to play it. The high end releases the sound and doesn’t make you sound airy or tubby on the palm keys. Like a fine wine, you will discover that this piece will continue to get better and better for you with time!
Finally, mouthpieces that can get both the vintage vibe and modern vibe!