03/17/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Saxophone Project)

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Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016 Date: 03/17/2016 Location: Laundry room in a small house in Austin, TX Instrument: Tenor saxophone Notes: This piece was recorded during the Bad Luck duo Spring tour, in the laundry room of a small house in Austin, Texas. I practiced for a few hours in the mid-afternoon heat and documented towards the end of this session. The image Ovitz House (2010) accompanying the post today by Roe Ethridge.

03/15/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Saxophone Project)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 03/15/2016
Location: San Antonio, TX (Flight Gallery)
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

This improvisation was recorded while on the Bad Luck duo Spring Your to the SXSW music festival. We played an the art gallery called Flight in San Antonio to a packed house. Afterwards a large large crowd had gathered by the front entrance drink, talk, yell, and walk in and out of the gallery as music played overhead and outside—all of which can be heard in this recording. I decided to document an improvisation in a small room inside the gallery, and made it my goal to execute as subtle a piece as possible within an otherwise chaotic and completely inappropriate environment for such an improvisation to take place.

The image IN-EL Mendori (2011) accompanying the post today by Issey Miyake.

03/03/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Saxophone Project)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 03/03/2016
Location: Practice Room B at South Whidbey High School. Langley, WA (Whidbey Island)
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

The image Imaginary Beings (Doppelganger) accompanying the post today by Neri Oxman, and the Mediated Matter Group, with W. Craig Carter.

03/01/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Saxophone Project)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 03/01/2016
Location: Main performance hall at Chief Sealth International High School. Seattle, WA
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

The image Invisible Sun (algorithm 5, second letter form) (2014) accompanying the post today by Julie Mehretu.

02/21/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/21/2016
Location: The porch outside my brotherâs apartment in San Francisco, California.
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

I recorded this piece early in the morning on the day I was set to depart San Francisco and return back to Seattle. My brother will soon be moving back North, and knowing that this may be my last opportunity to inhabit this spaceâone which Iâve grown to love visiting over the yearsâI decided to document a piece. Despite being located near Golden Gate Park, the apartment is a few blocks from a major road and surprisingly quiet inside. The porch out back is situated three floors up and is part of a perimeter, inside of which is a large, beautiful green space with large trees, succulents, grasses and birds. Itâs a lovely sanctuary inside a hurried city. It was very joyful for me to welcome the day in this space, and also to say goodbye to it by documenting my time spent there.

The image Allover (Genesis, Travis Tritt, and others) (2008) accompanying the post today by Christian Marclay.

02/20/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/20/2016
Location: A bedroom in my brother’s apartment in San Francisco, California
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

I used the initial melodic statement for this improvisation as a recurring figure throughout the piece, returning to it almost as a point of strength that phrases could build and decay from. The improvisation was recorded at dusk just after arriving at my brotherâs apartment in San Francisco. I was in a calm and reflective mood and wanted to capture this spirit during the improvisation.

The image 23 (2009) accompanying the post today by James Welling.

02/18/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/18/2016
Location: Practice Room B at South Whidbey High School
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

This improvisation was recorded at a low volume setting in my microphone setup, but extremely high volume from my horn. I wanted to overwhelm the room with high harmonic tones and melodic smears but also bring out the warmth in the room that was present too.

The image Feldkapelle fur den heiligen Bruder Klaus 03 (Bruder Klaus Field Chapel, Mechernrich, Germany) (2009) accompanying the post today by Helene Binet, Peter Zumthor.

02/16/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)



Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/16/2016
Location: Main performance hall at Chief Sealth International High School. Seattle, WA
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

The singing in this improvisation was intended to be intertwined into dark, brooding melodic and harmonic figures. As is the case in much of my sung improvisations these days, my focus here was with harmonic/melodic intersection, and integrating my singing into phrases as opposed to making it the primary focus of the piece.

The image Alloy (2010) accompanying the post today by Julian Lethbridge.

02/12/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/12/2016
Location: Thornton Creek House in Seattle, WA
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

My improvisation today focuses primarily on a tempered pitched free improvisation with figures played in a slurred fashion. However, I began with only tempered pitches but gradually introduced more gentle pitch bends into my phrases, then shorter articulations, some screaming into the horn and finally a few quarter tones. As my activity would rise in quickness and intensity I would always return back to more subdued slurred phrasing before rising back again.

The image Eclipse (2010) accompanying the post today by Bill Jensen.

02/10/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/10/2016
Location: Practice Room B at South Whidbey High School
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

I recorded this improvisation at a high volume but played very quietly into the mic. I wanted to bring out the percussive qualities of aggressive tonguing against the reed in equal balance to pitches coming from the horn itself. These two focus areas are then intersected by a third, which are the tones coming from the key cups striking the body.

The image Winter Group 3: Red, Green, Blue, and Gold (2009-11) accompanying the post today by Pat Steir.

02/07/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/07/2016
Location: Thornton Creek House in Seattle, WA
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

In this piece I continued my current focus on singing into the horn with colorations in wide and narrow chord structures. I began by singing in mid register and progressively moved higher and higher, then resetting back in the mid register and beginning the climb in pitch again. I did not restrict myself to any specific sung pitches or fully adhere to climbing and then resetting, but used this only as a loose framework.

During this piece I wanted the singing to feel as though it were a natural part of the chord structures. For instance, I would sing upper register tones set against lower register fingerings, but then move my sung pitches into the low register and replace this now missing tone by introducing an upper register pitch from a multiphonic chord.

The image The Seeming Literal, Thus Faithful (2012) accompanying the post today by Justin Matherly.

02/06/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)


Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/06/2016
Location: Thornton Creek House in Seattle, WA
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

I worked to pair tempered pitches alongside quarter steps, multiphonics, split tones and various other color textures in this piece. My aim was to maintain a fluid narrative not bound by any one approach, and open to follow the various pathways my mind seemed to wander down. For example, I began with aggressive swipes inside dense layers of activity, with the swipes occurring at fairly regular intervals. But as the piece progressed the swipes were replaced with occasional brittle chirps in the upper register, which were then replaced by a focus on double tonguing in tempered pitches with harder multiphonics interjected around them.

The image Let’s Walk to the Middle of the Ocean (2015) accompanying the post today by Mark Bradford.

02/02/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation 2 of 2)



Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project 2016

Date: 02/02/2016
Location: Main performance hall at Chief Sealth International High School. Seattle, WA
Instrument: Tenor saxophone


Notes: Improv 2 of 2

I recorded this improvisation during a morning of extreme frustration. I mistakenly deleted a number of improvisations from the month of January while working on my computer before practicing/recording today. I felt almost in a state of mourning as I recorded this piece and a second improvisation.

While improvising this piece I tried to create layers of pointillist melodic activity that were intentionally imbalanced. I want some layers to rise of higher than others all the while maintain a drone beneath.

The image accompanying the post today by Kim Hiorthoy.

01/31/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)



Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project

Date: 01/31/2016
Location:
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

This improvisation is a drone-based piece using continuous flutter tonguingâa very challenging and physically taxing technique to do while humming/singing into the horn. I was particularly intrigued by the high pitched whisper tones that would enter the sound field from my saliva interacting with the deluge of activity in the room.

The image Mothia Cs, 1989 accompanying the post today by Pier Paolo Calzoloari.

01/28/2016 (Continuous Resonance Solo Improvisation)



Neil Welch Continuous Resonance Solo Project

Date: 01/28/2016
Location: Practice Room C at South Whidbey High School. Langley, WA (Whidbey Island)
Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Notes:

Here I worked to create a palette wash of harmony on top of which I could place melodic bits and pieces.

The image N'Nex (2013-14) accompanying the post today by Julia Dault.