02/14/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 45)

12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 45

Date: 02/14/2013

Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Location: Practice room B at South Whidbey High School.  Langley, WA (Whidbey Island)


My ears were bent towards interloping chords today.  As I have stated before, the practice room B at SWHS is a fantastic, resonant space to play.  My improvisation to today focuses on the use of chord clusters with fluttering inside tones.  

There are many ways to create chords on the saxophone.  In the last few years I have become particularly interested in creating chords with moving lines beneath or above a sustained pitch.  My improvisation today uses a fingering system that creates a very consonant chord, with the concert key tones of Gb, Ab (middle octave) and Eb (high octave), among other pitches that intersect these notes.  The high Eb in this case is the sustained pitch, and by opening and closing my Eb palm key I am able to quickly trill between a Concert Db and Cb. 

Because of this resonant space, there is quite a bit of activity that carries through the room, but even in a very dead space this improvisatory gesture is a busy one.  As the piece progressed, I began introducing less consonant tones, such as the Concert B and lower octave Concert G.  There are higher tones above the high Eb that seemed to want to come out, but I worked to hold these back in order to perform a piece that uses a limited range of just under two octaves.