03/24/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 83)

12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 83

Date: 03/24/2013

Instrument: Soprano saxophone

Location: Home studio in Clinton, WA (Whidbey Island)


This morning I woke early feeling rested and hopeful, with that initial pulse of energy that can happen on a new day.  I decided to record immediately and capture a joyful, dance-like improvisation to welcome this feeling.  That joyful spirit in me on these days can evolve so differently from the dawn to dusk, and I decided to capture this feeling to spur it’s growth and ward off its decline.

I quickly decided on a fingering and tackled this improvisation using a familiar improvisatory technique.  If I’ve decided my ultimate compositional goal, in this case to create a dance-like improvisation, to achieve this I will often begin with longer, sustained tones to establish order and control in my mind and body.  I then feel more invested in the music and my mind becomes able to create more diversity of sound.  I used the following fingering:

(Left Hand) Fork F and C keys, Low Bb and Octave // (Right Hand) F-E-D keys.

The first half of the composition I view as precersure material–a free improvisation that allows me to learn and grow, with the second half being the ultimate improvised composition.  The fingering allowed a concert key Eb to Bb perfect fifth drone to sustain throughout the piece.  I immediately recognized that the gesture Bb–Eb–F in the upper register would become my melodic fulcrum.  As the piece evolved I began, slowly at first, to open and close the Octave and G keys, low F and Fork F keys.  I eventually entered the compositional section by creating several recurring loops of sound with specific notes trilling in repetition.  Near the two thirds point in the improvisation I began opening and closing the fork F key fully, which began forcing the upper octave Concert Bb to pulse louder than surrounding material.