12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 97
Instrument: Tenor saxophone
Location: A hallway inside the Comcast Arena. Everett, WA
This afternoon I found myself in a very peculiar setting. These days my artistic energy is devoted to my own work and those closely associated to me. I had a performance tonight playing Duke Ellington music with the Everett Philharmonic Orchestra. In between the afternoon rehearsal and evening performance, I had a free hour that I dedicated to my improvisation recording. The event was held in the Comcast Arena, which looked as though the space itself was the exact personification of that company. The walls were painted a gravely color, with paneled ceilings and muted industrial carpet. The entire complex was sparkling clean with not an unnecessary object in sight. In fact, in the long, silent hallways I couldn’t find even a chair or moveable garbage can to set my microphone on. This sterol, controlled environment was so different that anything I experience on a daily basis, I became greatly inspired to record a response piece to the space itself.
During this improvisation I worked with pliable false-fingerings and double tonging. The particular style of double tonging in this piece usually creates sores on the tip of my tongue the next day, and because of the discomfort I generally reserve it for the right moments. While double tonging with the tip, I cup the middle section of my tongue and move side to side, back and forth across the tip of the reed. My level of volume was medium to loud overall, and I tried to create a center of harmonic action that had a climbing chromatic affect as the improvisation took shape. I went in between moments of controlled fingering cycles to pockets of energy on a few different pitches, to screaming into my horn. I maintained the double-tonging from start to finish.