05/23/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 143)


12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 143

Date: 05/23/2013

Instrument: Alto saxophone

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


Today I worked with non-tempered pitches that had a siren-like call to them, surrounded by undulating tones that were muted and presented at a steady pace beneath.  There were two siren calls, the first being in the upper register with very bright and present tones, and the second being in the upper-mid register with more of a subdued quality.  I thought of this improvisation as occupying two words, the first being the siren pitches and the second being the lower tones.  I attempted to keep the lower world, with it’s twisting, cyclic sounds coursing nearly at all times, whereas the upper siren-calls would only step into the forefront occasionally.  

There was a single fingering used during this improvisation, with side keys added or taken away to create the cycles.  The siren call in the upper register used the follow fingering:

(Left Hand) B-A-G keys, Octave, Low Bb // (Right Hand) E-D keys.  Flick open and closed the Low C to allow the pitch to pop out at a high level of volume.  This create the notes (in the alto key) of High C, and High D (quarter step sharp).

The siren call in the upper-mid register used the same fingering, but had the Low C held completely down.  The undulating lower register tones used primarily the low F# and A, and were made with the above finger creating a cycle by opening and closing the Palm Eb and Side C one at a time in repetition.


The image “‘61 Pontiac” accompanying today’s post by Robert Bechtle (1968-69)