06/01/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 152)

12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 152

Date: 06/01/2013

Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Location: Meeting room inside the Good Shepherd Center.  Seattle, WA


The Good Shepherd Center is a space that I’ve performed in many, many times over.  The massive, historic building was, until coming under the ownership of Historic Seattle, a Catholic girls school long ago.  The main performance space is located on the top floor of the building, formerly a chapel with 30 foot ceilings.  However today I recorded in one of the many old school rooms on the lower floor.  Though this was one of many such rooms the acoustics were simply outstanding and I couldn’t resist performing an improvisation.  The room was approximately 20 feet long by 10 feet wide, with old hardwood floors and at least a 15 foot ceiling.  

It is strictly off limits to perform in any other area of the building other than the main performance hall, but I’ve found time and time again throughout this project that I can generally pull my horn out any place I become inspired to play in.  I’ve found no one stopping me from doing so in most cases.  Maybe it’s because I’m often in and out of these public spaces so quickly, but no matter what the reason for my sucess I’m very encouraged to know that I can play this music just about anywhere I feel like.  

During this improvisation I worked with the natural reverberance of the room.  I used split tone fingerings to make close-knit sound clusters, bending and pulsing them with tongue articulation.  Immediately after beginning the improvisation my mind gravitated towards creating tiny dots of higher octave pitches in between these clusters, and this become a point of reference during the piece.  This device was used no matter if the chord clusters were being held out, double tongued or played in rapid motion from one to the other.   


The image accompanying today’s post by comic artist Robert Tinnell.