06/16/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 167)


12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 167

Date: 06/16/2013

Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Location: The rec room in my childhood home.  Edmonds, WA

This morning I visited with my Mom back at my family home in Edmonds.  I had just a few minutes to warm up and found myself inspired by a story I had heard on NPR on the drive over.  An interviewee presented a case that 1963 was the most artistically influential and critical year of development for the Beatles.  It was interesting to hear that they had over 40 in-studio performances for the BBC that year, and for some reason I walked away with the song “Fool on the Hill” semi-permanently implanted in my brain throughout the day, even though that song appeared several years later.  I decided to explore a very tonal, lyrical melody with an accompanying split tone chord to pay homage to my day-long obsession with this song.

The series of upper register pitches were done with traditional fingerings, albeit the tenor High F was played using the Fork fingering, which produced more of a muted sound on my horn.  The chord played each time after the two upper pitches produces a minor third with the tenor pitches E and C, each approximately a quarter step high.  To punctuate the overall melodic color, I began slightly altering the broader sound by incorporating occasional dots by striking the Side High F key.  The occasional rapid cycles were played by moving my index and middle fingers in a trilling fashion against the High Side F# key.  The brief held pitches were created by then holding the Side High F key down.  The rhythm “1–2&– 3–4&–5–6” played near the 2/3 point in the improvisation was accomplished by putting down and then removing this same Side F key while continuing the original sound cycle.  

The fingerings:

Gesture 1: Altissimo G

Gesture 2: Fork F

Gesture 3: E/C: each a quarter step high.  (Left Hand) B-A keys, Octave, Palm Eb


The image accompanying today’s is the Beatles.