08/20/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 232)


12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 232

Date: 08/20/2013

Instrument: Soprano saxophone

Location: Some distance into the woods near Locket Lake.  Located in the Necklace Valley and part of the North Cascade range.  WA state.

From August 18th-21st I hiked into the Necklace Valley with my friend and fellow musician Cameron Peace.  In total, we covered approximately 30 miles of very strenuous backpacking, including well established hiking trails, game trails, rock scrambling, and short crossings over alpine glaciers.  The three recordings from August 19th-21st detailed my experiences in some of the locations we visited.

Day 2: August 20th.  Second full day in the valley.

Today we explored the floor of Necklace Valley and the high mountains above it.  We hiked to the far side, coming almost a stones throw from an enormous glacial cirque.  We then forged our own path up the mountain, using the map to walk and climb over 2 miles of a rock slide.  We emerged at the top to find lake after lake, with gorgeous views of the North Cascades all around us.  

After returning to camp at Locket Lake, I walked some distance into the woods and set up my mic at the base of a large Doug Fir.  A creek running out of nearby Al Lake can be heard in the foreground.  I recorded this improvisation first thing in the morning before the sun had fully permeated this part of the forest.  I found a warm patch of sunlight to practice in, and began the process of arriving at this improvisation.  

In today’s piece I wanted to explore the persistent change of the forest.  In what can look like a permanent, unevolving environment, there is of course a torrent of action taking place at all times.  I explored this dynamic environment by using a single fingering with a repetitive, medium tempo pacing, and using my embouchure to uncover sound within the horn.  The fingering was as follows:

(Left Hand) B-A keys, Low Bb // (Right Hand) F-E-D keys, Low C


The image accompanying today’s post is a trail leading up to the Necklace Valley.  WA state.