10/23/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 296)

12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 296

Date: 10/23/2013

Instrument: Tenor saxophone

Location: Home studio in Clinton, WA (Whidbey Island)


In this improvisation I worked on pulling aggressive sound textures out of the horn through singing into it with a fixed drone pitch beneath.  The main points of tighter, gritty oscillation occur a half step above the root in the lower register, as well as a half step below the root in the upper register.  I purposefully wanted an imbalanced approach during this improvisation.  I heard the quiet storm that opens the piece as a pre-cursor to the more overt sound aggression to come.  

During this piece I kept my singing range within the span of an octave.  I chose a range that was comfortable to sing, and a pitch that I was able to hold as static as possible while singing.  The range spanned the low register F to the mid register F, with the Low F being the drone pitch.  I avoided singing intervallically and instead snaked my way up and down the horn.  Despite the high amount of sound density in this piece I wanted to limit the spectrum of sounds to be introduced.  There is one bright chirp near the end of the piece, which was unintentional.  I avoided allowing the horn to begin squealing or squawking, and tried to sing with a more pure tone quality to see what sounds could be created with a more fundamental approach to air flow in and out of the horn. 

In the last 30 seconds of so of the improvisation, I held out the low F in unison with the fingered F pitch.  There was a specific vibration in my chest that was occurring, possibly due to my tired vocal chords, and while playing I could hear another F speaking a full octave below.  It entered the sound spectrum in fleeting moments that were difficult to hold on to.  


The image “Orange Sound, project” accompanying today’s post by Lauretta Cinciarelli (1999).