10/31/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 304)

12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 304

Date: 10/31/2013

Instrument: Tenor saxophone

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


The weather has been colder this past week, and last night there was finally a bit wind to go along with this change.  The winds tend to blow like mad in the Fall on Whidbey, but the days and nights have been so still from the Summer clear through the beginning of Fall.  Before going to bed last night, I stepped outside for a few minutes to feel, smell and listen to the wind.  I stood on my porch motionless and let the wind whip around me.  While beginning my recording this afternoon I found that this experience was still with me and I decided to record an improvisation that explored these conditions last night.   In my improvisation I used a fixed fingering and moved the air flow up and down the horn with my voice, exploring various colors at every point between.

During this improvisation I used mostly unbroken phrases while singing.  I sung within a comfortable range that allowed me to maintain control, and did various executions of the same ascending and descending shapes to see how the colors would change with repetition.  At times I also focused within a particular range of the horn, trying to learn what overtones I could expect in this area and to allow these overtones to interact in new ways once I had moved on.  The fixed fingering used in this improvisation was as follows:

(Left Hand) 1-2-3, Low B // (Right Hand) 2-3, Low C, Side F#


The image “The Sleep of Reason” accompanying today’s post by Bill Viola (1988).