12/27/2013 (12 Moons Solo Project Day 361)

12 Moons Solo Saxophone Project Day 361

Date: 12/27/2013

Instrument: Tenor saxophone

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


Caught between holidays, I have the week off from teaching until after the New Year.  I went to bed early last night and woke up around 5am ready to start the day.  I leisurely went about my tasks this morning, interspersing the day’s obligations with reading, working on album material and practicing.  This relaxed but productive atmosphere highly influenced today’s piece.  I decided to work with two themes in this improvisation: Constant Resonance and Air Flow Articulation.

The term Constant Resonance comes directly from the 12 Moons project itself.  My wife and I recently discussed my use of the phrase as something that appeared fairly often early on in the project.  This is an evolving term for me, and in many ways is just an ever-present focal point in my playing.  I view Constant Resonance as a focus more on liquid, undulating tone textures as the main source for an improvisation, versus rhythm or melody, or harmony.  I worked to incorporate this theme with the physical technique of using my Air Flow as an articulation source verses my tongue.  During this improvisation I used a single fingering, and relied on the tongue movement inside my mouth, mouth shapes and air flow to explore pushing a pulling tones out of the horn.  

The fingering used today was as follows:

Multiphonic fingering with the following primary tones: F# (quarter step flat) G (quarter step sharp) and C#.  Many other pitches in the upper register emerged during the improvisation as well.

(Left Hand) 1-2-3, Low Bb, Octave // (Right Hand) 2-3


The image “El Vendedor de Alcatraces” accompanying today’s post by Diego Rivera.