Composed: 2011 Duration: 7 mins.
Instrumentation: Sax Quartet SATB Level E
ISMN: 979-0-720137-21-6 Catalogue: RM1080
Level: E Country: United States
The Melbourne Sonata is a major work for soprano saxophone & piano. It is dedicated to Irish saxophonist Gerard McChrystal and is a 12 minute composition in three movements, Go, Slow and Blow.
The effective performance of this piece lies in the ability of the duo to maintian considerable intensity throughout. The two parts are tightly integrated and at times the two instruments should be indistinguiable from one another. With few gaps in the saxophone part, circular breathing essential. The lines weave in and out of each other leaving neither instrument prominent. With the pedal depressed throughout the 2nd movement, some of the saxophone notes should cause the piano to resonate. It was not my intention to have the saxophone playing into the piano but rather a resonant 3rd voice in the distance. The final movement requires clarity of articulation and a hint of a Celtic feel.
This arrangement of the lovely traditional Christmas carol is set in a lush, sometimes romantic style of a quasi-jazz saxophone section. It is packed with interesting harmonic movement and yet always stays true to the original melody that all know and love. The writing is challenging enough to make it interesting and yet it never crosses over into the “too difficult” category that some jazz saxophone section writing can stray in to. The short “Supersax” two thirds the way through is guaranteed to give listeners goose bumps and all in all this chart is sure to be a crowd pleaser no matter where it’s performed.
This volume (120+ pages) was created to provide a practice method for four years of study in jazz. The large majority of this book focuses on exercises and patterns that form the technical framework for this study and addresses the first element of this practice strategy. Exercises are in all twelve keys moving by step, chromatically, circle of 4ths, and minor thirds to prepare for common progressions. Key signatures in exercises are in the tonic key and some accidentals have been altered for ease of reading. The text in the beginning of this book explains how to take these technical exercises and create the eighth note lines which form the basis for many jazz solos.
The goal of these etudes is to help students gain technical command of multiphonics and to become familiar with the phrasing, interpretation and notation of contemporary music. Multiphonics, or the simultaneous production of more then one note, are an important element of the new experimental style know as musique contemporaine, or contemporary music. The following studies are not a compressive listing of multiphonics, rather they introduced them progressively in a musical context. Technical mastery of multiophonics will require students to gain fluency in two areas. The simpler task is to learn the often awkward cross-fingerings characteristic of multiphonics. This is just a question of practicing individual multiphonics as they are encountered. More challenging is learning how to make multiphonics speak which will require a mastery of voicing, the correct placement of everything behind the lips, including the tongue, oral cavity, soft palate and throat. The best way to accomplish this is to become fluent in harmonics or overtones. A series of exercises on harmonics have been provided as preliminary studies. In addition to helping produce multiphonics the study of harmonics will also facilitate altissimo and a general improvement in sound production. If harmonics and multiphonics speak it is a good indication that proper embouchure, air support and voicing are being used.