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Lately I've been listening to a lot of Bix, with the bass sax parts by Rollini or Min Leibrook (might be someone else in there on some of the tunes, I don't know).

Other than blindingly obvious statements like "listen and transcribe" does anyone have ideas on how to start doing some of the bass line things they do? It's not just roots and fifths all the time. I try to do some similar things but haven't cracked the code.
 

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Good luck. Those guys were geniuses - I loved their stuff. There's also Joe Rushton, who played with Red Nichols' Five Pennies for years. I saw Rushton live and even stood next to him in the men's room (probably too much info there).

There was also Ed Penner, who played bass sax with the Firehouse Five plus Two in their earliest recordings. But Penner's bass sax wasn't well-captured on those sides. Penner switched to tuba after that.

Last February, I sent a weekend in Montana playing with an excellent bass sax player, John Goodrich (who is also a sop sax/clarinet expert, and can be seen on Youtube doing bass sax duets with Paul Woltz and trios with Paul and Peiter Meijers with the Uptown Lowdown JB out of Seattle).

When I listen to those players you mentioned, I hear grace-notes off the beat leading into the next phrase and chord-changes - filler if you will. Hard to capture style, though. DAVE
 
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