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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,
I've been playing the sax for 7 months and recently learned and performed Blue Monk.
My teacher wants me to learn another blues-like song and told me to choose one.
Ideally, it would be -like blue monk- a 12 bar blues, well-known and played by many famous sax players.
Do you have any recommendations?
 

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What tunes are you considering? Your teacher probably assigned you to pick your next tune so that you'd do some legwork on your own and learn more in the process. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
well, there's Blues for Alice, but it's not really a blues. There's Equinox, but I feel the theme is too simple. Au privave, on the other hand, is too complex.
My favourites so far are Tenor Madness and Now's the time, the themes are kinda similar. I also love what Rollings and Parker respectively do on their solos. Maybe Tenor madness is preferable because I play the tenor, or maybe Now's the time is a better choice because I would have to traspose the parts of the solo that I like.

But none of them feel very "blue" like Blue Monk does with its chromatism.
 

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well, there's Blues for Alice, but it's not really a blues. There's Equinox, but I feel the theme is too simple. Au privave, on the other hand, is too complex.
My favourites so far are Tenor Madness and Now's the time, the themes are kinda similar. I also love what Rollings and Parker respectively do on their solos. Maybe Tenor madness is preferable because I play the tenor, or maybe Now's the time is a better choice because I would have to traspose the parts of the solo that I like.

But none of them feel very "blue" like Blue Monk does with its chromatism.
Blues for Alice is actually a blues, if you look at the chord changes closely you'll notice that it goes to the 4 chord in bar 5, and to the 5 chord in bar 8, so it keeps the overall structure, it just throws in some extra turnarounds along the way. :) but any of the tunes you listed would be great to learn. as you keep playing you'll have the chance to learn tons of blues tunes, so for now you should just pick one that you like and jump in.
 

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Soul Station and Dig Dis, both by Hank Mobley. But yeah, I think the point was to stumble around the rabbit hole yourself until you find something that grabs you. Why not pull up Pandora, search on "blues saxophone" and listen for a few days?
 

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Blues for Alice is actually a blues, if you look at the chord changes closely you'll notice that it goes to the 4 chord in bar 5, and to the 5 chord in bar 8, so it keeps the overall structure, it just throws in some extra turnarounds along the way. :)
Yes, definitely a blues. A 12 bar blues. However, one minor correction (just to avoid any confusion), I think you mean it goes to the V7 chord in bar 10; it's a ii-V7 in bar 9 and 10, very typical of the blues. Bar 8 is a VI7 chord, also common in the blues.

note: ii-V changes in bars 9 & 10 and iii-VI7 changes in bars 7 & 8 are more typical of 'jazz blues,' (as opposed to the more basic 'I IV V blues') but they also are common in jump blues and swing, and can be substituted even in the most basic down home blues if you want.
 

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Everyone is different, but there is no way I could play "Blues For Alice" after only playing sax 7 months. How about Watermelon Man or Impressions?
 

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Everyone is different, but there is no way I could play "Blues For Alice" after only playing sax 7 months. How about Watermelon Man or Impressions?
+1 regarding Blues For Alice. I wasn't recommending that one, just commenting on the changes in it. Watermelon Man is a great tune to learn; it's a 16 bar blues. I wouldn't call Impressions a blues, but almost anything, especially a minor tune, can be played in a bluesy style.

Probably the OP would do well to start with a 12 bar blues and really master that format first, or at least in response to what his teacher is asking for.
 

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Yes, definitely a blues. A 12 bar blues. However, one minor correction (just to avoid any confusion), I think you mean it goes to the V7 chord in bar 10; it's a ii-V7 in bar 9 and 10, very typical of the blues. Bar 8 is a VI7 chord, also common in the blues.

note: ii-V changes in bars 9 & 10 and iii-VI7 changes in bars 7 & 8 are more typical of 'jazz blues,' (as opposed to the more basic 'I IV V blues') but they also are common in jump blues and swing, and can be substituted even in the most basic down home blues if you want.
you're right, i can't count! i think what i meant to say was that it goes to the V bar 9, thinking of the ii in the ii-V as being part of the V chord, since i think of the basic structure of the blues as being 4 bars of I, 2 bars of IV, 2 bars of I, 2 bars of V, and 2 bars of I, even though i can't remember the last time i played a blues without at least the IV chord thrown in in bar 10.
 

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you're right, i can't count! i think what i meant to say was that it goes to the V bar 9, thinking of the ii in the ii-V as being part of the V chord, since i think of the basic structure of the blues as being 4 bars of I, 2 bars of IV, 2 bars of I, 2 bars of V, and 2 bars of I, even though i can't remember the last time i played a blues without at least the IV chord thrown in in bar 10.
Yeah, I knew that's what you meant, but I wanted to point it out in case someone got misled. As to the V-IV changes in bars 9 and 10, yes that's the standard basic blues change and even in the "sophisticated" jazz genre those basic changes have been used plenty often (for ex, Coltrane's tune "Bessie's Blues"). When soloing, you can usually substitute a ii-V or V-V for the V-IV, and vice versa. Plenty of flexibility in the blues; that's the beauty of the blues.

Also, a simple pentatonic or minor blues scale riff is used for some common jazz blues heads (like "Sonnymoon for Two"), but the solos can, and usually do, follow the changes, including substitute chords, etc.
 

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"Trouble so high" by Vera Hall. It is part of the Alan Lomax recordings, highly recommended. Moby made a famous EDM version on "Play", 18 years ago.
 
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