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http://www.soundclick.com/player/single_player.cfm?songid=10729957&q=hi

The tuning in the begining is a little off but it gets better. The monitors were not working so it was a little hard to hear but what else is new. I was playing my Hollywood with my Barone Classic. The change always sounds a little off to me. It goes from a C- to F7. The F7 never really sounds locked in to me. If anything sticks out to you about my playing and how I could improve please let me know. Thanks!
 

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It's always hard to judge a pop/rock sax recording from a club date or rehearsal....the heat of the moment is on, it is hard for the player to hear him or her self with the monitors, and many other factors.

That being said, I really like your intensity and aggressive approach to the solo. Subtleties are often lost in the loud volume from the other instruments and people talking, so "going for it" really makes people notice the solo and connect with it more. Once you state a strong idea, feel free to let it breathe and think for a second about your next idea. The same fast blues and pentatonic ideas are great in a guitar solo, but will barely get a saxophone player noticed. Try singing some slower, punchy, melodic licks over this track and play them on your horn; leave some space in between each one so listeners can digest each idea. I know myself that playing fewer notes in a loud, R&B setting is very hard to do and you feel like you're not doing enough, but it will pay off when everyday people can relate to your solo.

When the tune gets to the 2nd change, I believe they are going from an F7 to G7, which would lend itself well to G dominant licks. Playing A on the F7 and B natural on the G7 somewhere in this section would really help "make the changes" in an otherwise diatonic tune.

Thanks for posting the clip! Hope that helps.
 

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When the tune gets to the 2nd change, I believe they are going from an F7 to G7, which would lend itself well to G dominant licks. Playing A on the F7 and B natural on the G7 somewhere in this section would really help "make the changes" in an otherwise diatonic tune.
That's pretty much exactly what I noticed as well. As you also said, I'd try to be a little more simple......slow down!
Took me way too long to realize I wasn't being paid "per note"! Don't worry about or try to play every fast lick known to mankind during a 1 minute solo!

John
 

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You got a nice attitude with lots of energy in your playing wich i like. Try to limit yourself to only 3 notes, for example C-Eb-F. This is a good way for me to force myself to play these notes in different ways. Try to be creative with these notes, make them swing, different attacks, bends etc. Its a efficient way for me to explore and put more meaning into each note.
 

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I like the approach, nice and aggressive. However, it does sound a bit unstable to me rhythmically, it's not really 'in the groove' so to speak.
That said, nice sound and good control, and a cool sounding band.
My € 0.02
 

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Dude you have always sounded good to me!

In the context of this soul/funk band I would have to agree with the posts above that you should play less, and articulate more.

Less is more in this type of music. Start solos slow and low, end fast and furious!

B
 

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I agree with the majority of replies. In general, people expect the guitars to play the crazy stuff. And while saxes can too, most people I've talked to would rather hear a melodic sax solo. The instrument is just better sounding for it. Melodic and clear. You'll be remembered for that. Otherwise it just sounds like a competition between the amped guitars and you and you most likely won't win that battle in the minds of the listeners. They're the ones who judge us, after all.

It isn't a competition for who can cram the most notes into a small time frame. In order to stand out, you have to be the opposite of what the guitars are doing. Doesn't mean you can't show your strengths, but it does mean you have to play those strengths in a way that compliments You. I've heard enough sax players get caught up in the whole ability competition thing. As if fast equals good. It doesn't.

I don't mean this to sound harch in any way. Listen to the musical setting you're playing in and let that help determine how you can best showcase your instrument and your ability.

Harv
 

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http://www.soundclick.com/player/single_player.cfm?songid=10729957&q=hi

The tuning in the begining is a little off but it gets better. The monitors were not working so it was a little hard to hear but what else is new. I was playing my Hollywood with my Barone Classic. The change always sounds a little off to me. It goes from a C- to F7. The F7 never really sounds locked in to me. If anything sticks out to you about my playing and how I could improve please let me know. Thanks!
Please note that my comments are of the 'do as I say, not do as I do' variety, and, since you want criticism, I'm here to give it ....

First, it is impossible for me to play when I can't hear myself. It destroys confidence and produces internal discord. You have to play from within, and that is impossible for me when I feel like I'm being assaulted by noise. At a minimum, tell the band to quiet down at least at the beginning of your jam, until you can get your feet on the ground so to speak.

I'd say that the main problem is that your articulation is terrible (I don't articulate at all). You need to work on that big time. If you're in the SF area email me and I'll give you the name of a badddd teacher in Oaktown who articulates like a m***f*** and will try to teach you (I was satisfied with my lack of articulation and never tried to learn how to do it, it's a style thing, but if I was starting over, I'd study articulation hard).
 

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First I'd smack the sound tech about the face and ears. Solo's are supposed to POP. If you dont have a sound person, ask all other players to lighten up when the solos happen. It can be done. You can obviously play. You will automatically play better when you don't feel you have to overblow every note to be heard. Your solos will instantly become more dynamic and melodic the moment you can whisper out some notes as well as scream some. The world changed for me when I got a great personal monitor and cranked it up. I'm pretty sure you already have the skill-set. You just need to arrange it so you can use them. A long discussion with the band as well as just stopping some songs in mid-rehearsal to "discuss" this will / should eventually get the message out.

My favorite approach lately is to stop the rehearsal, look at the offending player and say, "You need to turn down or everyone else needs to crank it way up. What's it gonna be?"
 

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http://www.soundclick.com/player/single_player.cfm?songid=10729957&q=hi

The tuning in the begining is a little off but it gets better. The monitors were not working so it was a little hard to hear but what else is new. I was playing my Hollywood with my Barone Classic. The change always sounds a little off to me. It goes from a C- to F7. The F7 never really sounds locked in to me. If anything sticks out to you about my playing and how I could improve please let me know. Thanks!
I heard the Maiden Voyage clip. Nice sound. Great feel. Good vibrato and control. You just might be a jazz player and don't know it. You really felt that.

That's the right direction. What I mean is play ballads. Standards. That's how you really build up your sound regardless of what genre you play. Young guys just don't hear ballads. Listen to Dexter Gordon. He wrote the book.

That's what the whole thing is about, feeling. Once you feel it if you've done your homework every thing falls in place. Don't approach it intellectually, feel it.

Like I said earlier you have to do your homework too.

Practice does not make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect.

The guys that are saying less is more are correct. In that music you have to hit peaks quickly sometimes.

I had the pleasure of hanging out with Big Jay McNeely one time.

Now that's who you should check out.

Also Lenny Pickett. That cat's got it down.

That's how you learn. Listen to the masters. It's easy. That's how they learned.

They'll say " you should have heard the guys I heard."

Not many learn in a vacuum.

One thing I do know about the more popular styles is you can't fake it like so many do in jazz.

R & B, Rock N Roll, all that came from the blues. Rock N Roll is just the blues speeded up.

You can't fake the blues. You gotta feel it in your soul.
 

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Thanks so much for all of your suggestions. I will do more in the area of singing simple melodic lines and getting them on my horn. It is something I just started doing but I really see the power in it and I plan to do it a lot more.

It is always hard when the sound on stage is way to loud and you have two volumes, loud and as loud as possible. It makes my tense up and makes everything harder for me to do. I have been thinking of a tactful way to bring this up but I only show up to a third of the rehearsals so I don't try to do much more than play my parts well. I should be more vocal because I end up writing about 80% of the melodies for this group. They are nice guys and I play with them for the hang as much or more than the music. I do like funky horn music though!

I was noticing my lack of articulation as well. It seems like when I to fast stuff it is either jazz tonguing or slurred. I would really like to expand my skills in this area. If anyone has some good suggestions about articulations I would love to hear.

I think one of the reasons I have been playing stuff fast is because I have been spending a lot of time working on bebop patterns and scales at home. I love jazz, blues, R&B, soul and anything with horns really. As a result I'm ok at a lot of styles but master of none.

You guys really put some thought into this and I really appreciate it. Every single post on this thread has been good for me to read and I feel blessed that I have such a big pool of solid players to help me. You guys are the back bone of this forum and the reason I'm online. I have gotten so much better since I started searching through this forum.
 

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i agree with the relative sound level sentiment. your solo is very energetic, but it gets muddled because of the relative (to the band)volume. they need to turn down and turn you up. i actually liked your composition, even at the c-f7 change. regarding qty of notes - some folks like it, some don't, but i like it (done well). if that's what you want to play, do it with all you can.
even the guitar gets muddled shortly into his solo - when he starts adding volume.
sound mix is where the biggest improvement is here.
 

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Discussion Starter #15

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I liked your solo's and sound. Also agree with most comments above and that the biggest issue seems to be that the others are too loud. But... you play a 7* and that is quite closed for playing in a loud band. Guys like Big Jay ( View attachment 28335 ) and Lenny Pickett (mentioned above) play bigger tips. I switched to a 10* MPC since I play as a soloist in a loud Big Band, that helped me a lot with cutting through (but I have other issues in my playing :bluewink:).
 

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Tip openings have nothing to do with volume. As an example, I saw Maceo one day at a gig when his mic failed. I could still hear him clearly in the horn section (with Ellis and Wesley who WERE playing in their mics at full volume).
It's all a matter of how you use your air, where you point your sound etc etc.
 

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Tip openings have nothing to do with volume. As an example, I saw Maceo one day at a gig when his mic failed. I could still hear him clearly in the horn section (with Ellis and Wesley who WERE playing in their mics at full volume).
It's all a matter of how you use your air, where you point your sound etc etc.
Hi Maarten. My personal experience is different, having compared lots of different pieces with different tip sizes (from a NY Double Ring 4* to a Florida USA 11* and Berg 150/2). Also had lots of discussion on this topic with guys like Hans Dulfer, Rinus Groeneveld, Wouter Kiers, Boris van der Lek and Ruud de Vries, all Dutch pro's with a huge sound and playing on big tips (> 9) in loud environments.

But I know that your remark is also very valid. Playing loud on smaller tips works probably well for very advanced players like you, that really control their air support very well (I don't belong by far to that group!). Recently also discussed this with Robert Veen (a great Dutch player who can play in every style on every sax!), who played real loud on his tenor in a very loud tenor-battle session in Leiden. To my surprise he played on a vintage HR Berg 85/2 with very hard reeds and with a tremendous (and loud!) sound.

So I guess both of our opinions are a part of 'the truth' :).
 
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