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I'm not happy with my blues playing.

So in the spirt of Sonny Rollins on the bridge, I'm going to do my own personal mini version of that. Practice nothing but the blues for 1 month.
I'm really serious. I want to play the blues. I will meditate, get into a trance state and ruminate, practice and focus, be in the moment and get in a zone and immerse myself with and become one with the blues. Am I crazy? Has anyone else tried this sort of experiment?


The blues, in all of its many styles, concepts and permutations, but the blues nonetheless. In 12 keys.
Will I get bored and burned out after a few hours or a day??? I'm going to try it when I get back to Costa Rica next week, up in the mountains, away from all the distractions.
 

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I would start with Blues in one key und grow in that. Then you got idears, and later you can transpose them easily. If you start to soon in different keys, you will spread your attention too much, which gives shuttered energy. Being secure in one key, you can go to the next key. So the whole way will be easier.
 

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Has anyone else tried this sort of experiment?

The blues, in all of its many styles, concepts and permutations, but the blues nonetheless. In 12 keys.
I think that's a great goal that actually each sax player should try to achieve. Not as easy as most think, but I'm sure you will learn a lot and come out as a better player if you stick to it.

I have done something like that about 3.5 years ago, but (unfortunately) without the practicing part. I didn't (and don't) have a place to practice anymore, but in that time I could use a small home recording studio of a friend once a month for a few hours. On the UK sax forum of Pete Thomas someone organized a kind of Blues TOTM with each month another Blues key, so I joined that and just recorded and posted a lot of quick and dirty Blues clips in all keys. As mentioned, unfortunately without much practicing (only about 10 minutes before each recording), but I still learned something from it.

Here is a thread where I shared all my (amateur) results of my "playing in different Blues keys adventure":
https://forum.saxontheweb.net/showt...d-Blues-clips-in-all-keys-(an-ongoing-process!)

Would love to repeat this experiment in the same way you are going to approach it, if only I had the opportunity to do so.

Check the YouTube channel of Cliff Smith in case you would like to practice including the use of backing tracks. He has many nice backings in different keys and tempo's:
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=blues+backing+track+cliff+

Good luck with this musical adventure and let us know how it goes (maybe including some sound clips). :)
 

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I'm not happy with my blues playing.

So in the spirt of Sonny Rollins on the bridge, I'm going to do my own personal mini version of that. Practice nothing but the blues for 1 month.
I'm really serious. I want to play the blues. I will meditate, get into a trance state and ruminate, practice and focus, be in the moment and get in a zone and immerse myself with and become one with the blues. Am I crazy? Has anyone else tried this sort of experiment?


The blues, in all of its many styles, concepts and permutations, but the blues nonetheless. In 12 keys.
Will I get bored and burned out after a few hours or a day??? I'm going to try it when I get back to Costa Rica next week, up in the mountains, away from all the distractions.
Great idea, but since you’re asking for feedback I’m wondering what you see as your weaknesses playing the blues currently? What is it you don’t like about your playing?
 

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Practice nothing but the blues for 1 month.

The blues, in all of its many styles, concepts and permutations, but the blues nonetheless. In 12 keys.
Will I get bored and burned out after a few hours or a day???
Well, I practiced the blues for many years (never mind 1 month) and never got bored or burned out. And I still practice the blues, still a lot to learn about playing them in all those concepts and permutations, along with other styles. Then again, to my mind the blues lies at the heart of jazz, rock & roll, R&B, funk, and most other music I like. So when you practice the blues, you are practicing all those styles.

So yeah, 1 month is a good start!
 

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Thanks for asking... For me, it's about more effectively and seamlessly tapping into cosmic energy flow, which is my obsession as a musician. A bit abstract for some but for me perfectly precise and exactly defined. When I play/perform, to achieve a relaxed feel with intensity nonetheless, even at brisk tempi, creating melodies in an alpha state and my energy is flowing without any blockage. Not trying to prove anything, Concentrating on the blues is as perfect vehicle to focus on towards this as anything, (as opposed to long tones LOL) and its fun too.

Great idea, but since you’re asking for feedback I’m wondering what you see as your weaknesses playing the blues currently? What is it you don’t like about your playing?
 

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Its never a bad idea to focus on one form or one concept or one key or anything you want to get better at. After I heard Tommy Castro shread guitar last saturday I decided I want to be able to do that if I want to on a blues solo. So I bought his latest CD and intend on lifting licks and inflections. One thing I'd add to your intend is specific things you want better. K
 

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Thanks for asking... For me, it's about more effectively and seamlessly tapping into cosmic energy flow, which is my obsession as a musician. A bit abstract for some but for me perfectly precise and exactly defined. When I play/perform, to achieve a relaxed feel with intensity nonetheless, even at brisk tempi, creating melodies in an alpha state and my energy is flowing without any blockage. Not trying to prove anything, Concentrating on the blues is as perfect vehicle to focus on towards this as anything, (as opposed to long tones LOL) and its fun too.
I think the blues has always been more about raw emotion than blazing quick fingers and technique. Gimme something where I can hear the pain rather than lightening fast technical licks any day. I admired Stevie Ray Vaughn's skills as a guitarist but for me there was always something missing. When Janis Joplin sang you heard the tears and it ripped your guts. If that's the cosmic flow you are chasing then good for you.
 

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Reminds me of this video, from Bob Reynolds, which I really like. Not that I think you shouldn't practice the blues in every key, but this might give you some inspiration, or something to work on.


-Bubba-
 

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Reminds me of this video, from Bob Reynolds, which I really like. Not that I think you shouldn't practice the blues in every key, but this might give you some inspiration, or something to work on.

-Bubba-
Good lord who is this guy? Dude dude just drones on and on. Insufferably boring, worse than doing long tones or watching paint dry. No cosmic energy flow happening in this. This video should be max 2 1/2 minutes long . Quick example, quick explanation, quick demonstration.
 

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If you can play the blues, In all its' colours, side ways and emotions, from the heart and soul, You can play anything.
And it ain't easy.
 

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I think the blues has always been more about raw emotion than blazing quick fingers and technique.
+1.

And LateNightSax, that's what you have to tap into; the raw emotion of the blues. There are several ways to try and define the blues. Technically, it's a set of changes, usually the 12 bar form, but also 8 bar, 16 bar, or 24 forms, which are simply variations on the 12 bar changes. That's the technical side. But what really defines the blues is the FEEL and the way the music is expressed. An attitude. You can play almost any chord progression or tune with a blues FEEL. Conversely, you could play a 12 bar blues and make it sound nothing like a blues. Which would be fine if that's your goal; quite a few jazz blues tunes take that approach and most listeners wouldn't recognize them as blues, even though they are playing a 'blues' progression.

Anyway, I think you need to learn both the blues changes and the numerous variations on those changes, and most importantly, how to project the feel of the blues. That "feel" is not something that can be easily taught or broken down into a method (aside from some of the "special effects", 'blue' notes & the blues scale, commonly used); you have to listen and get it in your soul, so to speak. Maybe the blues doesn't speak to everyone; if you can't hear it and feel it, you won't be able to play it.
 

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I'm going to do my own personal mini version of that. Practice nothing but the blues for 1 month.
I'm really serious. I want to play the blues. I will meditate, get into a trance state and ruminate, practice and focus, be in the moment and get in a zone and immerse myself with and become one with the blues. Am I crazy? Has anyone else tried this sort of experiment?

The blues, in all of its many styles, concepts and permutations, but the blues nonetheless. In 12 keys.
A bit crazy amyabe.

Learning the blues is not about practising blues things in 12 keys.

It's more about listening to great blues. Transcribing is useful but even kore useful is doing doing tone and [psound exercises. You listen to the great blues players like Lee Allen - he said it all with one note. One note that was full of feel, emotion, soul whatever you call it and everything that other people could do by practising stuff in all 12 keys. So the main thing to practise (IMNO) is being able to get that into your sound. Of course you need the technique to play things with you fingers but more important is the technique to get your thoughts and feelings into your sound - and that only comes with working on your sound.
 

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Reminds me of this video, from Bob Reynolds, which I really like. Not that I think you shouldn't practice the blues in every key, but this might give you some inspiration, or something to work on.


-Bubba-
You can do better than that. There’s endless subs you can come up with through listening.
Joe Henderson’s Isotope and Tetragon. Bud Powell blues. There’s tons of ideas with blues.
That example is my friend calls ”Sears and Roebuck’s” changes
 

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