Sax on the Web Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi :)

I've been getting some requests lately to create some new tools for learning the scales. When you're just getting started it can be a bit of a hassle learning them, since beginners are usually also still struggling with embouchure, posture, etc all at the same time. So I designed an Ebook that is a very practical visualization of all the major and minor scales across the whole range of the saxophone (any type) all in my ISS fingerchart format. This way you can forget about the mental calculations for a bit (if you want) and just focus completely on the physical act of playing the scales right of the paper. As you do that and get better at it, you will quickly create more mental space to focus on the theory.

All in all a nifty tool I think :) Hope you will enjoy it.

You can download it here:

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
JamesD,
Very nice job! Great idea for beginners like me.
Of course I was excited thinking it was a free download.

Alas, it is not free, but the cost is quite reasonable. I was glad to make the purchase.

All I gotta do now is practice . . .

- Paul
 

·
The most prolific Distinguished SOTW poster, Forum
Joined
·
27,650 Posts
How does this contrast with Joe Viola's scale and chord books?
 

·
Forum Contributor 2015, seeker of the knowing of t
Joined
·
4,344 Posts
So you've developed fingering charts for every scale? Isn't that a whole lot of unnecessary stuff?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
SaxPunter,
Yeah - it's unnecessary when you already know your fingerings! But I don't.

I find the standard finger charts are a bit cumbersome. I'm hoping that the 'Scale Book' will allow me to burn the finger chart into my brain faster. I can read music and I already know scales. There might be other options (e.g. - Gary's reference to 'Joe Viola'). At least this one has a nice layout and I can print full size color sheets from the PDF.

- Paul
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the replies guys :)

Actually, the main thing is that most finger charts are designed as if looking at the saxophone from the front (the opposite of how we're
holding it while playing). I found that this makes for a whole lot of mental acrobatics in the mind of the beginner when learning the scales at first. By re-designing the charts so that
it's as if we're holding the sax in front of us (like when we are playing) its far easier to use them. With the old fashioned charts it always
takes a few seconds to flip around each image in the mind before it can be applied, but I found, by re-designing it this way, we can truly play the notes
right of the page and it feels very natural. (What you are doing with your left hand is actually on the left, and what you're doing on the right is actually on the right)

I find this helps to create a better (more clear) mental picture of the sax in the mind of the student. And that makes other things easier
down the road :).
 

·
Forum Contributor 2015, seeker of the knowing of t
Joined
·
4,344 Posts
The charts are nice, but I am questioning the usefulness of them in learning scales. Really, once a student has learned where all the notes are, adding an extra step of referencing a finger chart for every scale just seems to add unnecessary work if you ask me and I think it may actually make the process longer and harder.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
The charts are nice, but I am questioning the usefulness of them in learning scales. Really, once a student has learned where all the notes are, adding an extra step of referencing a finger chart for every scale just seems to add unnecessary work if you ask me and I think it may actually make the process longer and harder.
I believe different students like to learn in different ways :). Maybe you are a more abstract learner. I have some students to whom I can explain the structure of major scales (for the first time) on the piano, and they can very quickly work out all the scales in their mind on the sax (type of students that is also very good and enjoys doing maths and stuff), but I find many more of my students are not so good at this and they much rather have a clear picture of each scale on paper. As they play through them they very quickly pick them up and remember (type of person that is better at creative stuff). Some of them even print some of the sheets out on A4 or A3 and hang it on a wall for a while so they can use it easily during practice every day. I think it's all about whether you are someone who enjoys learning theory first, and then putting it into practice, or if you're the type of person that much rather starts with doing stuff, and then likes to learn the theory as they go.

I think both approaches are very valid.
 

·
Forum Contributor 2015, seeker of the knowing of t
Joined
·
4,344 Posts
I'm not talking about having the scales written out, I'm talking about having a fingering diagram for each scale. Isn't that what you have produced? If so I think it's an extra step for most. Learn the chromatic scale once, the fingering becomes automatic. Justify it however you want, Im not buying...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
144 Posts
Hi James, I viewed a few of your videos when I first decided to learn to play the sax. I've enjoyed them. Thanks for putting them out there.

Is your site down? I'm unable to access the links above.
 

·
Distinguished Member, Forum Contributor 2012-2015
Joined
·
5,880 Posts
I'm not talking about having the scales written out, I'm talking about having a fingering diagram for each scale. Isn't that what you have produced? If so I think it's an extra step for most. Learn the chromatic scale once, the fingering becomes automatic. Justify it however you want, Im not buying...
+1
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
277 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Hi James, I viewed a few of your videos when I first decided to learn to play the sax. I've enjoyed them. Thanks for putting them out there.

Is your site down? I'm unable to access the links above.
Thanks :) Always nice to hear :). The link should work fine. Perhaps the server was overloaded for a moment.
 

·
Distinguished SOTW Member
Joined
·
6,862 Posts
I think both approaches are very valid.
You are right. They are.

However, I do not believe that looking at a graphic of a scale made up of a series of fingering charts is an example of "learning by doing." If it is anything, it is an abstraction. When students write out their own charts, diagrams, etc. they are reflecting on something they are doing. This is a very powerful form of practical learning.

FWIW: I think the most purely practical approach to learning scales is the one very many of the best teachers advocate. That is, students learn the basic intervals inside the scale on one root and then apply those intervals to build other scales based on the other roots.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top