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The melody man, the melody!!!! Not a fan of the kind of smooth jazz inflections on the head.

Other than that, you're a great player, you have a nice sound and a powerful rhythm section. I like your drummer's approach. And he plays brushes.

Some of your improv ideas fall short but mainly because you're taking chances and I don't really mind as a consequence. Also, you could have maybe paced yourself a little more to build intensity.

Were you looking for any kind of specific feedback?
 

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ya specific stuff would be cool
LOL, I meant were there any particular point you would like a critic on. You're obviously far from being a beginner so it's not like there's anything "wrong" in the way you play. Know what I mean?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
any feedback is good man thanks for listening.. what did you think of the group as a whole? did it sound tight to you?
 

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any feedback is good man thanks for listening.. what did you think of the group as a whole? did it sound tight to you?
I recently discovered we all have a different definition of "tight" so what I'll say is the band sound makes sense as a whole and is very reactive. Although I like the way your drummer plays it may add some "tightness" if he worked a little more within the rhythm section rather than punctuate the soloist that much. I was listening on pretty crappy headphones and I couldn't hear the bass very well so I can't tell you anything about it and that's a shame because a locked in bass & drums is really what makes or breaks it IMO.

Like I said, there's nothing inherently "wrong" with how you play, nor with how the band sounds, "au contraire"!
 

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the smooth jazz inflections did get to me to.
I am listening to solar now, since I know the tune. Doing this because I could not tell what was happening with the harmony with nardis, dont know that one.
This one seems to have more Brecker influence. Actually I can barely hear the guitar on this one, and I also cant tell where the changes are.
There are a lot of cool and hip sounds, like I said very Breckerish. Wish I could tell what it was being played over.
Anywho, sounds good but I cant say anymore since I cant hear much better.
Your sound is good though, so that is nice. :)
 

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Your attacks in playing "solar" are much more solid. Nardis is also a straight ahead style piece, why the mushy slides? Where there is no following note you also slide off the note.

You've obviously got good chops and a command of vocabulary, but I feel that in both pieces you are merely cataloguing what you can do technically rather than giving us a musical story. If nothing else, as Magical Pig points out, you need to at least understand that by pacing yourself you can build to a climax. Instead we hear a barrage of notes running up and down the sax at a single (high) volume level. What do we get from this? Yes you have some mastery over the instrument. What else?

There are lots of people who listen to music in order to be touched or moved by it. There are some who listen to their Hi Fi and only hear the fidelity (music doesn't communicate that much to them). There are very few who want to listen to someone who has little to communicate other than their level of technical ability.

The question of "tight" Magic Pig also covers. If tight just means that you are all in the same rhythm and end at the same point, then yes it’s "tight". If you are asking if you all play with the same intensity and feeling, and are interpreting the music the same way, then no. Play your solo then play the keyboard or the bass solo separately. Who would guess you are playing the same tune?

From these two clips I'm guessing that you like to play at the edge of your ability as much as possible. This can be interesting/exciting for a short while. Everyone likes to see someone on a tightrope with some just waiting for them to fall off. After a while it’s obvious you are being pummelled by an ego rather than having someone share musical thoughts. Yes, sax ego can be just as boring as guitar ego.

You've got enough facility to play, no need to prove this. Just relax and put it to work making music.
 

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It sounded to me like a lot of the time the drummer is listening to him/herself, not the solo, which I think is very good.
This is a very important observation, IMO. The only thing I would disagree with is the "I think this good" part.

I'd put it this way: I think this is more than good, it's essential!
 

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Grafton alto | Martin Comm III tenor
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It sounded to me like a lot of the time the drummer is listening to him/herself, not the solo, which I think is very good.
This is a very important observation, IMO. The only thing I would disagree with is the "I think this good" part.

I'd put it this way: I think this is more than good, it's essential!
How can a solo be "essential" ???
 

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How can a solo be "essential" ???
I think this got lost in translation. As I read it - Joe Giardullo thought Pete Thomas was saying that he thought a drummer listening to a solo was good whereas JG said that was essential. However, JG missed that Pete was actually saying that the solo was good but that the drummer didn't appear to support that because they weren't supporting the solo.
 

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Pardon me for muddying up something that should be simple. My bad.

I am a firm believer in individual players taking their own path through the music. That is what I mean by "essential".
I was just trying to add emphasis to what Pete had posted.

When Pete wrote "the drummer is listening to him/herself, not the solo, which I think is very good", I took that to mean that listening to him/herself and not the soloist was the "very good thing".

That's what I think is essential. It is a part of my musical aesthetic and has been for 40 years. I know it is not something that is generally thought to be a good thing, but I see it as an essential component of modern music, and I listen to a lot of music that starts from that point of view.

I thought that was the point Pete was making and I was happy to see a post with that point of view. Now, I'm not sure if that is what Pete was saying.

Oh well.
 

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When Pete wrote "the drummer is listening to him/herself, not the solo, which I think is very good", I took that to mean that listening to him/herself and not the soloist was the "very good thing".

That's what I think is essential. It is a part of my musical aesthetic and has been for 40 years. I know it is not something that is generally thought to be a good thing, but I see it as an essential component of modern music, and I listen to a lot of music that starts from that point of view.

I thought that was the point Pete was making and I was happy to see a post with that point of view. Now, I'm not sure if that is what Pete was saying.
No, I meant the opposite.

That it is a very bad thing for the drummer to not be listening to the soloist, but that the solo was a good solo.

I can't imagine how, in this style of music, it could be good or essential for the drummer to not be listening to the rest of the band.
 

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No, I menat the opposite.

That it is a very bad thing for the drummer to not be listening to the soloist, but that the solo was a good solo.

I can't imagine how, in this style of music, it could be good or essential for the drummer to not be listening to the rest of the band.
It's called "independence".

In my experience, when a player follows too closely what another player is doing, more is lost than gained.
I'd rather that the drummer, as was done in this case, follow his/her own ideas rather than abandoning those ideas.

The soloist (and the rest of the band), then, has new ideas to work with, if he so chooses.

As a player, I think it's essential to work with players who provide strong, independent ideas.

It's not exactly "not listening", either.
It's actually what a player actually does with that listening.
 

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It's called "independence".
Nothing wrong with that

In my experience, when a player follows too closely what another player is doing, more is lost than gained.
I agree that can be very true, I personally I dislike it when a drummer starts playing too closely with what I do as soloist.

However that isn't what I was saying. I apologise for my post being a bit ambiguous. Just to clarify so hopefully I won't be misunderstood or misinterpreted.

All I said was the drummer didn't seem to be listening to the soloist. I didn't say or suggest that the drummer ought to follow the soloist too closely (as you seem to imply that I said).

IMO these are not usually good things in this style of music:

  • Not listen to the soloist and go your own way
  • Follow a soloist too closely

The good things IMO are:

  • Listen to the soloist and complement what they do
  • Feed some fresh ideas if appropriate to what the soloist is doing
  • Be sensitive to when it works to just play simple time and not loads of fills or cross rhythms
  • Be aware of the soloist's dynamics
  • Help the soloist build the solo
 

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Hopefully we get where both Joe and Pete are coming from and yes, each voce is and should be distinct and it's certainly important for rhythm to keep that heart beat that drives all else. There is however a basic underpinning that makes any group dynamic work. You need to have a shared vision of what you are doing/communicating together. Often this is just playing a standard which dictates key, melody, and the mood/feeling. In every great recording I’ve heard, no matter who was playing (different style players), or even if it was free jazz, what made it work was that all were pushing in the same direction. What doesn't work in this recording is that even all are together in terms of rhythm, chord changes etc., there is no cohesion. Each plays without any reference to the others and nothing comes together to give a feeling of the whole. This shouldn't be taken as a lone criticism as many groups have this failing. It's just a little surprising as the level of musicianship is otherwise very good.

I might not have bothered to comment but Jtrey wanted to know if they were "tight". This is a core question relevant to both Joe and Pete’s comments. Both elements that need to be present. In this case it’s mostly one-sided with each player playing autonomously with little or no concession to a shared musical vision.
 
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