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Anyone have any thoughts on this idea! SCIENCE: Does it have similar mathmatical structure as do dialects? PHILOSOPHY: "Is riding the groove like writing your own verbal response within a musical conversation?" What is it about the sax that is so inviting to the player and so valuable to the public?
 

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FWIW it has been said that the sax best represents the human voice of all instruments.
 

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Welcome to the forum Robert. Funny you could elicit responses from around the world, but this one's coming from, uhh Buckeye, AZ.

I'm sure someone will say use the search button on this; however, I'm not sure what I would query on since it has a lot of branches. Personally, I don't think saxophone playing is so much a language as it is a voice. The language is music, and there are many musical languages just as there are many spoken languages. As with many spoken languages, there are even some that are not written languages, and so it is with music. In this example, I would say that "jazz" per se is not a written language when it is improvised; however, it may be transcribed and replayed, but it will never be played again for the first time. As with all languages, I'm not sure any of us can put a finger on who was the first person to speak of something, but they can be quoted, and can even be given credit for being the first if there isn't anything out there that can't be found by using someones "search button."

Even jazz is not always original thought, because in some instances players "quote" others musically while making improvised or impromptu statements. As far at the saxophone goes, and what makes it so valuable to the public, it is an instrument that has a voice of it's own, and even can emulate the pitches, timbres, and frequencies of the human voice giving it, in some instances and by some players something that frequently gets mentioned in terms like "soul." Additionally, it is also the flag-bearer of "cool" and is played by many people of above average intelligence, and extremely good looks.
 

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jrvinson45 said:
Additionally, it is also the flag-bearer of "cool" and is played by many people of above average intelligence, and extremely good looks.
That makes me the exception that proves the rule.:(
 

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try imitating a voice like in rap music with your sax - I´d like to see THAT!
it´s harder than one might think because the intervals rappers use are - well...try it.
 

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ismail said:
try imitating a voice like in rap music with your sax
I actually hear rap music having similar rhythms to bebop. That's just my personal opinion.

I also have a belief that whales and dolphins communicate using music. So I don't think that viewing music as a language is all that odd. In fact, I saw a researcher using a soprano sax to try to mimic the whale calls.:argue:
 

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Greg Fishman had a great quote when I interviewed him for SOTW.

Here's the paragraph that covers it:

"My theory is that I am teaching a language - jazz is a language. An improvised language. I am improvising right now. We are using vocabulary to speak to each other. But we are able to communicate spontaneously. It's not like this morning I got in my car and said, "Here's this great sentence I am going to say on the interview." I describe it to students like this: if you are going to go on a date, you can't think, "Wait until I say this sentence to my date tonight - she's going to think I am so cool." It's impossible to predict what words will be appropriate to say at 7:30pm on any given evening. You can't prepare in advance. Have you ever been with a group of friends and said something off the top of your head that was really funny, that fit the mood of the moment, and then you tried to say the same thing on another occasion, and it just fell flat? Jazz is the same way. If you're counting off "Cherokee," and you immediately start thinking about what lick you're going to play when you get to the bridge on your improvised solo, you're in trouble. You need to have enough control over your musical vocabulary that you can react and express your ideas in real-time, as things are happening."
 

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Well..many people consider music to be a language, and the sax would just be one medium as to speak, or to sing those words.
 

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Upawholestep said:
I actually hear rap music having similar rhythms to bebop. That's just my personal opinion.

I also have a belief that whales and dolphins communicate using music. So I don't think that viewing music as a language is all that odd. In fact, I saw a researcher using a soprano sax to try to mimic the whale calls.:argue:
I´m not talking about just imitating the rhythm. Should have become clear in my post. Bebop may have a similar rhythm but it sure as hell does not sound as simliar to rap as what I have in mind.
 

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ismail said:
I´m not talking about just imitating the rhythm. Should have become clear in my post. Bebop may have a similar rhythm but it sure as hell does not sound as simliar to rap as what I have in mind.
Totally understand. In fact 90% of the rappers I work with don't even know the meaning of the word "melody". They think it was the name of the stripper they dropped all the bling, bling on last night. :cool:
 

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Sax playin is fun.
 

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Hurling Frootmig said:
Greg Fishman had a great quote when I interviewed him for SOTW.

Here's the paragraph that covers it:

"My theory is that I am teaching a language - jazz is a language. An improvised language. I am improvising right now. We are using vocabulary to speak to each other. But we are able to communicate spontaneously. It's not like this morning I got in my car and said, "Here's this great sentence I am going to say on the interview." I describe it to students like this: if you are going to go on a date, you can't think, "Wait until I say this sentence to my date tonight - she's going to think I am so cool." It's impossible to predict what words will be appropriate to say at 7:30pm on any given evening. You can't prepare in advance. Have you ever been with a group of friends and said something off the top of your head that was really funny, that fit the mood of the moment, and then you tried to say the same thing on another occasion, and it just fell flat? Jazz is the same way. If you're counting off "Cherokee," and you immediately start thinking about what lick you're going to play when you get to the bridge on your improvised solo, you're in trouble. You need to have enough control over your musical vocabulary that you can react and express your ideas in real-time, as things are happening."
Hurling, that's a great quote, and it raises an interesting question........ when we speak spontaneously, we're using a known vocabulary, not generally inventing new words as we go. I'm not sure that there's a direct analogy when we improvise.......... we're following a harmonic form (the chords), but what we do within that form is wide open, we're free to invent new words, so to speak, although the listener certainly expects to hear at least some words, in the form of cliches or licks, to identify the style......... so I'm not sure that the analogy can be taken too far........
 

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Upawholestep said:
Totally understand. In fact 90% of the rappers I work with don't even know the meaning of the word "melody". They think it was the
name of the stripper they dropped all the bling, bling on last night. :cool:
Well, I have no idea what interesting job you are doing. But I know a lot of rap - (no matter if US-American, British or even German) - that is witty and sophisticated.

Still, rap (even by good musicians) uses a flow of pitch that is really hard to imitate with an instrument...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
My observation and thoughts!!

Hurling Frootmig said:
Greg Fishman had a great quote when I interviewed him for SOTW.

Here's the paragraph that covers it:

"My theory is that I am teaching a language - jazz is a language. An improvised language. I am improvising right now. We are using vocabulary to speak to each other. But we are able to communicate spontaneously. It's not like this morning I got in my car and said, "Here's this great sentence I am going to say on the interview." I describe it to students like this: if you are going to go on a date, you can't think, "Wait until I say this sentence to my date tonight - she's going to think I am so cool." It's impossible to predict what words will be appropriate to say at 7:30pm on any given evening. You can't prepare in advance. Have you ever been with a group of friends and said something off the top of your head that was really funny, that fit the mood of the moment, and then you tried to say the same thing on another occasion, and it just fell flat? Jazz is the same way. If you're counting off "Cherokee," and you immediately start thinking about what lick you're going to play when you get to the bridge on your improvised solo, you're in trouble. You need to have enough control over your musical vocabulary that you can react and express your ideas in real-time, as things are happening."
I know that in the scientific community there was a discovery that junk DNA had similar mathmatical arrangements as was used in many languages. I think that intonation, bends, articulation, vibrato, altisimo, flutter, growls, slap tongue, glissando, scales, and every other sound imaginable from the sax defines its basic gramar. Those that speak well rise to the top and teach us all--the language. I know that while playing, I feel where the music is going and what others are saying--musically that is. I guess it depends on the level of players you are with some grade school, high school, college, post graduate, and some way out their so far they have their own milky way. This I mean in an abstract sense. Within a song, I feel how others are describing something abstract with abstract. Then I try to clarify what they are playing by adding my own musical sentence, and if I reveal that I understand the conversation very well, people will love it. I know you can play something so sweet and sad that it makes some people cry--Not because it's that bad, but because it describes their sadness so well. IT REACHES PAST THE MIND AND GOES RIGHT TO THE HEART. I think the sax gives us a universal language to contribute part of ourselves to humanity.
 

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ismail said:
Well, I have no idea what interesting job you are doing. But I know a lot of rap - (no matter if US-American, British or even German) - that is witty and sophisticated.

Still, rap (even by good musicians) uses a flow of pitch that is really hard to imitate with an instrument...

True. Good music is good music. I am a recording engineer in Atlanta. I have worked on A LOT of rap. Most of it is uninspiring. Some is good. Very little is great. It's my job and that how I make a living. But to get back to the subject at hand, there are people that have a better command of a language and can express themselves eloquently. Most of the rappers that come through use the same rhythm throughout the whole song and don't express anything of interest in their lyrics. But I have also work with very talented artists like Outcast and Cee-Lo who are always striving to expand their vocabulary.

No instrument can imitate ALL the nuances the human voice can make, and I think it would be foolish to try to accomplish that. And as far as the flow of pitch, I can play on the sax all the pitches a rapper is hitting, I just can't say the words with the horn, nor would I want to. I've tried it, and it ends up sounding very monotone because of lack of words. The language is not being used properly. I think I'm rambling now. I've played through the head too many times and getting close to repeating myself.;)
 

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Robert Dubrul said:
I know that in the scientific community there was a discovery that junk DNA had similar mathmatical arrangements as was used in many languages. I think that intonation, bends, articulation, vibrato, altisimo, flutter, growls, slap tongue, glissando, scales, and every other sound imaginable from the sax defines its basic gramar. Those that speak well rise to the top and teach us all--the language. I know that while playing, I feel where the music is going and what others are saying--musically that is. I guess it depends on the level of players you are with some grade school, high school, college, post graduate, and some way out their so far they have their own milky way. This I mean in an abstract sense. Within a song, I feel how others are describing something abstract with abstract. Then I try to clarify what they are playing by adding my own musical sentence, and if I reveal that I understand the conversation very well, people will love it. I know you can play something so sweet and sad that it makes some people cry--Not because it's that bad, but because it describes their sadness so well. IT REACHES PAST THE MIND AND GOES RIGHT TO THE HEART. I think the sax gives us a universal language to contribute part of ourselves to humanity.
Robert,
Sounds as if your original question was rhetorical. You've obviously given it a lot of thought. In response, I'd say "universal language" is probably a little bit over the top. Universally there are a lot of musical voices not "limited" to the 12 tone octave, and there are people who are quite used to speaking musically in those voices. I wouldn't disagree; however, to the idea that perhaps those of us without any other musical endowments (ie. "can't carry a tune in a bucket" vocally speaking) do benefit from gaining a voice in the "universal language" of music by virtue of having learned to speak through the saxophone.;)
 

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My 2 cents! Close your eyes, pretend you can't speak. Pretend everything you want to say, every expression you want to convey, every hurt place in your heart, every delightful expierience in your soul,,,,,, has the want to come out......And you have an instrument (The Sax) to do it all with. Hold it like a you would a woman, coax out of her (mine are females) the responses you want everyone to hear, feel, and share them. You can,,, and they your listeners can,,,, tell the difference between someone blowing into the mouthpiece, and someone who can make it talk in it's own unique language.
 

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I was wondering if it's faster to take Hwy 22 down to I20 or is it better to go through Lexington and take 77. Will someone please play their saxophone and let me know which or perhaps an alternate route. Also, I need a 9 point bush hammer. What's the best place to get one? This might be a question more suited for the tenor.
 
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