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Ok. I'm in highschool, I'm a sophomore. The way my district does schools is messed up so 9th grade is in a different school building with 8th graders. At the end of 9th grade I auditioned for my high school (10-12) jazz ensemble. I made first band, and was told I was playing second alto. I get to school this year and the guy who was playing second tenor is a senior, and told the director that he thinks he should be second alto. So the director made him second alto, and i got stuck on second tenor. The harmony of the harmony of the harmony. The first alto player is better than me and I have no way to compete with him. He is a senior. The first alto is a friend of mine and would feel bad about bumping him down. I know I could if I wanted to. I also know that I'm better than the "second alto". I'm not playing bari. Been there, done that. No thanks.

I like playing tenor a lot, but am better than second tenor. What should I do? I feel its right that I play second alto since that is what I was told.

EDIT: how do I myself move this to another lounge? I thought I was posting in Jazz and Improvisation but I guess not.
 

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Senior!

I say suck it up. Their is nothing wrong with the Tenor part, and nothing wrong with the Harmony. You will learn alot playing second Tenor, next year you will have "seniorty" then you can play what you want to play.
 

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dylanroebuck said:
What should I do?
Ahh, carbs preempted me as I was writing this but I'll leave the text unchanged: This is going to be the kind of answer I hate reading, giving, or receiving but in this case I think it's just the way it is - "Suck it up". :D

You are definitely the new guy in town and many times the only thing one can do in such situations is to keep your dissatisfaction to yourself and see the part you've been given as an opportunity to prove yourself to the band director and other students. If you do that well, hopefully you'll move up in the band.

BTW, though, the second tenor part is a great opportunity to get some of your technical chops down. In some respects, it might be the most challenging book to play so look at it that way.

And don't worry - your day will come. We're just pretty impatient when we're young and learning to pace yourself will pay off. I got some great advice many years ago - "The most important job you'll ever have is the one you've got right now". If you use that kind of philosophy, you will seldom have real problems being stuck where you are. I know it's not easy, but take this in your stride and make the most of it. Keep positive and it'll pay off.
 

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Nah, those guys have it all wrong. What you really should do is quit. Quit the darn jazz band that'll show 'em. They'll be sorry. I mean, if it can't be the way you want it to be, then forget it. Jazz is all about doing what you want to do, and playing what you want to play. You think Coltrane ever had to play stinkin' 2nd tenor (well, yeah, probably, but anyway...) or Dexter Gordon (actually I think he did play some 2nd tenor, but I'm pretty sure he didn't like it...)?










Disclaimer: Just in case anyone missed the sarcasm dripping from the above statement, here is the requisite winking smiley:;)
 

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Carbs said:
Hit the woodsheed, and suck it up. Work your butt off and do better next year.
Is there an echo in here? :shock:
 

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1)2nd tenor isn't as bad as some people make it out to be. I just started playing 2nd Tenor with a group made up mostly of pros. It's the only chair I had never played before. It's not bad at all. I don't have time to look it up, but you can check the long history of pro big bands and find a crapload of great players who have played 2nd tenor.

2)Regarding seniority, get used to it. I sub in with a couple of groups. One group's sax player left for personal reasons. I did a few gigs subbing for her. They did have a regular guy who had been the sub and when she left, he to the permanent spot. Even though the band acknowledges that I'm better, he got the gig and I became the sub because he'd been associated with them longer. I don't sweat it. I still gig with them and make money.

You're going to have seniority someday too. Be patient.
 

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Remember: you're not playing a chair, you're playing a saxophone.

FWIW, when I played in an orchestra at a church I attended, I played parts that were uncovered. That occasionally meant 1st, 2nd or 3rd clarinet, 1st, 2nd or 3rd trumpet (on clarinet) or 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th alto ("4th" essentially means "French horn part"). Tenor sax, bass clarinet or contrabass clarinet on request. My main sax? Bari -- with which I played trombone, bass, tuba, euphonium or cello parts; rarely a part written for bari sax.

(In HS, I did essentially the same thing: I played what was needed. Second clarinet, third clarinet, bass clarinet, tenor sax, contrabass clarinet and bari.)

While I'm not the world's best player and never had been, I was willing to play whatever part I was asked to. That willingness may go a lot further than being even a better than average player. Heck, if you pursue music after HS, you're probably going to work in pit bands, ensembles and maybe some studio work. If you're a jerk, it'll get around. If you're willing to work hard to make the group/project/whatever a success, that'll get around, too. Which would you rather work with?

BTB, playing harmony will be of far more utility to you as a musician than playing melody -- and if you're in a HS band playing alto, you're playing a harmony part generally, anyhow.
 

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I must be an odd bird...but I never gave or give a hoot what I play. Then again...I am simply delighted when the phone rings and I get a chance to play. picc, bari, bass clarinet...whatever! Tell me what axe(s) to bring and what time we hit...I'm there.

I think sometimes students get caught up in their perceived politics of these types of situations, and what it means to get "stuck playing a crappy part". What if you were the lead player, trying to lead the section and you had some disgruntled, grumpy self-entitled underclassman playing second tenor dragging the section down with his mopey, "I hate second tenor" attitude?

Sit down, lose the indignation, play second tenor, learn what you can. Add your voice and positive approach to the group.. You might just find that to be rewarding.

Steve
 

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This topic doesn't belong in Jazz and Improv either, but in Highschool and College. I've moved it there.
 

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Playing second Tenor

Well... it's better than a sharp stick in the eye.

Start shedding the changes on the tunes with solos and whn the opportunity presents itself... go for the solo now and then.

In the mean time... second tenor is fun, second tenor is fun,second tenor is fun,second tenor is fun,second tenor is fun,second tenor is fun,second tenor is fun,second tenor is fun,second tenor is fun,

HUTMO
 

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Carbs said:
Second Tenor kills. You get to lay back the whole time and just play. Also if your lucky you may sit next to a really hot Bari player.
I don't know who you're sitting next to but I'm sitting next to a 50 year old fat guy. :shock:
 

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Seniority only sucks when you're a junior (and that's only for the next 10 months). When you're a senior you enjoy it (it's a pity it's also for only 10 months)
 

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Al Stevens said:
2nd tenor gets the same bread the other chairs get.
Amen, brother. I don't care what part I play, or what horn I play. They all pay the same.

In any case, that 2nd tenor part is probably the hardest sax part anyway. It'd make you better. Besides ... it isn't a competition. Play your butt off anywhere you're sitting. Make it sound good. Isn't that what it's about anyway? Making the music sound good?





.....Maybe when it's not Mustang Sally for the 20th time that week.
 

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Agent27 said:
I don't know who you're sitting next to but I'm sitting next to a 50 year old fat guy. :shock:
Hey now!:twisted:
 
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