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Selmer Balanced Action Tenor Saxophone, Powell Flute
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First of all I must say a big thank you to Pete (Sactopete) for passing me the torch this month. Also Peter (mrpeebee) for the help, and a big huge thank you to Chris (Chris_Kn) for the backing tracks he made for us!!!!!! I'm super excited, so lets get started!


There are a number of reasons why I picked this tune, but 2 stand out.

1) I am primarily a tenor guy and have never really been comfortable on alto. So one of my goals for 2014 was to become a better alto player. I have been listening to a lot of Parker, as he is one of my favorite alto players, and this is one of my favorite tunes he recorded. It also happens to be the tune I started learning the exact day Pete extended the TOTM offer to me. So I thought it only fitting!

2) The versatility of this tune is absolutely amazing. You can do it as a ballad, or a latin (my fav.) or even as a med/up swing. I've heard great versions in all 3 styles. Chris_Kn even turned me on to a version that is latin and swing ala Dexter Gordon!! For this reason Chris has made us 3 backing tracks. A medium swing, a latin and a ballad version. Both the swing and latin version are 5 choruses long. 2 for head in and out and 3 for solos. The ballad is 2 complete choruses. Each of the play alongs has a 4 bar intro and outro ala the famous Parker Quintet version. Feel free to utilize this as you wish:)


Almost every jazz player ever has a version of this tune and if you search it on youtube you will find a number of great ones. I want to link you to 2 of my favs. Both done by Parker. The first is my favorite rendition and is the Parker Quartet. The second is the more famous Quintet version with the intro I mentioned.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jmSDTCiCup0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zCoBvEEczc0

***having issues with the embed feature...will work on it and update when I figure it out***

Here is a link to the folder with lead sheets in C, Bb, and Eb as well as play alongs.

https://app.box.com/s/p2q74lmquyhem5ljc29q

Alright! One last thing before we get started. I challenge everyone to post a recording of themselves playing the head unaccompanied on a saxophone voice you are not completely comfortable with! Nothing crazy, just the melody as you would play it for someone who asked you to play it for them. So all you alto players break out your Tenors:) All you Tenor players break out that Alto:) Try to make it a voice in another key and not tenor/soprano or alto/bari. I understand this isn't possible for everyone, but I hope most of you give this a try. I'll go first and share my take of the head on alto.

https://soundcloud.com/simonjazzsax%2Fsolo-alto
I am very much looking forward to hearing everyones versions, especially the challenge:)
 

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Hey. Tried to get into the link app.box.com and it is asking for an email and password like getting into my own account. Is there something I need to do?
 

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Selmer Balanced Action Tenor Saxophone, Powell Flute
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hey. Tried to get into the link app.box.com and it is asking for an email and password like getting into my own account. Is there something I need to do?
Fixed the Box Link. Let me know if it doesn't work now. Also trying to get these youtube videos to embed. Can you see them on your browser?
 

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All of the links work!! The videos are not embedding, but the will go right to Youtube. Thanks!!
 

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Nice call Simon...

Here's an old demo recording of Star Eyes from 1990, it will be a fun comparison as I'll record a fresh take on alto when I have a chance.
http://soundcloud.com/fsaxwas9/star-eyes

That's our old bandmate (and BluJazz recording artist) Paul Kogut on guitar. His last album (Turn of Phrase) features Lewis Nash and George Mraz and is well worth checking out...his more recent playing reminds me somewhat of John Abercrombie. He was always a really swinging guitarist fun to revisit the old clips from that era...
 

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To quote Matthew Mcconaughey, "Right on, right on, right on"... Great choice Simon. I've never played Star Eyes, but love the tune, and so many great versions to listen to. Wow. Sheddin' time for me. Be back shortly...

Bob
 

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This tune is not my thing or is it? See Some Nice possibilities ahead. Well have a crack at it this week or mid month..
 

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Oh I hate alto but thanks Simon you got me picking my alto off its stand, 1st time in over a month :baby:, lol...

quick take on the head, nothing crazy. Alto can wait till next time I need again :twisted:

.
 

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Very nice sound on your alto, SimonJazzSax.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Oh I hate alto but thanks Simon you got me picking my alto off its stand, 1st time in over a month :baby:, lol...

quick take on the head, nothing crazy. Alto can wait till next time I need again :twisted:

.
Sounding really good Davey! You have a nice alto tone. You should definitely play it more often. I enjoy your voice on that instrument and soprano the best from the recordings I've heard:). Can't wait to hear some more versions.

Thanks so much for stepping up and being the first to do the challenge!!!!


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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Very nice sound on your alto, SimonJazzSax.
Thanks:). I'm getting more comfy. Love Paul Desmond and Bird. So I'm going that route!


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Yeah man, sounding good. Reminds me of Richie Cole when I used to play with him.
Cheers Dave, I like your playing too. I met Richie when I was a teenager in London and he was nice-turned me onto Phil Woods, McPherson etc. Caught up with him recently and was able to say thanks.


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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CeHqpZgH7Gc&list=UUiCCXbDNwN8MH_dfNDkWybA
Great pick this month! I'm going to use this as a teaching tool for some of my students. I'm going to hopefully do a few different takes (if that's ok, if not, I won't) to show my students how to play different ideas and concepts on the same tune. This take is just a straight-ahead simple way to play through the tune. Thanks for listening!
 

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(formerly borganiboy)
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@Simonjazzsax,, thanks for the great pick. Very solid nice alto tone you have. Look forward to your full version.

@Dave Pollack,, another killing alto version. Very nice lines indeed, great flow and ideas.
 

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I challenge everyone to post a recording of themselves playing the head unaccompanied on a saxophone voice you are not completely comfortable with!
okay your on! here it is:
https://soundcloud.com/donnersm%2Fstar-eyes-first-try-no-backing Dont mind the metronome...i didn't use it just didn't figure out how to switch it of in Garageband..

You asked for it! out of my comfort zone...Soprano instead of alto...and no backing no practise...just first recording..

a proper recording will follow in a week or 2 after my trip
 
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