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Who was your greatest teacher, what was it about him/her that made This teacher great?

Was there a teacher that while you were studying with you had an epiphany with and improvisation suddenly made sense? And what was it, what was the missing piece of the pie that this person provided?

I know a lot of stuff in one question.
 

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sonnymobleytrane said:
Who was your greatest teacher, what was it about him/her that made This teacher great?

Was there a teacher that while you were studying with you had an epiphany with and improvisation suddenly made sense? And what was it, what was the missing piece of the pie that this person provided?

I know a lot of stuff in one question.
David Baker, Bebop scale conception, approach note. My phrases started ending in the right spot (most of the time).

Not a sax player, obviously, but great on jazz theory. I'm still absorbing things he showed and talked about.
 

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hakukani said:
David Baker, Bebop scale conception, approach note. My phrases started ending in the right spot (most of the time).

Not a sax player, obviously, but great on jazz theory. I'm still absorbing things he showed and talked about.
The information in his books was this something you worked on or was it something else
 

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sonnymobleytrane said:
The information in his books was this something you worked on or was it something else
He was one of the teachers at an Aebersold camp when I was an undergrad. Totally blew me away.

Later, when I was studying audio tech at IU, I got to take a class in improvisation from him. I learned much more, because class was twice a week.

I also had, and still recommend, his books.
 

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My current teacher and mentor, Gary Hammon has shown me more about being a musician than anyone else. He is one of the very few teachers out there it seems that stresses basic musicianship (listening, phrasing, tone, etc.) over anything else. It is from him that I have learned that technique only goes so far. At some point you have to be serious about playing with substance and depth, not just show how many licks and patterns you know.

And he has worked with some of the greatest players in jazz over the past 40-50 years. He is a truely wise mentor and a creative and sensative saxophonist.
 

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My current techer has really taught me about be a a musician in the real world. I have kind of been his shadow for the past year and have learned a lot obout musician etiquitte (sp?) and "the buisness" he has also taken my arranging to a much higher level than it was before.

Not to mention that he has made my saxophone playing sound much more smooth and mature rather than the technical robot I was before.
 

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Marty Nau in Virginia ... he introduced jazz and good tone to me. Not to mention that he is a phenomenal player.

Jim Riggs in Texas ... he pretty much showed me how to play the horn.
 

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Bill Fiege in San Francisco really got me started improvising. I loved his approach to teaching beginning improv: Put some changes in front of me, turn on an Aebersold (or equivalent) backing track, and tell me to start playing. Then, once I had stumbled through a few choruses, he would stop the tape and critique what I had done (always contructively), point out some scales that I might want to use here and there, and then restart it.

I'm sure had I spent more time with him, we would have started getting more advanced, but he helped me get over the initial hump of how to improvise: Just play. He definitely helped me develop my ear, espcially in terms of just being able to walk into a situation, find the "right" notes, and just use them.

Then another SF guy, Ken Rosen, showed me tons about sound production, improvisation and theory. Really cool guy, great player and a great teacher.
 

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Doug Graham - University of South Carolina - This guy just pushed the right buttons to turn my young butt around and to get serious about being a musician. Doug was Chris Potter's teacher for many years.

Al Regni - one of the great doublers in New York. Really helped prepare me for the real world.

Records - lots and lots of records
 
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Life , and a cat named Fernando Esparza. I learned to love playing alone.
I was often in the spotlight , but he taught me to love playing at anytime,
for anyone, or no one at all.
 

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Greatest teacher I had was George Naff who was the Director of Bands at East Carolina University back in the early 70's. George did the marching, concert and jazz band and what he taught about musicianship was outstanding. He didn't focus so much on improv, although I did get a lot from him on that, as he did on style, interpretation and performance. He had a way of making you notice all the little things in a chart that made the difference in a good performance and great performance. Probably the thing he did best was to teach you how to truly get into the music and retell the story the composer had told in the tune. One heck of a teacher and a great man to boot. Thanks George!!! - Dennis :cheers:
 
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