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Compiling a repertoire

MandyH

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Bear with me....

One day a week I volunteer and drive the adapted minibus for our local hospice, collecting wheel-chair bound visitors to the day hospice, and taking them home at the end of the afternoon.


This week I happened to mention to the volunteer co-ordinator that I had just passed my grade 8 on saxophone, and I was asked, no begged, to come and play for them. I mentioned that it might be a bit loud (occasionally they have a lady play acoustic guitar and sing) but they were really keen.


So I'm looking for suggestions and advice on how I go about getting together a foot-tapping, easy listening repertoire that I can play to this captive audience.


Normally, they do some craft, play board games etc, they have a superb kitchen and lunch is a feast (I've only managed to get lunch once, but if it were ever offered again, I would definitely take it!) It is a day away from their other half (usually their prime carer) and the same old 4 walls, and a chance to get away for a day in safety.


I am not doing it for their appreciation of me, but for their enjoyment and something to talk about when they get home etc.


Suggestions for songs to play, where I can get the sheet music, backing tracks etc would be really good.

I have a TDK sound-cube that I can load backing tracks onto a memory stick and play along with, but I am useless at just playing along, by ear or memory, so I am going to need sheet music.


I have Alto and Tenor, or could transpose scores anyway.


Many thanks for you advice.
 

ArtyLady

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Sounds like a great opportunity Mandy :cool:, I would be interested in the answers you get as I have only been out and performed as part of a band, and would be interested to hear how to go about how to "go solo" :)
 

Chris

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Depending on age I would go with 'Chart Hits' for appropriate decades. Then work out the ones you can get mp3's/sheet music for then ones that would go down well in that setting. Then ones that sit well on the sax.. Sorry for the non-specific answer, a little more info might help, like the approx ages of listeners.

Chris..
 

MandyH

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The listeners are probably anywhere between 40 and 90 in age, probably with the majority in their 50s, 60s and 70s.
Male and female.
 

Chris

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Hi Mandy, check out this site http://www.digitaldreamdoor.com/pages/music0.html it will stop you thinking about years and tunes and let you pick songs you know. There are some pretty good lists as starting points.
What are you thinking about time wise 45/60min or a couple of shorter sessions?? or even longer:w00t:.
 

Jeanette

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Might be worth a chat with one of the nurses working in there, they may play music in the day anyway so could give you a guide as to what goes down well. I should think anything that has been in the charts and likely to be known will be appreciated.

Good for you Mandy, hope it goes well. I'm sure you will enjoy it, despite what a lot of people think Hospices are not always a sad place to be or work. :)

Jx
 

Taz

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Hi Mandy, this sounds like a great opportunity to get way out of your comfort zone and force you to push yourself a bit! ;)
Solo gigs are really great fun and you will have a blast.
Personally I'd look at swing, the likes of Sinatra. Ballads will go down really well but so will a few modern classics too. I've got quite a few backings but no dots. You're more than welcome to any that you want.
 

trimmy

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Hi Mandy
Choose what you know well and what you can play well enough, your playing the sax what is there not to like :)
They will love it and tell them you want lunch as payment ;)
 
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jbtsax

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In my experience (I turned 66 in December), most people are like myself and were heavily influenced by the music they heard growing up into their teenage years. For me this is the popular and jazz music in the 50's and 60's. In fact a lot of jazz tunes were still part of the popular music of the day, although not as much as my parent's generation.

I would suggest that you google the tunes of the "Hit Parade" for the 40's, 50's, and 60's and you will have a great list of music to choose from. There are tons of karaoke backing tracks for a lot of these tunes, and if you don't know the melody you can find most of the sheet music on the internet or in music book collections. If you are good at transposing, you have it made. I'm sure your audience will request some of their favorites for you to learn.

If someone asks you to play a song you don't know you can say, "I don't know that tune yet, but I will play another song with a lot of the same notes in it." ;)
 
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kevgermany

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Dean Martin, Andy Williams, Glenn Miller, Frank Sinatra Tom Jones... Some spirituals like Michael rowed the boat ashore, Go tell it on the mountain.. And Louis Armstrong. And don't forget Elvis.
 

Jamesmac

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[QUOTE="kev
[QUOTE="kevgermany, post: 159286, member: 65"

Michael rowed the boat ashore, Go tell it on the mountain.. And Louis Armstrong. And don't forget Elvis.[/QUOTE]

:rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:
I'm sure the average 50 /60+ would be more at home with Stevie Wonder the Motown artists and all those English groups from the 70,s
 

Greg Strange

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With the 20th anniversary of the death of Kurt Cobain recently why not try "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana - might bring back some memories for some of the audience - and why not try a bit of Guns 'n' Roses...:rofl:

Greg S.
 
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Nick Wyver

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With the 20th anniversary of the death of Kurt Cobain recently why not try "Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana - might bring back some memories for some of the audience - and why not try a bit of Guns 'n' Roses...:rofl:

Greg S.
Like this, you mean?
 

U CAN CALL ME AL

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Hi Mandy

I have played for a number of Bowls clubs (next best thing to a nursing home), in nursing homes and a number of Senior birthday parties. I did try to PM you but your in box is full. My current repertoire is around 250 numbers, most of which are played from the dots, no one seems to mind the presence of a music stand.

In a nursing home I have found the maximum span of attention to be quite short and a programme of around 30 mins is quite adequate. Your PA should be more than adequate as residents lounges tend not to be very large.

Music that goes down well is the Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Tony Bennet era as their numbers are all very well known. It not necessary the foot tapping numbers that they"ll like and will often sing along. One play along well worth a look at is the Swing When You"re Winning Robbie Williams set. The quality of the backings is good and available in E♭ & B♭

REgards Al
 

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