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First Open Mic and Jam Session

Profusia

Senior Member
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Worcestershire
I dreamed I was gestating a saxophone player, but 9 months on it turns out it was only gas.

I finally manned up and went to my first Jam/Open Mic session last night (Sunday).

I was invited to join in for 3 blues tunes (with guitarists, keyboards and drummer) and then late on got my own spot for a solo with backing track. This is the latter.

I didn't play the changes, its not proper jazz, but it went better than I expected apart from the backing coming in too soon without any count in and me consequently messing up the first 4 bars. A liberal sprinkling of duff notes of course but happy enough considering playing without any dots and how little I prepared...

http://youtu.be/Fihe4MCqPZM

Well its a big milestone for me anyway :)
 
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TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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Cambridgeshire
I dreamed I was gestating a saxophone player, but 9 months on it turns out it was only gas.

I finally manned up and went to my first Jam/Open Mic session last night (Sunday).

I was invited to join in for 3 blues tunes (with guitarists, keyboards and drummer) and then late on got my own spot for a solo with backing track. This is the latter.

I didn't play the changes, its not proper jazz, but it went better than I expected apart from the backing coming in to soon without any count in and me consequently messing up the first 4 bars. A liberal sprinkling of duff notes of course but happy enough considering playing without any dots and how little I prepared...

http://youtu.be/Fihe4MCqPZM

Well its a big milestone for me anyway :)

And that, my friend, is awesome. Great stuff, I hope you're well happy with that :thumb:
 

Profusia

Senior Member
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Worcestershire
Thanks Timbo - coming from a seasoned band player like yourself that's a huge compliment. And yes I was pretty happy all things considered although I know I'm totally faking the jazz.
 

Fraser Jarvis

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,917
For someone who's only been playing 9 months you just shouldn't be that good already! you have a very distinctive tone as well, keep at it man....cant wait to see what you'll be like in another 9 months! BTW how many hours do you practice each day? (23.5?)
 

Profusia

Senior Member
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Worcestershire
For someone who's only been playing 9 months you just shouldn't be that good already! you have a very distinctive tone as well, keep at it man....cant wait to see what you'll be like in another 9 months! BTW how many hours do you practice each day? (23.5?)

Bless you Fraser! Most days I manage to get about an hour and a half in. Occasionally a bit more at weekends but it often doesn't go to plan. Its a real frustration as there's so much stuff I need to buckle down and focus on. I live in a mid-terrace and my neighbour sleeps til about 7:30/8pm so I can't start til then, and then I have to think about the other side so don't like playing much after 9. I bought one of those sax mute cases, which does work, but its hard work to play and getting the sax in and out is a hassle so I very rarely seem to use it. Hopefully one day I'll be able to dedicate myself to the sax properly.
 

BUMNOTE

Senior Member
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605
Locality
Wolverhampton West Midlands
Hi Prousia,just saw your video,that your first time....welldone,bloody ace,where did you get the tune from? Well done again.Bumnote.:welldone
 

ArtyLady

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Essex
I thought it was excellent for a first jam session well done!! :welldone
 

saxplorer

Senior Member
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878
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Surrey, UK
Very very nice indeed, wonderful tone.

(And what is "proper jazz" anyway? the best jazz is quite improper, I reckon ;} - it sounds like jazz to me)
 
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thesaxman71

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,687
Good on ya fella! now you done it once... it will get easier the more you do and more fun and less scary!
 

Profusia

Senior Member
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Worcestershire
Hi Prousia,just saw your video,that your first time....welldone,bloody ace,where did you get the tune from? Well done again.Bumnote.:welldone

Hey thanks a lot, really. Its Lover Man by Jimmy Davis, Jimmy Sherman, and Roger Ram Ramirez and I believe was written specifically for Billy Holiday so a wonderful old jazz standard. I just got the dots from Wikifonia and a backing track from iRealB.
 

Taz

Busking Oracle
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Rugby UK
Very very very nicely done. You've got a great tone for such a newbie I enjoyed your improvisation too. You sounded very relaxed and you looked like you were enjoying the experience too! Way too cool. well done!
 

Wade Cornell

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New Zealand and Australia
This has got to be a great start for you. No need to comment on those areas that you know may need work. What impresses is the way you were able to cover so smoothly any notes that may not have been intended without showing it. That's real pro class. Nobody in that audience would have noticed as it just flowed. You didn't make one of the other common mistakes in trying to out-play yourself. You knew your limits and played within them. That's just plain smart and also the sign of a pro.

The only constructive advice that may help is that you should leave your audience wanting more. Unless you have a lot of very different stuff to say in your solo or a break to another rhythm/feel, it's best to be brief. Six and a half minutes is probably three minutes too long. That has nothing to do with the quality of your playing, it's just about how long you can keep an audience's attention with the same song/feel single soloist and canned backing.
 

Profusia

Senior Member
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Worcestershire
Very very very nicely done. You've got a great tone for such a newbie I enjoyed your improvisation too. You sounded very relaxed and you looked like you were enjoying the experience too! Way too cool. well done!

Thanks very much indeed mate! :blush: Not sure I'll ever be cool though! :mrcool

Yes it was a surprisingly enjoyable experience. And weirdly I got more nervous last night soloing a bit of bluescale at band practice than I did on stage at the open mic. I can't figure that one at all!
 

Profusia

Senior Member
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1,014
Locality
Worcestershire
This has got to be a great start for you. No need to comment on those areas that you know may need work. What impresses is the way you were able to cover so smoothly any notes that may not have been intended without showing it. That's real pro class. Nobody in that audience would have noticed as it just flowed. You didn't make one of the other common mistakes in trying to out-play yourself. You knew your limits and played within them. That's just plain smart and also the sign of a pro.

The only constructive advice that may help is that you should leave your audience wanting more. Unless you have a lot of very different stuff to say in your solo or a break to another rhythm/feel, it's best to be brief. Six and a half minutes is probably three minutes too long. That has nothing to do with the quality of your playing, it's just about how long you can keep an audience's attention with the same song/feel single soloist and canned backing.

Thanks a lot Wade, and thanks for being gentle. Yes I know there is a huge amount of room for improvement. I think I did go a bit too far with a few throwaway runs but nothing too terminal. I totally agree with you about the length - I really hadn't realised how long 3 choruses would drone on for. Although nothing was said I'm pretty sure the organiser would have been fidgety with me taking so long on one tune. I'll check the timings next time for sure and go for 2 choruses rather than 3 on slow ones. As for any seeds of being a pro (haha), I doubt they will ever come to fruition, but check back in about 20 years or so if we're both still kicking about ;}

Sincere thanks for the listen and encouragement as always.
 

Chris

Well Known
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Sounding that good Thomas I hope it is the first of many 'gigs' for you.

Chris..
 

Profusia

Senior Member
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1,014
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Worcestershire
Sounding that good Thomas I hope it is the first of many 'gigs' for you.

Chris..

Thanks a lot Chris. Hardly a gig though, but its encouraged me to go back for more soon. Might do My Funny Valentine actually.
 

jazzdoh

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West Midlands
Very nice Thomas your sound has come on leaps and bounds,good to see the Chiltern being played out.
 
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Sue

One prosecco, two prosecco, three prosecco - floor
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The Millenium Falcon
Great stuff Thomas, hope it's the 1st of many :)
 

Wade Cornell

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New Zealand and Australia
Just throwing ideas: It's not written in stone that anyone must play the head plus (x) number of choruses then the head again. Heck you don't even have to play a standard and can make up your own tune/variation to any backing track.

I have no idea about the makeup of the audience where you played but have some idea about demographics. Generally I'd say among the world's population of people under 70 years old there would be something like .001% of people who would know more than five "standards".

Play them as head plus variation if that pleases you, but unless you are in a place where you are being judged for authenticity (which is in many way the antithesis of the idea of jazz), make it your own. IMHO few people know or care about the original and just want to hear someone play in a way that touches them. Put the music first and make it personal.
 

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