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Getting Flat Keys under my fingers!

jbtsax

jbtsax

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I suspect as alluded to elsewhere that you may be having fun dealing with enharmonic names such as F# and Gb etc. That's just a matter of practice.

As a string player I can tell when the arranger is a wind player as I end up with 5 or 6 flats in the key signature
Stringed instruments are really better suited to the keys of C, G, D, A and E because of the open strings and hand positions.
 
Colin the Bear

Colin the Bear

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I wasn't referring to the notes. Key of G has the F#. Bb on alto. Key with a Gb in would be... err Abb is it?
 
Halfers

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Are we talking saxophone? Just play G# and lip it in:rolleyes:

I find adding chromatic top to bottom helps with fingering problems. Also finding a familiar piece in the key you're working on helps with pitching it.

I've realised that when I go through chromatic scales I have a slightly odd way of treating the notes in my head. I tend to mentally label the black key notes :) Sharps, apart from B flat, for some odd reason! Maybe that's why I'm struggling with the concept of Flat keys! Anyway, it seems quite obvious now (these things always do), but when I run through the chromatic scale I'm going to start mentally naming all the sharps, then run through again and mentally name all the flats! Maybe that will 'reset' my habits!!
 
jbtsax

jbtsax

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I've realised that when I go through chromatic scales I have a slightly odd way of treating the notes in my head. I tend to mentally label the black key notes :) Sharps, apart from B flat, for some odd reason! Maybe that's why I'm struggling with the concept of Flat keys! Anyway, it seems quite obvious now (these things always do), but when I run through the chromatic scale I'm going to start mentally naming all the sharps, then run through again and mentally name all the flats! Maybe that will 'reset' my habits!!
The chromatic scale is typically written using sharps ascending and flats descending. You might try that.
 
Colin the Bear

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Think of scales as intervals. For major it's tone, tone, half tone; tone, tone half tone, separated by a tone.

It's not a piano. Try to learn scales as finger patterns.
 
spike

spike

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Think of scales as intervals.
Exactly - eventually you probably won't think in terms of notes, scales and chord names, you'll have a completely different concept of the roadmap of the sax keyboard. You'll just know where to go. All those finger patterns will become instinctive.
It just takes a while.
 
Colin the Bear

Colin the Bear

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And you can't rush it. Keep at it and let it happen. ;)
 
Jazzaferri

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I have to wonder about what is at the root of the problem. Is it the actual fingerings that are the problem or the reading of notes in bKeys. Personally while C# and Db are all of the sameness finger wise........ some prefer reading in Db (5b) some like me prefer reading in C#. Life being what it is most arrangments that I play on alto are in Db (Emajor (guitar players fave key it seems)

IT mostly comes down to practice, though a good understanding of how one learns helps to find the tools/aids that make this process more efficient.
 
Halfers

Halfers

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I have to wonder about what is at the root of the problem. .

Me :)

I think the heart of it is the fact the Saxophone is still very new to me and the temptation to run before I can walk is strong within me! I can rationalise that improving my theory and practicing is the only answer, but it doesn't stop me from trying to find 'the secret' :D
 
Veggie Dave

Veggie Dave

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I can rationalise that improving my theory and practicing is the only answer, but it doesn't stop me from trying to find 'the secret' :D

The secret isn't very secret - it's hours and hours of playing and practising, followed by a few more hours of playing and practising. ;)

But the real secret has two parts:
  1. No one approach is the right way to do it.
  2. No matter how hard you're working, how much time and effort you find yourself putting into the instrument it should never stop being fun.
 
Halfers

Halfers

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The secret isn't very secret - it's hours and hours of playing and practising, followed by a few more hours of playing and practising. ;)

But the real secret has two parts:
  1. No one approach is the right way to do it.
  2. No matter how hard you're working, how much time and effort you find yourself putting into the instrument it should never stop being fun.

The real fun today was annoying my son while he was on the X Box (he spends so much time practising that, I think he's pro level) by nailing(ish) the solo to Bowie's 'Modern Love' while he was trying to mortally combat some aliens or something. My impro to 'Moondance' failed miserably, but hey, who said fun had to be perfect :)
 
Jazzaferri

Jazzaferri

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The secret that I learned from Kenny Werner and reinforced many times in a 5 day retreat with Vic Wooten is to practice so slowly at first one is conscious of the actual finger motion......... feeling how it moves and where it lands n and hearing how the note sounds (attack, tone, intonation) all the time being com0letely relaxed but focussed completely on the task.

That's sooooo hard for me but when I am learning really tricky passages (such as a non scalar triplet 16th followed by 4 32nds played at about 120 bpm such as I had on Friday repeat ad nauseam) when I do it that way things come together so much quicker in the end.
 
Jazzaferri

Jazzaferri

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Oh and BTW I am not responsible for the spelling of completely. When I go in to edit the spelling looks right in that screen LOL
 

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