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(January 2016): Blues Key Concert C Minor

rhysonsax

Well-Known Member
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3,804
The second key for the Cafe Saxophone blues recordings series is concert C minor. So for Bb saxes that is D minor and Eb saxes will play in A minor.

The guidelines for these threads are that each person who wants to take part chooses their own backing track in whatever style they like, provided that it's in the right key and can be classed as "blues". Then they record their sax playing and link to it from here.

There seem to be lots of good backing tracks on YouTube.

It's up to you whether you want to play a blues with a "head" (tune) or just improvisation.

Some well known blues tunes in concert C minor are:
  • Mr PC (by Coltrane)
  • Stolen Moments (by Oliver Nelson)
  • Footprints (by Wayne Shorter)
After a really interesting first month with blues in C major, let's see how everyone gets on in C minor.

Rhys
 

mrpeebee

Senior Member
Messages
393
Posted these two old C minor blues clips of me already (wrongly) in the previous C major thread, but now here in the correct C minor thread :).

1. 'Chitlins Con Carne' (April 2011)
This is a C minor blues from blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughn. The backing is a jazz/blues backing from youtube. I used it to test a modern metal Berg Larsen 150/2/SMS against a 1950's metal Otto Link Florida no USA 10* mouthpiece (Berg starts, Link comes at 3:03). Played on a 1953 Selmer SBA tenor and a La Voz medium reed:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TXjc3vWRVM

2. 'Mr. PC' (June 2013)
This is also a C minor blues (like 1), but more in hard bop style. Made famous by Cotrane and his bass player Paul Chambers. I used the organ backing track to compare five vintage Otto Link's from my collection. All mouthpieces are played with the same 1953 Selmer SBA tenor and La Voz medium reed.

- Mr PC (ML6 - Four8*MO - TM8 - EB8*- FLnU9 - LVm) by mrpeebee

Time index mouthpieces:
0:31 - 1930-35's Otto Link Master Link (refaced from 4 to 6)
0:59 - 1935-40's Otto Link Four**** (refaced from 4* to 8* by Mojo)
1:28 - 1940-50's Otto Link Tone Master (refaced from 5 to 8 by Erik G.)
1:57 - 1974-75's Otto Link Early Babbitt 8* (original)
2:26 - 1950-60's Otto Link Florida no USA 9 (original)

Hope to do and post a new recording later this month.
 

jimmylh

Well-Known Member
Messages
1,019
Posted these two old C minor blues clips of me already (wrongly) in the previous C major thread, but now here in the correct C minor thread :).

1. 'Chitlins Con Carne' (April 2011)
This is a C minor blues from blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughn. The backing is a jazz/blues backing from youtube. I used it to test a modern metal Berg Larsen 150/2/SMS against a 1950's metal Otto Link Florida no USA 10* mouthpiece (Berg starts, Link comes at 3:03). Played on a 1953 Selmer SBA tenor and a La Voz medium reed:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TXjc3vWRVM
.
I was digging that youtube video before I even knew who you were, and I had never heard the song before. When I saw you over on SOTW I thought, Hey I wonder if this is the same guy! Yep, it was. Great version
 

mrpeebee

Senior Member
Messages
393
Did record a medium Blues in C minor (concert key) during my latest short monthly recording session. Used again (like previous month for C major) a free available backing from YouTube, without score or chord scheme. So just one take with a fully improvised melody line and solo. The reed was (again!) not really willing to go into smooth altissimo!

Here is my minor Blues take:
- 'Blues in Cm' - medium (Florida no USA 10* - Plasticover 2):
Blues in Cm (FL no USA 10* - Plasticover 2) medium by mrpeebee

I actually prefer playing Blues in a major key, which (IMO) gives the player much more options to improvise compared to a minor key Blues.
 
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thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,533
@mrpeebee : You sounds great. And also some very useful information about your mcp's. To find a blues in Em is not easy for me. But I found some and one is (IMO) in the style of J.J. Cale. He played some straight blues as well.
 

jimmylh

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1,019
@jimmylh : Nice version of "Stolen Moments". Are you playing jazz as well?
Thanks. I guess Stolen Moments would be a sort of jazz/blues cross over. I'm not sure if it's a jazz tune with blues changes or a jazzed version of a blues tune. lol. You got me. I sort of rushed it to have something to post, but I'm not really happy with it. I totally hosed the last chorus. Just a bunch of mindless noodling. lol I'm going to study this tune with my teacher next lesson, so maybe I can do a better take later this month if anyone wants to hear it.

The melody is 16 bars with a chromatic run of chords in the last 8 bars. The solos are supposed to be played to a standard 12 bar blues form which I failed to do, which is why it doesn't sound that bluesy. Here is a thread where JB answers a question about it:

Help me analyze the song Stolen Moments
 
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OP
rhysonsax

rhysonsax

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Messages
3,804
Thanks. I guess Stolen Moments would be a sort of jazz/blues cross over. I'm not sure if it's a jazz tune with blues changes or a jazzed version of a blues tune. lol. You got me. I sort of rushed it to have something to post, but I'm not really happy with it. I totally hosed the last chorus. Just a bunch of mindless noodling. lol I'm going to study this tune with my teacher next lesson, so maybe I can do a better take later this month if anyone wants to hear it.
I certainly want to hear more versions of Stolen Moments. I'm hoping to record one myself when time allows.

Rhys
 

thomsax

Well-Known Member
Messages
3,533
Thanks. I guess Stolen Moments would be a sort of jazz/blues cross over. I'm not sure if it's a jazz tune with blues changes or a jazzed version of a blues tune. lol. You got me. I sort of rushed it to have something to post, but I'm not really happy with it. I totally hosed the last chorus. Just a bunch of mindless noodling. lol I'm going to study this tune with my teacher next lesson, so maybe I can do a better take later this month if anyone wants to hear it.

The melody is 16 bars with a chromatic run of chords in the last 8 bars. The solos are supposed to be played to a standard 12 bar blues form which I failed to do, which is why it doesn't sound that bluesy. Here is a thread where JB answers a question about it:

Help me analyze the song Stolen Moments
I really like your recording. I'm unable to play anything like "Stolen Moments". I'm not clever enough. I took some lessons from a jazzguy in the early 80's. What a waste with money and time! I've a Masterclass from Saxophone Journal called "Minor Blues Workout Masterclass" by Dr John Paulson. Different types of excercises and some play-long songs as well. A good nasterclass.
 

MikeMorrell

Netherlands
Subscriber
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1,376
Did record a medium Blues in C minor (concert key) during my latest short monthly recording session. Used again (like previous month for C major) a free available backing from YouTube, without score or chord scheme. So just one take with a fully improvised melody line and solo. The reed was (again!) not really willing to go into smooth altissimo!

Here is my minor Blues take:
- 'Blues in Cm' - medium (Florida no USA 10* - Plasticover 2):
Blues in Cm (FL no USA 10* - Plasticover 2) medium by mrpeebee

I actually prefer playing Blues in a major key, which (IMO) gives the player much more options to improvise compared to a minor key Blues.
I love the freedom of your improv on this!
 
OP
rhysonsax

rhysonsax

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3,804
Top playing Mark - lovely sound and great control. I was listening on headphones and the reverb on the sax was a bit much for me.

Looking forward to hearing more.

Rhys
 

MikeMorrell

Netherlands
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1,376
Here is a hopefully better version 2 of Stolen Moments. I added a two chorus 12 bar blues solo to it. I don't normally post more than one take of a song since my soundcloud statistics show hardly anyone listens twice to the same song. Anyhow, here it is:

https://soundcloud.com/jimmylh%2Fstolen-moments-v2
I definitely like the second version more than the first, Jimmy. You seem to have more control with more variation in note duration and dynamics. In fact, there's more variety in the dynamics of the second piece as a whole. I also thought the that improv on the second version was more subtle (better thought through?). Anyway, big improvement!
 

MikeMorrell

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King Casey

Member
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Thanks Rhys.
Well over the top with reverb. I have done lots of noodling in this key.
Mike: you require many hours of unfocussed rambling and eventually it becomes more focussed.
cheers, Mark.
 
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rhysonsax

rhysonsax

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3,804
I had some work I didn't want to do this weekend, so that was the perfect excuse to do some recordings for this thread.

First I had a stab at Stolen Moments, using Oliver Nelson's original solo to give me some ideas:


And then I had a go at a minor blues called New Orleans Rainy Afternoon from a good saxophone book I have called "Blues Power Live !" - recommended for the blues/rock players out there. Basically just playing on the (tenor sax) D minor blues scale throughout.

I'm looking forward to hearing more minor blues as the month goes on.

Rhys
 
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