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Must......learn......to project!!

ESJohn

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Lakeside, Ohio

We performed in Lakeside, Ohio at the Hoover Auditorium on Sunday. While this auditorium has a capacity of 2000, there were barely over 100 in the audience. The program included 14 tunes in the concert, plus a pre-concert performance by the strings. When we played Satin Doll by Duke Ellington (arr. Osterling), I was responsible for playing the second alto sax solo, which consisted of four measures. I was mostly satisfied with my efforts, except that I think I played too softly. We were in the back rows of the orchestra, so it was almost impossible to see any of us, even with those massive screens at the sides of the stage. Still, it was the most exciting venue where the band has performed. I am guessing that we will be invited back again, but most of the audience seemed subdued in their response to us.
Here is the link to the portion that includes my very brief solo (I'm the last of four. Fortunately, I am not visible at all. The director's stand is blocking any view of me!)
Many, many thanks to Nigel for pointing me in the right direction as to how to post a youtube video!
View: https://youtu.be/qclQZr5sSog
 
Solo at t = 0:55

Sax is more present than I thought given the subject line.

I suggest you omit the scooping and bending from the solo, and instead focus on developing your support and air stream. Listen also for how your time sits in the mix. This is a tough tune to play at the given tempo. We all know that it wants to swing but sounds like it's on a tight leash.
 
Solo at t = 0:55

Sax is more present than I thought given the subject line.

I suggest you omit the scooping and bending from the solo, and instead focus on developing your support and air stream. Listen also for how your time sits in the mix. This is a tough tune to play at the given tempo. We all know that it wants to swing but sounds like it's on a tight leash.
That's the first sax solo. Mine is at 1:06.
 
I really enjoyed your clip! this a great band and I'd love to see something like sometime!!!

I used to do exactly the same thing ... scoop notes and instead of having a steady air stream ( breath support )I was following the melody with my lungs. It lead me to have issues controlling my articilulations and not being able to perform long distance notes without a massive scoop that ultimately would kill my swinging flow of jazz melody and/or a hammer tonguing just because I was unsure if I would make it.
Do a long tones exercise with progressively bigger distances ... because in non diatonic passages you might sound as if you have less accuracy and projection. Work on having all notes homogenous .. check you swing feel so that no pitch scoops in and preserve a perfect triplet feel.

This doesnt happen in one day. But you sure do want to sound like the one that does long tones trust me.

If you have more clips of this band Id love to see more of you guys performing. I loved it!
 
That's the first sax solo. Mine is at 1:06.
Like @Dr G said, you are "easing into the notes" instead of attack/fade. I know it's kinda hard to develop this but any little bit of hesitation will make you sound insecure instead of "this is my part".

I mean, you sound good but you could sound great with just a bit of adjustment in that direction.
 
Outstanding critiques! Thanks to all for the great suggestions! I love the Miles Davies quote and will remember it always!
I have a shot at sort of redeeming myself this Sunday as we will be performing the same tune in an outdoor setting with hundreds of people milling about with I'm sure less than 100 paying any particular attention to us. We'll be in a gazebo next to a lake. I'll try to get the notice of the folks on the other side (in a very cool and swinging way, of course!).
 
I'm not wanting to keep this thread going, but I do want to thank all of you once again for your great advice and suggestions! I took them seriously and tried my best to implement them.
We played at the Barberton, Ohio Mum festival to a crowd of maybe 100 or so. They were very enthusiastic. I had so much fun playing that four-measure solo as part of Satin Doll and received several compliments. Although I tried to get the folks across the lake to notice, I'm not sure if they did since we were facing the other direction. Still, there was no reason to hold back the volume and I think it went well. I hope there will be more opportunities in the future.
Our director was grinning from ear to ear when we were finished, and all were in very good spirits as we left.
 
I think you are all playing good. Must take a lot of effort to keep a band like this "running". You should have a bigger audience. Too big concert hall? But a big band like yours needs a big stage. It's not easy. How are you promoting a concert like this? Just curious, I used to organize concerts for some years ago. Sometimes there were more staff and musicians than spectators.
 
Thanks Thom,
The band is supported mostly through membership fees. Some of our events are paid, which definitely helps. The Lakeside event was featured on their website. I'm sure there were notices posted elsewhere within the resort area. We were asked to invite our friends and family (I got one of our friends to attend).
Lakeside's auditorium was very up-to-date in terms of technology and acoustics, so it was an exciting place to be, even with the smaller crowd. The mum festival was outdoors. The folks there were in a happy mood to begin with, so I think that helped us in our performance. There were hundreds of people looking over food vendors, etc. and the other forms of entertainment, such as a ski show before us and a steel band that immediately followed our performance.
 

Similar threads... or are they? Maybe not but they could be worth reading anyway 😀

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