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Sheet Music Sax Quartet suggestions?

David Dorning

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A group of us from our local jazz class are getting together to try out a sax quartet. We’re all relative beginners so I wondered if anyone in the forum could suggest some pieces to start off with. I have identified plenty of free scores on the web but I imagine sax quartet playing has particular challenges and someone out there has already invented this particular wheel, and may be able to suggest something that will work to set us off on our way. Between us we can do either SATB or AATB. All suggestions gratefully received!
 

Pyrografix

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We started out with Colin Cowles Very First Saxophone Quartet Book (and still use it now as our warm-up) It has some very simple but effective short tunes which encourage you all to listen to everyone else as you play to help your part slot in to place. The major difficulty we've had as players from a sax orchestra was not having a director standing in front of you helping you to keep time!

Have fun with your venture!
 

Sue

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Have great fun whatever you choose. Maybe look out for Karen Street's Fairer Sax Ensemble books. I think there are 3 in total but they may be scored for SAAT or AAAT, I can't remember.
 

Justin Chune

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Playing sax quartets is the greatest fun and I wish you well. When we started we had an arrangement of the Beatles tune "When I'm Sixty Four" that worked. Today we played "Bull Frog Blues" Roncorp, Inc. Ragtime music can be fun. Don't be put off by all the black notes. Make the quaver the beat and it becomes more manageable. "Shimmy Like Kate" is a fun piece that you could manage. I don't have the publisher to hand. I have quite a collection of sax quartets and if I see anything suitable I'll let you know. Let us know how you get on.

Jim.
 

David Dorning

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Thanks everyone for your helpful suggestions, all taken on board. Counting down to our first session on Saturday!
 

MandyH

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Enjoy yourselves - we started with Pachelbel's Canon and Entry of the Gladiators (Lord knows what our teacher was on when she suggested those!)

We have a good arrangement of Build me up Buttercup, done by a friend for us.

There is a fair arrangement of 4 Gershwin songs done by Phillipe Marrilia (but watch him, your Bari player will be swearing! He loves 2+ octave jumps as a walking bass!)

And make sure you talk to each other - I (as Bari) have a lovely solo in The Bare Necessities, but I really had to nag the SAT to keep down, as I was blowing my heart out and could hardly hear myself over the "accompaniment"!
 

Nick Wyver

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I can recommend NOT trying Toccata and Fugue in D minor by good old JSB in a sax quartet arrangement by Roger Greenberg. Completely bonkers.
 

Nick Wyver

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And make sure you talk to each other - I (as Bari) have a lovely solo in The Bare Necessities, but I really had to nag the SAT to keep down, as I was blowing my heart out and could hardly hear myself over the "accompaniment"!

Well, what do you expect with an S80? You need something with some muscle. ;)
 

old git

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A long, long time ago, there were a series of discs, I'm swinging now, called Four Freshman and Four Trumpets, Trombones, Saxes but not, thank goodness, Drummers.

See if you can find any tracks, they could be inspirational. Please note I did write "could".
 

Nick Wyver

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I have a Meyer 7... But have never tried to play it, what do you reckon?
The last time I did quartet stuff on bari I used a Meyer 9M. It worked fine for me so I'd give it a go if I were you.
 

David Dorning

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Just reporting back to all those who offered advice on quartet playing. We met on Saturday and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, as we discovered just how hard quartet playing can be (thanks for supplying that vital metronome Sue!) We took your advice and tried some simple pieces by Gershwin, Lennon/McCartney and Mozart. It’s probably fair to say the world’s leading saxophone quartets are not going to be challenged by us – well not yet anyway – but plenty to practice and really looking forward to meeting again next weekend.Thanks to all for offering advice.
 

Jeanette

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Hi

Thanks for the update, sounds like you enjoyed it, let us know how it goes over the coming weeks :)

Jx
 

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