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Favorite Saxophone Players

GUEST 12 Feb 09 - 06:56 PM
bubblyrat 12 Feb 09 - 07:08 PM
MartinRyan 12 Feb 09 - 07:12 PM
The Vulgar Boatman 12 Feb 09 - 07:20 PM
Terry McDonald 12 Feb 09 - 07:28 PM
pdq 12 Feb 09 - 07:33 PM
Beer 12 Feb 09 - 07:38 PM
pdq 12 Feb 09 - 07:50 PM
Jack Campin 12 Feb 09 - 08:35 PM
van lingle 12 Feb 09 - 09:09 PM
Leadfingers 12 Feb 09 - 09:27 PM
Uncle Phil 12 Feb 09 - 09:29 PM
pdq 12 Feb 09 - 09:39 PM
catspaw49 12 Feb 09 - 09:49 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 12 Feb 09 - 10:09 PM
mrdux 13 Feb 09 - 01:23 AM
M.Ted 13 Feb 09 - 01:47 AM
GUEST,heric 13 Feb 09 - 02:28 AM
Dave Sutherland 13 Feb 09 - 02:51 AM
Jack Blandiver 13 Feb 09 - 04:45 AM
Hamish 13 Feb 09 - 05:18 AM
Stu 13 Feb 09 - 05:30 AM
irishenglish 13 Feb 09 - 07:07 AM
bubblyrat 13 Feb 09 - 07:20 AM
Jack Blandiver 13 Feb 09 - 07:36 AM
GUEST,Tunesmith 13 Feb 09 - 07:42 AM
GUEST,Jonny Sunshine 13 Feb 09 - 03:08 PM
fat B****rd 13 Feb 09 - 03:12 PM
Stringsinger 13 Feb 09 - 03:22 PM
Will Fly 13 Feb 09 - 04:00 PM
PoppaGator 13 Feb 09 - 04:08 PM
van lingle 13 Feb 09 - 05:37 PM
GUEST,TJ in San Diego 13 Feb 09 - 05:51 PM
Jack Campin 13 Feb 09 - 06:03 PM
Jack Blandiver 13 Feb 09 - 06:26 PM
Will Fly 13 Feb 09 - 06:38 PM
Terry McDonald 13 Feb 09 - 07:06 PM
Stringsinger 13 Feb 09 - 07:12 PM
PoppaGator 14 Feb 09 - 03:42 AM
Will Fly 14 Feb 09 - 04:06 AM
Will Fly 14 Feb 09 - 04:08 AM
Jack Blandiver 14 Feb 09 - 04:10 AM
Will Fly 14 Feb 09 - 04:11 AM
Murray MacLeod 14 Feb 09 - 04:37 AM
Jack Blandiver 14 Feb 09 - 05:15 AM
bubblyrat 14 Feb 09 - 05:17 AM
Jack Campin 14 Feb 09 - 08:23 AM
Ernest 14 Feb 09 - 10:13 AM
Murray MacLeod 14 Feb 09 - 10:19 AM
Terry McDonald 14 Feb 09 - 10:39 AM
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Subject: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 06:56 PM

David Sanborn Live at Montreux comes out on DVD on Feb. 17th. He's one of my favorite Sax players--he's got some serious chops. Who are some your favorite Sax players?


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: bubblyrat
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 07:08 PM

Not my favourite instrument,but I liked the guy in Dave Brubeck's band,and whoever played alto-sax on Art Garfunkel's version of "Heart in New York" !! I don't know anybody else,except Boots Randolph !


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: MartinRyan
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 07:12 PM

"The guy in Dave Brubeck's band" was alto player Paul Desmond whose tone was just about unique. (Lee Konitz the nearest?). Brings back memories of putting up with Brubeck's rather clunky piano just to hear Desmond and Joe Morello, the drummer, IIRC.

REgards


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: The Vulgar Boatman
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 07:20 PM

Frankie Trumbauer. Mark you, there's this bloke called Courtney Pine who's still doing a bit...
Wood's 100 tonight Bubblyrat.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Terry McDonald
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 07:28 PM

Gerry Mulligan and Andy Sheppard.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: pdq
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 07:33 PM

"the saxophone is an ill wind that nobody blows good"


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Beer
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 07:38 PM

Don't know much about the instrument but I sure like to hear Clarence Clemons blow it.
Beer (adrien)


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: pdq
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 07:50 PM

By the way, Frankie Trumbauer (mentioned already) was the premier exponent of the C "melody" saxophone in Jazz. The instrument has not been made in the US since the 1929 stock market crash when it was deleted in favor of the models that sold better.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Campin
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 08:35 PM

I have a C melody (Buescher from 1922). Nice for Shetland tunes. They are being made again now, by the Aquilasax firm. A lot of sound for very little respiratory effort, though the keywork feels like driving a truck.

My faves are at the cool end: John Harle, John Surman, Jan Garbarek. And at the other extreme, Anthony Braxton, though I can only handle him in small doses.

Going to hear Gilad Atzmon next week. There's a saxophonist with something important to say: www.gilad.co.uk.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: van lingle
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 09:09 PM

Johnny Hodges who played with Ellington was one of my favorites as were/are Lester Young, Stan Getz, Coltrane, Cannonball...


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Leadfingers
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 09:27 PM

Sidney Bechet - Soprano Sax , Clarinet , and on at least one recording , Sarrousaphone !


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Uncle Phil
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 09:29 PM

Charlie Parker


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: pdq
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 09:39 PM

I believe modern sax playing started in the 1920s.

Top players from the 1920s:

Sidney Bechet ~ soprano sax
Jimmy Dorsey ~ alto sax
Frankie Trumbauer ~ C "melody" sax
Don Murray ~ baritone sax
Adrian Rollini ~ bass sax

This means Jazz, I suppose.

All these guys still sound good today.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: catspaw49
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 09:49 PM

Can't do it.....favorite or greatest or whatever.....can't do it. First problem is that saxophone is a group not one instrument and some of the finest are specialists. Charlie Parker put it best when he said he "spoke" Alto. Coltrane and guys like Ben Webster spoke Tenor and Gerry Mulligan has to top any Bari list.

Then, what are they doing?   What style, etc. just like any instrument. Although there is a "Concert" style perhaps, Sax is most often an instrument of Jazz along with Rock and R&B.

Someone mentioned the great Paul Desmond. Paul once described himself as the world's slowest alto player and also another time as the world's quietest alto player. I doubt he was either but god knows that sound of his was cool as ice. Now Bird had a cutting, edgey, sound that fit well in Bop. What they DO SHARE in common along with the other greats of jazz was their ability to soar into unbelievable flights of fancy taking you farther and farther then somehow bringing you back almost seamlessly. That trait separates the greats from the near greats everytime.

These guys were musically perfect and they were truly intimate with the instrument, so completely at ease and comfortable that thoughts were translated to music with no effort. Most jazz players do this but the true greats are in a different space and breathe the rare air.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 12 Feb 09 - 10:09 PM

Mulligan and Desmond, but I'm also quite partial to Coleman Hawkins.

Jerry

And OH YEAH! STANLEY TURRENTINE!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: mrdux
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 01:23 AM

Sonny Rollins -- saw him last year and he's till quite amazing. Also Coltrane, Parker and Coleman Hawkins.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: M.Ted
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 01:47 AM

Not to forget Stan Getz, Harry Carney, Roland Kirk, John Hardy, Marshall Allen, Art Pepper, Jim Pepper, and Benny Carter--just for starters.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: GUEST,heric
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 02:28 AM

Martin Winning


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Dave Sutherland
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 02:51 AM

Dick Heckstall - Smith if he'd have been American he would have been mentioned by now.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 04:45 AM

A few of my favourites that haven't been mentioned:

John Gilmore
Dudu Pukwana
Lol Coxhill
Ron Aspery
Gary Windo
Didier Malherbe
Roscoe Mitchel
Joseph Jarman
Pharoah Sanders
Evan Parker

*

Someone mentioned Marshall Allen back there; one of my happiest memories is smoking with Marshall after the Arkestra's Edinburgh Festival gig back in 1990. He was most keen that I should come and meet Sonny, but I was too in awe! Fags with the 1st lieutenant was one thing, but being summoned to the captain's table was something else altogether.

You're on the spaeship earth - destination unknown!

Felt a lot safer when Sun Ra was at the helm!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaDfeA7hYkY

They'll come back in shining ships of gold...


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Hamish
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 05:18 AM

Nt previously mentioned, but Michael Brecker and Tommy Smith. Charlie Parker, of course. So lyrical and infectious.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Stu
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 05:30 AM

My wife.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: irishenglish
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 07:07 AM

Rahsaan Roland Kirk
Alto Reed (Tommy Cartmell) from Bob Seger's Silver Bullet Band-one hell of a player!
Pete Zorn


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: bubblyrat
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 07:20 AM

Sorry !! I forgot to mention PETE ZORN,whom I saw playing with Mr H's band not too long ago !!
Adolph Sax was probably quite good too, but before my time ,I'm afraid!!When was the instrument's first use in "classical" music ??----Ravel's "Bolero" ??? Certainly,Prokofiev liked it !!


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 07:36 AM

Rahsaan Roland Kirk

My personal favourite, but already mentioned.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S0JJmwq7KXQ


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: GUEST,Tunesmith
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 07:42 AM

There was a program on BBC TV4 recently about the history of jazz, and it included a track by Dexter Gordon playing a ballad. I thought it was just wonderful.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: GUEST,Jonny Sunshine
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 03:08 PM

Paul Desmond, John Coltrane, Cannonball Adderly. Also well worth a listen is Danish player Lars Moller


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: fat B****rd
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 03:12 PM

All of the above, just about. Joe Henderson, Sonny Rollins, Lee Allen. There's loads I can't bring to mind just now.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Stringsinger
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 03:22 PM

Charlie Parker. Bird. The most creative of them all. Coltrane, runner up.

Bechet for trad swing. Jimmy Dorsey. Trumbauer.
Lester Young. Coleman Hawkins. Johnny Hodges

Sonny Rollins

Gerry Mulligan was right up there...

I like Paul Desmond's tone.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Will Fly
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 04:00 PM

Frankie Trumbauer's playing on "Singing The Blues" is just beautiful.

And let's not forget King Curtis... and the wonderful players on Little Richard's singles...


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: PoppaGator
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 04:08 PM

Tony Dagradi of Astral Project.

I have other faves, all already mentioned.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: van lingle
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 05:37 PM

Right Will, Trumbauer's recordings with Bix Beiderbecke were something else.
Also, Wayne Shorter's playing with Miles in the early 60's and then Weather Report deserves mention.
And then there's Hank Mobley with Miles in the Mid 50's.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 05:51 PM

John Coltrane and a fellow I had the good luck to meet and hear in Seattle many years ago, Julian "Cannonball" Adderley. Stan Getz and Paul Desmond are up there as well. Charlie "Bird" Parker was gone before I really got to hear him much, but leaves a powerful legacy.
I also liked Bud Shank, but I may be biased because he played with both Charlie Byrd and Laurindo Almeida.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Campin
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 06:03 PM

I'm horrified that nobody's yet said "ME!!!!". Aren't there any other folk sax players out there?

I know it's used by a few English morris sides.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 06:26 PM

Folk saxophonists?

John Rangecroft & Davie Webster - of Ken Hyder's Talisker!

Dreaming of Glenisla (1975) is one of my all time favourites, which recently saw CD re-issue in Canada:

http://www.reelrecordings.org/ken_hyder.php


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Will Fly
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 06:38 PM

Aren't there any other folk sax players out there?

The melodeon player in our ceilidh band also plays tenor and alto saxes - makes a great addition to the sound.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Terry McDonald
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 07:06 PM

Alan Whetton plays beautiful soprano sax on Hilary James''Burning Sun' album.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Stringsinger
Date: 13 Feb 09 - 07:12 PM

Don't forget Lee Konitz. He worked with Lenny Tristano and was a pioneer in the "cool school" of jazz. He often played "outside" of the changes.

Stnsnger


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: PoppaGator
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 03:42 AM

Can anyone explain:

1) Just exactly what is/was a "C Melody" sax, and why is it called that?

2) What's the deal with horns being tuned a half-step off what for other instruments is "concert pitch"? I had the opportunity to sing with an band featuring a horn section several years ago, and the leader who wrote the charts had an ongoing dialogue with the horn players about this discrepancy, while the horn players would occasionally make comments about how much easier things were for the less-musically-literate string players. Why would an "A" not be an "A" for every instrument?


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Will Fly
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 04:06 AM

Players of different instruments often have their particular charts written in such a way that the basic key of their instrument is written in one key but actually plays in a different key. So a piece for the alto sax, for example, might be written on the staff as C, but actually plays in Eb. The guitar itself uses transposition, with there being an octave difference between what's written on the treble clef and what actually sounds (an octave lower). So, when arranging a piece for a mixed band, the arranger has the choice of writing all the arrangements in concert pitch, or writing them in the transposed equivalent for each particular instrument - a tone difference for a Bb tenor sax, 3 semitone difference for an Eb alto sax, etc. Sounds complicated, but the individual musicians would have learned to read music in its transposed form.

The C Melody sax, I believe, was in the alto sax range but pitched in C, rather than the more usual Eb.

I'm sure other 'Catters can probably explain this better than me!


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Will Fly
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 04:08 AM

Forgot to say - the reason for the transposition is to save the composer and player from constantly writing and reading sharps and flats on the staff. A melody written in Eb for the alto sax is much easier to write and read as a composition in C on the staff - but will play in Eb. :-)


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 04:10 AM

A C melody sax is a tenor in C, rather than the usual Bb. In Johnny Roadhouses the other week I was shown a vintage C soprano.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C_melody_saxophone


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Will Fly
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 04:11 AM

Thanks IB - couldn't quite remember whether the C melody was in the alto or tenor range!


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 04:37 AM

Kenny G a shocking omission, shirley ...


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 05:15 AM

I must point out that was a cross post, Will. I suppose in folk parlance it's the difference between a C and Bb whistle.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: bubblyrat
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 05:17 AM

I really like the interplay between the (alto ?) -sax player and the bassist in Bela Fleck and the Flecktones --who he ??


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Jack Campin
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 08:23 AM

The usual C melody (like mine) is one tone higher than a B flat tenor, but there are also C melody sopranos, one step higher than the B flat soprano. There are also F saxes, a tone higher than an E flat alto, but they're a lot rarer.

The sax was originally developed to play the classical repertoire, but the early makers couldn't make their minds up whether it was a kind of oboe/bassoon/flute (hence in C or F) or a kind of brass instrument (hence flat keys). The C melody plays oboe or flute music as written.

There's a ton of classical saxophone music dating back to soon after the sax was invented. Most of the early stuff isn't very good.


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Ernest
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 10:13 AM

I have to second bubbyrats mentioning of the Flecktone`s sax-player (whose name escapes me too) an would also add Bill Evans, who does similar stuff - look out for his album "Soulgrass"!


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Murray MacLeod
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 10:19 AM

mustn't forget Bob Holness, genial game show host ("can I have a "P" please, Bob") who laid down that scintillating sax solo on Gerry Rafferty's "Baker Street" ...


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Subject: RE: Favorite Saxophone Players
From: Terry McDonald
Date: 14 Feb 09 - 10:39 AM

I hope you're not being serious, Murray?


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