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WooF Member Recording Thread

Discussion in 'See and/or Listen' started by tjontheroad, Mar 7, 2009.

  1. Hey Fellas!

    Here's a very typical performance from yours truly. I was aiming for New Orleans, but landed somewhere just short of it I think.

    Click here to watch Bearys-with-Tom

    ps. the drummer can count to two, he just don't care!
  2. Ed

    Ed Founder Staff Member Administrator

  3. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

    Bari sounds good.

    Too funny, I just put up some YouTubeage of Birdland from this last weekend's practice. We used four players though. :cool:

    Here's a chart Randy did last week or so. It was called Pavanne and I liked it so much we did it this weekend too. We all had metal jazz mouthpieces on the instruments. I think we would be better served with rubber ones for this music.
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2009
  4. Thanks Jim. Means a lot. All criticisms are welcome though. Anything that makes me a better player is a good thing.
  5. Nice. It's a cool arrangement of Birdland. I've gotten into cloning myself. I did at least change shirts for each sax.

    I like the brighter jazzy tone. Maybe just the bari should go with HR.
  6. Nice tracks, all. Thanks. I'm glad to see this thread revived.

    Gandalf, I've written a few sax quartet arrangements over the past couple of years. Our quartet performs them (not very well) in the community band concerts. If you are interested, send me a PM, and I'll send a list and then PDFs of the ones you might want to look at. I might have recordings of them, but I don't know where. I'll go in search.

    TJ, I like your cloning effort. A guy on another list did that and found a way to use Windows Movie Maker to do split screen videos of himself playing with himself (so to speak).

    I find it difficult to record ensemble wind arrangements alone as a clone. I miss the ability to watch other players and get visual clues. The blend isn't as good as I'd like it to be. You do a better job of that than I have been able to do.
  7. Clone wars...

    I have a different kind of cloning project underway. Piano-sax duos. I'm trying to recreate the essence of jam sessions we had as kids in our parlors. High school bandmates, my brothers and I would get together and play tunes to help us learn to play by ear. We gathered in the parlors of whomever had a piano and probably drove the rest of the family out of the house.

    This project uses the tunes and styles we played then. We were influenced by the swing and dixieland jazz records of the times (the '50s), so my project tries to capture that sound. Back then I was listening to Ben Webster, Lester Young, and Bud Freeman on tenor and Teddy Wilson, Art Tatum, Fats Waller, and Mel Powell on piano. Mostly because those were the players on the jazz records in our house.

    As I listen to the first cuts of the tunes, I can hear myself struggling to stay inside and not let later influences and idioms creep in.

    Here's a couple of cuts from the first of my clone sessions. They are typical of the project.


    I'm interested in getting comments on the performances. I hear things in there that I'd like to change, and I want to learn whether others hear the same things and get new ideas, too. Also reinforcement about parts that you might find pleasing. Not for attaboys, but to learn what is working best from the vantage of the uninvolved listener.

    Ignore the mix. If I do anything with this project, I'll need someone with better ears than mine to start from dry tracks and handle that part.

    This online review process worked well for me on another discussion group when I made my first commercial CD, so I thought I'd try it here.
  8. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

    Well remember you asked and I'm not a pro. The band didn't jell it would seem. The sax soli's were stiff (listen to Al's latest post for a moving sound). So my question to you is, "Are you using your best player on alto sax?" If not why? By the way, I've felt this when listening to semi-pro and pro bands before. The lead alto has to sell it or the whole sax section is boring.

    With a great lead alto even a mediocre sax section sounds better. Having your best player on lead tenor for a lot of charts means the weird part of the chord get emphasized. And the best sound is on a part that isn't important unless the fellow is soloing.

    Could just be the recordings, who knows? But I didn't listen to all the pieces because something was missing. Al's charts though warranted playing over, and over, and over... :cool:
  9. Thanks Al. The split screen process takes more time to edit than I'd have at hand these days. Maybe, if I get a faster computer to speed up the compositing time required. I may get a faster one soon. Plus something with a viewing screen bigger than the little 12inch powerbook I use now would be a big help.

    It is adding an extra level of difficulty doing this video as a clone. I help myself with this by first recording a rough version of all the parts with just audio. Then, I re-record the parts live with the video and new audio. I later mix and sync the new live audio with the matching video taking out the rough tracks. Now you (and everyone else) know how it's done :)

    I posted this vid on SOTW and I'm getting grilled over their. Go figure :emoji_rolling_eyes:

    I not one to critique. I barely get by myself. The thing about your playing I always hear and admire is you strong sense of time. Both tracks have that. The only thing I heard that wasn't as good as everything else was some of first few notes in the second track didn't come out as strong. That said, it's all good.
  10. Thanks very much. That's just the kind of thing I need to hear. Assuming you refer to Honeysuckle Rose, I heard that too, and thought about either punching in a new first couple of lines or even just bumping the gain at that spot. But then I thought, maybe it's okay as is. Wrong.

    I'm not always as aware as I should be about where the mic is, and I know I was sneaking into the tune more than I ought. The beginning of a tune should be strong. Wimpy lines don't get it.
  11. Technically, I'm our best player, as far as solos go, our Lead Tenor has it covered. Our lead alto is a pretty good lead player, and he only plays alto so that's why he's there. I'm not really an alto player. I've been asked to play lead, but I wanted to stay on bari because it's too much fun, and I just got the newtome YBS-62 from bari_sax_diva, so I wanted to play that. I also play lead alto in the second band, and trombone 2 in the third. Didn't want to be a hog for parts, and I like to think I have a decent sound on bari, and it really seems like my instrument.

    The micing was off. The guy running sound was actually parallel to the sax line, as were the monitors. Not exactly the ideal place to mix from, so the balance is off there.

    Our trombones are real rough, especially the bottom 3 *using a split bass part* and the low trumpets are rough as well, which may be where the jelling is going off.

    The solis are stiff, we know. The lead alto is not a jazz player, he's a classical guy. Great player, but has problems swinging, especially at the quick tempos. Both of the tenor players had problems getting all of the notes in the soli sections in Anthropology, and Count Bubba's Revenge.

    Ok, enough excuses. Thanks for the criticism though, it gives us great stuff to work with for next year.
  12. Memories of You (your 2nd posting) is the tune I was referring to. Something about the tone in first few lines isn't as rich as the rest of the song. Like the reed isn't wet enough or you adjusted your embouchure later on. I had to listen a second time to pick it up. If I'd heard it live, it would have been forgotten quickly.
  13. Oh. I can't quite hear that. ("I was born with a cheap set of ears."*) How far into the track does it sound like that?

    I do hear a distinctly different tone in the C1 that ends the verse and the C1 that starts the first chorus. Perhaps that's because I recorded the sax part of the rubatto verse a cappela and added the piano accompaniment afterwards. So the choruses are recorded at a different time from the verse. Might even be a different reed.

    *Arthur Hunnicut on the Twilight Zone
  14. Gandalfe

    Gandalfe Administrator Staff Member Administrator

    It wasn't bad, I should be in a band as good, but it wasn't great. The sound just seemed... well, pedistrian for a college jazz band. Having a lead alto who's mostly a classical guy is exactly what I'm talking about.
  15. The biggest problem we have is that there is no music major at our school, and none of our music faculty are sax players. Only the lead tenor and myself have had private lessons since high school, which hurts us a lot. Our director is a very good trombone player, and great jazz instructor, but he knows his limits to trying to teach sax playing. We're all good enough to get the technical aspect out, but having a sax teacher would help a lot.

    I've heard some stuff from the MS jazz band. You guys aren't bad for a bunch of engineers. Hell, that's exactly what our band is. Whole sax line are either mechanical or electric engineers.
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