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Chris Potter - Saxophone God - Humber's 2009 Artist in Residence.

Unlike many of my fellow comrades, I never had the opportunity to see Michael Brecker play. I've never seen Wayne Shorter or Sonny Rollins. I have seen many players do there thing either in a clinic or on the bandstand, but today was the first time I've ever been able to sit with most of my school - including 30-50 saxophone players (mostly friends) - and listen to Chris Potter - one of my FAVOURITE saxophone players!!

There is nothing like saxophone players gathered outside the auditorium doors scrunched in to try to be the first in the door and get good seats at the front. And people being genuinely excited that they just saw Chris Potter walking in the hallway!!!



Clinic 1:


In the tradition of Humber College ... most of clinic one is spent as a 1-on-1 interview about how Chris came to be in this crazy business; The bands he's worked with; the influences he has had etc.

He then played "Invitation" for a good 10 minutes or so. I have never heard anything like that in my entire life up close. I was sitting in the front row and he wasn't miced for that, so I got to hear nothing but natural saxophone! It was indescribeable to hear the sound and ideas I've listened to countless times on his recordings come to life in front of me. Totally unreal and surreal - almost like in a dream HAHA!

After that he spoke about his approach to working ideas around the horn and breathing new life into them. And he spoke about the genius of Lester Young and Lester's ability to simply say what he means on his horn. And the idea that technical ability does not make you a good player.



We have now taken a break until 2:00pm - when we will return to hear what he has to say/play next!!!

This week is going to be amazing!!!! :emoji_relaxed:
 
Thanks! ... I wish I had time to keep blogging about it ... it was FANTASTIC! ... i learned so much from him and his philosophies on playing!

I also took a couple hundred pictures!

I'll see if I can post a link to the clinics in case anyone is interested in downloading them!!

Pat Labarera, Kirk MacDonald and Chris Potter playing resolution was some good times!
 
I'll see if I can post a link to the clinics in case anyone is interested in downloading them!!
Please do! Thank you. IMO, Chris Potter is as interesting to listen to as anything dead or alive, crawling or walking. I have a bunch of his CDs and have heard him live twice in Boston. The first time was actually disappointing, perhaps because I showed up with unrealistic overblown expectations, and his playing seemed very laid back, perhaps because the band had just flown in from London. The second time - with identical unrealistic overblown expectations - was as good as anything I have heard live, which includes the likes of Brecker, Rollins etc. up close. It was like sitting on a flying musical carpet for close to two hours, and then being dumped off with a sense that the experience was unreal, a figment of imagination. I am positivily unable to appreciate what he does so getting a chance to gain any insights from those clinics would be a treat.
 
I will have to wait until after school is over to worry about posting. Sorry guys. I just have like a million things due in the next month! But I will definitely get them up here.
 
Very interesting. Reminds me of the privilege I have of finally being accepted into a quality big rehearsal band where I play 2nd alto. The best part of that is being able each week to hear top sax players share their lead alto and jazz chair tenor soloing ideas for a variety of big band charts. Although 2nd alto and 2nd tenor chairs are filled by "regulars," mystery (to me) guests arrive each week to play in the top spots and it's always a rare treat to sit next to a well-known (in our SoCal community) lead alto player and listen to him do his thing while being able to chat with him between tunes and during the break about our shared passion for playing saxophones.

Thanks for sharing your experience. I know it's something you'll never forget.

Rob
 
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