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Help with lower C#

Hi guys!

My daughter (11) has been really struggling with lower C# on her alto sax - she can play lower C and lower D nice and strong with any dynamics and articulation, but somehow the C# is a hit-or-miss affair for her. Her teacher suggested relaxing the embouchure a bit and putting more mouthpiece in, but it didn't seem to help much. Any suggestions will be much appreciated, but please note I am not a musician and I do not play any instrument myself so as plain English as possible, please. :-)
Also, any exercises you'd recommend? We've been trying interlaced scales (C, C#, D, C#, E, C#, etc.) and simple tunes so far.

Thanks!

Pawel

Followers

We (Joseph and Hannah) have decided that every time we double in the number of followers (so right now we're at 5, so it'll be 10, 20, 40, 80, maybe throw in something for 100, 160, etc.) we will alternate posting an original composition to thank you! (It may or may not be very good. We're certainly not experts ;)

Feedback on my newest work-in-progress?

 
Hello! I'm a self-taught composer, and this is my second full piece (I've written things like character themes for friends that I don't count as full pieces) and, although I've been working on it throughout the summer, I'm still unhappy with it. I'm looking for critiques and tips on how I can improve this piece.
Thanks!  

https://musescore.com/user/26691311/scores/5180188

Help, advice, suggestion plss

 
Hi  people ^^

https://musescore.com/user/28933897/scores/5165729

Before, to make it clear and not to create confusion: I know almost nothing about music, much less harmony, so forgive me. I'm just a kid wanting to do something cool. I would appreciate it if you would leave tips and suggestions.

About the idea: I'm going back to my homeland, so I decided to do some work on it (even though I have no idea what I'm doing). I started doing this project today, and I intend to take it for a week, until it is complete. I want you to accompany him with me. For now, is this ...  

https://musescore.com/user/28933897/scores/5165729

"I don't know what i'm doing and it's the not knowing that makes it interesting". - Philip Glass

Summer Competition Results!

So we had a 3 way tie for first, so I had to choose from those 3 as to which was first, second, and third (which also meant changing their scores so they placed as listed below lol)

FIRST! - @Skylighter - 20
SECOND! - @lizzapie - 19
THIRD! - @The Virtuoso Pianist - 18

now the point scale for the rest of you!

@lareinedeslapins - 17
@frncscbrqz - 17
@Thelight OI - 17
@WantaSample - 17
@jmoses - 16
@Kenobiingondolin2019 - 15
@MusicRebel - 15
@Grant Develle - 15
@NobleEwe - 15
@Shadows654 - 15
@pavlos235 - 14
@Deanna140601 - 14
@Okely Dokely - 14
@Msalis - 13
@BeeBunny - 13


Thank you all! it was a good competition around the board!

Summer Competition!

Hey guys!! I might as well start our summer comp, so here it goes!

RULES:

must be submitted by July 15th 

- 1 submission per person
- no longer than 10 minutes and no shorter than 1 minute
- must be ORIGINAL
- it can be for any type of ensemble you can think of from solo Piano to Saxophone,     Viola and Harp ;P

(I haven't decided on how I'll do the judging yet, but once completed, hopefully it won't take me long to get the results out :D)

now go make some music!!!! :D

Help

I have been in my school band for 2 years. I went from elementary to middle school. We started in 6th grade and are now in 7th and I am a tenor sax. I currently gave problems with coming from over the break to some of the lower notes like F, F#, E, D, et cetera. If anyone has suggestions, please post some.

The string instrument doctor

Hi there fellow string instrument players,

Outside of transcription and arranging for orchestra and occasionally smaller ensembles I am also a professional violin maker and restorer.
And for that reason, I am willing to try and answer every question on the subject of violins, violas, cellos and contrabasses in regard of construction, acoustics and history.

Questions can go from: 'How best to clean my violin' to 'What's so special about old instruments and especially those by Stradivarius'.

Please take note that my mother tongue isn't english, I'll always try to utilize the correct terms and words but mistakes are bound to be made!

[article] Sax practice routine

One of the main problems every saxophone player faces at some point is: “what and how to practise”. I just wanted to share some experience and knowledge on the topic - I’ve been a practising saxophone player for about 18 years already. This is not a complete guide or an instruction, but a note containing some suggestions. Though I am more into practising improvisation now, I’ve tried to mention some more general practise activities here .
So let’s just go through an example of daily practice schedule:

  1. Breathing.
    Whenever I have time I get back to some breathing exercises (see my article on breathing) - 3-5 minutes or so - as breathing is one of the most important things for producing great sound, and cool sound is what we are constantly aiming for.

  2. Long tones
    - indispensable both for embouchure and for breathing skills. Moreover, different dynamics, cresc, dim, steady tone, etc. - at least 15 minutes. Be aware of your intonation and timbre during this exercise! You may want to use some tuner. Also read the article about embouchure posted in this group, I find it important. One of saxophone myths is that “only beginners should practise long tones”. I like to compare that with sports: every sportsman warms up before actually starting doing sports; long tones - is a warm-up for professional wind player, we need that to be in good shape, that’s of vital importance!

  3. Overtones*
    - practising overtones and matching them to standard fingerings. Try to match the “full” timbre and pitch of overtone when playing tones using “normal” fingerings. There are several books on the topic, a good place to start is the corresponding section of David Liebman’s “Developing a personal saxophone sound”

  4. Techniques you need:
    tonguing exercises for “junior” saxophonists , different articulations - for all sax players (it’s extremely helpful to start with simulating articulation of your favourite saxophonists, especially for jazz-oriented musician) for more advanced players the list might look like this: flutter tonguing, split tones (multiphonics), altissimo, growl, circular breathing, etc.

  5. Scales and arpeggios.
    All kinds of scales and arpeggios you need; a plenty of things for jazz players: all modes of major/minor scale, diminished and augmented scale, melodic minor scale (actually there are tons of scales, see the fundamental work of “Yusef Lateef “Repository of Scales and Melodic Patterns”) , triads and 7th/9th chords (including augmented ones) arpeggios, studying chord/scale theory (check Mark Levine’s “Jazz Theory Book”). David Baker’s “Creative.Approach To Practicing Jazz” is a good source of ideas. “ I am not too familiar with classical stuff, so feel free to post your thoughts and share your experience in comments.

  6. Exercises.
    Both classical (for developing your overall playing technique, like “Daily exercises for saxophone” by H.Klose) and jazz (elements you need for improvisation - enclosure, 3 to b9, licks and patterns:II-V7, all kinds of cadences, cycle of fifths, etc.. Just remember to practice things in all 12 keys whenever it is possible. Here are the authors of literature on the topic: Jerry Coker (co-writer of “Patterns for jazz” and the author of a bunch of other books), David Baker (“How To Play Bebop” in 3 parts, etc.), and, of course, the educational books with playalongs by Jamey Aebersold.

  7. Practising improvisation.
    That is: studying transcribed solos (and the process of solo transcription itself, of course) - remember analysing not only the notes played in different harmonic situations, but also the master’s articulation and time feeling (is he behind, before or on the beat?; learning tunes with chord progressions, applying patterns, licks and everything you’ve learnt in steps 5 and 6 and, finally, several minutes of “just improvising” to track your progress and just for pleasure. There is a really cool book called “Elements Of The Jazz Language For The Developing Improvisor” by Jerry Coker, I highly recommend it. The same author has an article entitled “How to practice improvisation” in his “Complete Method for Improvisation” book (part of this article was included in Jamey Aebersold’s “Jazz Handbook”)

If you have any questions or if you have something to add to this article - please don’t hesitate to do it in comments!