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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

Jazz standards transcription plan

This is our transcription plan. If you wish to make a lead sheet of any of these standards, please write "xxx started" and "xxx finished " when you finish it (where xxx is the number from the list). Don't forget to post the transcription into this group with a link to the score - and we will put it in our "Available standards" list. If you would like to post any other standard - that's also cool, just upload it and provide us with a link to it.

16. Sweet Georgia Brown
19. [in process] In a Sentimental Mood
20. [in process] St Louis Blues
21. [in process] How High the Moon
22. [in process] Oh, Lady Be Good!
24. [in process] Embraceable You
25. [in process] On Green Dolphin Street
26. [in process] Tenderly
27. [in process] The Way You Look Tonight
28. [in process] These Foolish Things
29. [in process] I'll Remember April
31. Sophisticated Lady
32. Ain't Misbehavin'
33. Night and Day
34. After You've Gone
35. Laura
36. Lush Life
37. Sweet Lorraine
38. Don't Blame Me
39. Cherokee (Indian Love Song)
40. Night in Tunisia
41. Indiana (Back Home Again in Indiana)
42. You Go to My Head
43. There Will Never Be Another You
44.Georgia on My Mind
45. Satin Doll
46. Prelude to a Kiss
47. I Should Care
48. Stompin' At the Savoy
49. How Deep Is the Ocean
50. I Cover the Waterfront
51. Come Rain or Come Shine
52. There Is No Greater Love
53. You Don't Know What Love Is
55. On the Sunny Side of the Street
56. Misty
57. Love Is Here to Stay
58. Perdido
59. Tea for Two
60. It Could Happen to You
61. I Got It Bad (and That Ain't Good)
62. Skylark
63. Over the Rainbow
64. The Nearness of You
65. If I Had You
66. (I Don't Stand A) Ghost of a Chance
67. Angel Eyes
68. Out of Nowhere
69. Lover Come Back to Me
70. Darn That Dream
71. All of Me
72. More Than You Know
73. I Got Rhythm
74. Just One of Those Things
75. Mean to Me
76. September Song
77. Someone to Watch Over Me
78. I've Found a New Baby
79. Polka Dots and Moonbeams
80. Easy Living
81. Pennies from Heaven
82. I Didn't Know What Time It Was
83. Memories of You
84. It Don't Mean a Thing
86. They Can't Take That Away from Me
87. Star Eyes
89. [in process] Alone Together
90. Just You, Just Me
92. Things Ain't What They Used to Be
93. Do Nothin' Till You Hear from Me
94. Blue Moon
95. I Surrender Dear
96. You Stepped Out of a Dream
97. My One and Only Love
98. 'S Wonderful!
99. Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
100. Here's That Rainy Day

Help with Sax sound

Hi everyone! 

New to the alto sax and i have a quick question, when i go to play i have about one or two seconds of just air and then the sound comes out fine - is this caused by my breathing, embouchure or reed? I have no idea? I just want a clean sound to come out the moment I begin. Any advice would be greatly appreciated! :)

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.

[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!

List of available jazz standards

Alphabetical list of MuseScore jazz standards lead sheets:

All the Things You Are - https://musescore.com/user/27845251/scores/4962493
April In Paris - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/april-in-paris
Autumn Leaves (Les Feuilles Mortes) - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/autumn-leaves
Bag's Groove - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/bags-groove
Body and Soul - https://musescore.com/user/27845251/scores/4962109
But Not for Me - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/but-not-for-me
Ballin' the Jack - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/ballin-the-jack
Caravan - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/caravan
China Boy - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/china-boy
Christmas Song, The - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/christmas-song
Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/do-you-know-what-it-means-to-miss-new-orleans
Estate - https://musescore.com/user/34714/scores/121561
Fly me to the moon - https://musescore.com/user/84373/scores/103144
Foggy day, A - https://musescore.com/user/28274246/scores/5041483
Frim Fram Sauce, The - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/frim-fram-sauce
Honeysuckle Rose - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/honeysuckle-rose
I Can't Get Started (with You) - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/i-cant-get-started
I Wish You Love - https://musescore.com/user/34714/scores/52280
I Won't Dance - https://musescore.com/user/10401/scores/4987740
Just Friends -  https://musescore.com/user/28274246/scores/5100461
La Vie En Rose - https://musescore.com/user/34714/scores/52287
Lester Leaps In - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/lester-leaps-in
Love For Sale - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/love-for-sale
Lover Man (Oh, Where Can You Be?) - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/lover-man
Man I Loved, The - https://musescore.com/user/637886/scores/432436
Maple Leaf Rag - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/maple-leaf-rag
My Funny Valentine - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/my-funny-valentine
My Romance - https://musescore.com/user/28274246/scores/5041449
Old Country, The - https://musescore.com/user/34714/scores/52281
On A Misty Night - https://musescore.com/user/34714/scores/52289
Poinciana - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/poinciana
Round Midnight - https://musescore.com/user/27845251/scores/4984712
Royal Garden Blues - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/royal-garden-blues
Star Dust - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/star-dust
St. James Infirmary - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/st-james-infirmary
Smile - https://musescore.com/jmechmech/scores/5040821
Stella By Starlight - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/stella-by-starlight
St. James Infirmary - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/st-james-infirmary
Summertime - https://musescore.com/user/27845251/scores/4962990
Take The A Train - https://musescore.com/user/9331886/scores/4923174
What Is This Thing Called Love? - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/what-is-this-thing-called-love
What's New? - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/whats-new
Willow Weep for Me - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/willow-weep-for-me
Yesterdays - https://musescore.com/ericfontainejazz/yesterdays

Saxophone scores and groups

 Welcome to the Saxophone group! Here is some Information for you and links to sax scores and other sax-related groups on MuseScore.  

First of all, this particular group (Saxophone) is kind of “basic” saxophone group, containing discussions and articles about saxophone. To read an article - just scroll down after clicking the "discussions" section. You will recognize an article in "discussions" by the [article] prefix in its title.

You are very welcome to make more posts!  

Then, here are some links to other saxophone-related groups including sets of valuable saxophone scores:  

1) Saxophone ensembles group (quartets,quintets,etc.) - 
https://musescore.com/groups/saxophone-ensembles
2) Jazz Standards Lead Sheets
https://musescore.com/groups/jazz-standards-leadsheets
3) Sax arrangements group - saxophone arrangements of rock/pop music or movies’/games’ soundtracks      
https://musescore.com/groups/sax-arrangements
4) Sax solo transcriptions
https://musescore.com/groups/sax-solo-transcriptions
5) Collection of scores: sax solo or with accompanying instrument - https://musescore.com/groups/saxophone/discuss/5015764

Feel free to create discussions and articles, to add your scores and to comment!