Sam Newsome

Sam Newsome
"The potential for the saxophone is unlimited." - Steve Lacy



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Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Lower Register

I've spent the past few weeks transcribing and practicing Steve Lacy tunes. I must say, it's been an enlightening experience. Many of Lacy's tunes require you utilize the lower register on the soprano, which is the most neglected part of the instrument.

Players tend to play the soprano in the middle and high registers, but it's down low that it really has it's body. This is where you tap into the instrument's boldness, it's masculinity. This is where the soprano becomes the little guy with the intimidating presence, able to hold his own with men twice his strength or size.


Check out the tune "Underline" on the Steve Lacy CD Snips-Live at Environ. It's just two short motifs, but it really forces you to hone in on your breath control and low note fingerings.

One of the most distinctive things about playing is probably my ability to play in the altissimo register with ease. But now I'm hoping add a lower and deeper dimension to my sound palette.






It's like they say, "Real change, happens from the bottom up."

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