Sam Newsome

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

Monday, December 27, 2010

Subway Soprano: Leviticus Gorey

Here's a clip of my favorite subway musician, saxophonist Leviticus Gorey.

I've had the pleasure of briefly hearing him on several occasions when I was, unfortunately, hurrying to catch a train. Each time I remember thinking to myself, "Man, this cat is killing. I really wish I had more time to sit down and really check him out." It would have been ideal if he was actually performing on the subway car, giving me and all the other passengers a private concert from 14th Street to Jay Street-Borough Hall.

Leviticus has a wonderful sound and a great time feel. He even has a cool jazz-name! It makes me wonder why you don't hear more about him performing above ground. I guess everyone has their own path they're traveling.

I must say, I really respect when someone does choose to perform for therapeutic and artistic purposes rather than to make money and to further their career.

In any case, the next time I come across him playing on the subway platform, even if I'm running late, I'm going sit down and check him out, even if it's just for one tune.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Joe Giadullo (Solo Soprano)

Here's a cool clip of soprano man Joe Giadullo.

Joe is another straighthornist who primarily works in the medium of noise and microtonal based improvisations. I first discovered Joe a few years back after reading a review of his CD, No Work Today: Nine for Steve Lacy on which he credits Steve Lacy for the inspiration for the music. I might also add that it features some very inventive solo soprano work, too.

A little side note: Joe generously sent me a CD of his called Weather, recorded live in Poland (I think, but don't quote me on that), on which he performed a solo saxophone rendition of John Coltrane's "A Love Supreme." It's very creative. It gave me a lot of cool ideas.

This clip shows the Evan Parker influence in Joe's playing: circular breathing, while creating a ping pong effect with the various multiphonics. It's an excerpt from a piece called "Dragon Land Bakery," by Sax, Soup, Poetry and Voice, The group also features Nicole Peyrafitte on vocals and Pierre Joris on poetry. It was recorded live on November 10, 2007 at The Sanctuary for Independent Media in Troy, NY.

I'm looking forward to posting more of Joe's solo work in the future!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Evan Parker Quartet

Here's a cool clip of Evan Parker in a quartet setting at the 2009 Freedom of the City Festival of new and improvised music at Conway Hall in London, England. Here, Evan is in the company of Peter Evans on trumpet, John Russell on guitar, and John Edwards on bass.

Besides from the interesting sounds and textures that the band is playing, I like most that I can see Evan's fingers, which gives me a better understanding of how he's able to do what he does.

To play the sounds that he gets in an intricate combination of simple- and cross-fingerings along with oral cavity manipulation (speeding up and slowing down the air flow as it enters the mouth through the mouthpiece by changing the position of the tongue).

Much of Evan's sonic vocabulary seems to be oral cavity oriented. Here's is where the book Top-Tones for the Saxophone: Four-Octave Range by
Sigurd M. Rascher comes in handy--especially when you want to get beyond the original scope of the instrument.

Well, that's my spiel for the day. Enjoy!

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