Saturday 7 January 2012

Solo recording session

A few weeks ago I did a solo saxophone recording session.  I did the recording at Shiftworks - a studio I've used a for my trio and duo recordings - and used the same engineer, Alex Bonney.  I took alto, tenor, and baritone for the session.  The idea was to record  a series of very quiet improvisations with as much emphasis on breath sounds, and mechanical key noise as on the naturally produced sounds of the saxophone.  We set up two close-mics, and also attached some very small DPA mics to the saxophone itself - on the crook, on the bell, and inside the bell.  I've posted a few photos from the session below.

Musically, I tried to explore breath sounds, percussive sounds, resonance, extreme quiet, mechanical sounds (key/pad noise), sub-tones, multiphonics, overtones, 'non-notes', and combinations of these elements.  The temptation to play a 'natural' note would usually lead to the termination of these short improvisations.  These ideas had been on my mind for a while after exploring them almost by accident during some very quiet practice sessions at my flat, and it was great to finally get them on tape.  I'm hoping the recordings will see the light of day sometime later in the year.

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