Saxophone

Saxophone

Saxo tenor

The saxophone occupies a central place in the religious images of the jazz, up to the point of being the instrument – reference of the same one. Nevertheless, in the beginning of the jazz hot, and at least up to well brought in the year, the saxo did not manage to find a hollow in the formations of the genre. Initially there would be very punctual appearances: Sidney Bechet with the saxo soprano, the tenors Bud Freeman or Gene Sedric; Frankie Trumbauer with the melodic saxo in Do (interval between the tenor and the high place); or Ernie Caceres with the baritone, although all of them already much advanced the decade. It will be only immediately after the changes that the styles of Chicago and, especially, New York introduced in the jazz, and that they ended up by driving to the appearance of the Swing, that the saxophone begins to occupy a predominant place in the jazz, not without the initial reserves of the proper criticism jazzistica.

Saxo soprano

In words of Joachim E. Berendt, “the saxo soprano continues where the clarinet finishes”. The history of the saxo soprano in the jazz begins really in the year although, before it, there was a big figure of the saxo soprano, practically isolated, in epoch as early as : Sidney Bechet, a clarinettist that, for years, simultaneo both instruments, although gradually the soprano was turning into the main one, it touching with a big expressiveness and with the force and phrasing of one trumpet Nevertheless, Bechet had very few disciples and all of them used the soprano as the second instrument (Johnny Hodges, Don Redman, Woody Herman, Charlie Barnet or Bob Wilber).
Sidney Bechet.
It was Steve Lacy who initiated the blast-off of the instrument, developing a very personal, not debit Bechet skill, with technical springs till then unknown, like the aspiration of the notes opposite to its “blast”, skill that was massively adopted then by the musicians of the year and. Later, John Coltrane would put the instrument in the first line of the jazz, with only one recording: My favorite things, a surprising hit of sales, that had an enormous influence in the jazz of the years posteriores. The sound of the soprano turned quickly into a fashionable sound in the jazz, both between the musicians of free, and between the post-boppers.

A big number of saxophonists used, from this moment, the soprano often, sometimes even of predominant form: Pharoah Sanders, Archie Shepp, Joseph Jarman, Sam Rivers, John Surman, Charlie Mariano, Jerome Richardson, Zoot Sims. . . Nevertheless, the big figure of the saxo soprano in the year and the most influential in the development of the instrument after Bechet and Coltrane, has been Wayne Shorter. The Shorter influence is especially clear in the jazz musicians rock and merger, like Tom Scott. Nevertheless, from the year, in the scene of the jazz a style was imposed of touching the saxo soprano that was separating clearly of the intonation “africanizada” and expressive of the free-jazz saxophonists and post-bop, causing a school that Berendt calls of “pure soprano, according to the vein of the contemporary estheticism”, and whose more influential examples are Dave Liebman, Paul Winter and Jan Garbarek.

Tall Saxo

Charlie Parker, with Tommy Potter, Thousands Davis and Max Roacht.
Scarcely it is possible to find musicians of hot who were using the high saxo, and less still who were establishing a proper style capable of influencing other instrumentalists. At the end of the year and beginning of the, the high places payroll was very scarce and slightly significant, standing out only Don Redman, whose influence how arreglista and big bands leader is undoubted, but that it was showing itself like alone saxophonist occasionally. It is what has allowed to some authors to say that the history of the tall saxo of jazz begins in the epoch of the Swing, already well brought in the decade of, developing three schools impelled by three saxophonists high place of major relief of the epoch: Johnny Hodges, Benny Carter y Willie Smith, respectively. The Hodges sound was characterized by one “vibrato warmly and expressively and a way of melting the sounds like glissando”, loaded with melancholy, which a big number of disciples generated, the most important of which ones were Woody Herman and Charlie Barnet, the last one coming almost to the mimicry. For his part, Oil pan had a clear and light sound almost opposed to that of Hodges, and it was the model in which there was inspired most of the musicians of big band.

Up to well brought in the year a deep renewal did not take place in the tall jazz saxo across Charlie Parker who “changed, literally, the skill, the style and the sound of the jazz”, acquiring such a big role in the history of the jazz that practically has darkened any other tall saxo of bop, including Sonny Stitt. On the other hand, the school appeared cool, whose main sonorous prop was Lee Konitz, who influenced decisively musicians like Paul Desmond, Bud Shank, Herb Heller and Paul Horn. Nevertheless, it was the style of Parker the one that did school in the following decades, beginning for Art Pepper and continuing for almost all the high places of the fifty and sixties: Cannonball Adderley, Jackie McLean, Oliver Nelson, Phil Woods, Charlie Mariano and many others.

Until, Parker would be the only reference between the high places. This year, there popped in Ornette Coleman, whose music represented “the first fundamental reflection on the procedures and basic materials of the jazz from the innovations of Charlie Parker”, and had a “liberating effect” on the remaining tall saxophonists, up to the point of which, for many authors, Coleman is one of three big names of the jazz history, together with Louis Armstrong y Charlie Parker. Tras he, Eric Dolphy, Marion Brown, Anthony Braxton, Roscoe Mitchell, Oliver Lake and many others, they penetrated for the route of the free jazz. The whole later history of the tall saxo in jazz is based on these two props, Parker and Coleman, even between the musicians originated from the jazz rock, like David Sanborn, Eric Marienthal or Fred Lipsius.

Saxo tenor

The saxo tenor has turned into the emblematic instrument of the jazz. Its evolution inside this musical field, nevertheless, has been a crescent of a gradual way, from the traditional jazz in which practically we do not find interpreters of tenor, up to the big explosion of the year in which, in words of Joachim E. Berendt, the jazz tenorizo. Only some interpreters of tenor of traditional jazz have stayed in the history of the instrument: Bud Freeman, representative of the called Style Chicago, or Gene Sedric. It would not be up to the arrival of the swing, in the year, that they began to appear tenoristas in the bands of jazz, and at first about the only school which head was Coleman Hawkins, with a style characterized by its powerful and voluminous tone and the dramatism of its melodic lines. All those who were touching the tenor in these years, were disciples of Hawkins: Chu Berry, Ben Webster, Illinois Jacquet, Herschel Evans, Benny Golson, Charlie Ventura. . . Nevertheless, the big explosion of the saxo tenor came in the forties, when Lester Young turned into the “strong man” of the tenor. Its sound was the opposite of that of Hawkins: soft, to half a voice, of wide lines lyric and centred on the high tessituras of the instrument.

Young influenced in the style of almost all the saxos tenors of its generation and later, even in those who already had tendency to the Hawkins tone, like Gene Ammons. Berendt organizes Young’s followers in two big ones bloques: Of a side, the musicians who assembled Lester’s ideas with the bop (Wardell Gray, James Moody, Budd Johnson, Frank Foster, Dexter Gordon. . . ); of other, those of the school of the “modern classicism”, especially what has happened in calling “sound Four Brothers”, inside West Coast jazz, with musicians like Stan Getz, Herbie Steward, Zoot Sims, The Cohn, Buddy Collette, Bob Cooper, Richie Kamuca, Jimmy Giuffre.

Already in the middle of the year, Sonny Rollins will be who breaks Young’s strong predominance in the tenor and achieves a significance that there projects up to well brought in the sixties During a time, the appearance of John Coltrane, who somehow was following the same expositions but it achieved a much major impact, braked its leadership Nevertheless, its influence, even mediatizada for that of Coltrane, it is reflected in relatively “independent” musicians, as Hank Mobley, Johnny Griffin, Booker Ervin, Teddy Edwards, Roland Kirk, Bobby Jones. . . In the course of time, the Coltrane influence was every time major between the tenoristas, up to the point of that one can be said that, from half of the decade of, all the modern saxophonists are its “disciples”. Berendt, it divides them also in two big groups: On the one hand, which are “to this side of the tonality” (Joe Henderson, George Coleman, Charles Lloyd, Joe Farrell, Billy Harper and many others); for other, which come from the avant-garde of “free tonally”, headings for Archie Shepp, Albert Ayler, Pharoah Sanders and Dewey Redman. Some of the most out-standing European interpreters of tenor, in this line, were Willem Breuker, Peter Br√∂tzman or Jan Garbarek.

The most visible head of the currents influenced by the jazz merger, from, was Wayne Shorter who, time behind, had been announced in the field of the hard bop in a clearly debit Coltrane style, although the figures more properly “merger” were musical like Michael Brecker, John Klemmer, Tom Scott, Wilton Felder, Branford Marsalis, Lou Marini or Benny Maupin, in addition to peripheral figures like Cat Barbieri. Also, and especially from the year, a good number of saxophonists tenors recaptured the bop: David Schnitter, Bob Berg, George Adams, or Lew Tabackin, between others, in many cases with clear influences of Sonny Rollins.

Saxo baritone

Gerry Mulligan.
The saxo baritone has been present in the jazz from the birth of the Swing. Nevertheless one could not speak about a real bloom of the instrument until there strengthened the hard bop and, especially, the jazz of the Coast West. During at least three decades, the scene of the baritone in jazz was completely dominated by Harry Carney, with a monopolistic character that does not happen in any other jazz instrument. Its style, powerful, intense and rough, it marked almost two generations of instrumentalists between whom Ernie Caceres and Jack Washington stood out.

With the arrival of the bop and the cool, suddenly, there bloomed a big number of baritonistas of high quality, beginning for Serge Chaloff, who applied to its instrument all the technical Parker innovations, and Pepper Adams, whose sharp and hoarse sound was clearly debit of that of Carney. The most well-known and with major projection of all the baritones of this generation, was Gerry Mulligan, although the Coast West provided other figures like Bob Gordon, and in the tradition of the bop there were revealed musicians as Cecil Payne, Charlie Fowlkes, Ronnie Cuber, Jack Nimitz or Nick Brignola. Also there was baritonistas outstanding in the field of the free jazz, like Pat Patrick or John Surman, and in that of the modern jazz, including to Hamiet Bluiett and Henry Threadgill.

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