Jazz clinics and a saxophone masterclass have been the theme of the last month. I have had quite a few Zooms calls for high school and university music programs. No visits to exotic destinations, but great conversations, nonetheless. 🙂 Please contact me if you would like me to visit with your students!
First, I taught a sectional for the OKMEA All-State Jazz Ensemble saxophone section, directed by Dana Landry.
After that, I joined Dr. Mary-Karen Clardy and the UNT College of Music flute studio for a masterclass. My presentation was entitled “The Flute in Jazz and Commercial Music.” We discussed some of my work as a jazz saxophonist, flutist, and clarinetist. Then, we talked about approaching the flute from a classical performance background. The students had lots of great questions!
As President-Elect of the Oklahoma Jazz Educators’ Association, I participated in a jazz education director roundtable for the SWOSU JAZZ A, JAZZ B, and the 51st Annual Jazz Festival. The panel was moderated by Dr. Richard Tirk and featured Oklahoma jazz educators Dr. Terry Segress and Joe Metzer. We discussed music selection, rehearsal techniques, and recruiting strategies for middle school, high school, and college jazz bands. Dallas jazz musician and drummer Stockton Helbing was the guest artist for the festival. Have a listen to his music at his site.
This week, I presented “Taming and Tuning Your Saxophone Section” for the Kentucky Music Educators Association conference. In this clinic, I explained saxophone tone fundamentals and gave practical steps for music educators to develop their saxophone section performers. After presenting this at the Texas Music Educators’ Association and the Jazz Education network conferences, I had some great feedback from directors. I thought this was an oddly quiet Zoom call. Afterwards, I found out after the fact that 50 attendees were watching and commenting on the conference website.
Music education colleagues, please contact me if I can offer help to you or your students. I offer clinics in the areas of saxophone, clarinet, flute, jazz improvisation, and music technology. I am glad to work with your departmental budget restraints. Also, you may apply for clinic funding through Conn-Selmer or Vandoren USA.
Sometimes, the key to great improvisation is to use less melodic vocabulary in multiple contexts. Here is a ii-V-I Lick in three contexts over F Blues and “Autumn Leaves”:
– the ii-V-I progression in the last four bars of F blues
– the major ii-V-I in the first four bars of “Autumn Leaves”
– the minor ii-V-I in the second four bars of “Autumn Leaves”
F Blues is the 2020-2021 Texas and Oklahoma All-Region Jazz Band Audition Improv Etude. “Autumn Leaves” is the 2020-2021 Texas All-State Jazz Band Audition Improv Etude.
When I post the TMEA and OKMEA saxophone etudes every year, quite a few students comment and ask for tips on the improvisation etudes. This year, I wanted to dedicate a special masterclass to this. Join me Thursday night and learn the keys to practicing and improvising over F Blues, Autumn Leaves, ii-V-I vocabulary, and more.
This will cover F blues (TX/OK) and Autumn Leaves (TX), two common songs/progressions that all jazz musicians should know.
Register today at In Harmony Lessons.
Join me on Monday, June 29th at 6 PM for an online masterclass covering the Texas Music Educator’s Association All-State All-Region Jazz Etudes. We’ll discuss:
Register here – spots are limited! Use the discount code INHARMONY21 for $10 off registration.
I am pleased to join the faculty of In Harmony Lessons, offering online instruction in saxophone and jazz improvisation for all instruments. If you have an internet connection and a laptop or mobile device, you are all set! To book a lesson, click here.
In November, I had the pleasure to serve as the clinician for the 2017-2018 Region X All-Region Jazz Band I in Orange, TX. This enthusiastic, auditioned group of high school jazz musicians assembled a concert of challenging big band music in only two rehearsals. I also had the privilege to perform a tune with Louisiana jazz educator and bassist Jay Ecker, who directed Band II. Thanks to organizer Jose Ochoa for his hard work in organizing this event!