Here’s a short playlist of ‘snapshot’ recordings by former students preparing tunes for ABRSM jazz exams, which run from grade 1 through to grade 5. The tunes are all ‘real’ jazz standards. The rhythm section parts are played by a pro band and are supplied on a CD. The student is playing the tune, improvising their own solo and then returning to the tune to finish.
Oh, and by the way, there’s absolutely no pressure to take exams if you don’t want to!
And below is a short playlist of bits and pieces of me playing. They are either ‘test of concept’ try-outs of works-in-progress or album track extracts. I’m using variously soprano, sax, tenor sax, C Melody sax, bass clarinet, WX7 wind synth and a couple of basses (other instruments are played by the members of Comus, B So glObal or the Colins of Paradise!);
By the way, the ‘WX7’ I mention playing in one or two of the above tunes is one of these;
It’s a Yamaha WX7 woodwind MIDI controller. The WX7 allows you to control any synthesizer sounds via an instrument that has sax-style fingering and delivers expressive nuances of volume and pitch control via the sax-style mouthpiece and reed.
They were first sold in the UK in 1987, which – being an early adopter of such jollities – was when I got mine. I used it a fair amount originally for album work and contemporary dance pieces.
You can find out a bit more about the WX7 here on windsynth.net. Yamaha’s own publicity shot for the WX7 makes it look a bit like Darth Vader’s mothership crashing, but there you go;