San Diego Saxophone Lessons

San Diego Saxophone Lessons
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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The (Really) Wide World of Jazz

For the casual listener, getting into a whole new universe of music can be daunting! This is true for my saxophone students as well. With close to 100-years-worth of jazz music that's been recorded, it's hard to find a place to start.

Should you go buy Miles Davis' "Kind Of Blue" and listen to it a hundred times? Or should you check out the latest Kneebody record? Which Coltrane records should I get?

As with any style, knowledge of the jazz tradition will really pay-off and help you to understand and appreciate what's going on in the music today. If you listen to rock, most people know the contributions of Led Zeppelin and The Beatles, and maybe even artists like Robert Johnson or Little Richard. With jazz, there is such a rich history on each instrument it can seem overwhelming for new listeners.

Luckily, there are some great blog posts which can help you get started. I've pulled some choice posts from REVIVE Music (formerly The Revivalist), and from NPR's A Blog Supreme (I recommend subscribing to both). These all include musical examples so you can listen while you read!

REVIVE's "Evolution of an Instrument" is great for getting your timeline straight:

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