Monday, May 25, 2009

Q & A #1: Developing your own saxophone sound

Coltrane Time Hard Driving Jazz album cover
Image via Wikipedia
Ogul Koker from Turkey wrote on May 24, 2009:
I've started to play sax 1,5 years ago. But at the same time I've started to study musicology. So I had no time to play sax and after this one big year I can't ever properly blow my sax :(

So my plan to learn how to play sax for this year is to practice all major, minor scales and modes, arpeggios and to learn how to do vibrato...

I also want to study some jazz, but dunno where to start :( I thought I could start with trying to imitate a player that I liked. I really like Mark Turner, Kenny Garrett, J. Coltrane and a lot of guys, but they sound to me hard to play... I think I should try to imitate a player from an early era? But who will that be?
I've got an alto sax btw.

Sorry for my bad English and greetings from Turkey! =)

Dear Ogul,

thanks for your note.

About developing your jazz sound; If you are not sure whom to imitate, no one else cannot really tell it to you. My suggestion is to listen to music a lot. Kind of jazz you like, players you admire. Then gradually (over the years) your saxophone sound will develop toward the direction of your liking.

Keep practicing and listening. Good luck,


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susmita said...

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Harri Rautiainen said...

Thanks for your interest, susmita.

Yes, I do play saxophone and try not to sound that sad :-)

Will check out your sites,

Harri Rautiainen said...


there is a DVD package from well-known jazz saxophonist, Dave Liebman about developing your personal sound:

The Complete Guide to Saxophone Sound Production and Developing a Personal Saxophone Sound Package Set by Dave Liebman