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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Solo Sax

Piano (and guitar?) aside, I think that most solo jazz albums were made by sax-players, with solo recordings already dating back to the early years of jazz recording in the thirties and fourties. Like with solo trumpet CDs, the whole range is covered from enjoyable albums, over show-off exercises to avant-garde sound explorations (Rosenberg, Zorn). Some are solo but dubbed (Surman) or the musician plays several instruments (McPhee). In 2007 no less than 9 solo sax albums were released (and I'm sure I missed some). The great thing about solo recordings is the uncompromising exposure by the musician, showing his music in all its individual power and vulnerability. I am a great fan of Joe McPhee, and his albums are certainly worth looking for, but so are Lacy, Braxton and Evan Parker. Of the younger generation, John Butcher is probably the real heir of these famous solo saxophonists, and his latest "Geometry Of A Sentiment" is an adventurous gem.

2007 releases

Joe McPhee - Soprano
Anthony Braxton - Solo Willisau
John Butcher - Geometry Of A Sentiment
Sam Newsome - Monk Abstractions
Steve Coleman - Invisible Paths: First Scattering
Sonny Simmons - Ecstatic Nostalgia
Laura Toxvaerd - N° 1
Urs Leimgruber - Solo 13 Pieces For Saxophone
Christine Sehnaoui - Solo

List of sax solo albums (non-exhaustive, no ranking)

Sonny Rollins - The Solo Album
Lee Konitz - Lone-Lee
Lee Konitz - Solo
Marion Brown - Solo Saxophone
Joe McPhee - Tenor
Joe McPhee - As Serious As Your Life (not only sax)
Joe McPhee - Everything Happens for a Reason
Steve Lacy - Solo: Live At Unity Temple
Steve Lacy - Actuality
Steve Lacy - Hooky
Steve Lacy - Weal & Woe
Steve Lacy - Remains
Steve Lacy - Solo at Egg Farm
Steve Lacy - Clinkers
Steve Lacy - Materioso Monk's Mood
Steve Lacy - 10 of Dukes + six originals
Steve Lacy - 5 x Monk 5 x Lacy
Steve Lacy - Solo : Live At Théâtre Du Chêne Noir
Anthony Braxton - For Alto
Anthony Braxton - Saxophone Improvisations Series F.
Anthony Braxton - Alto Saxophone Improvisations 1979
Anthony Braxton - Compositions 113
Anthony Braxton - 19 (Solo) Compositions
Anthony Braxton - Wesleyan (12 Alto solos)
Anthony Braxton - Solo (NYC)
Anthony Braxton - Solo (Köln) 1978
Anthony Braxton - Solo (Milano) Vol. 1 & 2
Anthony Braxton - Solo (Pisa)
Anthony Braxton - Live At Moers Festival
Evan Parker - Saxophone Solos
Evan Parker - Monoceros
Evan Parker - Chicago Solo
Evan Parker - Time Lapse
Evan Parker - The snake decides
Peter Brötzmann - No Nothing
Peter Brötzmann-14 Love Poems
Peter Brötzmann - Solo - Wolke In Hose
Ken Vandermark - Furniture Music
John Surman - Road to St. Ives (with electronics)
Urs Leimgruber-Goletter
Mats Gustafsson-Improposistions
David Liebman - Colors
David Liebman - The Tree
David Murray - Solo Live
Roscoe Mitchell- Solo
Roscoe Mitchell- Sound Songs
Roscoe Mitchell - Solo Saxophone Concerts
Kaoru Abe - Solo. 1972.1.21
Kaoru Abe - Solo. 1972.7.13
Kaoru Abe - Solo. 1972.4.11
Kaoru Abe - Solo - Live At Gaia Vol. 1-9
John Butcher-Fixations (14)
John Butcher - Thirteen Friendly Numbers
John Butcher - London And Cologne
John Butcher - Invisible Ear (with synth)
Gianni Gebbia - Arcana Major/ Sonic Tarots Sessions
Gianni Gebbia - H Portraits
Gianni Gebbia - Body Limits
Paul Dunmall - Solo (Soprano Saxophone)
Paul Flaherty - Whirl of Nothingness
Daunik Lazro - ZongBook
Vinny Golia - Solo
Larry Stabbins - Monadic C
Sam Rivers - Portrait
Lol Coxhill - The Dunois Solos
Lol Coxhill - Solo
Lol Coxhill - Out To Launch (except 1 track)
Trevor Watts - World Sonic
Joe Giardullo - No Work Today (Nine for Steve Lacy)
Frank Gratkowski - Artikulationen
Frank Gratkowski - Artikulationen 2
Phillip Greenlief - Stalking Andrei
Jack Wright - Places To Go
Jack Wright - Up For Grabs
Scott Rosenberg - V
Stephane Rives - Fibres
Bhob Rainey - The Withered Grasses
Assif Tsahar - Ayn Le-Any
Kang Tae Hwan - Seven Breaths
Carlo Actis Dato - The Moonwalkers
Ned Rothenberg - The Crux: Selected Solo Wind Works 1989-1992
Ned Rothenberg - Solo Works : The Lumina Recordings (not entirely solo)
Rudi Mahall - Solo (bass clarinet)
John Zorn - A Classic Guide to Strategy
Sweet Sue Terry - Pink Slimy Worm
Masahiko Okura - Solo
Masayoshi Urabe - Solo
Paul Termos - Solo 84-85
Christine Sehnaoui - Solo

More in the modern classical genre
Claude DeLangle - The Solitary Saxophone
Susan Fancher - Ponder Nothing

Watch a Ned Rothenberg video from Youtube, demonstrating his fabulous circular breathing technique (+ musicality + emotions = staggering!).


Anonymous said...

Tony Bevan
1998, Three oranges, Foghorn Records FOGCD001. Solo.

Alan Wilkinson
1989-1994, Seedy boy, BFC456. Solo.

Earl Howard
Five Saxophone Solos (Mutable, 2005)

Fernando Rowies said...

David Liebman - Soprano Sax Solo,
[1985] - "The Loneliness Of A Long Distance Runner"

teddywilson said...

This frenchie I've discovered recently is grandiose:

Jean-Charles Richard "Faces" (with Dave Liebman playing drums on 2 tunes)

Recorded 2005

Enjoy !

Anonymous said...

Out Into The Andromeda
-Sonny Simmons

micro-saxo-phone-Alfred Harth

Achter Atem: Remix of Kang Taehwan's solo-album Seven Breath


Anonymous said...

Bedankt Stef! Je bent de laatste tijd zelden op het jazzforum maar ik had dus om tips gevraagd op het gebied van solo-sax. En toen kreeg ik een link naar jou blog :D Wat zouden we zonder moeten? ;)

Anonymous said...

If this is the only mention,Jack Wright gets on this blog,that is a crying shame:he's up there w/the best-

Anthony Braxton
Alfred 23 Harth
Evan Parker
Jack Wright
John Butcher("somethingtobesaid" and "Field" are two of this year's best..)

Safe Jack Wright download-


and hey,the CD-R is available for $6,if you're looking for "jazz" masterpieces on a budget...

Unknown said...

ain't special with what he was doing ... he's carrying a nice brand sax anywah lol