Ever wondered why so many guitarists want to solo like a saxophonist? It’s true that artists as diverse as Robben Ford, Larry Carlton, Matt Schofield, and Allan Holdsworth are heavily interested in how saxophone players construct melodies, phrases, and improvised solos.
In this series of Sax Stories, I have the pleasure of interviewing Ben Donnelly, a London-based saxophonist, composer and arranger who’s work has been featured on several jazz releases. I’ve played with Ben on a number of occasions and am always knocked out by his voice on the instrument.
In this interview:
– hear Ben’s history from a childhood of classical training to his introduction to jazz at aged 10.
– hear Ben’s views on solo construction, the importance of register, when (and when not) to use licks and rehearsed runs.
– hear Ben discuss how to spice up simple chord progressions, as well as how to tackle the really complex ones.
– as a bonus, Ben was kind enough to play 2 solos to demonstrate these concepts! We didn’t have much recording equipment at the interview but what we captured was well worth a listen.