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  1. #1

    Default Easy songs to play on alto saxophone

    I am learning to play the Alto Saxophone. I can do the C, D, F, and G scales. I would like to try playing a few real easy songs. I will appreciate if anyone could suggest some songs that I might could try - some really easy songs.

    Carol K

  2. #2

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    I would suggest you go to your local music store. They have easy melody books. I suggest Christmas Carols because you are already familiar with them and they are usually very easy to play.
    treat others as you would wish to be treated.

  3. #3

    Default reply to wainsworth in re easy songs

    Thank you for your suggestion. Maybe if I tried some Christmas Carols now, I could play some of them pretty good when it gets close to Christmas.

    Carol K

  4. #4
    Distinguished SOTW Member
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    Carol: If you need to read music to play music, then wainsworth's suggestion was a good one. If you hear melodies in your head (like I do), then just play them - work them out on your horn in various keys while at the same time devloping your ear and your improvisation. DAVE

  5. #5

    Default reply to Dave Dolson in re easy songs

    I play mostly by music, but I can play a little bit by ear. Maybe I can try picking some songs out by ear on my saxophone. That might be kind of fun and a good learning experience.

    Carol K

  6. #6
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    Carol: One word of advice - you may make it easier on yourself if you learn the tunes in their written key first. True, any tune can be played in any key and to learn how to do so is admirable. But if you ever have the opportunity to play something with someone else (or even better, in an ensemble), you should be armed with the best keys for whatever tune is called.

    For instance, the old favorite SWEET GEORGIA BROWN is usually played in F or Ab by most ensembles. So, you'd need to put it into alto's D or F to play with the ensemble. Cole Porter's WHAT IS THIS THING CALLED LOVE was published in C - that puts you in A on the alto.

    After that, when you become more proficient, you could probably play tunes in any key called. But for now, try to work them out in their written (or most popular) keys.

    How does one know the proper key? That's a good question. I try to refer to the sheet music or trusted fake books, but having played all these years, I pretty much know the tunes and keys of my genre of music. DAVE

  7. #7

    Default reply to Dave Dolson re easy songs

    Thanks for the good advice. I think it is good to play songs in the key they are generally written in too. At this point, I can only play in C, D, F, or G. I will need to look for songs written in those keys and try to play them. I just play at home for my own enjoyment. I play the piano and have different songbooks and sheet music but don't know if I have anything easy enough to try on my saxophone. I like hymns but the books I have might be a bit too difficult for me to play on my sax right now. Maybe I can find something.

    Carol K

  8. #8
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    Hi, Carol

    This is something that works for me. I play mostly by ear and am only beginning to learn to read

    Do you remember a song from "The Sound of Music"

    Do a deer a female deer
    Re a drop of golden sun
    Me a name I call myself
    Fa a long long way to run
    So a needle pulling thread
    La a note to follow So
    Ti (forgot!)
    Do (forgot also )

    Just play this in every key starting with D. Then D#, E, F, F# etc.

    In no time, you will be familiar with the sound of each key and can start to play more scales to complement what you have read.

    I guess I am saying this coz I am not good at reading but I think a good saxophonist should be able to play by ear also and not just play from scores alone.

    Cheers!
    Doremifaman

  9. #9

    Default reply to Doremifaman in re easy songs

    Thank you for suggesting that song - "Do A Deer ...." from the Sound of Music. I do remember that song and that would be a really good and fun one to learn to play on my saxophone in different keys. I would like to also eventually learn "Edelweiss" from the Sound of Music. That is one of my very favorite songs ever. Thanks again for the good suggestion.

    Carol K

  10. #10

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    Eidelweiss, like any slow ballad with long notes, will also help you to improve your tone.

  11. #11

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    The Yamaha beginner method book has a lot of tunes that everyone knows.

  12. #12

    Default reply to HC in re easy songs

    Thank you for telling me about the Yamaha beginner method book. Maybe I can find that book somewhere.

    Carol K

  13. #13

    Default Easy songs to play on alto saxophone

    If you can find it they used to print lists of songs for buskers, in the keys in which they are usually played, together with the starting note and a transposition chart for the various instruments. Someone allowed me to copy his old lists, which don't of course include the latest tunes but more than enough for anyone to get started on. Does anyone know if these are still available anywhere? Many players who want to play by ear would find them extremely useful I would think.
    treat others as you would wish to be treated.

  14. #14

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    Carol,

    I have a CD-playalong book, "15 Very Easy Hymns for Alto Sax," I'd send to you, if you live in US and haven't gotten this book yet. I grew out of it into jazz, though I must say some of the songs are very nice on alto. Send me your mailing address and I'll send it along (wuf123 at cox dot net). No charge to you, fellow beginner!

  15. #15

    Default Easy songs to play on alto saxophone

    I forgot to mention Carol, that if you are a churchgoer and can't afford to buy melody books, you might like to borrow the hymnbook from your church. You would then have plenty to choose from in easy keys and you don't have to transpose if you are playing by yourself.
    treat others as you would wish to be treated.

  16. #16

    Default reply to wainsworth in re easy songs

    I am a churchgoer and I have the hymnal that is used in my church. I bought one several years ago. I will have to look through it to see if I could play any of the hymns on my saxophone. I am just learning to play the alto sax, but I might can find some songs in my hymnbook that I could try playing.

    Carol K

  17. #17

    Default reply to MJ in re easy songs

    That would be very nice of you to send me the book "15 Very Easy Hymns for Alto Sax", but I feel that I should pay you something for it. I am very much a beginner with the alto sax. I can do the C, D, F, G and am just now learning the A scale. Do you think the songs in this book would be easy enough for me play at this stage?

    Carol K

  18. #18

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    Carol, you should be able to handle 11 of the songs in this book from day one. You're doing me a favor by giving these songs a whirl on your saxophone. Enjoy! I'll mail it off within the next couple days.

  19. #19

    Default reply to MJ in re easy songs

    Thank you very much. I will look forward to getting the book.

    Carol K

  20. #20
    Musician and Composer saxchado's Avatar
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    Any song can be "easy" if you take it at the right tempo. Don't forget Dave's suggestion of using your ears too. Aural development is priceless for the saxophonist, but it is also very important to be able to read. Try finding some songs in your hymnal that you know very well. Use the book to get you through the first couple of bars, and then turn away and use your ears to try and figure out the rest. You'll be amazed at how quickly you get better at this!
    Beware of sticky keys. --Chad

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