Friday, 4 January 2013
Day 4 - Saxamaphone
Isn't it just so beautiful?
I first started learning to play the saxophone when I was in year 7...I think. I remember in year 6 I went with the school to some kind of event at Chatham town hall, we could go and look at all sorts of instruments, have a go on some them. Mum asked me afterwards if there were any I would be interested in learning once I got to secondary school. What was strange was that until then I'd always had a bit of a soft spot for the violin, but something about the sax grabbed me there.
We went to Maidstone to rent a sax from someone there...when I first had a go he was impressed that I made a sound come out of it. Hells yeah. Lessons started, can't remember my teacher's name, but he had a beard. What I really remember is the smell of the practice room at school, a dusty, musty smell, almost like a library but not quite. Maybe it was the smell of music. Deep. I really enjoyed learning it and wish I'd stuck with it a bit longer but, unfortunately for the saxophone, it's cumbersome. I had to walk up a huge great hill to get to my school, and got the bus home. It didn't last beyond year 8.
I think it was when I was about 17 some money my Auntie Dee and Grandad had left me became accessible, and before we put it away somewhere safe again I decided to get a saxophone. I got a couple of books and got back into the swing (ha!) of it for awhile. When I went to university however, there was just no room. It got forgotten, again. Awww. It's ok saxophone, I have a feeling the story gets better.
It was last year, after I really started playing my ukulele, that I realised I wanted to give it another go, and properly this time. I went back down to Kent for Christmas, went into Chatham and bought some new reeds and went back to Pogles all excited. The saxophone came out, and I found it wasn't in the best condition anymore. The keys stuck and the notes all blurred into one. Cue two days with a pin and some motor oil, and it's doing a lot better. I'll still need to take it in for a once over somewhere, but it's looking good.
Today has been much like the other times I've played it recently. I went up and down the notes a few times, played the things I know, and then my mouth got sore and tired because my embouchure is pretty much nonexistent.
It's beginning world! Again. Third time lucky? As long as by the end of the year I can play something other than Groovy Kind of Love, In the Jungle, Swing Low Sweet Chariot, and Hine Ma Tov then I shall count it as a success.