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Jazz Sax Lessons: Play Along & Learn a Song: Happy Birthday

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>> Okay, it's time to play some music.
Time to play some songs.
What I've done as you can see here.
In my school is write out a few simple
songs that you might enjoy playing and
some that invariably people
have asked you to play and
so the first one I chose
is Happy Birthday.
Come on how many times have you wanted to
play happy birthday on your saxophone and
well, not been able to because
you didn't play a saxophone yet.
So I wrote it out for B-flat and E-flat.
You can download that PDF obviously.
Happy Birthday, it's the number one
most royalty-earning song ever.
I was told by a very reliable source
that Henry Mancini's Moon River,
is the number two most royalty
earning song of all time.
Totally unrelated trivia for
you there, but hey, we're
a comprehensive school, so there you go.
So I'm gonna play Happy Birthday for
you, and before I do,
let's take a look at a couple things.
First of all,
check out the time signature.
This one's in three four time.
Your four represents your quarter note,
which is the note that gets one beat.
And your three represents the number
of beats in each measure.
So this one is three-four time.
So we're going to be playing
three beats per measure.
Check out too,
those first two eighth notes,
they're outside the first double bar line,
which means they are pickup notes.
Pickup notes.
So they occur, it's just those two eighth
notes are only taking up one beat.
So it's they occur on beat three.
So if I were counting this.
If you were right here with me,
I'd say okay here we go.
I'm going to give you two beats and
you play on beat three.
And so I'd go one, two.
So you start on beat three,
and then count to beat one.
So besides that there's only one
potentially new thing for you, and
that is that fermata in
the third to the last measure.
Or that little birdseye looking thing,
that's what we call fermata, or
a hold, and so, you hold that note.
Certainly you know what the song
sounds like when you hold that note
when you're singing.
You sung it a gazillion times also.
So it's up to you or
the director to continue on.
So you hold that note and
then [SOUND], continue on.
So, anyway, I'll play this for you.
Feel free to play along or listen,
or whatever you like, here we go.
I'll count two beats and we'll play.
And one, two.
>> There we go.
[LAUGH] Happy birthday.
Cool, so if you have any
questions about the fingerings.
So, was gonna say if you do have
any questions about the fingerings,
obviously refer to your fingering chart,
pretty straightforward.
There might be sort of a question, too.
And this is something that when we read,
it's a technical point reading-wise,
but every note should be attacked,
should be articulated,
should be tongued,
unless there is a slur written over it.
Now, if you're playing Happy Birthday by
yourself, I don't think the person who
you're playing Happy Birthday
to is gonna care too much, but
just be aware of that from the musical
standpoint, from a theory standpoint.
That every note that is not slurred or
phrased over, a lot of times two notes
that are the same, if you have a tie or
a slur they're not re-attacked,
it's played like one note.
But you might have like a phrase
marking over, several notes.
I could have put a slur say,
from the note in the first,
from the first note, after that double
bar, in the beginning after the pickups,
all the way to for instance,
the half note, in the next bar.
And that would have meant that you
wouldn't have tongued the second
beat of the first bar, or
the third beat of the first bar, or
the first beat of the first
note of the second bar.
So I would play it like this.
>> So
I wouldn't have re attacked those notes.
So any notes that falls
within that slur marking.
Is not attacked officially.
So be aware of that.
Okay, so let's play it one
more time together, okay?
Again I'll give you two beats.
One, go.
>> There we go.
I didn't write this down either, but
just know on this song typically the last
two bars are slowed down or retarded.
>> So
if you want to do that or
rather the other way around.
If it was indicated and
the music asked you to do that,
you'd see a retard written.
It's usually just abbreviated RIT period.
At that point, it's just a gradual slow
down from that point that
the RIT period is written in.
It's called a retard.
So there you go.
All right, enjoy entertaining
all the people in your life that
have birthdays on your
saxophone from now on.
Okay, take care.