14 April–27 April (Sunday–Saturday, 2 weeks running)

This entry is part 9 of 11 in the series 2024 Practice Log

This is my regularly updated practice log, mostly for accountability with my saxophone practice. Below you can see my practice for the week. If you’d like to check it out, here’s my goal list of tunes for the year. 

This update is a little behind: I’ve been mired in preparing and grading exams and gotten less practice done than I’d like, so there’s been little to report. (I even considered doing three weeks in this summary, though I decided against it.)

I’m still working on “Four”—trying to get used to playing at at higher tempos—but I’m now also working on “But Not For Me,” a tune that goes back to the first jazz album I listened to, the Miles Davis double album Tallest Trees. I also selected “All the Things You Are” by chance, because the tune came into my head. So I guess I’m working on two new tunes while trying to get “But Not For Me” up to a slightly higher tempo, albeit not the blistering speeds some play it at.   

Below, you can see a log of my practice sessions for the last few weeks.

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Practice Log: 31 March–13 April (Two weeks, Sunday–Saturday)

This entry is part 9 of 11 in the series 2024 Practice Log

This is my regularly updated practice log, mostly for accountability with my saxophone practice. Below you can see my practice for the week. If you’d like to check it out, here’s my goal list of tunes for the year. 

I’m still working on “Four” but I’m pretty much happy with my progress on “Skylark.” I’ll be choosing another tune this week. (The second week covered in this post, for reasons covered below.)

Below, you can see a log of my practice sessions for the week.

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March Reads (2024)

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series 2024-Reads

This is the third in a series of posts about books I’ve read in 2024, covering the month of March. As always, the beginning of semester is a busy time and I get less reading done, but even more, I started some books that I’m still working on finishing in April… but I prefer to only mention books when I finish them, so they won’t get blogged about till the end of this month (at the soonest). 

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Practice Log: 24–30 March (Sunday–Saturday)

This entry is part 9 of 11 in the series 2024 Practice Log

This is my regularly updated practice log, mostly for accountability with my saxophone practice. Below you can see my practice for the week. If you’d like to check it out, here’s my goal list of tunes for the year. 

I’m still working on “Four” and “Skylark” for this week. I know the form of “Four” but actually navigating it in real time—especially at the popular tempo—is tough!  

Below, you can see a log of my practice sessions for the week.

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Looking Back on #dungeon23

There is a post that has sat unpublished in the queue on this blog for almost a year: the last installment I started on last year’s #dungeon23 experiment. 

I got as far as July 8th before throwing in the towel. Why only till July 8th? Well, a couple of things: 

  1. July means summer class. I teach intensive writing courses in the summer and winter break, and the workload can be pretty full-on. I don’t perfectly remember, but I have to assume that was part of it. 
  2. I hit a wall, not of creativity so much as of the limitations of my chosen structure. In other words, I’d have to go back to the start and rethink my approach if I wanted to do the project the way I wanted. I didn’t choose a dungeon, mind you, I chose a shattered moon with multiple parts to it, and with some dungeons on its various surfaces. With something a little more straightforward, like, say, a dungeon, I might have been able to keep it up for a year, but with the project I chose, I eventually realized there was a better way to organize everything, but didn’t want to go back and attempt that because it would mean restarting from scratch halfway through. 
  3. My creativity is more of a feast/famine type thing: it’s quiet fallow periods followed by periods of intensive activity, and doing “one little bit” each day just isn’t really how I operate. I knew that going in, but thought I’d give it a try anyway, and… yeah, I was able to confirm that it’s not for me. 

I’d still like to do more with the shattered moon setting: at least run it for a group, or maybe even work it up for publication. But the optimal format for either of those things would be pretty different from what I came up with originally, and I’m still thinking over what is the really optimal format for it. Perhaps after finishing with a big translation project my wife and I have taken on, I’ll return to it? We’ll see.