I feel that throughout this school year I have progressed greatly in not only my playing skills and composition but also my theory. Over the course of the year we have also learned about many different genres of music, and playing and composing different genres of music. I feel that I have made the most progress in my music theory throughout this year and this was because of a combination of what we learned in class and also starting to focus more on music theory in my private saxophone lessons outside of school. One element of music I would definitely like to improve on composing music and creating more interesting melodies that follow all the necessary guidelines.
For our exam in music we had to do a scales exam where we played 5 harmonic/melodic minor scales and one chromatic scale, a jazz solo playing test which was a solo that was written by Mr. Taitoko and we also had a music theory test. I was very happy with my performance in my music theory test but I feel that I could have done a bit better for my playing and scales tests. My note accuracy was good throughout my entire scales test, and I only messed up one scale about half way up but after starting again I was able to play all the notes correctly for this scale. I think that I need to work on my rhythm accuracy because in a few of my scales I was a bit off the beat. I could easily fix this by taking more time to listen to the metronome before starting the scale so that I was locked into the rhythm. In my playing test my note and rhythm accuracy was quite good and I only messed up one or two notes in the song, and I was also on the beat during the performance. Also, my precision of articulation during my jazz solo was quite good but this was not too difficult because there was no written articulation such as slurs, and the only articulation we needed to use was
In my playing test my note and rhythm accuracy was quite good and I only messed up one or two notes in the song, and I was also on the beat during the performance. Also, my precision of articulation during my jazz solo was quite good but this was not too difficult because there was no written articulation such as slurs, and the only articulation we needed to use was swing to give the piece a jazzy feel. There was also no dynamics written for the piece so I played the piece at a mezzo forte throughout, and didn’t change the dynamics throughout the piece because I feel that they weren’t a very important part of playing this particular jazz solo well. My tone quality during the jazz solo and scales tests I thought was also very good and appropriate to the song I was playing and to playing scales. The intonation that I played was also accurate during the piece. For our scales and solo playing test the tempo was 100 bpm in a 4/4 time, and I was able to stay on beat in the majority of my scales and also during my solo playing test. However, I felt that 100 bpm was quite a slow tempo for the playing test and I had to practice last-minute playing at this speed because I usually practiced the song at about 120 bpm in 4/4 time.
I was very happy with the score I was able to achieve for my final music theory test which was a 7 out of a possible 8. The reason I was very happy with this score is because I was not only able to improve on my score from the December theory test which was a 6 out of 8 and I because I now feel I really understand the content that we have learnt in music theory throughout the year. Some of the aspects of music theory we were tested on are key signatures in different clefs (alto, tenor, treble and bass clef), intervals, 7th chords and transposition. There was also two questions about composition. I feel that I can still improve on the theory aspect of composition and understanding this fully. By this I mean I need to get more comfortable with using passing and neighbour tones and labelling chords, to name a few aspects of music theory related to composition. Below is my final theory test.
I feel that throughout this year I have become a more complete music student because of the many things that we have learned such as the history of jazz and composing different genres of music. What we have learned this year especially about jazz has made me more open-minded toward listening to different styles of music and different styles of jazz because I have never previously been interested in listening to jazz music in my own time. Learning about different styles of jazz and certain jazz artists of the time and the componenets and elements of music that go into jazz compositions has made me reaslise how complex composing this music is, and has also now influenced me to listen to jazz in my own time.