Brandon Dixon is actively pursuing new musical ideas and opportunities. This list outlines the projects he is currently pursuing, as well as major projects he has completed in the past.
Quarter Tone Technique for Saxophone
Quarter Tone Technique for Saxophone is a technique book that demonstrates how to produce quarter tone notes in a fluent manner with full sound and proper intonation. Dixon began working on this book early 2016, and published the book on August 22nd, 2017.
The goal of this book is to encourage saxophonists to learn this technique and to encourage saxophone composers to write for it. Quarter tonality presents new melodic and harmonic possibilities that can bring about previously unexplored textures, colors, and atmospheres to music.
The book is sold online and in stores. In addition, many universities, high schools, and libraries have copies that can be rented or checked-out.
For more information about this book, please visit: www.quartertonesaxophone.com.
Ghost House is an experienced and active modern jazz sextet based in the New Jersey and Philadelphia area. The group is co-led by Evan Smith and Brandon Dixon. The band’s repertoire consists of original compositions by Smith and Dixon, as well as the classic jazz standards.
The group aims to create modern, ground-breaking music which has deep roots in traditional jazz. Smith’s composition Mr. Underdog pays tribute to composer and bassist Charles Mingus while exploring new harmonic cohesiveness over pedal tones. Dixon’s composition Contrast draws from the compositional style of saxophonist John Coltrane while exploring new harmonic possibilities. All of the band’s original compositions seek to explore these, and other new possibilities
Quarter Tone Jazz Quartet
The Quarter Tone Jazz Quartet, consisting of tenor saxophone, acoustic bass, quarter tone piano, and drumset, is the first of its kind. This unique band will compose and perform a new kind of jazz music which has never been heard before. Dixon is in the process of writing compositions for the quartet. Videos of Dixon performing quarter tone compositions can be found in the Videos page under the Quarter Tone Jazz section.
Dixon is currently in the process of composing and recording numerous classical compositions for saxophone quartet, solo saxophone with piano accompaniment, and other ensembles. These compositions seek to explore the new harmonic and melodic possibilities quarter tonality has to offer.
The solo saxophone with piano accompaniment pieces are unique in that the saxophone writing makes extensive use of quarter tonality, while the piano music makes use of none. These pieces can be performed with any piano without any modification to the instrument. The saxophone quartet music, on the other hand, utilizes the saxophone's ability to play quarter tones to create vivid atmospheres of sound and harmony.
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