When you listen to the great jazz masters from the 1950’s like Charlie Parker, one of the most important (and coolest) techniques used is be-bop articulation.

And it’s not just “be bop” players. Cannonball Adderley uses this technique, as does Gerald Albright today and loads of other amazing players.

But what is Be-Bop articulation and how can you practice it?

About this lesson

As an “articulation” skill you probably guessed by now that it is all about your tonguing.

Specifically, be bop articulation is simply where we put emphasis on the “second half” of the beat in a quaver or 1/8th note run.

Another way to think of this is that we tongue every second note in a run of 1/2 beat notes. This also works for 16ths or semi-quavers too, depending on tempo of course.

In the video below, I break down the counting for this plus how to get started practicing be-bop articulation on your alto or tenor sax, even if you are a beginner player.

Should I be learning be bop articulation?

I get it. Not everyone is a “jazz fan”. However, learning the technique of Be-Bop articulation will help you play in any style.

You see the most important thing you are developing when working on this skill is your tongue – finger coordination. And, this will help you playing in any style from classical to funk.

Ready to get started? Check out the lesson below and be sure to download the worksheet so you can practice this technique regularly.

Download the Be Bop Articulation Worksheet

Want access to the full Be Bop workout lessons?

As a Sax School member you’ll have access to our full Be Bop Workout lesson series, plus have unlimited access to over 600 other lessons, courses and masterclass to help you make amazing progress on your saxophone.

Find out more and get started today.

Nigel McGill

After 25 years touring, performing all over the world, I setup Sax School to share what I have learned. Today thousands of players in more than 70 countries use the huge library of online saxophone lessons in Sax School. Find out how it can help you too! www.mcgillmusic.com

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