Tom Bergeron

Saxophonist | Band Leader | Recording Artist | Record Producer | Professor of Music Emeritus

Saxophone Multiphonics: A Scalar Model

by Tom Bergeron

In addition to the sounds generally considered characteristic of the instrument, the saxophone is capable of producing sonorities which comprise multiple non-harmonically related pitches, to which the term multiphonic has been applied. These multiphonic sonorities can be organized according to a conceptual structure I have christened a Scalar Model, as it facilitates the identification of series of multiphonics — multiphonic scales — which have sequential fingering combinations, and which subsequently tend to produce sequential-sounding sonorities.

A complete explanation of the Scalar Model is the subject of a comprehensive book that I wrote in 1989. A completely revised 2020 Third Edition is now available as a free download, subject to the Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 4.0 International License.

In addition to the book, a collection of 54 recorded examples of multiphonic scales — corresponding to the examples notated and annotated in Chapter 6 — may be accessed here, subject to the same terms.

Download the Book

Saxophone Multiphonics: A Scalar Model

Recorded Examples

The copyright holders grant the freedom to copy, modify, convey, adapt, and/or redistribute these recordings under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 4.0 International License.