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EXCLUSIVE! FIRST-EVER DIGITAL RELEASE ANYWHERE! (SAJ-40) http://fmp-label.de/freemusicproduction/labelscatalog/saj40.html . Alfred Harth put together this orchestra from amateur musicians, all of whom learned the saxophone from him. The result is a wild, infectious, and tuneful romp through pieces by Coltrane, Dollar Brand, Frank Zappa, and more. A social experiment and statement about the beauty of amateur enthusiasm, it recalls Gavin Bryars and Brian Eno's Portsmith Symfonia.
"Saxophonist Alfred Harth is a semi-regular FMPer. And, for The Frankfurt Saxophone Orchestra, he has taken the social commentary/responsibility/attitudes of Eisler/Brecht and made them a reality. The group consists of 21 reed players, none of whom had played a sax or clarinet before the age of 30. They all learned from Harth, who then organized the group. For those who usually skip reading titles, represented composers include Coltrane, Zappa, and Dollar Brand. The notion of getting together with a diverse group of people towards a common (and, in this case, creative) end is an admirable one, though these aggregations usually have quite a short life span (as do most groups). The arrangements are simple, but the execution, as well as the solos are sincere and propel the music with pure gusto. Every town should have one."
- Milo Fine, Cadence magazine
Das Saxophonorchester Frankfurt
Alfred Harth: alto saxophone, bass clarinet
Chris Becker: tenor saxophone
Clemens Böhlen: alto saxophone
Thomas Conrad: alto saxophone
Max Eipp: tenor saxophone
Angela Federspiel: alto saxophone
Rudi Federspiel: tenor saxophone
Petra Fehrmann: clarinet, alto saxophone
Marlies Gebhard: alto saxophone
Gerhard Gugel: alto saxophone
Michael Kloss: tenor saxophone
Renate Kosanke: tenor saxophone
Walter Krämer: tenor saxophone
Manfred Lieske: clarinet, bass clarinet
Horst Luley: tenor saxophone
Walther Neu: alto saxophone
Florian Nikel: alto saxophone
Ole Schmidt: alto saxophone
Andrea Schmitthenner: tenor saxophone
Robert Soprun: alto saxophone
Franziska Valenti: clarinet, alto saxophone
Recorded live by Jost Gebers on March 27th & 28th, 1982, at the Flöz in Berlin.
CD mastering by Olaf Rupp.
Mixed and produced by Jost Gebers.
Track 2: Ole Schmidt, Alfred Harth
Track 6: Manfred Lieske;
Track13: Michael Kloss
Track 15: Alfred Harth, Rudi Federspiel;
Track 17: Rudi Federspiel
Cover design by the orchestra. Photographs by Dagmar Gebers.
The orchestra consists of printers, teachers, unemployed people, pupils, goldsmiths, sociologists, geographers, poets, all of whom began to learn an instrument, namely the saxophone -- but not before the third decade of their lives. They all learned it from Alfred Harth, who founded the orchestra with them in 1980.