Jody Espina: Sax Practice, Improv, and Tech
Jody Espina, saxophonist and president/founder of sax equipment manufacturer JodyJazz Inc., presents a clinic on practice techniques, improvisation, and mouthpiece technology. Along with being a performer, he's a Berklee alumnus and a very successful businessman.
Espina will present skills and techniques for developing a personal saxophone sound. Topics will include breathing and embouchure techniques as well as harmonics and other exercises to help players achieve their dream sound.
DownBeat’s January 2011 issue features an article by Espina entitled “Paraphrasing the Greats.” He will discuss and demonstrate this underutilized technique and its role in developing a style and vocabulary as an improviser.
Part two of the clinic will cover mouthpiece technology, including what each part of the mouthpiece does to the sound as well as a discussion of reeds. Espina hopes to help players make more informed decisions when they search for a new mouthpiece.
After graduating from Berklee in 1983, Espina performed and taught music in Barcelona and toured with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra before settling in New York City in 1985. For the next 15 years he pursued a successful career performing, recording, and teaching music, including playing in Broadway pit orchestras, recording movie soundtracks, and leading the Jazz Department at the Hoff-Barthelson Music School.
In 2000, he founded JodyJazz, a saxophone and clarinet mouthpiece manufacturer. Espina attributes the phenomenal growth of the company (which has annual sales in excess of $1 million) to a dedication to quality control, innovative designs, and cutting-edge technologies. In 2008 Espina moved JodyJazz to Savannah, Georgia in order to be closer to family.