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December 30, 2005

Wow Sue, the new CD is awesome -- the tunes, the concept, the players, the playing! Vincent Ector -- haven't heard much of his stuff, but I love the harmonic, painterly drummers and he has certainly mastered that art.

I have another musical question for you, if you don't mind. I recently had to come up with an algorithm to construct chords (for a piece of software.) I gleaned the following "rules of construction" just from observation. Can you tell me if my logic is solid here? (Sometimes logic drawn from simple observation tends to break down somewhere along the line -- exceptions.)

// -- >> Basic Chord Constructs
' A major chord always has 4 semi tones between the tonic and mediant (I and III)
' A minor chord always has 3 semi tones between the tonic and mediant (I and III)
' A major chord always has 3 semi tones between the mediant and dominant (III and V)
' A minor chord always has 4 semi tones between the tonic and mediant (III and V)
// -- >> Variants
' An augmented chord always has +1 semi tone on the dominant (V)
' A diminished chord always decreases III and V by 1 semi tone and adds VI which is 2 semi tones above the new dominant (V)
' A major 6th chord always adds the VI and is 1 semi tone above the dominant V
' A regular 7th chord always adds VI (2 semi tones above V) to the major chord form
' A major 7th chord always adds a VI (3 semi tones above V) to the major chord form
// -- >> 11, 13,etc. yet to be quantified

If this logic is correct, our major chords follow the form: root + 4 semi-tones + 3 semi-tones. Our minor chords follow: root + 3 semi-tones + 4 semi-tones. Do we use other "basic" forms to construct chords, such as root + 5 semi-tones + 5 semi-tones. If not, why do we only use those two basic forms? I did a scant bit of research awhile back and happened on Scriabin's "mystic chord." The first thing I noticed about that chord is that each note is 5 semi-times apart, and that's actually what prompted me to wonder if r + 5 + 5, or r + 3 + 5, etc. were acknowledged forms. I hope my wording (and logic) isn't too confusing (or totally off base!) and if this is too heady for a blog then please feel free to point me the direction of a book or online document.

Thank you mucho!


December 25, 2005

Hi Sue and Happy Holidays!

What a wonderful website you have. My husband and I are thoroughly addicted to your blog and your guests! That's an interesting observation that Deb makes about solos. As a non-musician, I never really thought about how everything works together from the inside out. I have a book called The Complete Idiot's Guide To Jazz. It covers a lot of ground, some terminology, history, various styles, instruments, players. A good overview and quick reference. Funny thing though, the word solo is not listed in the index nor in the glossary of jazz terminology. There's a short chapter about the first (or accepted as the first) soloists, but it's about the players and not what a solo actually is. I think it would interesting to read a book about how everything really works or comes together. The best that books like this one can offer seems to be: Some jazz is written down... some completely spontaneous... It's up to the performer to take these hints and make jazz out of them. (pgs. 45, 46) A little on the cryptic side I guess!

Thanks for your insights, both wise and witty, and of course for the wonderful music!

Sandra and Jon


December 23, 2005

Thanks again mucho Sue. Those sound like good reads. I've had Duke's autobio on my list for way too long.

Re: "that woman" - when I was thinking about that jazz satire the other day she was the first person/charcter that came to mind, "Well, there's one part that's written itself." ;-)

Possible answers to the Lou-Sue riddle. And keep in mind that this is coming from someone whose last compositional attempt resulted in 5 lovely instr. parts, all for French Horn as it turns out.

"How do you get from B(flat) to E(flat)?"

A.) Practice?
B.) One half of a 12-step plan?
C.) The Beatles?
D.) Any way you dang well please?
E.) I know one thing for sure, 2 days ago you couldn't get there by taking the A Train!

Have a Happy!


December 22, 2005

Wow, all these years of listening to jazz, reading about it, even having the good fortune of knowing some very cool players, and I never knew exactly what a solo was/is. Thanks Sue! What books/videos about jazz do you, or Scooby, or Tim, etc., personally like/recommend? Historical, bios, theory, whatever -- the stuff you like. I have a few books/vids, but would like to pick up some more. I rented the Ken Burns series a few years ago. Naturally Blockbuster didn't have it so I had to sign up for NetFlix, but I was glad I went thru the hassle of the rent thing as opposed to buying it because overall I found the flick to be oddly depressing and gloomy. The accompanying book, on the other hand, is beautiful. I also have "Madame Jazz" by Leslie Gourse with Sweet Sue looking very cool on the cover! Thanks in advance for the recs! -Deb


December 22, 2005

Sue said, " I think players should take full responsibility for all the sounds they're putting out into the universe!" That reminds me of a master class that bassist Doug Weiss gave many years ago. At the beginning he had us sit quietly for awhile. He then mentioned how beautiful silence is and that if we chose to disturb that silence by playing a solo it had better be worth it!


December 21, 2005

T'is true Sweet Sue, holiday shopping abounds in Brooklyn. Bagels, Brooklyn Beer, live fluke from the Bay, articles of clothing emblazoned with the word "Brooklyn" -- something for everyone on your list. And of course the little ones always love to find fresh Fratelli fettucini noodles in their stockings on Christmas morn.

Better go, just got email from Kylie Menka. Seems she has challenged me to some sort of "spelldown refract."

Oh, my music question: how do you know when someone is done with their solo? Are you counting pre-allotted bars/beats or is there some signal passed? I was listening to some big band stuff the other day, Frank Foster I believe. The drummer took what seemed to be an extended solo (encouraged by the audience, live thang) and yet the whole band came back in in perfect unison. Now I'm listening more for those solo-comebacks -- I'm amazed at how perfect they are across the Jazz spectrum and curious as to how that whole thing works.

Thanks! Ciao -Deb

Ed Fitzgerald

December 20, 2005

Sue: I'm not coming for my lesson tonight(12/20) due to the strike. I'm afraid I'll get caught in traffic, particularly on the Jackie Robinson. I'll miss 12/27(we'll be in Canada) but will see you 1/3/06. My horn travels,so I'll be prepared.

Liz C.

December 19, 2005


Thanks so much for solving the mystery of the Spam! To think that all these years, I was certain that they were actually subliminal messages to get me to buy more Haagen-Dazs.

However, with this new realization comes new responsibility. Do we turn OFF our Spam filters, and harvest as much as the stuff as we possibly can before forwarding it all to the CIA, the FBI, or the Whitehouse? Or do we form an underground group of vigilantes who fight the terrorists by responding to the Spam with False information?

I also realize now that *I* am the one responsible for my waist size. I have no one else to blame anymore! I need to find someone to sue to pay for the many years of therapy it will undoubtedy take for me to recover from this...

So much to think about...



December 13, 2005

Happy Holidays, or as the girls in Bay Ridge say, "Check out my new pawlishes with Santer Claus decals." (Not typos.)

Are we officially playing blog-back in the guestbook area, cool. I can never think of those ear flap hats without first thinking of Ignatious J. Reilly, followed by that delightful tune from the movie "This Is Spinal Tap", "Big Bottom, Big Bottom. Talk about mud flaps, my gal's got 'em." You know, I wonder what a movie spoof of the Jazz industry would be? Has one been done? Could be a great boost for visibility; nothing us humans love more than sex, scandal and spoofiness. Someone recently suggested to pianist Bill Carrothers (an extremely funny Jazz Cat, and pretty hip player too), anyway someone suggested to him that he should propose a TV reality show about Jazz musicians. He said, "Oh, sure, we can call it, 'Glass Eye for the Poor Guy' or 'My Big Fat, Obnoxious Club Owner.'" He had a whole slew of them, very funny guy. In fact, if he could afford to make even less money... ! Well, I came in here with a thoroughly thought-provoking musical question in mind, but too late to switch gears now, another time. Have fun!


P.S.: Working title, how about a weird cross between the Ken Burns thing, "Kentucky Fried Movie" and "This Is Spinal Tap", called: "This is Ken's Burnt Jazz Movie." Okay, keep thinking...

Geoff Dunbar

December 13, 2005

So you think this is some kind of South Seas balmy paradise, down here, Sweet Sue?

Well, if you're ever in a position to fly down the Pacific way (to escape the frost on the Big Apple), either choose a spot closer to California (Tahiti, perhaps, or the Cook Islands), or keep flying over Aotearoa (NZ) to Australia's east coast. Port Chalmers is down on the 45 degree south parallel, and the whole country is further south than most of Oz, which means its closer to Antarctica, and colder -- since the prevailing winds are ''Southerlies'', bringing that brisk cold air up here!

Generally, the best we can do in Summer is a high of 80 or so (usually in the mid 70s), while winter lows are sometimes in the mid 20s. You can up these figures by a factor of 10 in the northernmost part of the country (closest to the Equator), but that about it!

Now, Sydney....aaahhhh -- get one of your wealthy patrons to shout you a trip over there this winter, Sweet Sue! You won't regret it (unless those pesky race riots are still happening). The nicest, warmest (mostly of the comfortable 80s lower 90s sort), most equable climate you can imagine -- the best climate, by far, of any Australian city!!!

Re hat with ear flaps: My wife Carola owns and wears (not all at once) at least FOUR:
a bright orangey-red one advertising "Tui''
beer, a plaid ''Mambo'' hat, an American one advertising a ski-field (I think) called ''The Bump'', and a plain sheepskin cap with flaps. Now she wouldn't have need of ANY of these in a South acific paradise, would she?

I hope you're coping with what looks to be a cold, snowy winter in NYC, Sweet Sue (altho I rember that visually, at least, New York looks its best under a light coat of snow -- agreed?).

I was thinking of my old library school days when you had your litle sojourn in Eau Claire, Sue -- I attended the University of Minnesota, in the dim, dark, frozen (in winter) past. I used to cross the Mississippi River at least twice a day, over a footbridge that linked the two parts of the Minneapolis campus! I really enjoyed my three years there, among the German-Scandinavian-Polish natives (see the movie ''Fargo'' for only slightly exaggerated depiction!), but in the end I knew the winters would get me if I didn't get out.

And look how far away I've gone!

David Springer

December 12, 2005

Hi just landed on your website some great music.


November 23, 2005

Re: Fun WIth Computers. If you liked playing with the synthetic voices, then you are really gonna dig this: http://kaelabs.com/support.htm Synthetic voices singing. It's equal parts funny and mind blowing.

Happy T... !

P.S. - I used the word cripe the other day and thought of you. I'm pretty sure I made it up, equal parts crap and cripe. Feel free, it's a great holiday BQE traffic word.

Bruce Hering, Eau Claire Memorial

November 13, 2005

Well, with comments from my students such as "this was the best jazz clinic we've ever had" and comments from the audience members such as " this was the most fun I've had at a concert in years", I would have to conclude your visit to Eau Claire was a SMASHING success, Sue. On behalf of all my students, and a very appreciative audience, thanks so much for bringing your world-class talent, your infectious positve nature, and your intuitive educational skills to us in Wisconsin. We hope to see you again, soon!

Geoff Dunbar

November 10, 2005

Hi, Sweet Sue! Sometimes we literarians miss out on things, like I ALWAYS read the NYTimes Book Review section each week (on the Net, of course -- although I tried subscribing to the Sunday edition from here in New Zealand back in the 80s -- it cost over $300/year SURFACE MAIL, i.e., 3 months late, then; who knows what it would cost today -- but I'd much rather have the good old paper in my hands every Sunday, like you (you LUCKY thing!). Now, where was I? Oh yeah, while I religiously read the Book Review section, I hardly ever look at the Magazine. Thanks for nudging me over to the Ferlinghetti interview! I've always been in with the Beats: even edited a mimeographed magazine called Wild Dog (out of Pocatello, Idaho) in the mid 60s, and wrote my share of poetry! (We published LeRoi Jones back then -- before Amiri Baraka came along -- and his nom de plume was ''The Mississippi Sheik''.

When I arrived in New Zeland in 1972, I found that Kerouac, Ferlinghetti and all those cats were being avidly read by the young, as if they had never gone out of style (which they had, in popular terms, in the States). I also found they were still alive for many young Australians, in the 90s, when we were in Sydney.

Earlier on, you had a bit about hearing a great new young sax talent in a subway station. Back when a ride was still a dime, buskers weren't allowed (although with a few exceptions, busking simply wasn't done ANYWHERE, in those days!).

The nearest thing to a busker in the subways I remember was a blind trumpeter (complete with cup) who used to walk the length of the west side trains, cheering us all up with great sounds.

I rode the subways every weekday for two years, from 96th or 103rd down to 14th st. and back, travelling back and forth to Stuyvesant High.

Once, I remember a very disillusioning experience, watching a blind guy flip open the dial of his wrist watch and FEELING the time; the Sunday before, Dick Tracy's Crimestoppers section in the funnies featured a bit about detecting fake blind pan-handlers. REAL blind persons never had wrist-watches on! So, an early lesson about not believing everything you read (particularly handy for us literarians).

Well, nice to keep in touch: You still grace my Home Page, Sweet Sue -- keep on truckin'!

Geoff (New Zealand)


October 31, 2005

Sue, you did indeed sheesh on Sept. 25th, and I *did* read that entry. I guess I was so grossed out at the thought of "a lot of songs from the 90s" that I totally missed it.

Happy Halloween, have fun and all that!


October 31, 2005

Hey Sue,

A few weeks back, I had this dream that I was driving in my car, listening to some jazz station on the radio when "New Year" came on. So I got all excited about hearing one of your songs on the radio (I really love that one, BTW) when the vocal began, and, it was A MAN singing!

I stared at the radio in horror (after all, it was my dream - why shouldn't I be able to drive without looking at the road?), and exclaimed, "No! That's Sue's song! This is so wrong! ...I wonder if she knows about this?"

And then I woke up.

Should this be filed under "Analyze this?"


P.S.- Interesting new look and feel for your site. Quite daring! It's growing on me...

Tony Burrell, II

October 21, 2005

the Fish Story was funny! You really do need a sharp knife :-)
happy altoing


Kendra Shank

October 20, 2005

hi Sue,
nice talking with you last night at the JJA panel. Cool Blog & site. thanks for the tips on digital stuff...i'll learn this stuff eventually!!!
xo kendra

Bob Smigel

October 18, 2005

Jammed with you at Tim's wedding...Would like to check out a show. Would like to help get you some gigs near me so I don't have to travel too far. THANKS!


October 15, 2005

Sue, I saw you with Hilton Ruiz last night in Schenectady. And, (excuse the pun) you bleew me away. I knew with an opener like Sweet Cherry Pie, on which you kicked ass, the night was going to be incredible. It was. Even though you're mike was fucked up during the first set, you came through loud and clear. And now I'm hooked on your blog!


October 14, 2005

"...and their ilk." I don't why, but I have a sneaking suspicion the word sheesh is gonna show up in your blog soon. ;-) Sue, your blog is the bloggiest, your humor is priceless and your music is "Outrageous baby!" The samples from the new CD sound amazing. Thanks for all of it and keep it up!

Basic Brooklyn Jazz Fan

P.S.: The fish story... what kinda Brooklyn girl are you, should have gone something like: "Hey! Git dat smelly crap outta my face!"

Alyssa Severson

October 10, 2005

Hi Sue!
I'm a jazz student from Eau Claire, and as girl who loves the jazz language, I'm really excited to meet a woman that can be a jazz role model for me. I play alto sax as well and I'm excited to work with you and I'm ready to soak everything in. I'm getting pumped!

Tim Price

October 8, 2005

Your site and blog are always an inspiration to me.

I ran across a quote that reminds me of you;

The ideas that have lighted my way have been kindness, beauty and truth. -:Albert Einstein

YOU...Sweet Sue are a beacon in this world! :)
Keep on!!!


October 6, 2005

see you inschnectady on the 14th--steve johns sends his best


September 21, 2005

Sue -- After my wife and I got your cd (pink slimy worm -- and WHEN is another one comin' along?) we found so great I decided to make suterry.com ,my home page! Well, we live down here in Port Chalmers, towards the southern end of the South Island of New Zealand. My wife Carola is a painter/sculptor, an aspiring sax noodler of many years, and a true-blue Kiwi. I was an American once (have traded in my US ''papers'' for NZ and Australian citizenship). Left in 72 and from what I've seen the US hasn't improved much since then (a bit before your time, though). Well, maybe this will be the start of a fine correspondence (I grew up in what they now apparently call Manhattan Valley -- 100th and Amsterdam, 109th bewteen Columbus and Amsterdam, 110th across from St Johns, and so forth -- a great time was had by all! And now I've got to go and tend a bad case of the flu (NOT bird flu!


September 21, 2005

Hi Sue,

Sure, we're out here (referring to today's blog entry). I check it frequently for new entries. I was also a DJ in school -- worked my way up to Jazz Director by the end. Loved doing radio! I'm a former Paul Jeffrey student as well. Paul really taught me a lot.
Your site is great. Keep those blog entries coming!

-- Scooby


September 2, 2005

Hello Sue,

I feel it is important to share with you that I began on the alto saxophone about 2 ½ years ago. Your “Step One: Play Alto Sax” book and CD played an important role in my success and dedication as a beginner on the instrument. I recently purchased your “Practice Like the Pros” book and CD, and I look forward to utilizing the ideas presented.

Thank you for these solid products, and the insight and inspiration from your success.

Best wishes,


ashley seward

August 23, 2005

hey Sue-live outside if Saratogajust as well Dizzys is too expensive-Tried to buy Sax in the City-sent money-never got cd?? Yes alot of jazz up here! Come on up Ashley

Sandrine Lee

August 6, 2005

Hi Sue,
It was nice meeting you at Birdland the other night.
Will, his dad & I just check out the site and some of the tunes. You're great! Definitely sign us in for your upcoming gigs. We'll be there.

Manuel Valera

July 18, 2005

Hi Sue,

it was great to meet you and to hear you play. hope we can play together sometime

Take Care

Manuel (piano player from Oscar's band)

917 224 4117
718 855 5952

Steve Kay

July 17, 2005

Hi Sue:
Greetings from Nebraska. I enjoyed your new web site. Have a great summer.
Best Wishes,

mark zaretsky

July 11, 2005

It was nice to meet you at the wedding in Central Park. The band sounded great. I'm enjoying the clips off your album (PSW) and have just ordered it. I'd love to hear your group if you ever made it to Rochester. We did just have a jazz festival here in early June that's becoming popular. Best of Luck!

Tony Burrell, II

July 10, 2005

Good to hear you live again at the 2006 MLJWIJ Fest-liked the soprano work, would like to hear you do more onthat horn as well.......nice "Stolen Sweets" solo, haven't heard that tune since a Mancini album'way back when...............hmmmm, just thought about it, must have something to do with your "Sweet Sue " moniker?

Willis/Susie LEE

July 8, 2005

Your website is the BOOM.Keep up the great works in music and living. Call us abd stop by for a bite .(718-549-7983). We are in Riverdale(BX).NY

Jim Leporati

June 27, 2005

Hey Sue,
Love your site and your playing (and especially your use of "roll-back")!

See you soon!

Julius Tolentino

June 26, 2005

Site looks great. Fun playing with you the other nite. Hope to play again soon. MP3's are burnin'!

Fred Harvey

June 23, 2005


Came to the site in search of a mouthpiece..a "petey (or PD) jazz". He might have had more fluid (drinks) than fact...

Stayed for the songs -
Good stuff, but then you already knew that.

Oh the egg thing is Equinoxes - (Spring and Fall)

Jerome(JD) Aaron

June 19, 2005

Hey Sue--always loved your axe playing even as roomies. Trying to give you something back...

Larry Geiger

June 14, 2005

Hi Sue
Had lunch with Tim P today after my lesson, and he was tellin me about your site and the blog. Cool stuff. I especially enjoyed the game of life story. Another set back card could be to have an 18 year old son who announces that he is going to go to El Salvador for the summer.
Would love to come up to NYC and hear you play sometime. If tim likes you, you must be cool.
Larry Geiger

Jill Waterman

May 15, 2005

Hey Sue:

I just googed myself and found your web site around page 4 or 5. Love the header picture you're using! It's great to be back in touch. Please add me to your mailing list.

Warmest Regards,

Jill Waterman

Willis &Susie/Carpenter/LEE

May 11, 2005

Thanks for keeping in touch. We will pull up on you ASAP..Willis/Susie

DAvid Yudkin

May 6, 2005

Hi sweetheart!

Gene Solon

May 5, 2005

Greetings from Tucson! Just checked my e-mail and found your new, dandy, improved and lovely web site. It's almost midnight here so I'll explore the rest of it tomorrow. By the way, you can call me "old man" now with impunity. I just turned 80. Played Ellington all day; he and I share the same birth date. Heard through the grapevine that you were out there supporting 802 a week or so ago. Good for you! More later.
Hugs and kisses.

Kenny Davis

May 5, 2005

Hi Sue. You always sounded great. Have a good gig. Sorry I can't make it. Peace,

Kenny Davis


May 5, 2005

Hello Sue,

You might not remember me, but I took a lessons with you when you lived in Manhattan and Brooklyn, I hope you are doing well, I will see you on the 12th, take care

Jan Klincewicz

May 5, 2005

Hey Sue !! The site looks great. In refernce to Clarence "C" Sharpe you might do better Googling his name spelled SharpE .. There's not a lot about him, but he appears on a Freddie Redd CD "Lonely City" and also on Lee Morgan's first album which I found on a Japanese Blue Note .. You can hear a cut on the Philly Jazz Jukebox http://www.phillyjazz.org/jukebox/andromeda.php

Meilana Gillard

April 24, 2005

It was really great getting to work with you on the Persip band gig. You are such and amazing player and your lead playing really impressed me. I came across your site from a link on Tim's. The site looks great and the music sounds awesome. Take care!


April 6, 2005

I remember c-sharp at the life cafe in the 80's
i performed there as well with a group called pink...
i was googling around and found this link... so many people have died
yes, i remember c-sharp

Bob Siebern

March 29, 2005

Love ya!

Joel Blumert

March 25, 2005

Hi Sue! Please let me know if you're ever going to be playing in the NW CT/SW MA area (Berkshires). I would really like to bring my 11 year old daughter, a budding alto player, to hear you. I don't know if you remember me - we did back-to-back a.m. shows on WWUH a long time ago. I've been doing massage and new bodywork therapies for quite a few years now, and am in the process of going back to playing music myself - did a little gig at Jazz Cafe' 5C last year; Trudy Silver is an old friend from my New Britain days.... anyway, I'm interested in your instructional material for my daughter. Peace. Joel


March 23, 2005



Ricky M

March 8, 2005

Hi Sue,
Great website!
I like the Blog section particularly.
Hope to see you soon. : )

Bill Hardin

February 27, 2005

I listened to Theme & Trajectory X. Very Nice. Has this been published. Is there a way I could get a copy.

Chris Burnett

February 13, 2005

Very nice website and really wonderful music, Ms. Terry! Peace, Cb


February 4, 2005

Cousin Sweet Sue... Great site! Love the layout, love the pics, love the music! Thanks for all your love and support.

Michael Hackett

January 30, 2005

Hey Sue! Great site! Miss you all in NYC! Regards to all,
Mike Hackett

Richard Greeman

January 24, 2005

Dear Sue,

Luva ta pieces! Beautiful site. Sorry I missed you this year. The trip -- what with airplane hastles -- seemed too much, even for Swine Day. I'll be back next Thanksgiving, tho, promise. Unless Bush declares a fascist state. Meanwhile, I'm super happy with Elyane, who is more and more sexy, funny, wise, loving and French (oh la la is for real).

Lots of love, Richard

George Haling

January 20, 2005

The name of my virtuoso clarinetist friend and former teacher is STEVE ELSON
and his group is called Lips and Fingers.
Thanks for the website info Sue, love to you both, GH

Emanuel Stern

January 19, 2005

Hey Sue the site looks great.
Take care,

Emanuel & Chloe

Tim Price

January 19, 2005

Your website is as unique and cutting edge as you are!!
Best wishes to one of the most profound people in this era..and one of the most creative alto players ever!

Rex Djere

January 14, 2005

Hi Sue! You are the Saxophonist of the Month at www.saxtalk.com. i love your new updated site and I updated my article on you at saxtalk. Great work! Visit me at saxtalk soon.


January 6, 2005

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