Balafon, the first of Christian Lauba’s Neuf Études for Saxophone, is an “African song” that uses the ancient technique of circular breathing. This soloist work - splendidly performed in the album “Hard” by Richard Ducros, one of the greatest interpreters of Lauba’s works for saxophone – was expanded and transformed, with the composer’s approval, by saxophonist Philippe Geiss into a piece for Saxophone (tenor or soprano) and electronics under the title Blue Balafon. The arrangement calls for “free articulation in a ‘jazz legato’ spirit”, making the use of circular breathing optional in order to favour the piece’s incredible energy.
The score comes with a CD that includes a complete version of the work performed on Saxophone by Philippe Geiss, as well as an electroacoustic accompaniment isolated for playback. This eclectic musical adventure proves itself both stimulating for the mind and invigorating for the senses.