Transcription of Jason Fabus’s Swingin’ Alto Sax Solo on Cherokee

Here is another Facebook  solo transcription for you.   I woke up at around 7:45 this morning, rolled over in bed and grabbed my phone off the side table to check what I might have missed during my  7 hours of sleep.  Still sleepy, I checked my email, some comments on my site, the news to see if the world blew up yet and the weather for today.  Lastly, I decided to check Facebook to see if there was anything interesting.  I scrolled down through a couple posts about Trump and some cute pet videos and then saw this gem.   My wife was still sleeping so I put my headphones in and pushed play………..

I did have plans this morning but those all dropped by the wayside after hearing this swinging solo by alto saxophonist Jason Fabus.  I went downstairs grabbed a coffee and escaped to my office where I spent the next 3 hours transcribing this gem of a solo.

Jason looks to me like he is about 16 years old.  I’m sure he must be older than that but I would be surprised if he could get into bar without being asked for his ID.  Like I have written in other posts here on my blog,  I love hearing new young burnin’ players I have never heard of for the first time.  This was one of those times.  Nothing in this solo is super complex or mind boggling but the beauty of this solo is it’s melodic content, simplicity and swing.  Jason’s lines and ideas are great and a classic mix of bebop and blues.  I especially love hearing this kind of playing coming from a young player.  It’s almost like he is an old soul in a young body.

Coincidently, yesterday I spent a half hour playing along with Charlie Parker soloing on Cherokee from 1943.  This is a killer alto sax solo by “Bird” if you haven’t checked it out yet.   The background for his solo was quite similar to the play along that Jason solos with here.

Jason Fabus

Thanks again to Jason Fabus for all his energy and the great solo on Cherokee! If you want to find out more about Jason Fabus,  check out his site at   If you live in California near Los Angeles or Orange County be sure to check out one of Jason Fabus’s groups around town. Thee is a calendar of gigs on his website.

Check out the video below and the transcription.     Enjoy!

Jason Fabus soloing on Cherokee

Jason Fabus’s Solo on Cherokee-Alto Sax Mp3(Right click and choose “save link as” to download mp3 to your computer)

Cherokee-Jason Fabus Solo Eb
Cherokee-Jason Fabus Solo Bb

Steve About Steve

Steve Neff has been playing and teaching saxophone and jazz improvisation around the New England area for the last 30 years. He is the author of many effective jazz improvisation methods as well as founding the popular jazz video lesson site


  1. Avatar Eric Olson says

    Old time feel and great tone. Finally someone who isn’t trying to take Cherokee at 400. Thanks for doing this one Steve.

  2. Hey Jason,
    This is Mr. High! Thank you for staying with it. I enjoyed Cherokee and your development.
    Peace Always
    John High

  3. Seems like Jason is +10 yrs older than 16, by a quick glance at his bio, a Masters degree in 2017 would make 26 years old pretty likely

  4. Steve thank you for the gift of the transcription. I stopped to listen just the way you and so many others probably listened to Jason “Fabulous”. Your comments are right on. We may be hearing much more great music from him hopefully.

  5. Avatar John Anderson says

    Fabulous! I love swinging melodic approaches like Jason’s. I could listen to that all day. Just beautiful.

  6. Just about everything he plays is worth transcribing.
    Check out – I Want To Be Happy, Night and Day and Portrait of Jennie.
    Amazing player!

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