Swingin’ Max Ionata “You’re Driving Me Crazy” Tenor Sax Solo Transcription

Here is another swingin’ solo by the great tenor saxophone player from Italy, Max Ionata.  I absolutely love this solo and have probably listened to it a hundred times over the last few days while transcribing it.  Max Ionata plays with a perfect blend of hip jazz lines, crazy technique, a swingin’ time feel and a melodic concept that is so easy to listen to.

I have posted another transcription of “But Not for Me” and Home At Last in the past as well as a solo of his on a minor blues with Dave O’Higgins. If you don’t know his playing, please check out these recordings and Youtube videos of his.  Max Ionata has a tenor sax tone from heaven in my opinion and his jazz playing is equally as beautiful.  His tone is lush, dark and full of character and his fast lines are smooth as butter.


Max Ionata’s Inspiration CD

The tune is “You’re Driving Me Crazy” by Walter Donaldson. I was unfamiliar with this standard but I found the music to in Volume III of The Real Book by Hal Leonard (although it is in a different key). Max is performing with the Francesca Tandoi Trio.

Hope you enjoy the solo!  Thanks to Max Ionata for his incredible tenor sax playing that always brings a smile to my face!  Do yourself a favor and check out Max Ionata’s website as well!  If you appreciate the solo and Max Ionata’s playing please feel free to say so in the comments below………..  Thanks,   Steve

Max Ionata Tenor Sax Solo-You’re Driving Me Crazy (starts at 1:03)

Max Ionata Solo on You’re Driving Me Crazy-Bb PDF
Max Ionata Solo on You’re Driving Me Crazy-Concert Key PDF

*If you would like to support me here at neffmusic.com, you can do so on the support page of my store by debit or credit card.   Any support is appreciated and will go towards keeping this site running, saxophone reeds, mouthpiece patches, coffee, and towards justifying the many hours I spend on providing free transcriptions to the saxophone community!  Thanks,   Steve

If you love these type of solo lines, be sure to check out my PDF books “Approach Note Velocity Volume 1-Major” “Approach Note Velocity Volume 2-Minor“, which includes hundreds of approach note lines over major and minor chords that I have written out in all 12 keys. These lines are the foundation to building a great jazz vocabulary!!


Approach Note Velocity Volume 1-Major


Approach Note Velocity Volume 2-Minor

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 Neffmusic.com.


  1. My type of group and my type of lyrical soloing. I also respect someone who can transcribe ANY solo.

  2. Avatar Jacques Rossat says

    Fantastic discovery for me. Many thanks. These solos are epitomes of logics, fluidity and creativity. Brilliant transcription too, thanks again.
    BTW I loved the way the drummer dares to make ample use of the chinise cymbal.
    Keep swinging

  3. Avatar William Bone says

    This is great and it kinda reminds me of a faster version of Tad Dameron’s “On a Misty Night.” Dunno, I haven’t compared the changes and Max has his own killer voice but I also hear some early Trane. Check out Trane on Dameron’s “Mating Call.”

  4. The whole thing was just so swinging and tasty. Max was great and the singer was not only great with her vocals, but very fine with her soloing. Solid.

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